Critic: Dan Taeyoung, Jason Danforth
The Rhino Remote is an application that uses the accelerometer in smart phones as a gestural 3d modeling mouse.
gestural recognition, gestural drawing, 3d modeling, fluid drawing, VR drawing, motion tracking, accelerometer, drawing with motion
designing with gestures
Current 3-D modeling applications are constricted to the limited 2D motions that can be tracked with a mouse. In the physical world designers have the freedom to work more gesturally through sketching or sculpting models with their hands. Although some tools such as touch and trackpads have allowed designers a more fluid process when working with computers, affordable options for gestural 3-D modeling have yet to be invented.
The Rhino Remote is an application that uses the accelerometer in smart phones as an affordable option for gestural 3d modeling. By using an application that works with smart phones, designers don’t have to purchase new expensive products to track gestural motions. The intention is to release design from strict 2d motions of a computer mouse that force designers to awkwardly translate 2d mouse motion into a 3d modeled form. Forming a 3d model should directly mimc the natural 3d motions of making that form in the real world. Rhino Remote aims to make design more natural to how a human may design without a computer. Rather than have designers change how they move to fit a computers sensing capabilities, a computer should change how they sense to fit human’s design capabilities.
The intention is to release design from strict 2d motions of a computer mouse that force designers to awkwardly translate 2d mouse motion into a 3d modeled form.
How It Works
Smart phone accelerometers are already quite sophisticated. A weight inside of the phone tracks the directionality of a motion with a force in that direction, which is then tracked through a vector. Using this vector a current x,y,z position of the designers hand is identified and mimicked in the 3d model. Grasshopper tracks this 3d position and translates a new (3d) cursor position in Rhino.
While the Rhino Remote shows potential for a much more accessible gestural mouse, major limitations in accuracy stand in the way of this yet being a feasible design tool. While the accelerometer is great at tracking the force of a motion its quite poor at precisely track the directionality of that motion. This leads to the location of the point getting further and further from its accurate location. Beacons are a potential remedy for this accuracy problem. Beacons wouldn’t rely on the motion but would triangulate the position of the hand using a camera and tracking markers that define boundaries within a volumetric range.
However even with the accuracy dilemma at the scale of the hand, the smart phone could be used as a design remote if used at a much larger. A phone may be used in the future to design at a 1:1 scale when measuring out a room. A designer might walk a boundary of an imaginary room and qualify locations inside that area where furniture or features in the architecture would be. This 1:1 scale may be more compatible as a design tool with the limitations of the smart phone. Movement of a phone could also allow a first person perspective of what its like to walk through or experience a space (which has already been seen in VR).