31 July 2023, by HCI-UHH
In the scope of the HORIZON-RIA HORIZON Research and Innovation Actions within the call for a human-centred and ethical development of Digital and industrial technologies 2022 (HORIZON-CL4-2022-HUMAN-01) our group will participate in the PRESENCE projected coordinated by ICAT from Barcelona, Spain.
Within the call projects will develop innovative eXtended Reality industrial and societal applications, integrating technologies such as advanced visualisation, 3D, Augmented and Virtual Reality experiences, human-machine interaction and cooperation, with a focus on well-designed and fully tested scenarios in real-world environment.
Our project will focus on presence. The concept of presence can be understood as a synthesis of interrelated psychophysical ingredients where multiple perceptual dimensions intervene. A better understanding on how specific aspects, such as plausibility (the illusion that virtual events are really happening), co-presence (the illusion of being with others), or place illusion (the feeling of being there) impact XR experiences is key to improve their quality. The availability and performance of current technologies do not reach high levels of presence in XR, which is essential to get us closer than ever to the perennial VR dream: to be anywhere, doing anything, together with others, from any place. PRESENCE will impact multiple dimensions of presence in physical-digital worlds, addressing three main challenges: i) how to create realistic visual interactions among remote humans, delivering high-end holoportation based on live volumetric capturing, compression and optimization techniques, under heterogeneous computation and network conditions; ii) how to provide realistic touch among remote users and synthetic objects, developing novel haptic systems and enabling spatial multi device synchronisation in multi-user scenarios; iii) how to produce realistic social interactions among avatars and agents, generating AI virtual humans, representing actual users or AI agents. PRESENCE will ensure the future uptake of research results following a threefold evaluation method: 1) each technology will be independently evaluated to understand its impact on the illusion of presence; 2) each component will be evaluated by the integration team, providing scientific and technical feedback in order to facilitate their use in each project iteration as well as beyond the project scope, towards technology transfer and exploitation; 3) all components will be integrated in two demonstrators (professional and social setups), following a human-centred design approach and ultimately evaluating the user experience.
We will serve as technical coordinator for the project. The consortial partners are Unity, ACTRONIKA, Certh, Raytrix, GO TOUCH VR, Section, IMEC, SenseGlove, Didimo, University Barcelona, SyncVR, ZaubAR, Sound,