On the fly 3D surface reconstruction: KinectFusion

Microsoft’s Kinect is rightfully getting a lot of attention from researchers. One snippet that caught my attention is a collaboration between Microsoft and a number of UK and Canada-based researchers. The result is KinectFusion.

Have a look for yourself:

The implications for virtual worlds are fairly obvious. The thing that particularly struck me is the dynamic capability of the approach even at this early stage – if something changes with the physical world environment, it is reflected virtually. For the education, science and health fields, to name three, this is huge.

One obvious example within my pet area of clinical simulation: a camera (with consent) is placed in a busy emergency department in a large teaching hospital. Emergency nursing students based at a rural university receive that feed, had it convert on the fly to 3D for use within their virtual learning environment. Students may actually ‘work’ a full shift virtually, needing to respond to the challenges of the changing environment as they occur.

As I said, there’s a long way to go (for starters, KinectFusion is about surfaces only), but the progress is rapid and exciting. Over to you: what applications could you see this being good for?

Migration to Openlife: one story

Aussie Second Life resident, Shai Khalifa, has posted an interesting piece on our discussion forums.

As Shai writes, she had been a Second Life resident since September 2006. Technical problems, the lowering of sim pricing and the Openspaces issue led to her making a full migration to Openlife.


Shai goes on to put the case for Openlife having a greater sense of community, something that can be expected given Openlife’s current size. She also agrees that Openlife is a long way off providing the range of services that Second Life does, but is excited about progress to date and the new possibilities on the horizon.

You can read Shai’s piece in full here and discuss the issue further as well. My view is fairly similar to Shai’s in that Openlife has a very different vibe to Second Life – primarily due to its stage of development. This is something that’s appealed to a number of people, as have a number of other alternative grids. The real challenge for the alternative grids is maintaining infrastructure and momentum – only then will Linden Lab start looking over their shoulder regularly.

Just for interest, Openlife is certainly growing judging by the world map:


As always, we’ll keep a close watch on Openlife, one of the many grids popping up. If you’re running a grid that’s developing a community, let us know.

What do you think about Mainland zoning in Second Life?

Second Life resident Diag Anzac has posted a thoughtful response to Jack Linden’s recent zoning announcement on our forums.

Jump in and give your thoughts about a significant change to Second Life.

Is it a long-term slide?

I’ve had some interesting comments privately from people about the significant decline on active Australian Second Life users over the past two months.


So, I’ve created a topic on the SLOz forums to delve a bit deeper – why the slump? Wold love to hear your thoughts.

The SL voice experience so far

On the SLOz forums, Juko Tempel has invited comments on residents’ experiences with voice in SL to date.

How have you found it? How often do you use voice versus text?

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