Virtual Augmented Reality

Virtual Reality will make Open Data more visible and valuable

Senior Lecturer Aris Alissandrakis and Research Assistant Nico Reski, both at the Department of Media Technology, have presented their ongoing research efforts within Virtual and Augmented Reality, as well as a new project about visualizing public opinion.

The web features an ever-increasing amount of data that can be freely used, modified and shared. But how can we make that data visible and valuable?

On May 3, 2016, Senior Lecturer Aris Alissandrakis and Research Assistant Nico Reski, both at the Department of Media Technology at Linnaeus University, presented their research within Virtual and Augmented Reality at a meeting arranged by Dataföreningen in the city of Malmö. The talk covered their ongoing research efforts towards the exploration and interaction of Open Data in Virtual and Augmented Reality environments.

During the two-hour session, Aris and Nico presented a general overview about the concepts of Virtual and Augmented Reality. The main part of the talk focused around their investigations towards the application of off-the-shelf consumer technologies, such as the Oculus Rift head-mounted display and the Leap Motion controller, to craft an immersive Virtual Reality experience in order to explore Open Data. As the title of the talk, "Change your Perspective", indicates, the developed prototype aims to put the user "inside" the network, rather than looking at it from the "outside", thus providing a new point of view.

New project will visualize public opinion

Finally, some details about the concept and a video demo of the PEAR project were presented. PEAR, short for Augmented Reality for Public Engagement, is a project about visualizing public opinion, received from social media platforms (e.g. Twitter), in-situ in an interactive way. A first deployment called "PEAR 4 VXO" will be run in collaboration with the municipality of Växjö within the scope of the Vårstad festival at the end of May. The PEAR project is the outcome of efforts conducted together with master students of the Cross-Media Design and Production course at Linnaeus University.

The event was part eleven of a series called Thank Tank, created to make research more accessible to the public. The Think Tank series, organized by Jorge de Sousa Pires, is located at the Media Evolution City in Malmö, Sweden.

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