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MultiMedia, IEEE

Issue 2 • Date April-June 2000

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Displaying Results 1 - 23 of 23
  • E-books: it's all in the resolution

    Publication Year: 2000 , Page(s): 15 - 18
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  • Virtual Heritage: Breathing new life into our ancient past

    Publication Year: 2000 , Page(s): 20 - 21
    Cited by:  Papers (5)
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  • IEEE 1394: changing the way we do multimedia communications

    Publication Year: 2000 , Page(s): 94 - 100
    Cited by:  Papers (3)  |  Patents (5)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (66 KB)  

    The mark of a good bus design is to be general-purpose enough so that its use expands to applications beyond those for which it was originally intended. Compare the narrowly defined EISA (Extended Industry Standard Architecture) specification and the now-defunct MicroChannel bus to the vibrant IEEE 1394 standard, which has numerous specifications built around it already, and many more under development. This article highlights some of the many applications made possible, or made better, by expanding on the 1394 standard. It also directs you to the key specifications that have developed for each of the application areas. View full abstract»

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  • Virtual heritage: what next?

    Publication Year: 2000 , Page(s): 73 - 74
    Cited by:  Papers (2)
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    Virtual heritage is the use of computer-based interactive technologies to record, preserve or recreate artifacts, sites and actors of historic, artistic, religious and cultural significance and to deliver the results openly to a global audience in such a way as to provide formative educational experiences through electronic manipulations of time and space. Where do we go from here, and what can we expect in the next decade? Already we're witnessing the evolution of systems making virtual reality (VR) accessible to social and working groups for applications hitherto considered out of the question. For those with just a basic PC and access to the Web, VR is now a technology that promotes active participation, through contributions to virtual libraries or repositories, or becoming involved as avatars (virtual humans) in shared electronic communities. We can now harness the power of video games engines, backed up with tutorials, patches and 3D model libraries from the Web. VR is no longer a limited sensory experience, accessible to a few fortunate individuals. Neither is it a technology destined to replace the real experience of traveling to a historical site or museum and experiencing the true ambience and splendor of the past first-hand. It's a means by which we can increase our understanding of (and respect for) our sociological, cultural and natural past, with the ultimate aim of making our future a more rewarding experience for those yet to come View full abstract»

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  • Bringing VR to the desktop: are you game?

    Publication Year: 2000 , Page(s): 68 - 72
    Cited by:  Papers (3)
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    The goal of bringing photorealistic, real-time technology to desktop computers has challenged the virtual reality (VR) community. Some day, we will not need to travel across the globe to visit historically significant places; we'll simply select them from an interactive encyclopedia and virtually visit them from our classrooms and living rooms. Imaging technologies have advanced in great leaps and bounds, and most of this technology is readily available to average consumers today. In the forefront, video game companies have made great strides in this area. They have spent millions of dollars developing real-time 3D graphics engines that focus on a series of new core technologies specifically dealing with presenting complex 3D environments, comprised of textured and shaded polygon-based worlds, to a low-end audience running standard personal computers. Taking all this quickly-evolving technology into consideration, Digitalo Studios and the Virtual Systems Laboratory in Japan developed two projects using 3D video-game engine technologies, generating high-resolution, real-time 3D imagery for photorealistic walk-throughs of the Florida Everglades and the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris. The latter, nicknamed the Virtual Reality Notre Dame (VRND) Project, is a multi-user environment that is accessible to the public via the Internet View full abstract»

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  • An interactive multimedia satellite telemedicine service

    Publication Year: 2000 , Page(s): 76 - 83
    Cited by:  Papers (8)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (252 KB)  

    We present a telemedicine application, called the Medical Environment for Diagnostic Images (MEDI), that provides remote medical care services while taking advantage of the broadcast and multicast capabilities and the wide-band capacity of satellite systems. We developed the application in an open environment (Java) using a client-server architecture based on TCP/IP. We evaluated the performance of the application on satellite connections View full abstract»

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  • The living virtual Kinka Kuji temple: a dynamic environment

    Publication Year: 2000 , Page(s): 65 - 67
    Cited by:  Papers (1)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (680 KB)  

    Our research uses the natural computing power of emergent properties and chaos found in live data streams to bring a “living” element into a heritage environment. Using a live chaotic data stream found on the Internet, we can produce emergent rhythmic behaviors to control artificial life and climatic environmental changes. We constructed a model of the Golden Temple (Kinka Kuji) in Kyoto, Japan for our experiment. We decided to design artificial life “fireflies” to inhabit the neighboring temple gardens. These fireflies are connected in real time to the actions of stocks environments in the Nasdaq stock market. Using live chaotic data streams holds a lot of promise in providing a more natural process for both virtual environments and artificial life. In this research, we've only explored its beginning potentials, searching for the types of data available from users and the Internet. The data can provide new perspectives in making our virtual heritage alive and be closer to interpreting the “magical nature” of the heritage site View full abstract»

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  • Emerging trends in virtual heritage

    Publication Year: 2000 , Page(s): 22 - 25
    Cited by:  Papers (10)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (976 KB)  

    From the pyramids at Giza to Kakadu National Park in Australia, the world's cultural and natural heritage has stood the test of time. The pace of progress threatens these landmarks of our past at an ever-increasing pace. Rapid advances in digital technologies in recent years, from new media to virtual reality (VR) and high-speed networks, have offered heritage some hope. The first wave of VR worlds failed to live up to the promise. Today, the forward march of technology has quietly enabled a second wave of VR applications. Digital tools and techniques offer new hope to the often painstakingly complex tasks of archaeology, surveying, historic research, conservation, and education. These emerging second-generation technologies can be grouped into three domains: 3D documentation (everything from site surveys to epigraphy), 3D representation (from historic reconstruction to visualization), and 3D dissemination (from immersive networked worlds to “in situ” augmented reality). The author reviews these emerging trends View full abstract»

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  • Annotation and education

    Publication Year: 2000 , Page(s): 84 - 89
    Cited by:  Papers (4)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (1536 KB)  

    Because our research focuses on developing multimedia technologies for educational settings, we begin this article with an exercise. Throughout this article, you will see a number of screen images from programs we are building. Try to understand what these pictures mean without reading the explanatory captions that appear below them. You will probably find this difficult, as you are still unfamiliar with our work. The important thing to realize is that a well-written caption can provide a context for understanding. Our research explores the types of learning that occur when people collaborate to develop explanations of multimedia content. We develop systems to help learners observe digital photographs and video, pose hypotheses about their meanings, and justify their assertions with evidence View full abstract»

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  • Bringing the common whiteboard into the digital age

    Publication Year: 2000 , Page(s): 90 - 92
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    Most of us have attended a lecture or a meeting in which a whiteboard was an integral part of the learning and communication process. Whether you are an educator explaining some finer point of a lesson or you are simply conveying an idea to a colleague, whiteboards provide a way to augment the fidelity of your communication. This is particularly true when text alone will not do the trick. Wouldn't it be great if the common dry-erase whiteboard could digitally store all your handwritten text and sketches? How about if you could engage in the same free-style, creative, problem-solving discourse with other participants who are not in the same room with you? What if you could review the notes written on a whiteboard from a meeting that you could not attend? View full abstract»

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  • The Wireless World Web

    Publication Year: 2000 , Page(s): 10 - 14
    Cited by:  Papers (2)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (164 KB)  

    Technologies developed during the last decade have undoubtedly changed the face of the computing world. The Internet explosion and the progress in network operation and deployment have made the single, isolated computer completely obsolete. The device of tomorrow will be neither the portable computer we now have nor the mobile phone we use every day, but a combination of the two, fitting in a child's palm and perpetually connected to the whole world. The need for geographical freedom has prompted discussions about mobile protocols and a mobile Internet infrastructure. The mobile IP (Internet protocol) working group hosted by the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) has worked actively since 1996 on defining an alternative to mobile IP through a routing support allowing IP nodes to roam seamlessly among IP subnetworks while using either IPv4 or iPv6. The paper discusses the emergent technologies View full abstract»

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  • Virtual recovery and exhibition of heritage

    Publication Year: 2000 , Page(s): 31 - 34
    Cited by:  Papers (2)
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    Progress in computer technology has changed conventional archaeology and its exhibition. A project fuses art and culture with computer technology in an effort to bring a world heritage, the Museum of the Terra Cotta Warriers and Horses in China, into cyberspace. Three sites contain 8,000 terra cotta statues, most of them damaged in ancient times. Archaeologists have spent 20 years unearthing and recovering 3,000 of these statues. Using a laser range finder makes it possible to precisely document unearthed objects as 3D models. For damaged pieces, my colleagues and I can use an advanced interface to recover the original shapes and colors in cyberspace, avoiding new damage to relies. This virtual recovery framework lets us safely connect, move, and reconnect fragments many times in a virtual environment. The data examined in the virtual space can augment our imagined picture of the unearthed objects' original appearance and guide the physical restoration. We could even leave the original fragments in their unearthed state for future generations to study. Moreover, we can put recovered relies into a virtual museum to show their now-lost original appearance based on archaeological facts-hard to achieve in a real situation, where relies must be carefully preserved in controlled environments, untouched. We can even simulate the past in a realistic scenario before we have completed digging out all the sites. A variety of data reduction approaches help us display the virtual scenes View full abstract»

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  • Three-dimensional modeling for virtual relic restoration

    Publication Year: 2000 , Page(s): 42 - 44
    Cited by:  Papers (4)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (604 KB)  

    Relics change in quality when excavated from ruins and exposed to air and/or sunlight. This is one reason why we developed a new computer-based method to record and preserve archaeological properties. We propose a new method of 3D modeling of a relic shard that achieves sufficient accuracy and efficiency. With this approach, a single relic shard is scanned twice with a laser range finder, once for the front face and another for the back face. After that, the two sets of shape data for the front and back faces are integrated using physical constraints of the shard shape. We also developed a virtual reality (VR) technology-based relic restoration environment. Since we can simulate the restoration of relics in the virtual relic restoration environment before bonding the original shards, we can reduce errors during the restoration of real relics that were unavoidable conventionally View full abstract»

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  • Constructing the historic villages of Shirakawa-go in virtual reality

    Publication Year: 2000 , Page(s): 61 - 64
    Cited by:  Papers (5)
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    In Japan, UNESCO has registered ten areas as world heritage sites; Shirakawa-go in northern Gifu Prefecture is one of them. The private houses in this region, called Gassho-zukuri, are isolated from the outside world. As a result, the houses exhibit a unique building design developed to endure the area's severe natural environment. A Gassho-zukuri is built with wooden beams combined to form a thatched roof that resembles two hands in prayer. To protect these world heritage sites and to educate the public about the region, it's necessary to preserve not only the site's natural environment and architectural structures but also its various unique cultural assets. However, the Shirakawa-go region is one of the few world heritage sites where people actually live, giving rise to several preservation problems to address while respecting the residents' privacy. Thus, preservation through virtual reality (VR) is very important. From this viewpoint, we examined the necessary procedures and techniques for digitization of external views and cultural aspects of Shirakawa-go by using VR technology. We also reconstructed the Shirakawa-go area in 3D View full abstract»

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  • Virtualized architectural heritage: new tools and techniques

    Publication Year: 2000 , Page(s): 26 - 31
    Cited by:  Papers (5)
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    Technology has come a long way in solving many of the early limitations of virtual reality (VR) and virtual worlds have quietly found growing acceptance in selected areas. However, issues of graphic quality and speed has dogged virtual world heritage developers, forcing simplistic representations and triggering criticism from the heritage community. In addition, until recently there was also a lack of inexpensive software and data standards (such as QuickTimeVR and Virtual Reality Modeling Language, or VRML) for creating visually realistic interactive environments. Although significant advances have been made, the accurate virtual representation of historic and cultural landmarks has been limited by a lack of tools to quickly, inexpensively, and accurately model reality. The representation of built heritage requires two distinct forms of 3D data, current, real-world conditions and virtual or theorized historical interpretations. We call the combination of the two forms virtualized as opposed to virtual. Despite the use of numerous measurement technologies in traditional heritage work, existing tools lacked the optimal mix of features required for virtualized architectural environments. Dissatisfied with available choices. We began an extensive analysis of available technologies. In this article, we review results in heritage projects with two emerging systems View full abstract»

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  • Color restoration and image retrieval for Dunhuang fresco preservation

    Publication Year: 2000 , Page(s): 38 - 42
    Cited by:  Papers (4)
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    Dunhuang Mogao Cave, located in Gansu province, is a typical Chinese heritage site. Well preserved, the caves contain more than 555 grottoes, 2,000 painted statues, and 5,000 square meters of wall paintings. Scientists and artists have worked for a long time on how to preserve and restore the murals' colors, but have not found satisfactory methods. Discovering how to use advanced computer techniques to preserve, restore, and reuse Dunhuang fresco art information is a very interesting and complex task. In our project, we integrate many techniques, such as image processing, information retrieval, knowledge representation, and intelligent reasoning, to deal with these problems. Restoration of the frescoes is the basic focus of our project. Because of human activity, most of the frescoes fade day-by-day, with some seriously damaged. We propose a new, intelligent approach to color restoration. Each restored fresco will be preserved in the fresco database along with the original. For many of the Dunhuang frescoes, the key to preservation is to find an effective method for organizing, storing, managing, and retrieving the fresco data. We adopt content- and semantics-based image retrieval methods to solve these problems. Our fresco database will support Dunhuang pattern creation and virtual cave travel, reusing the fresco art information from the database. In this article, we mainly focus on the color restoration and retrieval techniques we use for fresco preservation View full abstract»

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  • Internetworked multimedia

    Publication Year: 2000 , Page(s): 101 - 102
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  • The city that doesn't exist: multimedia reconstruction of Latin American cities

    Publication Year: 2000 , Page(s): 56 - 60
    Cited by:  Papers (2)
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    Since 1995, our research group has used multimedia systems to investigate the city as a physical footprint of the social dynamics of cultural, economic, political and social activities. The original contribution of this research is the study of symbolic structures that define the evolution of cities. This investigation focuses mainly on attributes related to buildings and public spaces. We based the multimedia systems on historical 3D digital models of two Latin-American cities: Havana, Cuba and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Through these models, we collected and restored their urban structures in different historical periods to facilitate the understanding and analysis of the evolution of each city's identity. This research is part of a project called “Evolution of the Symbolic Systems of the Latin-American City”. The central purpose of this study is the development of a hypermedia application-an analytical system rather than a descriptive one. This application will enable a creative reading of symbolic structures' meanings, in terms of their cultural value in the city's form and of the collective understanding of the urban image. The investigation tries to break down separate treatments of the different levels of exploring the city: the large, general territorial plan; the urban structure of the squares, streets and public spaces; and the architectural structures. We undertook the hypermedia presentation as a new way to represent urban and architectural analysis View full abstract»

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  • VRML possibilities: the evolution of the Glasgow model [virtual city]

    Publication Year: 2000 , Page(s): 48 - 51
    Cited by:  Papers (1)
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    During the 1980s, ABACUS (Architecture and Building Aids Computer Unit, Strathclyde), in the Department of Architecture at the University of Strathclyde, researched issues surrounding the modelling and manipulation of large geometrical databases of urban topography. Initially, this interest lay solely in the ability to source, capture and store the relevant data. However, once constructed, these 3D data sets proved genuinely useful to a wide range of users. There ensued a demand from professionals for greater graphical functionality in the manipulation of these models and for the addition of contextual data. These demands often exposed deficiencies in the hardware and software systems then available. As a result, we focused development on research applications and deployment. The recent advent of the Virtual Reality Modelling Language (VRML) standards rekindled interest in this field, since VRML enables the addressing and solving of many of the issues that proved problematic in the past. The potential now exists to provide wide access to large-scale, multi-layered urban models View full abstract»

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  • Three-dimensional documentation of complex heritage structures

    Publication Year: 2000 , Page(s): 52 - 55
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    The need to study and preserve remnants of the first civilizations and to document their events, religions, cultures and significant architectural structures has always existed. As a result, various methods of visual communications developed over a period of time-from ancient techniques like rock-cut frescoes to today's digital techniques using multimedia. Along with these techniques, there exists a need to improve the user interface and to increase user interactivity. Soon, people will no longer need to go beyond the realms of their own homes to experience or study intricate heritage structures. Virtual environments of such structures will be easily available and navigable. All the associated information will be available at the click of a mouse. Virtual environments can be depicted in various ways. For example, for different lighting conditions, the virtual structure can appear as it existed, as it exists now or as it will (or could) exist in the future. Besides marking the beginning of 3D documentation of complex heritage structures, the research described in this paper has extended the limits of human skill and IT. For our project, we selected the palatial complex of Fatehpur Sikri, a heritage structure located near Agra in India that had a sufficient degree of complexity. My colleagues and I conceived the project in two parts: the resurrection of Fatehpur Sikri and an interactive virtual tour on the World Wide Web entitled “Fatehpur Sikri - An Epic in Red Sandstone” (<http://rohini.ncst.ernet.in/fatehpur>) View full abstract»

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  • Virtual-reality heritage presentation at Ename

    Publication Year: 2000 , Page(s): 45 - 48
    Cited by:  Papers (3)
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    Virtual reality (VR) and multimedia are central components of the heritage presentation programme at Ename, Belgium. These techniques are designed to help the visitor understand and experience the past as revealed through archaeological and historical research. The programme uses different VR approaches to bring to life archaeological remains, standing monuments and elements of the historical landscape for visitors. We named the overall project “Ename 974” to commemorate the foundation date of the first mediaeval settlement. Its major aim is to communicate new insights about archaeology, history and conservation to the general public, paying great attention to scholarly accuracy and by means of multimedia technologies. Among the most important of these technologies are on-site virtual reconstructions, museum multimedia and educational projects. Since 1998, the Ename Centre for Public Archaeology and Heritage Presentation has served as an international extension of the Ename 974 project. Its goal is to develop new technologies and new standards for heritage presentation. It also coordinates heritage presentation projects and educational programmes for partner sites around the world View full abstract»

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  • The audiences would be the artists and their life would be the arts

    Publication Year: 2000 , Page(s): 6 - 9
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    The advent of enormous repositories of digital information presents us with an interesting challenge. How can we represent and interpret such complex, abstract, and socially important data? In a new collaboration, Ear to the Ground, we have begun exploring ways to create experiential encounters with otherwise abstract data streams, especially through sound (http://cm.bell-labs.com/stat/ear). As part of our initial efforts, we gathered several examples of what we term data art, works produced by artists, designers, and engineers that challenge our traditional notions of information display. These pieces each have an aesthetic function, but because of their reliance on data, they also serve as a basis for forming inferences about the phenomena they describe View full abstract»

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  • Image processing for virtual restoration of artworks

    Publication Year: 2000 , Page(s): 34 - 37
    Cited by:  Papers (19)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (396 KB)  

    As tools for artwork restoration, image-processing techniques serve two purposes. They can be used as a guide to the actual restoration of the artwork (computer-guided restoration). Or, they can produce a digitally restored version of the work, which itself is valuable, although the restoration is only virtual and cannot be reproduced on the real piece of work (virtual restoration). We present two applications of digital image processing for restoring artworks. The first belongs to the class of computer-guided restoration techniques, and the second represents an example of virtual artwork restoration. The first example refers to cleaning dirty paintings. More specifically, we describe a technique that, by relying on cleaning a small patch of the painting, can foresee the final result when the same cleaning methodology is applied to the whole piece of work. Restorers can use it by applying a set of different cleaning methodologies to very small patches of the painting. They can then use the virtual cleaning software to determine which cleaning procedure is likely to give the best result, thus using digital image processing as a tool to guide the actual restoration of the artwork. In our second example, we present a system for removing cracks from old paintings and frescos. In many cases, cracks severely deteriorate the aspect of paintings both because of their number and their heaviness. Thus, a system capable of removing them is of great interest, even if the removal is only virtual View full abstract»

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Aims & Scope

The magazine contains technical information covering a broad range of issues in multimedia systems and applications

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Meet Our Editors

Editor-in-Chief
John R. Smith
IBM T.J. Watson Research Center