Motion Tracking, Telepresence, and Collaboration
Dene Grigar and Steve Gibson
This essay lays out research into the use of a particular motion tracking system, called the Gesture and Media System (GAMS), for real-time, embodied telepresence and collaboration. The central question underlying this essay is, In what ways can telepresence and collaboration be enhanced by motion tracking technology in performance and installations? Preliminary findings suggest that motion tracking technology makes it possible for multiple users to manipulate not only data objects like images, video, sound, and light but also hardware and equipment, such as computers, robotic lights, and projectors, with their bodies in a 3D space across a network. Implications for use may be of interest to those working on digital media projects where hardware, software, and peripherals must be controlled in real-time by teams working together at-a-distance or where physical computing research is undertaken.
VIEW Motion Tracking, Telepresence, and Collaboration
Dene Grigar is Professor and Director of The Creative Media & Digital Culture Program at Washington State University Vancouver whose research focuses on the creation, curation, preservation, and criticism of Electronic Literature, specifically building multimedial environments and experiences for live performance, installations, and curated spaces; desktop computers; and mobile media devices. She has authored 14 media works such as “Curlew” (2014), “A Villager’s Tale” (2011), the “24-Hour Micro E-Lit Project” (2009), “When Ghosts Will Die” (2008), and “Fallow Field: A Story in Two Parts" (2005), as well as 52 scholarly articles. She also curates exhibits of electronic literature and media art, mounting shows at the Library of Congress and for the Symposium on Electronic Art (ISEA) and the Modern Language Association (MLA), among other venues. With Stuart Moulthrop (U of Wisconsin Milwaukee) she is the recipient of a 2013 NEH Start Up grant to support the digital preservation of early electronic literature, a project that culminated in an open-source, multimedia book entitled Pathfinders and book of media art criticism, entitled Traversals, for The MIT Press. She is President of the Electronic Literature Organization and Associate Editor of Leonardo Reviews. In 2017 She was awarded the Louis E. and Stella G. Buchanan Distinguished Professorship by WSU.
Steve Gibson is a Canadian media artist, composer, and theorist. He completed his Ph.D. at SUNY Buffalo, where he studied music composition with Louis Andriessen. He also completed postdoctoral research in media and technology with Arthur Kroker at Concordia University in Montréal. He was formerly Senior Lecturer and Director of the Multimedia Program at Karlstad University in Sweden, and now serves as Associate Professor of Digital Media at University of Victoria, Canada.
In 1991 Gibson was resident composer with multi-media ensemble PoMoCoMo, and in 1993-94 he was resident artist at the Banff Centre, in their Art and Virtual Environments program. His Book/CD collaboration with Arthur Kroker, SPASM was released in 1993. Gibson's experimental work includes interactive pieces Cut to the Chase, Telebody, Virtual DJ and When Ghosts Will Die (with Dene Grigar), which have been performed at major festivals throughout Europe and North America. His installations and compositions have been performed in such venues as Ars Electronica; the Whitney Museum of American Art; the North American New Music Festival; the Banff Centre for the Arts; Festival International Musique Actuelle de Victoriaville; the International Computer Music Conference; the European Media Arts Festival; ISEA; Interface3, Hamburg; Akademie der Bildenden Künste, Nürnberg; the San Francisco Art Institute; 4 & 6CyberConf. His work has been published internationally by St. Martin's Press (US), The MIT Press, New World Perspectives (Canada), Turnaround Productions (UK), Future Publications (UK), Urra Apogeo (Italy), and Passagen Verlag (Austria).