This project explores how a Mixed Presence Mixed Reality System can enhance remote collaboration. Collaborative Mixed Reality (MR) is a popular area of research, but most work has focused on one-to-one systems where either both collaborators are co-located or the collaborators are remote from one another. For example, remote users might collaborate in a shared Virtual Reality (VR) system, or a local worker might use an Augmented Reality (AR) display to connect with a remote expert to help them complete a task.
However, most conferencing software requires groups of both remote and co-located collaborators to work together using different platforms. For example a group of people might connect over video conferencing from their laptop or desktop computers or mobile phones and tablets. Some of them might be face to face in the same room, while others are remote. So Mixed Presence (MP) collaborations involve both locally present (co-located) and remote collaborators. However, most Mixed Presence research has so far focused on table-top based collaborations, where people sitting around a real table might connect with one or more remote collaborators on a video conferencing link.
This research aims to bring together Mixed Reality research and Mixed Presence research to pave the way forward for future MR based groupware. So it explores how face to face users with Augmented Reality (AR) head mounted displays can collaborate with remote users on a desktop system. The current prototype has two users in Microsoft Hololens displays viewing and interacting with AR content on a table between them, while a third remote user on a desktop computer provides guidance. This research both reassesses techniques developed for one-to-one MR collaborative systems in context of Mixed Presence and develops new methods for MP MR collaborative systems.Project Video(s):
M. Norman, G. Lee, R. T. Smith and M. Billinqhurst, "A Mixed Presence Collaborative Mixed Reality System," 2019 IEEE Conference on Virtual Reality and 3D User Interfaces (VR), Osaka, Japan, 2019, pp. 1106-1107, doi: 10.1109/VR.2019.8797966.
Norman, M., Lee, G., Smith, R. T., & Billinqhurst, M. (2019, March). A mixed presence collaborative mixed reality system. In 2019 IEEE Conference on Virtual Reality and 3D User Interfaces (VR) (pp. 1106-1107). IEEE.