The idea for this project is to offer a smart, virtually enhanced environment for supporting collaborative workspaces and educational classrooms using Augmented Reality.
The starting point of this project is to create an application for the Hololens Head Mounted Display (HMD) where the person with the (HMD) can add virtual contents in various spots around the physical classroom to be used later for a class lesson of a specific subject. The ultimate goal of the application is to allow a multi users augmented reality application especially after the Microsoft release of Shared Holograms.
The first mode that we are going to build is a classroom mode. The application will allow the professor to manage the information that will be displayed at specific locations using a control menu. Assuming that all students would have an access to (HMD), we are planning to allow them looking around to see the virtual contents that the professor has positioned and been able to see the information that the professor is resolving in real time.
A big issue in augmented reality applications is the registration of the virtual contents. A precise tracking of the physical object is required to augment the virtual contents without the break of the illusion that the virtual content is a part of the physical object.
We will use the tracking system OptiTrack to drive the augmentation of the virtual objects. OptiTrack can provide a precise motion capture and 3D tracking, and we aim by incorporating that into our application to obtain a high quality augmented reality application.
If time allows, we will add a second mode to support collaborative workspaces. In this mode, everyone should have a control over the virtual contents to add and manage things simultaneously.
We will develop the application for the HoloLens and OptiTrack platforms. The OptiTrack cameras are going to be used to track multiple rigidbodies placed in different locations in the classroom. The positions and movements of these rigidbodies will be tracked to drive the augmentation of virtual objects. The HoloLens will be used to augment the environment with virtual contents in order to enhance the user’s working and learning experience.
We will use Motive application to set up and calibrate a number of rigidbodies in the classroom. Then, we will stream the positions and tracking of rigidbodies into Unity by configuring the machine that runs Unity with the one that runs Motive. Unity is the main environment that we will use to develop our augmented reality application along with Microsoft Visual Studio for application scripting.
Note.Another option to be considered for students can be to use their smartphones to look at specific point in the classroom to see what professor has put there and interact with it.
Both of us will be in charge of developing the application and writing all documentation needed for the final presentation of the project.