Login | Register   
RSS Feed
Download our iPhone app
Browse DevX
Sign up for e-mail newsletters from DevX

By submitting your information, you agree that devx.com may send you DevX offers via email, phone and text message, as well as email offers about other products and services that DevX believes may be of interest to you. DevX will process your information in accordance with the Quinstreet Privacy Policy.

Tip of the Day
Language: DHTML
Expertise: Beginner
Mar 26, 1997



Building the Right Environment to Support AI, Machine Learning and Deep Learning

Is it possible to really touch something in VRML?

Is it possible to really touch something in VRML, not just have a texture map that looks like a touchable surface?

This depends on whether you have the appropriate hardware to give you what's known as haptic or force-feedback.

At the moment, because this area is so new, there are no haptic nodes in VRML 2.0. But you could use the PROTO mechanism to make a local, proprietary node to support them just for your equipment.

Within your custom PROTO, you can include a script that manages your PROTO contents and uses Java or the External Authoring Interface to pass the information from the PROTO out to your tactile output device driver. For instance, you could include a one-channel VRML Texture node, to be interpreted as a grey-scale bump map.

Of course there's a lot more to it than this. There are the issues of how textures, geometry and dynamics interact to produce the sensation of touch. Evan Wies is working on what he describes as "a seamless, VRML2.0-compliant approach that combines PROTOs and scripts. It will work with the Sensable Technologies' Phantom, and Immersion's Impulse Engine and I-Force platforms. It should work with any browser that is 'up-to-spec.'"

[Thanks to Andrew Hardwick (andrew.hardwick@bt-sys.bt.co.uk) and Evan Wies of the MIT Research Laboratory of Electronics (ewies@mit.edu) and Rob at the Cosmo Development Group, SGI.]

DevX Pro
Comment and Contribute






(Maximum characters: 1200). You have 1200 characters left.



Thanks for your registration, follow us on our social networks to keep up-to-date