Large Interactive Laser Light-Field Installation ~ LILLI


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 Bowen Wu

LILLI is an immersive, volumetric, reflective lightfield display using a hybrid of video and laser projection to visualize marine wildlife and ocean climate data, et al.

There's been an abundance of large holographic displays portrayed throughout science fiction literature and films in recent decades. These fantastical depictions often show large consoles surrounded by multiple people working together to manipulate floating images and data. Although the users appear to interact seamlessly with the 3D data, there is a nagging question that goes unanswered:

How do multiple people interact with a large 3D scene?

Perhaps the question seems trivial, but consider the following. Most 3D displays currently available are around the size of a microwave. When groups interact with these displays, although they each have their own perspective, they are essentially all seeing the same information. So even if one person zooms in on part of the image, all the users understand what is happening.


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Now consider a 3D display the size of a small car. Now each person has their own perspective and they now also all see different information about the image. So if a person zooms in on the image, the other users become "surrounded" by the image and the 3D illusion is broken. Not all traditional interaction with 3D data translates well to large displays which brings us to the basis for this project.


Tyler Schoeppner, ask permission for reuse

The project is two-fold:

1. To create a large, interactive 3D display and

2. Explore and establish a foundation for interacting with large 3D data for multiple users

Using a combination of laser and video projectors we are designing and building a car-sized 3D display that can be viewed from all sides. The project is being run in collaboration with MIT Media Lab's Open Ocean Initiative to help promote cleaner and more accessible ocean research. This display will be featured in 11th Hour Racing's traveling pavilion as they follow racing sail boats around the world.


Dan Novy, ask permission for reuse

Update: Restricted access to campus due to the coronavirus has led to a redesign of the display. It is now a smaller, standalone display that can be constructed in any location.


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