Mar 21, 2016 | By Alec
Despite recent advancements and the steady decrease of hardware costs, 3D scanning technology is still in its infancy. Though it is already possible to get your hands on 3D printable scans using a costly turntable scanning setup, surely the real revolution must be in merging the power of smartphones with 3D scanners. Fortunately, Swiss startup Dacuda has just made a significant step in that direction. Through their patented SLAM 3D scanning engine, they have just released a smartphone SDK that can be used to 3D scan yourself and generate a good quality 3D printable avatar that can be used in games.
If 3D scanning is your forte, it will have been difficult to miss the excellent work of Swiss software specialists Dacuda. They reached the spotlight back in 2014, when they launched a Kickstarter campaign for the PocketScan device, which eventually gathered half a million dollars in pledges – more than ten times their original goal. Since then, they have been working on improving and steadily advancing their SLAM Scan® 3D engine, an algorithm used to enable real time 3D construction of objects. Just a few months ago, this already resulted in 3DAround Scanning app for smartphones, developed in collaboration with Volumental.
With its latest release, Dacuda is essentially trying to take that to the next level. With this SDK, gamers can 3D scan themselves with nothing more than a smartphone, and continue gaming with a photorealistic avatar. As the company’s CEO Peter Weigand explained, they are trying to avoid the bothersome obstacles surrounding 3D scanning altogether. “Today, generating 3D content is limited to expensive and cumbersome technology,” he told reporters. “Our technology allows you to scan your face in real-time to generate a high quality 3D avatar of yourself, all from your mobile device.”
It comes at a time when VR technology is growing and eyeing the gaming industry. Several games, such as FIFA and NBA 2K are already featuring ‘My Player’ modes that are all about increasing the gaming experience through personalized avatars and better self-representation. That niche can obviously greatly benefit from realistic and detail-oriented 3D scanning, which the SDK provides. “The future of gaming is about creating worlds that totally absorb the player, and realistic avatars are essential to making that vision come true. With Dacuda’s pioneering new solution for game studios, we open up an exciting new world of possibilities for game studios and players alike,” Weigand argues.
But other applications, including 3D printing and 3D mapping, can also certainly benefit from the SLAM Scan® 3D engine. As the CEO adds, the algorithm is capable of mapping just about anything, from figurines, people to all sorts of objects. Within just seconds, a 3D scan with a resolution exceeding that of semi-pro depth cameras is generated and can be 3D printed. The 3D engine further provides a wide range of 3D imaging options, from high-precision image stitching to global image map optimization. Key is a system that processes images from standard cameras to determine their exact positioning in 3D to reconstruct depth. This forms of a 3D point cloud of you (or an object), as can be seen in the clip below.
According to the Swiss specialists, that real-time feedback of data is crucial in gaining those high speeds. “Thanks to real-time feedback, users can arbitrarily move the camera to capture an object, while viewing the capture from their movements in real-time. For the first time, the creation of 3D objects can be as simple as taking a video,” they say.
While 3DAround was mostly suitable for making 3D images of food, it can be expected that this switch to the gaming industry will greatly increase their market and will find very enthusiastic users easily. Most importantly, by harnessing the power of the smartphone for high resolution imaging, they are greatly reducing hardware costs – as everyone has a smartphone already. “Since our technology relies on ordinary smartphone cameras, we can bring 3D scanning to millions of users without changing their hardware. Unlike hardware depth cameras, our solution operates at any focal length and is able to capture 3D objects indoors as well as outdoors. In addition, our resolution runs in real time on the device and scales with available computing power. Today we already exceed the resolution of semi-professional depth cameras,” they write on their website.
From online gaming to VR applications such as in social media, this latest smartphone DSK package can really give 3D scanning as a whole a huge boost. For more info on the DSK, go to their website here.
Posted in 3D Scanning
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Mat wrote at 4/1/2016 5:51:53 PM:
Looks more Uraniom than Dacuda?