23 Mar 2015

140 > character title: Skype with your robot friends.

I’m interested in merging digital and physical content. I began my capstone research by looking into alternative interfaces for human computer interaction. I’m tired of interacting with computers through buttons and screens. I found a lot of interesting hardware devices for interacting with computers. A lot of them were gesture controlled such as, Kinect, Leap motion, MYO band etc. I then moved in a different direction. I came across some interesting projects that dealt with extending physical content into the digital world. (without QR codes)

Elektrobiblioteka / Electrolibrary from printscreen on Vimeo.

Difflect from Stefan Wagner on Vimeo.

This got me thinking about what else you could bring across the physical/digital boundary. I saw this project involving projection mapping onto mannequins.

and I had the idea to create a more realistic version of skype by projection mapping someone’s face onto a mannequin head. This head would turn to follow you and be equipped with a mic and camera to pick up your image and voice to send to the other party. this felt a little uncanny valley, so Golan had the suggestion of abstracting the face into a simplified form using animatronics. Essentially the other person’s face is translated into an animatronic face that you speak to. Their image is picked up by facetracking software that analyzes for facial expression and translates that to servo motion in the animatronics.