Tele-Immersion is a technology by which we interact instantly with anyone on the other side of the globe through a simulated holographic environment. Tele-Immersion (TI) is defined as the integration of audio and video conferencing, via image-based modeling, with collaborative virtual reality (CVR) in the context of data-mining & significant computation. The 3D effect behind the tele-immersion makes it feel like the real thing. The ultimate goal of TI is not merely to reproduce a real face-to-face meeting in every detail, but to provide the “next generation” interface for collaborators, world-wide, to work together in a virtual environment that is seamlessly enhanced by computation and large databases. When participants are tele-immersed, they are able to see and interact with each other and objects in a shared virtual environment. It was in 1965 that, Ivan Sutherland, proposed the concept of the ‘Ultimate Display’. It described a graphics display that would allow the user to experience a completely computer-rendered environment. The term Tele-immersion was first used in October 1996 as the title of a workshop organized by EVL and sponsored by Advanced Network & Services, Inc. to bring together researchers in distributed computing, collaboration, VR, and networking. At this workshop, specific attention was paid to the future needs of applications in the sciences, engineering, and education. In 1998 Abilene, a backbone research project was launched and now serves as the base for Internet-2 research. Three researchers, led by UNC computer Scientists Henry Fuchs and Greg Welch, in May 2000 opened a pair of portals connecting Chapel Hill with Philadelphia and New York. Through these portals, they could peer into the offices of colleagues hundreds of miles away, in life-sized three dimensions and real time. The experiment was the first demonstration of Tele-immersion. There are several groups working together on National Tele-Immersion Initiative(NTII) to make this wonderful technology available to man.
Chapter – 2
TELE-IMMERSION DATA EXPLORATON ENVIRONMENT (TIDE)
Tele-Immersion has an environment called TIDE. TIDE stands for Tele-Immersive Data exploration Environment. The goal of TIDE is to employ Tele-Immersion techniques to create a persistent environment in which collaborators around the world can engage in long-term exploration and analysis of massive scientific data-sets. When participants are tele-immersed, they are able to see and interact with each other and objects in a shared virtual environment. Their presence will be depicted by lifelike representations of themselves (avatars) that are generated by real-time, image capture, and modeling techniques. The environment will persist even when all the participants have left it. The environment may autonomously control supercomputing computations, query databases and gather the results for visualization when the participants return. Participants may even leave messages for their colleagues who can then replay them as a full audio, video and gestural stream. All users are separated by hundreds of miles but appear collocated able to see each other as either a video image or as a simplified virtual representation (commonly known as an avatar). Each avatar has arms and hands so that they may convey natural gesture such as pointing at areas of interest in the visualization. Digital audio is streamed between the sites to allow them to speak to each other.
TIDE will engage users in CAVEs, ImmersaDesks and desktop workstations around the world connected by the Science and Technology Transit Access Point (STARTAP) - a system of high speed national and international networks. TIDE has three main parts: 1) Tele-Immersion Server (TIS) 2) Tele-Immersion Client (TIC) 3) Remote Data and Computational services
Fig2.1- The Tele-Immersion Data Exploration Environment
2.1 TELE-IMMERSION SERVER The Tele-Immersion Server’s(TIS)...