3D-News Archive August 2004


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Blue Ocean Rear Projection Screen
3D-News Posted: Monday, August 30, 2004 (18:47 UTC) | Posted By: Webmaster


Nippura Blue Ocean Rear Projection Screens are now available for order by Pro Audio Visual Specialists and Home Theater retailers across North America, Blue Ocean Screens are cast into the center of optical grade acrylic plates and are available in three freestanding frameless sizes: 72', 84'and 100' They are specifically designed for use with rear projection systems which by design virtually eliminates equipment sound, heat and light interference effectively and dramatically delivering a hi-definition image to the viewer. What viewers encounter is an amazingly brilliant image, one unrestricted by box or frame, one so deep and bodied that it appears to be flowing out of the Blue Ocean Screen.

Less than a year after Blue Ocean made its dazzling debut at the Home Entertainment 2003 Show in San Francisco, architects, designers, and image-industry developers began modeling vanguard applications.

Tony Vandenberg, President of Nippura USA, said, the 72' display amazed and astonished everyone with unheard of and incredibly faithful optical performance and aberration-free projected hi-definition images even the most hardcore home theater enthusiasts were left breathless.

Although the standard sizes are available in 72', 84'and 100' Blue Ocean Screens can also be custom fabricated into any geometric shape imaginable: curved walls, hemispheres, teardrops, or tunnels. These shapes will come in the world's largest seamless sizes up to 27' by 11'. The screens can also be used with 3-D stereoscopic projection systems, resulting in a reality gain that is almost unbelievable. Enhancing cad-wall, research, product-visualization, medical virtual, and, of course, Amusement.

Blue Ocean Screens also offers something never before found in a screen: self-rigidity. The thickness of each Screen can be fabricated so that it maintains its form without external frames or tension systems. Frameless hi-definition projected images without borders amplify the infinite depth viewing experience. In addition, the thickness can be increased for even more dramatic applications - for instance, a Blue Ocean Screen can be custom fabricated to hold back the whole 12 ft depth on both sides of a swimming pool, allowing you to don your 3-D goggles, dive in, and begin laps in the morning alongside your projected bottle-nosed dolphin companions. Or with a somewhat more modest budget you can suspend your standard 84 ft. Blue Ocean Screen in midair.

Blue Ocean Screens are the first ever to cast the screen into a hi-tolerance viewing plane centered between two ultra-clear slabs of cell-cast acrylic, the same type of material used in hi-optic fighter jet canopies. Normal wear and tear scratching has no long-term effect on the Screens performance, and a ten year old Screen, simply re-polished, will literally look and perform exactly as it did the day it left the factory. This toughness has Home Theater dealers anxiously awaiting their first inventories. No longer forced to deal with the risk of conventional surface screens that can be easily rendered useless by the slightest damage, scratch or oops (typically surface mounted screens are un-repairable), installers and users will certainly appreciate this user-friendly feature.

Blue Ocean Screens will not end in expensive obsolescence; made from an innovative proprietary diffusion material which does not restrict resolution, the Screen never needs to be upgraded and does not degrade like many of today`s hi-tech displays. Blue Ocean Screens can fully utilize and enhance all upcoming advancements in hi-resolution feed & hi-definition projectors without the hassle and expense of upgrades typical of other media technologies. For more information: http://www.usnippura.com.

DDD Delivers New Versatile 3D Movie Creation Solution
3D-News Posted: Monday, August 30, 2004 (18:31 UTC) | Posted By: Webmaster


New Software to Be Offered by Sharp on All 3D Display Solutions

DDD Group plc, the 3D software and content company, recently announced the completion of the development and delivery of a 3D movie authoring solution capable of supporting the majority of today's popular 3D video formats for Sharp Systems of America ('Sharp'). The new TriDef® Movie Encoder allows the 3D output from popular computer animation packages to be played on the Sharp Actius RD3D notebook computer and Sharp LL-151-3D desktop LCD display.
From today, the TriDef Movie Encoder will be offered to customers of Sharp's range of 3D displays and will be targeted towards animation studios seeking a quick and simple solution for the presentation of their existing libraries of 3D animated content on Sharp's revolutionary 3D 'glasses-free' LCD.

The TriDef Movie Encoder is compatible with the 3D output formats of many popular animation packages including Discreet's 3ds Max®, NewTek's Lightwave® and Alias' Maya®. Once the animation files have been processed by the Movie Encoder, they are then available as TriDef Movies that may be played back on the Sharp 3D display using the TriDef Movie Player software that is included in the package. The popular computer graphics animation tools are widely used in markets including automotive, film and video, games, interactive media, industrial design, education and visualization.

Ian Matthew, 3D Business Development Manager for Sharp, said: "Our customers want to use our 3D displays for a broad range of applications including support for output from widely used computer animation packages such as 3ds Max. Through our relationship with DDD, Sharp can now deliver a professional software package to meet this requirement. Our customers can now create their own highly impressive content such as stereoscopic walkthroughs of new architectural projects. The Actius RD3D and LL-151-3D allow this extra realism to be shown on a notebook or desktop display, providing additional versatility for our customers."

Chris Yewdall, Chief Executive of DDD, added: "The TriDef Movie Encoder is a valuable addition to the range of TriDef software we have delivered for Sharp and their customers. It reflects the maturity of both DDD's product range and the 3D displays market that we are now in a position to release our competitively priced movie encoding tools for the first time."

The TriDef Movie Encoder has a list price of $299 per license and is available from Sharp, DDD and DDD's resellers.

SGI Visualization Technology Creates and Powers 3D Virtual Tour of Ancient Olympia
3D-News Posted: Monday, August 30, 2004 (18:29 UTC) | Posted By: Webmaster


Foundation of the Hellenic World's Cultural Center in Athens Uses SGI Immersive Visualization Systems to Expand VR Environments

Just after the 2004 Summer Olympic Games commenced, the Foundation of the Hellenic World (FHW) - a not-for-profit cultural institution in Athens, Greece - has expanded its permanent virtual exhibits by opening an immersive 3D Virtual Reality (VR) tour of the ancient city of Olympia, created on and powered by a selection of high-performance visualization systems from Silicon Graphics. At Hellenic Cosmos, FHW's innovative cultural center/museum located in Athens' Tavros district, the new tour driven by an SGI® Onyx2® visualization system allows visitors to explore the history of 30-plus temples and secular buildings of ancient Olympia, the birthplace of the Olympic Games and the site of the first athletic event (a foot race) held in 776 BC.

The dazzling 3D visualization capabilities of the cultural center, powered by SGI® technology, are also being used for an in-depth virtual tour of the Temple of Zeus, ancient Olympia's largest building. The temple includes the ivory and gold statue of Zeus, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. The father of the gods to whom the Games are dedicated, Zeus' statue is also featured in a virtual visit to the workshop of Phidias, which shows how the sculptor created the seated Zeus, with a miniature of Nike, the goddess of victory, in his hand. Hellenic Cosmos is also premiering an immersive pentathlon powered by SGI® technology, where the public can interact virtually with ancient Olympian athletes in five sports, including the 200-meter sprint, discus throwing, wrestling, the long jump and javelin throwing. Prior to this week's official FHW opening of the Olympia VR environments, numerous members of the Greek Parliament have admired the stunning 3D graphics of the ancient city that has been a source of PanHellenic pride and unity for centuries.

A long-time SGI customer, FHW's Hellenic Cosmos currently uses an SGI Onyx2 visualization system to power its ReaCTor immersive display with four SGI® InfiniteReality2(TM) graphics subsystems to power the cave-like virtual environment. A Silicon Graphics® Octane® visualization workstation runs Fakespace Systems Inc.'s ImmersaDesk® to display additional content. At FHW's main headquarters, located under the Acropolis, artists and software developers use C to write their own framework for development of the environments on Silicon Graphics® O2® and Silicon Graphics Octane visual workstations, both running SGI® OpenGL Performer(TM), a real-time graphics programming toolkit. Softimage|3D(TM) and Softimage|XSI(TM) are primarily used for modeling. Over the years, SGI visualization systems have been used to create the content of all of the Foundation's virtual reality environments, including the three new environments created especially to coincide with the 2004 Athens Summer Olympic Games.

"We have relied on SGI's visualization power and expertise for many years because SGI is easily upgradeable and very scalable," said Athanasios Gaitatzes, head of the Virtual Reality Department, Foundation of the Hellenic World. "We develop our virtual environments on O2 and Octane and run them on Octane and Onyx2. SGI Onyx2 is extremely reliable, which is a big plus, because almost every day during the winter we have about 300 children using the exhibits -- we can't afford to have any down time. In terms of scalability, being able to use our applications from the O2 up to the Onyx2 -- without making any changes -- is very efficient."

"We are very pleased to see the SGI Reality Center solution's technology being used to present Olympic Games history beginning from the dawn of Western civilization. The re-creation of the early city of Olympia at the Foundation of the Hellenic World in Athens will inspire future generations of historians and archeologists -- and Olympic athletes -- around the world," said Paul McNamara, senior vice president and general manager, Visual Systems Group, SGI. "On the occasion of our recent celebration of the 10th anniversary of SGI Reality Center, and with nearly 700 Reality Center facility's deployed in multiple industries, SGI congratulates our customers throughout the world who continue to inspire us to deliver ever more powerful immersive visualization technology so they can continue to revolutionize decision-making in the sciences, energy, manufacturing and government industries."

In addition, FHW is making a major addition to the Hellenic Cosmos cultural center that includes the development of 3D environments for a 128-seat domed theater. Construction will begin in early fall 2004, with the completion and grand opening projected for 2006. The 3D domed theater will join the two permanent VR installation areas -- "Kivotos" and the "Magic Screen" -- where visitors wear special stereoscopic glasses and use a navigational device, or "magic wand," in order to experience the landscape, architecture, and culture of ancient Greece. The Kivotos is an entire room of 3 by 3 by 3 meters, where the walls as well as the floor are projection screens, currently powered by the SGI Onyx2 system-based on Reality Center technology. The Magic Screen, a large virtual reality display shaped as a drafting table, was the first virtual reality system to come to Greece, and runs on the Silicon Graphics Octane and Fakespace equipment. Its dimensions (1.5 meters wide by 1.2 meters high) and angle provide the opportunity for six visitors at any one time to interact with the digital content. As in the Kivotos, the Magic Screen allows visitors to engage in interactive activities and explore the virtual environment as they wish, not as mere onlookers but as active participants.

Low-Cost, Broadly-Available Computer/Machine Vision Applications Much Closer With New Canesta Development Platform
3D-News Posted: Monday, August 30, 2004 (18:26 UTC) | Posted By: Webmaster


World's First 3-D Image Sensor Technology Made Available to Developers, Researchers and Students to Sight-enable Any Application or Device

Research and development professionals in robotics, materials handling, biometrics, vehicle safety, security, virtual control systems, and a wide variety of other potential or existing applications for computer or "machine" vision now have access to low-cost, real-time 3-D imaging technology based upon electronic perception technology, Canesta announced today. The announcement accompanied the unveiling of a complete development platform for the company's new Equinox perception chip — a low-cost, real-time 3-D sensor that makes it possible for ordinary devices and machines to "see" and interact with the world around them.

The development platform — which includes a single-chip 3-D "camera", a USB interface to personal computers, and a Windows-based software development environment — will permit researchers to easily envision and rapidly prototype a wide range of novel and potentially important machine vision applications, particularly those not practical before the existence of the tiny Equinox chip.

"True 3-D image sensing is extremely useful for applications that need to look at a scene, and decompose it into objects," said Canesta vice president Jim Spare. "If you can not only resolve objects from the background, but also can acquire information about their size, shape, and distance from the sensor, then you open up an entire field of applications that are otherwise difficult or impossible to do. And, if you can accomplish this with a low-cost chip, then the opportunities are nearly unlimited."

According to Spare, Canesta's Equinox chip resolves a scene into "pixels", as does an ordinary camera chip, but instead of simply providing the brightness of each pixel, Equinox additionally provides the distance from each picture element to the sensor chip. In effect, this renders the scene into three dimensional objects that are easily processed by even the tiny computers in ordinary devices such as cell phones or PDAs. "We call this 'primary 3-D data'," said Spare, "and it eliminates the need for massive calculations of one or more 2-D images to accomplish the same tasks."

First Single-chip 3-D Camera
The development kit bundles a small 3-D camera — built using the Equinox chip — with a standard USB interface and cable, an application programming interface (API), and documentation. Developers will be able to prototype their application and code on a Windows PC, and then at future date, embed the same application — along with an Equinox chip — in the end-user device, similar to the way single chip CMOS cameras are integrated into cell phones today.

Numerous Applications
"The significance of this announcement," said Dr. Carlo Tomasi, professor of computer science in artificial intelligence at Duke University and former software architect at Canesta, "is that now, thousands of creative individuals in companies, research labs, universities, or even in garage shops, will have the ability to explore electronic perception technology on their own, and to develop interesting and important new devices and applications that can actually 'see'." Tomasi said that in addition to the creativity that get encouraged, the availability of a development kit will give its users a clear path to widespread, volume commercial deployment of their applications. "This is a significant step forward for computer and machine vision," he said, "not unlike the first development kits for microprocessors, or embedded processors, which greatly spurred their growth."

The general class of applications possible using this version of Canesta's electronic perception technology include size and depth detection, image segmentation, object classification, object tracking and location analysis, and human interaction. Spare explained each of these in further detail:

"Size and depth detection is used to determine the size of an object, and/or its distance from the sensor," he said. "This would enable, for example, a factory robot to accurately pick up or avoid a package, or a 'smart truck' to evaluate and monitor its cargo load.

"Image segmentation, by comparison, refers to the process of separating an object out from the background in a scene." A conventional camera setup would have difficulty, Spare said, in recognizing a human form in the passenger seat of a car, particularly if that person's clothing and the car's upholstery had no discernable texture. "But with our technology, the location, size and shape of the person would be instantly determined," he said. This would be invaluable, he stated, for making an airbag that could choose to deploy or not depending on whether the occupant was an adult or child.

Additionally, with what is, in effect a "wire frame" view of the scene, you could actually classify objects such as "child" or "grocery bag." "This is object classification," said Spare.

Object tracking and location analysis is made possible by the sensor's ability to render a 3-D scene at 30 full frames per second. Said Spare: "Object tracking enables you to create a warehouse or home security application that could actually determine if a moving object is a human — worthy of a security alert — or simply a small animal."

Finally, he said, a wide range of machine-to-human interfaces make up the human interaction category. "With the technology, human gestures or actions can control numerous types of systems from a distance," said Spare.

Electronic Perception Development Kit
Canesta's Electronic Perception Development Kit, or "EP DevKit" provides all of the tools necessary to create fully functional electronic perception applications using the provided real-time 3-D camera, and a personal computer. It is an "out of the box" solution, with no additional hardware development required, that provides access to raw frames of 3-D information via a standard, USB interface. This enables the rapid development of applications that depend upon 3-D information.

The EP DevKit includes a light source and matching optics which may be ordered in three versions, differing by field of view. EP DevKit Model # DP208 provides an 80-degree field of view; the DP205 gives 55 degrees; and the DP203 offers 30 degrees. Canesta will entertain developing other versions.

The included software development kit (SDK) provides an application programming interface (API) for writing and debugging C or C applications for the DP200 using Microsoft Visual Studio 6.0 on a Windows 2000 or Windows XP PC. Through the API, developers can access raw brightness and depth image frames, as well as set sensor parameters such as the frame rate, shutter speed, operation mode, window size, or the region of interest.

The software development kit comes with documentation and sample code to illustrate the operation of the kit. It also includes a demonstration program that shows a color-coded 3D view of any object that is placed in the imaging area of the sensor.

The API is common across Windows and embedded platform implementations. Therefore, application software can be ported from the PC to a future embedded environment with a minimal amount of changes. The SDK provides programming guidelines for writing efficient embeddable applications.

Availability
Canesta is taking orders for all three versions of the EP DevKit now, with the 55-degree option shipping approximately 30 days ARO. The 30- and 80-degree variants will ship later in the year, but the company advises getting in the queue as soon as possible. The Development Platform costs $7,500. Accredited educational institutions that agree to publish one or more scholarly papers on an application of electronic perception technology developed using the kit, and to contribute their software and design concepts to the public domain under the "open source" principle, can receive a $2,500 discount.

Volume pricing is available from Canesta.

Barco strengthens its position as the worldwide leading Integrator of Immersive Display Systems
3D-News Posted: Saturday, August 14, 2004 (0:35 UTC) | Posted By: Webmaster


Barco, the worldwide leader in visual display technology, has formed a new systems integration team in Stuttgart, Germany for Virtual Reality and Simulation applications. The team consists of well-known experts in the area of software and Image Generation hardware solutions delivery.

"Each of the individuals on this team are already familiar with Barco," explains Daniel Banek. "They have worked with Barco on numerous, complex projects in the past, such as Caesar in Bonn, RWTH Aachen, and large installations at Daimler Benz, to name a few. Their skills and know how on Image Generators, software integration and project management nicely complement Barco’s own expertise."

"Barco is pleased with this reinforcement of our global team of Immersive Visualization experts," states Yoav Nir, Business Unit Manager V&AR. "Thanks to this additional expertise and resources, Barco will be able to keep pace with the growing demand for its unique solutions and services as a Display System Integrator for the Virtual Reality Markets. We will grow and develop the Virtual Reality Markets with the same passion and commitment we have shown over the years."

The new members to the Barco team include Daniel Banek, Volker Stark, and Dr. Dirk Rantzau, as well as three solutions engineers with strong Virtual Reality and Simulation background. The team will start immediately and focus on designing and delivering completely integrated systems, including display solutions, software, hardware signal distribution, and Image Generator technology. For the local market, the new team will work in close cooperation with Barco's existing organization in Germany. For worldwide markets, they will partner with the Barco experts in Kuurne and with the Barco organization in the field.

Daniel Banek will lead the Simulation Department for Germany, Switzerland and Austria (DACH). Mr. Banek has over 15 years of experience in Computer Graphics and Professional Services. During the last five years, he led a Professional Services organization for delivering complete Immersive Solutions as a prime contractor.

Volker Starck joins the Simulation Department DACH (Germany, Austria, Switzerland) as Sales Manager. He will use his strong software and hardware background in computer graphics and his strong sales expertise to drive and grow sales in the DACH region.

Dr. Dirk Rantzau joins the team as Manager of Solutions and Projects. Dr. Rantzau has a Ph. D. in the area of distributed virtual reality systems and a strong background in computer graphics. He has a great track record of delivering very complex projects on time and to budget.

Kodak and Stereomedia Demonstrate 3D Stereo Imaging at SIGGRAPH 2004
3D-News Posted: Tuesday, August 10, 2004 (19:23 UTC) | Posted By: Webmaster


Kodak 3D Stereo Display System Showcases Live-Action Stereo Video Images Produced by Stereomedia

Eastman Kodak Company and Stereomedia Productions, a leading producer of 3D stereo content, will conduct demonstrations of 3D stereo imagery on the show floor at SIGGRAPH 2004, in the Los Angeles Convention Center, from August 10-12. The Kodak 3D Stereo Display(TM) system, the industry's leading autostereoscopic system, will display stereo images produced by Stereomedia during the SIGGRAPH exhibition, highlighting the Kodak display's ability to produce superior stereo imagery with high resolution. The demonstrations will take place at the Kodak booth #1162 at SIGGRAPH.

Visitors to the Kodak booth at SIGGRAPH will view, on the Kodak 3D Stereo Display, Stereomedia content that includes live concert footage, shot with the 3D Ikegami LK-33 video camera system.

The Kodak 3D Stereo Display, which can be comfortably viewed without special glasses or filters, is ideally suited to graphics-intensive applications for customers in industries ranging from military and government to oil & gas exploration to health imaging and industrial CAD/CAM visualization.

"Customers who require 3D stereo displays frequently are viewing real-time stereo imagery, and we wanted to illustrate the comfort, ease, and high quality of this system for SIGGRAPH attendees," said Lawrence Henderson, vice president and director, new business ventures, Eastman Kodak Company. "We are pleased to be working with Stereomedia on this demonstration, as they have had a long history of developing specialized content and technology solutions for a wide range of 3D stereo applications, ranging from medical to entertainment."

"The Kodak system is a milestone in 3D stereo display, effectively making 3D viewing more like 2D, in its simplicity of design and comfortable viewing experience," said Anthony Coogan, founder and executive producer of Stereomedia. "Any application that requires 3D stereoscopic images will have a standard method of display with this system. We look forward to further work with Kodak in this area."

At SIGGRAPH 2004, Kodak will also preview its next-generation Kodak 3D Stereo Display system. The new system - which is comparable to having an IMAX® movie theater in a desktop display - will be available for customers in October. Kodak will take orders for the new system at SIGGRAPH. To view the Kodak 3D Stereo Display system at SIGGRAPH 2004, visit the Kodak booth #1162 in the Los Angeles Convention Center.

The new version of the Kodak 3D Stereo Display incorporates the Kodak Monocentric Optics System(TM), a recent innovation from Kodak that enables concentrated brightness, as well as an ergonomic design, and a more compact, mobile footprint. Unlike many other stereoscopic display systems, the Kodak 3D Stereo Display does not require a dim lighting environment, and can be used with normal office lighting. Kodak's unique design creates a quick easy method of locking in on a "sweet spot" so that viewers can spend more time viewing critical data without suffering eyestrain or loss of image resolution.

The Kodak 3D Stereo Display system is an initiative of the Kodak New Business Ventures Group. For more information, visit the Web site at http://www.kodak.com/go/3d.

How it Works

The user sits in front of a system that creates a virtual image of two high-resolution LCD displays, one for each eye. The user looks into two "floating balls of light" that provide each eye a view of a magnified image of one of the two displays. The combination of the wide field of view, the virtual image, and the absence of imaging artifacts eliminates many of the sources of eyestrain that are present in other stereoscopic systems.

Sharp's 3D LCD Technology Now Available for Desktop Computers
3D-News Posted: Monday, August 9, 2004 (20:58 UTC) | Posted By: Webmaster


No-Glasses 3D Technology Now Available in 15-Inch Desktop Display

Sharp Systems of America, a division of Sharp Electronics Corporation, today introduced the Sharp LL-151-3D display, Sharp's first stand-alone display that features Sharp's 3D LCD Technology. This exciting 15-inch 3D LCD monitor delivers eye-popping 3D images to the naked eye, and can be easily switched between 2D and 3D viewing for standard applications such as spreadsheets, word processing or email.

Sharp's target with this unique monitor will include market segments that are already familiar with 3D solutions using Shutter Glasses and page sequential display mode, which are widely supported on PC using both Windows and Linux. Users of graphics cards that currently support OpenGL 3D displays with glasses (such as the NVIDIA Quadro cards) will be able to shed their Shutter Glasses and enjoy in the freedom of the Sharp LL-151-3D display right away. Target markets will include drug discovery, medical imaging, dental, mapping/GIS, oil & gas, CAD and other design applications, entertainment, education and others. The LL-151-3D will also appeal to the gamer that is looking to bring the greatest amount of realism to their gaming experience without the need for geeky glasses.

"The fourth wave of LCD technology is here, and Sharp is at the forefront delivering a practical solution that allows users the freedom to view both 2D and 3D images in one monitor," said Ian Matthew, 3D Business Development Manager for Sharp Systems of America. "The LL-151-3D display provides users with crisp 3D visualization, and the ability to add a level of visual interaction to their applications that has been previously very cumbersome to attain."

Sharp's 3D LCD Technology

Developed jointly by Sharp Corporation and Sharp Laboratories Europe, Ltd. (SLE), Sharp's TFT 3D LCD Technology is set to revolutionize the visual experience by offering a realistic sense of depth and presence that hasn't been previously available in LCD displays. The TFT 3D LCD, which can be easily switched between 2D and 3D display modes, allows the LL-151-3D monitor to display dynamic 3D images for realistic visualization of complex geometry.

Using a parallax barrier, light from the LCD is divided so that different patterns reach the viewer's left and right eyes. The direction in which light leaves the display is controlled so that the left and right eyes see different images. When centered in front of the display, each eye receives the correct visual information for the brain to process. This makes it possible for the image on the screen to appear in three dimensions without the user having to wear special goggles.

"Sharp's TFT 3D LCD technology works on the principle of displaying left and right eye views that are separated so that the left eye sees only the left eye image, and the right eye sees only the right eye image," explained Matthew. "Since these images have perspective and are offset in the same way that the human eye normally sees the two images, the brain naturally interprets the image disparity and creates a 'sense of depth' effect. The result is a 3D, 'out of screen' display' that provides users with a visual experience previously unattainable without polarized or liquid crystal shuttering lenses."

LL-151-3D

The Sharp LL-151-3D monitor is a 3D LCD display that can be switched between 2D and 3D display modes with the touch of a button (or through the unit's USB automatic switching that recognizes your content), making the monitor flexible for use in standard 2D and enhanced 3D applications. With the 3D effect made possible through a parallax barrier, the panel is a 15-inch XGA (1024 x 768) LCD display, which provides bright, clear pictures in which small details can be clearly seen.

Built in the pursuit of easy-to-use design and functionality, the Sharp LL-151-3D features exceptional style with smooth lines, a narrow frame, and adjustable height. Equipped with built-in stereo speakers, and compatible with both analog and digital video inputs, the LL-151-3D offers users ergonomic comforts that allow users to get the most out of their viewing experience. With its 370-nit brightness and 500:1 contrast ratio, the visual performance of the LL-151-3D is exceptional.

The Sharp LL-151-3D features a color management function compatible with the "sRGB" international standard for color reproduction. By performing color conversions with "ICC profile" that adjust to liquid crystal characteristics, the LL-151-3D displays pictures with natural tones, and color matching is achieved with sRGB compatible peripheral equipment.

The Sharp LL-151-3D also features slide system height adjustment. With this integrated slide system, users are able to swivel the display 90 degrees and adjust the screen angle and height up to 60mm for ergonomic comfort and productivity.

The Sharp LL-151-3D will come complete with a software bundle to support its 3D and multimedia capability, which includes The SHARP SmartStereo Photo Editor, and SHARP SmartStereo Camera Calculator.

The LL-151-3D is available in black and features a long life (approximately 50,000 hours) backlight. Available immediately, the LL-151-3D has an estimated street price of $1,499.00.

Availability

The Sharp LL-151-3D is available immediately through Sharp directly (http://store.sharpsystems.com), or through Sharp's network of retail partners and reseller channels. For more information, call 800-BE-SHARP (in the USA).

Sharp 3D Display Customers to Get HumanEyes Lite 3D Software Option
3D-News Posted: Tuesday, August 3, 2004 (16:04 UTC) | Posted By: Webmaster


HumanEyes Lite 3D for Easy 3D Image Creation & Output Now Supported on All Sharp Actius RD3D and 3D Monitors

HumanEyes Technologies Ltd., a leading innovator and provider of advanced and affordable 3D software solutions for easy 3D image creation and output, has entered into a partnership agreement with Sharp Systems of America. The HumanEyes Lite 3D software application, today optimized for Sharp, is now supported on Sharp's revolutionary 3D desktop displays and 3D laptops allowing true 3D viewing without the use of special glasses.

HumanEyes Lite 3D software allows users to easily create consumer and production-quality, 3D images - using ordinary digital cameras - for display on the forthcoming Sharp 3D LCD Color Monitor, and existing Actius RD3D Laptops.

Under the agreement, 30-day trial versions of HumanEyes Lite 3D software will be distributed free to every Sharp Actius RD3D laptop customer during 2004. Users will have the option to upgrade to the full version of HumanEyes Lite 3D software via the Sharp 3D website (http://www.sharp3d.com) at a cost of $49.95.

New Sharp 3D Monitors & Laptops

The Sharp Actius RD3D is the world's first notebook computer that incorporates Sharp's TFT 3D LCD technology, which makes it possible to view eye-popping 3D images using the naked eye, but is easily switched back to 2D viewing for standard applications.

"We are very impressed and excited by the ease of use and capabilities of HumanEyes Lite 3D software," says Ian Matthew, 3D Business Development Manager, Sharp Systems of America. "HumanEyes' software adds to the product portfolio supporting quality 3D that we offer our customers. Its ease of use will make it attractive to all types of users interested in true 3D visualization and photography."

"We are very honored to have been chosen by Sharp to provide our capabilities for their new 3D monitors and 3D laptop PC," said Gideon Ben Zvi, HumanEyes, CEO. "Sharp's breakthrough in 3D display combined with our HumanEyes Lite 3D imaging software offers users a first in easy 3D image creation and display - creating a new and heightened visual experience."

About HumanEyes 3D Solutions

HumanEyes 3D enables the automatic creation of stereoscopic panoramic 3D pictures ready for print. The process has 3 simple steps - digital photography, processing by HumanEyes 3D software, and printing using various existing printing technologies.

With HumanEyes 3D, users have the ability to re-use the scene for multiple printing sizes and depth effects in exactly the same way as they do with 2D. There is no need to re-shoot the scene in order to alter parameters - a single mouse click controls changes to the parallax and focal point. A composite feature within the software enables users to combine graphics, texts, logos etc with the 3D effect, which gives the user full control on depth positioning and focal points at all times.

The photographer does not have to make any adjustment to his or her current workflow. Macintosh-based systems are used to run the HumanEyes 3D software, and printers receive ready-for-print 3D files that work seamlessly with their existing equipment to produce superior results.

Barco family of four new Galaxy 3-chip DLP projectors raises standards for immersive and stereoscopic viewing
3D-News Posted: Tuesday, August 3, 2004 (16:01 UTC) | Posted By: Webmaster


Featuring built-in color matching and WARP predistortion, the new Barco Galaxy Family brings higher contrast, higher brightness and higher resolution in an unmatched offering for VR applications

The Barco Galaxy "family" consists of 4 unique 3 chip DLP™ projectors, all featuring SXGA resolution delivering 12% more pixels, on top of an enhanced contrast ratio from 1000:1 (Classic Version) to 1500:1 (High Contrast version) and a light output of up to 11500 ANSI lumens (High Brightness version). With the "Long Life" version lamp life can reach up to 2000 hours.

"Barco's Galaxy family integrates exclusive proprietary technologies for unique customer benefits", states Yoav Nir, Business unit manager V&AR. "Barco's Infitec development results in an unrivalled stereo separation without flickering and allows full freedom of motion without ghosting. Barco's "Dynacolor" provides the ultimate fine-tuning to obtain perfect color matching across all channels of a system and the optional "GISCU™" Global Inter System Color Uniformity guarantees that all colors are perfectly matched on all Barco systems, even if located in geographically different sites".

Next to Infitec stereo separation, all Galaxy projectors have fast refresh rates for use with active stereo separation, while for stereoscopic viewing with larger audiences external linear or circular polarization filters can be used. The brightness of 4000, 6000, 9000 or 12,000 ANSI lumens allows to choose the projector version that exactly matches the application needs. First Galaxy SXGA orders came from a major US car manufacturer for upgrading an existing design center.

For existing systems the Barco Galaxy family provides valuable visualisation upgrades: the incorporated "I-Blend" can produce three channels from a single high-bandwidth PC or workstation output, while the "Stereo-Creator ™" functionality can upgrade a single-pipe IG system to produce three channel Native SXGA resolution without any need for external scalers, warping or blending boxes. A leading company in the oil and gas exploration field has very positively evaluated a first installation using the Stereo-Creator.

"By the unique combination of a high light output, proprietary bi-cubic Warping and a proprietary optical soft edge matching, the Barco Galaxy family can perform the necessary predistortion for projection bright images with deep blacks on large domes," says Eric Braux, European Business operation Director, V&AR, "The Barco Galaxy family will bring new versatility to planetariums, widening their scope for exciting programming".

The Barco Galaxy family 3chip DLP™ projection platform will be previewed at Siggraph 2004.

Stereoscopic DVD-Zine
3D-News Posted: Tuesday, August 3, 2004 (14:55 UTC) | Posted By: Webmaster


Coming up is the world's first Stereoscopic DVD-Zine.

The zine series is called Scissor Friends the 3rd issue will appropriately be in 3D. The whole piece is set to a song by Bubblyfish, a New York-based Gameboy musician. The video goes through a number of sections, one that pays homage to the zine/book/band Destroy All Monsters and then also a section of pastries that fly and cakes in the shape of characters (Elmo, X-Men, etc.)

The DVD is scheduled to be published shortly. More information is available from http://www.scissorfriends.com

EST becomes reseller for SEOS HMD 120/40
3D-News Posted: Tuesday, August 3, 2004 (14:46 UTC) | Posted By: Webmaster


HMD 120/40 is an innovative, lightweight stereo SXGA head mounted display with a large field of view. Specifically designed for simulation and visualization purposes, its mass is less than a kilogram when fitted with head tracking and allows the user to interact with a virtual environment in a way that has not previously been possible.

Innovative Technology: HMD 120/40 incorporates a patented new catadioptric eyepiece developed by SEOS, which is not conventionally refractive. The result is a large pupil, providing high tolerance to eyeball movement without losing regions of the field of view. It also incorporates a wide range of optical correction ( /- 4 diopter), so that spectacle wearers can be accommodated (removing the spectacles). The image distance can be varied from collimated to 0.25M by the use of the eyepiece focus adjustment.

Specification Summary:
Resolution: 1280 x 1024
Colour: Field-sequential
Field of View: 80° x 67° per eye
Eye Relief: 12mm
Overlap: 50% (resulting in 120x67 deg FoV with a 40x67 deg stereo overlap)
Interfaces:
DVI input: 1280 x 1024 at 60 Hz.
Power supply: 115v/230v auto switching

For more information please see http://www.est-kl.com/hardware/hmd/seos/seos_12040.html

Canadian Wildflowers by 3D Photographer Simon Bell at the 3D Center of Art and Photography
3D-News Posted: Tuesday, August 3, 2004 (14:42 UTC) | Posted By: Webmaster


The featured artist at the 3D Center is Canadian photographer, Simon Bell. The exhibition includes anaglyphs of Canadian wildflowers viewed with cyan and red glasses. Bell's passion for photography began when he was given a "box-brownie" camera at six years of age. That early interest developed into career in photography, multimedia and 3D imagery that continues today.

He has traveled the world with his cameras and has produced many slide presentations and books. His 3D StereoJet images provided support for the Toronto Olympic bid in 2001. His images of bugs, lizards, birds and wildcats were published in a series of 3D children's books by Somerville House. His current book, due in September 2004, is about the classic American cars in Cuba, published by Boston Mills Press.

In addition, the Center is currently running a 12-minute underwater 3D slide show entitled "3D in the Sea" by John Roll which is shown several times daily.

The Exhibition opened on July 30 and ends on September 19, 2004.

The 3D Center also houses a collection of antique and contemporary stereo cameras, viewers and other devices. Information panels and interactive displays explain the phenomenon of 3D vision. The Center's collection of stereocards are available for viewing and the reference library is open to visitors. There are daily 3D slide projections.

Open Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays from 1 pm until 5 pm. Open First Thursday from 4pm until 9 pm. Admission by donation. 1928 NW Lovejoy, Portland/Oregon, USA. Tel.: 1 (503) 227-6667, Web: www.3dcenter.us.

Stereoscopy.com 3D-News (ISSN: 1612-6823) is published monthly by Stereoscopy.com, P.O. Box 102634, 70022 Stuttgart, Germany.
Editor-in-Chief: Alexander Klein.

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