paper at ACSE-ICTD conference

Raman, M., Tang, M.  3D Visualization Development of Urban Environments for Simulated Driving Training and VR Development in Transportation Systems. ASCE ICTD 2023 Conference. Austin. TX. 06. 2023

 

This work is based on a project to develop a physics-based, 3D digital visual environment that is a replication of actual field conditions for over seventy miles of Ohio highways and city roads for use in a driving simulator for the Ohio Department of Transportation. While transportation engineering design traditionally involves 3D design in a 2D workspace to create the built environment in the context of a natural environment, this project required replication of existing natural + built environments in a 3D digital space, thereby presenting a unique challenge to develop a new, repeatable process to create a specific digital end product.

Using industry-specific software comprised of InfraWorks (urban infrastructure design), Civil 3D (terrain modeling), Rhino (3D product modeling), 3ds Max (rendering/animation), Maya (3D animation/simulation), and Python (scripting) that are traditionally dedicated to their fields, the team developed a process to integrate them outside of their intended purposes so that they could connect industry-specific functionalities to deliver a novel product that can now be utilized by multiple markets.

This process utilizes the functionalities of each software to resolve a portion of the puzzle and delivers it as a solution for the next step of development using another software. Using an iterative development cycle approach, the process bridges the gaps between the industries of Transportation Engineering, Visualization, Architecture, and Gaming to deliver the end product.

The resulting 3D digital model of the existing urban environment can now be readily used as a baseline product for any industry that would benefit from such a digital model. In transportation engineering, it can be used in Transportation Systems Planning, Surface Operations, and/or Workforce Development. In outside/connected markets, it can be used in UI-based development, interactive game-based multiplayer virtual meetings, and photo-realistic immersive models for use in VR/multiplayer exploratory environments. This process has been standardized for the digital development of existing site conditions and context for the architectural conceptualization of buildings and public spaces in the Architecture program at the University of Cincinnati. The same process has been carried into the next development phase for the Ohio Department of Transportation.

 

Cincinnati Public Radio interview

our EVRTalk story goes live on Cincinnati Public Radio!

Ming Tang (UC) and Jai’La Nored, Anna Goubeaux, and Antoinette Moore (Council on Aging of Southwestern Ohio) were interviewed by Ann Thompson. WVXU, Cincinnati Public Radio. 

VR headsets put caregivers in the shoes of those they are assisting. By Ann Thompson. WVXU, Cincinnati Public Radio. 01.02.2023.

Live on Cincinnati Public Radio on January 2nd at 6:44 am. 8:44 am and 5:44 pm

(from left) Jai’La Nored, Anna Goubeaux, UC’s Ming Tang and Antoinette Moore.

Focus On Technology
Mondays at 6:44 a.m. and 8:44 a.m. during Morning Edition and 5:44 p.m. during All Things Considered.

Thanks for the support from COA, Live Well Collaborative, and the University of Cincinnati Urban Health Pathway grant

Check more information on the EVRTalk  program.

Thanks to Suzanne Burke, Ken Wilson, Jai’La Nored, Anna Goubeaux, and many others from COA. Thanks to the Live Well EVRTalk development team (Faculty: Ming Tang, Matt Anthony; advisor: Craig Vogel, Linda Dunseath; Students and Live Well fellows: Tosha Bapat, Karly Camerer, Jay Heyne, Harper Lamb, Jordan Owens, Ruby Qji, Alejandro Robledo, Matthew Spoleti, Lauren Southwood, Ryan Tinney, Keeton Yost, Dongrui Zhu.)

new website of XR-Lab

XR-Lab’s new website is completed.

eXtended Reality Lab (XR-Lab) is a research lab affiliated with the College of DAAP and Digital Futures at the University of Cincinnati.  XR-Lab explores how people engage with simulated scenarios through Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality, and Mixed Reality and promotes communication and collaboration through XR for education, health, safety, and professional training in both academic and industry settings.

 


Technologies have radically altered and reconstructed the relationships between humans, computation, and the environment. As the diagram shows, we believe AI, Digital twins, Metaverse, and XR are essential for fusing design and computation to connect humans. These technologies provide promising opportunities to empower us to rebuild a better world, physically and digitally.

We look forward to sharing our expertise and lab resources, incubating new ideas, and cultivating creativity and the digital culture of UC.

call for enrollment: Metaverse development

Design in the Age of Metaverse and Extended Reality

ARCH 7036-004 (51920)  / ARCH5051-004 (51921). Elective Arch Theory Seminar.  Spring semester. DAAP, UC.

Class time: Tuesdays and Thursdays. 12:30 pm-1:50 pm

Location:  Hybrid with online; CGC Lab @ DAAP; XR-Lab @ Digital Future Building.

Instructor: Ming Tang.  Director, Extended Reality Lab. XR-Lab, Associate Professor, SAID, DAAP, University of Cincinnati

The course is open to all UC students of any major. The course is open to both undergraduate (ARCH5051)  and graduate students (ARCH 7036). Please contact Prof. Ming Tang if you have issues registering for the course as a student from another major.

  • For SAID graduate student who has previously taken the VIZ-3 course, this advanced-level course will allow you to develop your XR-based presentations for thesis exhibition or propose your XR-related topics.
  • For students with general design backgrounds ( architecture, interior design, urban planning, landscape, industrial design, art, game, film, and digital media), this course will allow you to extend your creativity into XR and create an immersive experience.
  • For students without previous experience in design fields (engineering, art & science, CCM, medicine, etc.) this course will be an excellent introduction to the realm of XR.

This seminar course focuses on the intersection of traditional design with immersive visualization technologies, including Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality, Digital Twin, and Metaverse. The class will explore the new spatial experience in the virtual realm and analyze human perceptions, interactions, and behavior in the virtual world. Students will learn both the theoretical framework and hands-on skills on XR development. The course will provide students exposure to the XR technologies, supported by the new XR-Lab at the UC digital future building. Students are encouraged to propose their own or group research on future design with XR.

Hardware: VR headsets and glasses are available at the XR-Lab at DF.

Software: Unreal Engine 5. . available at DAAP CGC Lab.

Course Goals and Outcome

Students are encouraged to look at architecture, motion pictures, game design, 3D design, and other digital art media. As students develop their research, these fields become invaluable in inspiration and motivation. The instructor supports all attempts by students to experiment with techniques that interest and challenge them above and beyond what is taught in the classroom.

Students completing this course will be able to identify theories and research methods related to eXtended Reality (XR), including (1) History and theory related to XR (VR+AR+MR); (2) Emerging trend related to the Metaverse and its impact on design.

The course focus on hands-on skills in XR development through Unreal Engine 5. Students will propose their XR projects and develop them over the semester. 

This course will be offered as a hybrid of online and in-person at CGC/Digital Future building based on the project’s progress. The student will propose their projects and use 15 weeks to complete the development.

Prerequisite: There are no skills needed as prerequisites. However, Basic 3D modeling skills are preferred.

Schedule for each week.

  1. History and the workflow of metaverse development 
  2. project management at GitHub (Inspiration from the film due) 
  3. Modeling ( XR vignette proposal due)
  4. Material & Lighting (Project development start) 
  5. Blue Print, node-based programming 
  6. Character and Animation
  7. Interaction and UX @ deploy to XR
  8. Project development time
  9. Project development time
  10. Project development time
  11. Project development time
  12. Project development time
  13. Project development time
  14. Project development time
  15. Project development time
  16. End-of-semester gallery show at DF building

Examples of student projects on XR development

Recommended podcast on Metaverse

 

Future Service, Retail, Metaverse, and Robotics

Design for Future Service, Metaverse, and Robotics

Thanks to all students from SOD and SAID who have participated in the projects. We also want to thank the help from Kroger and UC Digital Future.

Redesign retail and other service experiences (retail space, in-person service, digital service, technology) and rethink customer/business needs. Envision the future service experience of retail, hospitality, and delivery: 1) physical, 2) digital, and 3) a combination of both. Research questions include:  What does the “future retail store” look like? How the online shopping and local stores pick up change the architecture of a store? How the metaverse and immersive experience can be integrated with retail? Can public and recreational programs be introduced into stores to enhance customers’ experience? How can robots assist employees and businesses in providing better service to customers? When robots coexist with people, how can we make robots more understandable and usable?

Collaborative design work from the College of DAAP.

Students: SAID, SOD

Faculty: Ming Tang, Yong-Gyun Ghim, College of DAAP, UC

SAID course description

This four-credit workshop course includes both a seminar and project development format, and develops techniques for digital modeling as they influence the process of viewing, visualizing, and forming spatial and formal relationships. The course encourages operational connections among different techniques for inquiry and visualization as a critical methodology in the design process.

Students: Ryan Adams, Varun Bhimanpally, Ryan Carlson, Brianna Castner, Matthew Davis, John Duke, Prajakta Sanjay Gangapurkar, Jordan Gantz, Alissa Gonda, Justin Hamilton, Emma Hill, Anneke Hoskins, Philip Hummel, Jahnavi Joshi, Patrick Leesman, Tommy Lindenschmidt, Peter Loayza, Jacob Mackin, Jordan Major, Julio Martinez, Jacob McGowan, Simon Needham, Hilda Rivera, Juvita Sajan, Gavin Sharp, Hannah Webster, Megan Welch, Meghana Yelagandula, Isaiah Zuercher.

SOD Studio description

Mobile Robotics Studio envisions how robotic technology can better assist people in service environments benefiting both customers and employees. Based on human-centered design and systems thinking approaches, cross-disciplinary teams of industrial, communication, and fashion design students created design solutions for product-service systems of mobile robots in retail, air travel, sports, delivery, and emergency services. 

Students: Noon Akathapon, Kai Bettermann, Cy Burkhart, Jian Cui, Joe Curtsinger, Emmy Gentile, Bradley Hickman, Quinn Matava, Colin McGrail, James McKenzie, Alex Mueller, John Pappalardo, Kurtis Rogers, Connor Rusnak, Jimmy Tran, Franklin Vallant, Leo von Boetticher