Hybrid images

I’m at Siggraph 2006 and will try to post some of the stuff that I find interesting through the week. No particular order or focus. Just notes along the way during this highly interesting conference. You can read more about Siggraph over at the official ACM Siggraph site. To put it short, this annual conference is the world’s biggest conference on computer graphics and interactive techniques.

So for my first little note. I just finished a session by Dr. Aude Oliva, Antonio Torralba and Philippe G. Schyns. It was about what they call hybrid images.

Images that change based on the distance from where it is viewed. Have a look at the two pictures below:

Angry and nice
Pictures copyright © 1999-2006 Aude Oliva & Philippe G. Schyns. MIT

Now step away from your computer screen while looking at the pictures. Depending on the size of your screen and the quality of your vision the pictures will change at a certain distance. For those of you that is just too lazy to step away from the screen I can simulate this by simpy reducing the size of the image. This is a small version of the exact same image:

Nice and angry

Suggested uses are commercial billboards that change depending on the distance to the viewer. and fonts that can only be read at a close distance to avoid people reading “over your shoulder”.

You find more examples and information over at the GALLERY OF HYBRID IMAGES.

Hybrid images

More videos from Siggraph 2001

This year’s Siggraph starts in less than a week. It’s time to finish off my little series of videos from the 2001 conference and make room for new and interesting stuff from Boston next week.

http://flash.revver.com/player/1.0/player.swf
First, another computer game controller experiment. You control the game by moving the different shapes in front of the screen. Link to video.

http://flash.revver.com/player/1.0/player.swf
And another pretty advanced multi player computer game. It’s 3D and is controlled by sensors in the 3D glasses and a special glove. Link to video.

http://flash.revver.com/player/1.0/player.swf
Then a little bit of art. You sit down in front of the screen with a headset with a microphone. Say a word, for example “elephant” and the system starts finding pictures of elephants on the internet and let them fly over the screen. Two persons can play at the same time. In each end of the screen. Then you can have pictures of elephants flying towards pictures of dogs… Link to video.

http://flash.revver.com/player/1.0/player.swf
Then some physical movement communicated through the internet. Place the sensors somewhere, connect to the internet and place the second set another place on this planet, also connected. Move one of the sets and the other one will move exactly in the same manner.

Very nice if you want to wave goodnight to your grandmother in Japan through movement with a robot teddy bear. Link to video.

http://flash.revver.com/player/1.0/player.swf

And last but not least, the scary vision. There is no water left on earth and all you have is this virtual shower. Fortunately, my camera didn’t get wet. Link to video.

More videos from Siggraph 2001

Flesh-eating plants

Sundew
Don’t panic. This blog is still mostly about media technologies. But it is summer in Norway and I have done some travelling in the mountains.

It’s time for a little curiosity. And yes, I know. You well educated and intelligent readers of this blog probably know that carnivorous is a better and more accurate expression than flesh-eating, but hey – carnivorous sounds boring. Flesh-eating sounds cool.

Sundew
In the area where I have been travelling lately there are two plants that have decided that it is a good idea to supplement their diet with small animals. Or, to be precise – insects. I have seen these plants in the mountains all of my life. This time I was able to snap some cool macro images of them.

Sundew and ant
The sundew is both beautiful and scary looking. It has leaves with small drops of stalked mucilagenous glands. The small drops are sticky and sweet. They both attract and trap insects. Once trapped, the plant starts to bend the leave to completely secure the prey. It then uses enzymes to dissolve parts of the insect and absorbs the nutrition through its leaves.

Butterworth
Another agressive little fellow is the common butterwort. A small plant with blue flowers. On the ground it has greeen leaves that is coated with a sticky slime that traps insects. Once trapped the plant release enzymes and digests its prey.

Butterworth close
The norwegian mountains during summer is probably one of the safest places on earth. Still there are pretty scary things going on if you have a look at the details…

All the images here are snapped by Eirik Solheim and can be used non commercially through this creative commons license. For commercial use please contact me.

Waterfall in Norway

Flesh-eating plants

Magnetic fluid art installation

Protude Flow
Protude Flow is one of the most amazing art installations I have ever seen. Another clip from my archive of videos from the Siggraph conference back in 2001. It is impossible to communicate how it was to experience this thing live through a video. The installation was made by Sachiko Kodama and Minako Takeno. It is a pool of magnetic fluid with one very powerful electro magnet above it. The magnet is controlled by the sound in the room through a microphone.
http://flash.revver.com/player/1.0/player.swf

Link to video on Revver.

The experience was something like “this has to be trick photography“. But you are there in the room and it is real…

Magnetic fluid art installation

PlayerPal – Media center control from your PSP

PSP and PlayerPal
PlayerPal will let you control iTunes or Windows Media Player from any device with a browser. Your PDA, laptop, playstation portable etc.

NetRemote and Girder could give you similar control, but PlayerPal looks like a pretty interesting and user friendly solution.

It will work as long as you have a browser on the device you want to use as a remote. No client needed. I haven’t had time to try this one out yet, so I’ll have to get back to it.

PlayerPal – Media center control from your PSP

Zooomr giving away free pro accounts

Good dog

If you are a blogger and want to host your pictures at Zooomr (the great picture sharing site with an unfortunate name) they are currently giving away pro accounts if you sign up and post a picture that is hosted on Zooomr on your blog. Then you paste the link to your article into this post at the Zooomr blog.

And yes – you are right. The picture in this post is hosted on Zooomr and I have pasted the link into the mentioned blog…

Zooomr giving away free pro accounts