THE INTERFACE SPHERICAL PROJECTION INTERFACE
Over the last few years Time's Up has assembled a variety of innovative devices, designed to help bridge the gap between virtual and physical environments. We are aiming for a close correlation between virtual and physical worlds. Even though we like the dinky glasses and the spacy helmets, we also find them a hindrance for our purposes. We want a most natural way to take our physical body into this world and use as many of its capabilities as possible. Thus SPIN, the Spherical Projection Interface.
SPIN is a three meter in diameter translucent sphere of rear-projected material, which is supported on bearings allowing it to roll in all directions. The walking movements of the person inside the sphere are registered by a trackball mounted below it and feed into a computer system. Information relating to the user's position data serves as parameters for navigation in a three-dimensional computer-generated world. This 3D world is projected onto the surface of the translucent sphere with 4-5 projectors.
The resultant immersion of the whole body in a virtual space enables a panorama view such as has never been seen before, while the user achieves an unconstrained freedom of movement in every direction by walking.
THE APPLICATION - BODYSPIN
BodySPIN is an interactive installation based on the SPIN Spherical Projection Interface. BodySPIN aims at researching behavioural patterns in a simulated environment that incorporates the user´s body rather than trying to overcome it. The research focus lies not only in the consequences of a VR-System onto the user´s body, but moreover in the influence of physical presence on the creation of such a system and its feedback upon the body (loop).
The user is equipped with a small body pack to allow real-time measurement of the necessary body functions. A system for muscle activity measurements, a breast belt to allow scanning of breathing frequency and a clocking device for pulse rate are all fed back into Virtual Environments projected upon the Spherical Projection Interface (SPIN).