SIGGRAPHITTI Issue 3 - June 2014

SIGGRAPH 2014 Advance Program Now Available

For comprehensive information aboFTut speakers, exciting events, and SIGGRAPH 2014 content, download this year's Advance Program! To make the best out of your SIGGRAPH 2014 experience, use this important resource to begin planning a week filled with education, interaction, networking, and fascination.

The Advance Program is your guide to all the amazing content packed into five full days in wonderful Vancouver. Whether you are interested in Art Gallery, Art Papers, Birds of a Feather, the Computer Animation Festival, Courses, Dailies, Exhibition, Emerging Technologies, Job Fair, Panels, Production Sessions, Real-Time Live!, Studio, Talks, or Technical Papers, this year's conference will highlight developments from the past 12 months that will spark your imagination and blow your mind. 

Physical Rendering With a Digital Airbrush © 2014 Roy Shilkrot, Pattie Maes, Amit Zoran, MIT Media Lab

Emerging Technologies

Thierry Frey, the Emerging Technologies Program chair, is proud to announce that 90 submissions were received and 26 have been accepted, including two curated pieces. Of these 26, 77% are submissions from outside of the United States.

When asked to describe this year's content, Thierry replied: "Very diverse. Some of the selected submissions fall close to the special call for 'invisible technologies' (i.e. installations and projects that leave technology in the background to focus on the user and/or the usage). One, for instance, uses a technology that is known, though not extensively used, but in a manner that could help innovate storytelling. Others are more typical of Emerging Technologies, being very scientific or technical."

To get a sneak peek of the Emerging Technologies content presented at SIGGRAPH 2014, watch the Emerging Technologies trailer! 

Can't get enough? See some additional pieces below:

Birdly is an installation that explores the experience of a bird in flight. It tries to capture the mediated flying experience with several methods. Unlike a common flight simulator, users do not control a machine. Instead, they embody a bird, the Red Kite. To evoke this embodiment, the system mainly relies on sensory-motor coupling. Participants control the simulator with their hands and arms, which directly correlate to the wings and the primary feathers of the bird. Those inputs are reflected in the flight model of the bird and displayed physically by the simulator through nick, roll, and heave movements.
Presenters: Max Rheiner, Fabian Troxler, Thomas Tobler & Thomas Erdin, Zürcher Hochschule der Künste
Cyberith Virtualizer
This Virtualizer, developed by Cyberith GmbH, is a locomotion device that delivers completely new impressions and experiences regarding game play and entertainment. It provides the user with the most realistic experience of virtual worlds possible, in their own private homes. The Virtualizer was developed to optimize the realistic impression of first-person games. It simultaneously unchains players from their chairs and places them right into the action. With the Virtualizer, you can actively participate in the adventures of your favorite character and (for the first time) without the restriction imposed by the borders of your screen.
Presenters: Holger Hager & Tuncay Cakmak, Cyberith GmbH
MaD: Mapping by Demonstration for Continuous SonificationMaD: Mapping by Demonstration for continuous sonification© 2014 Jules Françoise, Norbert Schnell & Frédéric Bevilacqua, IRCAM
MaD supports simple and intuitive design of continuous sonic gestural interaction. The system automatically learns motion-sound mapping when movement and sound examples are jointly recorded. In this demonstration, applications focus on using vocal sounds – recorded in performance – as primary material for interaction design. Potential applications include performing arts, computer games, and medical applications such as auditory-aided rehabilitation.
Presenters: Jules Françoise,  Norbert Schnell & Frédéric Bevilacqua, Institut de Recherche et Coordination Acoustique/Musique
Physical Painting With a Digital Airbrush
This augmented airbrush device acts both as a physical spraying device and an intelligent digital guiding tool that maintains manual and computerized control. Custom-designed hardware and numerous control algorithms support a human-computer collaborative for a physical painting effort.
Presenters: Roy Shilkrot,  Pattie Maes & Amit Zoran, MIT Media Lab
Pixie Dust: Graphics Generated by Levitated and Animated Objects in Computational Acoustic-Potential Field Pixie Dust © 2014 Yoichi Ochiai & Jun Rekimoto, The University of Kyoto; Takayuki Hoshi, Nagoya Institute Of Technology
This novel graphics system is based on expansion of 3D-acoustic-manipulation technology. In the conventional study of acoustic levitation, small objects are trapped in the acoustic beams of standing waves. Here, this method is expanded by changing the distribution of the acoustic-potential field (APF), which generates the graphics using levitated small objects. The system makes available many expressions, such as the expression by materials and nondigital appearance and these are levitated in mid-air.
Presenters: Yoichi Ochiai, The University of Tokyo; Takayuki Hoshi, Nagoya Institute of Technology; Jun Rekimoto, The University of Tokyo

Charismatic and Eloquent Instructor Avatars With Scriptable Gesture © 2014 Jian Cui, Nicoletta Adamo-Villani, Voicu Popescu, Purdue University

SIGGRAPH 2014 AR/VR Contest

The purpose of the SIGGRAPH 2014 Augmented Reality/Virtual Reality Contest is to encourage developers to create and showcase the best augmented reality/virtual reality experiences possible using today’s technologies. The contest is open to anyone interested in augmented and/or virtual reality: researchers, students, hobbyists, and professionals. Contestants can use any software and hardware they choose.
Up to three finalists will be selected to demonstrate their technology at SIGGRAPH 2014, during Real-Time Live! The winning team will then be announced from the Real-Time Live stage! All finalists will also have the opportunity to demonstrate their system to attendees during the SIGGRAPH 2014 Appy Hour, Wednesday, 13 August, 5:30-7:30 pm.
Be sure to submit your work by the 20 June deadline. The online submission forms are now available. Enter the Augmented/Virtual Reality Contest today!
For those of you who are interested in AR/VR, SIGGRAPH 2014 will include a AR/VR Panel — The Future is Here: Augmented and Virtual Reality
Although augmented and virtual reality (AR/VR) has existed in research labs and some niche markets for decades, only recently has it started to gain acceptance for consumers due to technical advances, low costs, easy-to-use software, and more compelling experiences.  Is this just another passing fad that will move back to the laboratory or is it here to stay? Will consumer AR/VR move beyond gaming to cover a wide range of digital media? Or is consumer AR/VR only appropriate for a small subset of entertainment and consumer applications? This panel of AR/VR pioneers will debate the trade-offs of different technologies, discuss important aspects of the end-user experience, describe the challenges of bringing these technologies to the consumer market, and predict the future of these new realities.
Specific topics to be discussed include:
  •  The major differences between virtual reality and augmented reality
  •  The most important factors for creating compelling experiences
  •  How AR/VR for the masses is different than AR/VR for research
  •  Trade-offs in system design
  •  The role of consumer AR/VR beyond entertainment
Featured Panelists: 
Henry Fuchs, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill 
Richard Marks, Sony Computer Entertainment America 
Palmer Luckey, Oculus VR 
Steve Feiner, Columbia University 
Jeri Ellsworth, Technical Illusions 
Jason Jerald (Moderator), NextGen Interactions
For more information as well as a checklist of materials you will need to complete your AR/VR contest application, visit the SIGGRAPH 2014 website

Nervous Ether: Soft Aggregates, Interactive Skins © 2014 Kathy Velikov & Geoffrey Thün, University of Michigan/RVTR; Mary O'Mlley RVTR; Wiltrud Simbuerger, Bartlett School of Archtecture, University College London


Art Papers

Explore the changing roles of artists and the methods of art-making in our increasingly networked and computationally mediated world. In addition to core topics related to digital arts and interactive techniques, Art Papers also explore the theme of the SIGGRAPH 2014 juried Art Gallery: Acting in Translation.
Highlights for SIGGRAPH 2014's Art Papers include:
Nervous Ether: Soft Aggregates, Interactive Skins
Nervous Ether is a prototype installation of a spatial envelope, consisting of an aggregate cellular pneumatic weave, that operates as an instrument to register and communicate remote environmental information, while also developing affective interaction with inhabitants.
Presenters: Kathy Velikov & Geoffrey Thün, University of Michigan Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning/RVTR; Mary O'Malley, RVTR; Wiltrud Simbuerge, Bartlett School of Architecture, University College London
Transmission: A Telepresence Interface for Neural and Kinetic Interaction
Transmission is a telepresence interface for neural and kinetic interaction, a live performance and audience participation tool and both art project and telepresence research design.
Presenters: Oliver Gingrich & Alain Renaud, Bournemouth University; Eugenia Emets, Artist at Analaema Group, London; Zhidong Xiao,Bournemouth University
The Aesthetics of Liminality: Augmentation as Artform
This paper describes modes of interaction in Augmented Reality Art in an attempt to constrict a critical vocabulary for this emerging artform.
Presenter: Patrick Lichty, University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee

Branching Support Structures for 3D Printing © 2014 Ryan Schmidt & Nobuyuki Umetani, Autodesk Research

Talks & Panels

Peek into the minds of creative geniuses and catch developing ideas while they are still in process during SIGGRAPH 2014's Talks. Presenters will showcase their works and demonstrate how computer graphics and interactive techniques are executed. From art, design, animation, visual effects, interactivity, research, and engineering, Talks reveal the latest achievements in these fields before publication.

To gain an even deeper understanding of the latest technologies, attend a SIGGRAPH 2014 Panel. Panelists share their experiences, advice and varying points of view with attendees. Panels provide attendees with the opportunity to interface with experts in computer graphics and interactive techniques while acquiring valuable knowledge.

See below for Talks & Panels highlights at this year's conference!

Branching Support Structures for 3D Printing
To 3D print a complex shape, a support structure is needed. Printing this support structure wastes time and material. We minimize this waste by generating a novel branching support structure which takes into account both the geometry of the model, and the properties of the printing process.
Presenters: Ryan Schmidt & Nobuyuki Umetani, Autodesk Research
“The LEGO Movie”: Construction, Animation, and Demolition
The creative requirements for “The LEGO Movie” demanded that the entire world be made of individual bricks because the models are assembled, re-assembled, and demolished. To achieve this, Animal Logic added a brick-based layer under the existing asset pipeline, which they kept "live" all the way through to rendering.
Presenters: Bryan Smith, Aloys Baillet, Eoin Murphy, Aidan Sarsfield & Daniel Heckenberg, Animal Logic
Building Wide-Field-of-View Augmented Reality Eyewear with Pinlight Displays
A brief overview of a simple, novel design for compact- and wide-field-of-view optical see-through augmented reality glasses, based on the principle of defocused point light sources, and description of how a  preliminary human wearable display could be constructed.
Presenters: Andrew Maimone, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; Douglas Lanman, NVIDIA Research; Kishore Rathinavel & Kurtis Keller, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; David Luebke, NVIDIA Research; Henry Fuchs, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Rapid Avatar Capture and Simulation Using Commodity Depth Sensors
This system can capture a human figure using a Microsoft Kinect without assistance, create a 3D model of the subject, then automatically rig, skin, and simulate it in a 3D environment in a matter of minutes.
Presenters: Andrew Feng, Ari Shapiro, USC Institute For Creative Technologies; Wang Ruizhe & Hao Li, University Of Southern California; Mark Bolas, USC Institute For Creative Technologies;  Gerard Medioni, University of Southern California; Evan Suma, USC Instiute for Creative Technologies


From Production Artist to Educator: Preparing for the Change

For many reasons, the nature of doing high-end VFX production work has significantly changed in the last decade, and some veteran production artists are considering new careers in higher education. This Panel examines many of the professional and personal issues involved in making the transition from intense production to serious teaching.
Presenters: Ed Kramer, The Art Institute of Colorado; John Andrew Berton, Jr., Drexel University; Vince de Quattro, Independent Instructional Designer;  Tad Leckman, Academy of Art University, Blizzard Entertainment;  Terrence Masson, Northeastern University; Tim McLaughlin, Texas A&M University
Ready, Steady ... SIGGRAPH
Not sure how to plan your time at SIGGRAPH 2014? This panel of seasoned attendees and program chairs explains how to maximize your conference experience, select the "don't miss" sessions, and decipher the convention center's layout.
Presenters: Ann McNamara, Texas A&M University; Angela Anderson, Talley Management Group, Inc.
Realizing the Compute Potential of the Mobile GPU
This panel is designed to benefit advanced programmers and thought leaders who want to learn about the latest advances and future directions of mobile GPU computing to deliver the most balanced, optimized, and efficient experiences using the full capabilities of today’s smartphones and tablets.
Presenters: Laura O'Connor, Qualcomm Incorporated; Kurt Akeley, Lytro, Inc.; Patrick Moorhead, Moor Insights & Strategy; Eric Demers, Qualcomm Incorporated; David Blythe, Intel Corporation; Jason Sams, Google, Inc.; Dave Shreiner, ARM, Inc.; Kartic Venkataraman, Pelican Imaging Corporation
Image Credit: Branching Support Structures for 3D Printing © 2014 Ryan Schmidt & Nobuyuki Umetani, Autodesk Research

Call for Volunteers

Interested in becoming involved with future conference initiatives? You're in luck! SIGGRAPH is now accepting submissions for 2016 conference committee members. Volunteers require a significant amount of time, and play a major role in the efforts and success of each SIGGRAPH conference. 

All interested applicants are welcome. Being a SIGGRAPH volunteer is a beneficial and rewarding experience that can enhance your personal network and professional career. Volunteers are responsible for designing the vision of programs nad successfully executing on that vision. 

View the general requirements for more information on becoming a SIGGRAPH 2016 committee member. 


Register Online: Unemployed Discount Available

We're bringing back Unemployed Discount Registration for SIGGRAPH 2014. With many people still finding themselves impacted by changes in the industry, we believe it's more important than ever to encourage the SIGGRAPH community to come together to make connections, provide inspiration, and look forward toward the future of the industry. As a result, we are extending our lowest possible registration rates — the Student Member rates — to unemployed members of our community. To register with this discount, you must be a member of ACM or ACM SIGGRAPH and agree to the terms found here.*

Pass Type

ACM or


Student Member

Full Conference**




Select Conference




Exhibits Plus




*All pricing reflective of registrations executed on or before 20 June.
**Note: The Full Conference Access Pass is the only pass that allows access to Courses, Panels, Technical Papers, Talks, and the Reception.

Book Your SIGGRAPH 2014 Accommodations

SIGGRAPH has negotiated discount rates for several hotels in Vancouver. These discounts are available to SIGGRAPH 2014 attendees only. Reservations made after 14 July are based on availability only and rates may increase. Be sure to book your hotel reservations soon as rooms are quickly running out!
SIGGRAPH 2014 hotel rates can only be booked through Experient, the official SIGGRAPH 2014 housing provider. If you are contacted by any other companies to make hotel reservations for SIGGRAPH 2014, be aware they may not be reputable companies or endorsed by SIGGRAPH 2014.
Why Stay in an Official SIGGRAPH 2014 Hotel?
It's an important decision: where to sleep during SIGGRAPH 2014. If you have friends or family in Vancouver, and they're willing to host you for five or more days, that might be your best option. Your second-best option is one of the official SIGGRAPH 2014 hotels. Here's why: 
  1. Official hotels have been inspected and carefully selected by SIGGRAPH. They’re SIGGRAPH-endorsed. They're cool, comfortable, and convenient.
  2. In the official hotels, you're closer to SIGGRAPH friends and colleagues. It's much easier to connect in real life over breakfast, lunch, coffee, drinks, or dinner.
  3. Most official hotels are within walking distance of the Vancouver Convention Centre or near quick, easy transportation links.
  4. You can discuss questions or concerns directly with the helpful people at SIGGRAPH 2014's official hotel desk in the convention center. 
  5. Booking terms are very reasonable when you use the official online reservation system: No change fees. No full prepayment.
  6. The official discounted rates are guaranteed until 14 July 2014.
  7. If you use other hotel-reservation systems, you have to live with their way-too-complicated terms and conditions. And if you have a reservation or room problem, SIGGRAPH 2014 can't help you negotiate with the hotel.
  8. Future hotel rates and registration fees will remain reasonable, because SIGGRAPH's negotiating position with host cities and hotel companies will be stronger. 
  9. It's the right thing to do, for yourself, the SIGGRAPH community, and your favorite conference. 
  10. SIGGRAPH room blocks will sell out and you won’t find a more reasonable downtown rate out there.

To book your room today, click here

Begin planning your trip now! Register for SIGGRAPH 2014 to experience all that the SIGGRAPH community has to offer. 

Issue Sponsor: Animation Magazine