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Programming a simulation of a moving hand


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#1 LReiter   Members   -  Reputation: 109

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 06:19 AM

Hi everybody,

I've registered here since I'm having a few questions regarding an university project.

The goal is to display a virtual hand on the screen which is movable via a motion tracking device.

I have knowledge in C and have just started to dive into a couple of OpenGL tutorials.

However, I'm asking myself whether this is the right approach. I'd like to not render the hand directly in OpenGL, but rather build a 3D Model (I do have experience with CAD programs, for example) and have it movable on display by analyzing the data from my motion tracking device.

Do any of you have any tips on how to approach this project? I'd be very thankful.

I hope I'm not hurting any posting guidelines or anything. Also, English is not my first language so please excuse a certain "sloppyness".

Thanks!

LReiter



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#2 frob   Moderators   -  Reputation: 22250

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 01:18 PM

Keep your goal in mind:  You want to make a virtual hand that is movable via motion tracking device.

 

 

Your goal does not say "Write a 3D graphics package."  

 

Use an existing graphics system instead of writing your own.  Writing your own simulator could take many months or even years, depending on the scope of the project.

 

 

From the description you need a few boxes and tubes which can be trivially created, and you have joints that can be moved.  You could get just about any existing 3D engine to do this project.

 

 

Somebody who is already comfortable with Unity3D could reasonably script an articulated hand via motion tracking with just a few days of work, possibly less if the motion tracking data is easily usable.


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#3 cdev1990   Members   -  Reputation: 115

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Posted 20 April 2013 - 12:47 AM

How are you going to get the motion tracking data from the tracking device?  Do you already have the device and software that extracts the data from it?



#4 Eliad Moshe   Members   -  Reputation: 812

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 05:23 PM

"The goal is to display a virtual hand on the screen which is movable via a motion tracking device."

 

0. What kind of sensor are you using?

1. Does your Hand's mesh needs to operate in a 2D surface or a 3D space?

2. How many degrees of freedom do you have in the system and of what type?


Edited by Eliad Moshe, 21 April 2013 - 05:25 PM.


#5 LReiter   Members   -  Reputation: 109

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Posted 22 April 2013 - 04:59 AM

First of all, thanks for the initial help.

My device is a Polhemus FASTRAK from 1996, however in full working condition. The most recent drivers are working perfectly.

Basically the "hand" is supposed to be an abstract representation of a hand/arm with a few joints. There are, I believe, 6 DOF - the "arm" will be restricted at the shoulder, the movement of the hand is recorded and the attached arm is manipulated by that movement. I will however talk to my boss about the degrees of freedom ASAP and then post here again, probably tomorrow. I believe they are: the 3 linear movements of the hand in x,y,z direction and the two angles in which you can tilt the hand (in front and to the side) as well as one more that seems to elude me as of now.

I want to have it all displayed in 3D with the possibility of, for example, displaying dots that disappear if "touched" by the hand.

All in all I thought to write a program in VisualC++2010 which works with OpenGL to maybe use a 3D model made with Blender. What frob said sounds good as well, I however fear that some additional features (dots?) won't be possible by just using an existing engine.

One last thing, the data comes from the FASTRAK in continuous columns of numbers. You can put these into a "pipe", which sounds to me like a possibility to feed this data into a self-written program. I have no experience with that so far, however.

Thanks again!



#6 Eliad Moshe   Members   -  Reputation: 812

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Posted 23 April 2013 - 07:33 AM

Does such application satisfies your needs?

 



#7 LReiter   Members   -  Reputation: 109

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Posted 23 April 2013 - 07:54 AM

It's very much close! Preferably, however, it should be in 3D and not use the Kinect as hardware. But this looks really good so far.






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