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Computer Graphics as a Telecommunication Medium

Date and Time
Wednesday, December 3, 2008 - 4:15pm to 5:45pm
Computer Science Small Auditorium (Room 105)
Vladlen Koltun, from Stanford University
Michael Freedman
I will argue that the primary contribution of computer graphics in the next decade will be to enable richer social interaction at a distance. The integration of real-time computer graphics and large-scale distributed systems will give rise to a rich telecommunication medium, currently referred to as virtual worlds. The medium provides open-ended face-to-face communication among ad-hoc groups of people in custom environments and decouples shared spatial experiences from geographic constraints.

I will outline a research agenda for enabling and advancing the medium. The three driving themes are system architectures, content creation, and interaction. System architectures aim to support the medium at planetary scale. Content creation aims to enable untrained participants to create high-quality three-dimensional content. Interaction aims to make virtual world communication seamless and natural. I will demonstrate preliminary results in each area.

Bio: Vladlen Koltun is an Assistant Professor of Computer Science at Stanford University. He directs the Virtual Worlds Group, which explores how scalable virtual world systems can be built, populated, and used. His prior work in computational geometry and theoretical computer science was recognized with the NSF CAREER Award, the Alfred P. Sloan Fellowship, and the Machtey Award.

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