Digital Media: Interaction Chirstie McBride

Workshop 1: Projection Mapping

Projection mapping may not be a very new technology, but the possibilities are limited only by the imagination.

Projection Mapping is the process in which animated projections are made to fit the exact shape of something in order to make it look like it has come alive. It can be used on building, models, and even the human body.

Here projection mapping has been used to make people's tattoos come to life, changing them, making them move or shift or even colour in. All of this was done with a projector and some software.

Projection mapping has also been used in educational matters, for example within Lincoln Castle there is a mini model of the castle through the ages. The general shape of the castle and landscape is there, than a reimagination of the historical landmark's history is projected over the top.

These are two real world applications for projection mapping, education and art exhibits.

Workshop 2: VR and AR

Adding more in to our reality or leaving it behind all together, with VR and AR you can do both.

VR or virtual reality is a way in which, with the use of a head set, a person can be transported to an entirely different world, one that can see, hear and interact with.

Headsets like Google Cardboard work by holding your phone in front of your eyes. Two little lenses use the screen to make it seem like what is on your phone is right in front of your eyes.

Without the lenses your phone screen looks like this.

Sensors in your phone then detect your head movements and move the content on the screen in relation to it. This way you can turn your head and see something else to the side of you.

Better VR headsets like the Vive work instead with external sensors which track the movement of the headset within a predetermined space. The Vive also give the user the ability to use their hands to pick up and interact with the virtual reality through two handsets.

VR can be used for games, to really take the player to the next level in immersion. It can also be used in art exhibits to show the 'player' what life is like in someone elses shoes.

AR or augmented reality is different. Instead of taking the user into a completely new space, it uses the real world and adds virtual content over the top of it.

Here we have an example of AR that I filmed. Nintendo have included AR games within their handheld consoles ever since they've had a camera on them. In this game, the aim is to shoot little flying heads that are slowly destroying your world.

AR can also be used in the every day, for example an app that fits furniture into your living space using your phone's camera. This way the buyer can see if the product they want to buy fits into the space.

Workshop 3: Microcontrollers

Small is better with these tiny computers.

With the use of different sensors, it is possible to make a mini computer that will complete a certain task. This can be something small like a little light sensor that will turn a light on when it picks up darkness, all the way to a robot that draws a person face using information gathered from a camera as its sensor.

In the workshop we experimented with Little Bits, a toy in which mini computers are built with lego like connecting pieces. A real life application of a small sensor like the ones found it Little Bits would be a monitor that told you when an elderly relative had fallen over. All it would need was a sensor which determined whether the elderly person was vertical or horizontal, this information would then be sent to a computer which would infer whether this was usual behaviour for that time of day. A message could then be sent over SMS to alert loved ones that something may be amiss.

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