2017 Poster Sessions : SpinVR: Live Cinematic Virtual Reality

Student Name : Don Dansereau, Robert Konrad
Advisor : None
One of the most exciting applications of virtual reality is to travel to distance places or communicate with friends and family. However, cinematic virtual reality---recording and replaying the world using stereoscopic 360 degree panoramas---is challenging. Current solutions either rely on sequentially captured images, which prevents video framerates, or on camera arrays. While camera arrays deliver high quality VR video, they require massive amounts of data to be captured and processed, which makes it difficult to support live applications, such as streaming or telecommunication. We propose a camera system that uses spinning line sensors to record VR videos directly into the format that is widely supported by VR displays and streaming pipelines: omni-directional stereo (ODS). No post-processing is necessary, but hardware complexity and tradeoffs between image resolution, video framerate, and sensor noise make the proposed system non-trivial. We explore these design tradeoffs as well as software and hardware for direct ODS capture.

Robert Konrad is a 3rd year PhD candidate in the Electrical Engineering Department at Stanford University, advised by Professor Gordon Wetzstein. His research interests lie at the intersection of computational displays and human physiology with a specific focus on virtual and augmented reality systems. He is specifically interested in the vergence-accommodation and visual-vestibular conflicts present in current VR and AR displays. He received his Bachelor’s Degree from the ECE department at the University of Toronto in 2014, and his Master’s Degree from the EE Department at Stanford University in 2016.

Donald Dansereau joined the Stanford Computational Imaging Lab as a postdoctoral scholar in September 2016. His research is focused on computational imaging for robotic vision, and he is the author of the open-source Light Field Toolbox for Matlab. Dr. Dansereau completed B.Sc. and M.Sc. degrees in electrical and computer engineering at the University of Calgary in 2001 and 2004, receiving the Governor General’s Gold Medal for his work in light field processing. His industry experience includes physics engines for video games, computer vision for microchip packaging, and FPGA design for high-throughput automatic test equipment. In 2014 he completed a Ph.D. in plenoptic signal processing at the Australian Centre for Field Robotics, University of Sydney, and in 2015 joined on as a research fellow at the Australian Centre for Robotic Vision at the Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane. Donald's field work includes marine archaeology on a Bronze Age city in Greece, seamount and hydrothermal vent mapping in the Sea of Crete and Aeolian Arc, habitat monitoring off the coast of Tasmania, and hydrochemistry and wreck exploration in Lake Geneva.