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Monday, May 16, 2011

Floating Telepresence Robot


Sony CSL has developed a floating avatar system that integrates a blimp with a virtual avatar to create a unique telepresence system. Our blimp works as an avatar and contains several pieces of equipment, including a projector and a speaker as the output functions. Users can communicate with others by transmitting their facial image through the projector and voice through the speaker. A camera and microphone attached to the blimp provide the input function and support the user's manipulation from a distance. The user's presence is dramatically enhanced compared to using conventional virtual avatars (e.g., CG and images) because the avatar is a physical object that can move freely in the real world. In addition, the user's senses are augmented because the blimp detects dynamic information in the real world. For example, the camera provides the user with a special floating view, and the microphone catches a wide variety of sounds such as conversations and environmental noises.
(Sony CSL via Forbes)

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