VTT has developed a stereo picture application
The new 3D technology gives old games a new lease of life
VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland has developed a stereo picture application for 3D games. The new plug-in, registered as "StereoGames", transforms the existing 3D game to a stereo game that utilizes the stereoscopic vision – even though the game didn’t have this feature originally. The new depth dimension gives the old games a new lease of life, thus eliminating the need for investing in a completely new game. The easily installable plug-in is suitable for PC games, mobile phone games, game consoles, digital television applications, animations and online games. Negotiations with several software development companies have already begun, and the launch of StereoGames for PC games is expexted within the next year. This plug-in makes it possible to add stereo information to mobile phone camera pictures, too.
There are several different techniques for producing stereo pictures. The method developed by VTT uses the so-called anaglyphic technique. The advantage of this technique is that it does not require heavy and expensive peripherals for viewing. The anaglyphic technique is a filter technology that builds on the complementary colour scheme. This means that two differently coloured images are produced, one for each eye. As the viewer looks through the filter glasses, the brain fuses the images into a three-dimensional stereo composition. The depth perception effect enlivens the game, making it more exciting: the atmosphere of the game is very realistic and the player can outline and estimate dimensions better than before. The improved spatial impression also adds to the attractiveness of the game. The best applications for the technology include game consoles as well as online and PC computer games because larger screens provide a more efficient stereo effect.
VTT's patented StereoGames method with stereo pictures offers numerous prospects for development. The method can be used in all 3D applications with a changeable angle of view for producing stereo pictures; therefore, architecture, product design and molecular modelling, to name a few, can greatly benefit from it.
The code corresponding to the StereoGames technology has been licensed for Mobile Solutions in Italy since the beginning of 2006, in connection with VTT's "Pingis" game. "Pingis" is a two-player game for mobile camera phones. The game also allows a single-player game. The phone's camera senses the movement of the phone on the basis of the picture and transforms it to a racket's movement. The stereo effect enhances the perception of depth, and the player can better perceive the dimensions and distances of the table.
Stereo pictures or video clips by a camera phone
VTT's patented technology description also includes, among other things, the StereoImaging technology. This technology means that a frame or a video clip recorded by a camera phone could be submitted to a service provider's server for "stereo picture development" by using one button. Once developed, the stereo picture could be sent back to the photographer or to a designated number or Internet address. The picture could also be downloaded onto a PC computer for optimal viewing. To take an example, a real estate broker could take a video clip of an apartment and submit it and all the necessary information to the desired online service using a mobile phone. The clip could be automatically generated as a stereo clip on the Web page.
VTT is planning to start a project to develop the StereoGames technology for autostereoscopic displays to completely eliminate the need for glasses. An application based on the StereoGames technology would bring the stereo dimension used in 3D games and other 3D applications to autostereoscopic displays – affordably and easily.