The Tangibles

The mediated sketch table gives users the illusion of drawing on the same physical workspace; they can see each other’s drawings and each other’s hands. Each user of the shared workspace has a rectangle projected onto the table, the contents of which is shared with the other users. The goal is to make the shared area look as close to identical as possible for all users, giving them the feeling of sitting around the same table.

Here's a picture explaining the basic setup of the system:

  1. Screen for video chat
  2. the shared workspace
  3. Projector displaying other users' workspaces
  4. Camera filming your own physical workspace (the video is sent to other users)
  5. Camera used for video chat
And here's a video showing the system in action:

The project was done as part of a collaboration between LTU (our technology), KTH (the royal institute of technology), and TU Delft in the Netherlands. We've been to both TU Delft and KTH to present the project and participate in workshops.

We use virtual touch buttons for turning the incoming video streams on an off. You interact with these simply by moving your hand over them.

Finally, here's a video showing an early idea for rectangle detection based on color thresholding. We abandoned it in favor of AR marker detection, but it was a pretty cool idea.

Check out the project blog for more info!