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Comic-Con 2013: 3D imaging at the GameSpot boothCheck out The 404 Show's Jeff Bakalar as he explores the tech behind GameSpot's impressive 3D photo booth here at Comic-Con 2013.
-Hey everyone. Jeff Bakalar here from CNET.com. We're at the GameSpot booth here at Comic-Con 2013 and our buddies at GameSpot have put together an unbelievable feat, the 3D cam. Here with me is Jan who's the genius behind this incredible concoction. Jan, tell me exactly what's going on here and how does it work? -So basically this is a process called photogrammetry. It is basically taking measurements off of 2-dimensional images. So what we have here is an array of cameras. We've got 89 cameras up here. -Wow. -And it's basically just trying to get a shot from like every angle and we can reconstruct that into a 3-dimensional model of it. -Cool. So you were telling me that they all have to fire at the same time. What-- -Yes. -How do you rig that together? -I rig it together by building this box over here. I made it so that all I have to do is push a button-- -Oh. -All the cameras are wired together onto it and so yes. Basically everything is hardwired on it. The flashes are radio triggered to it and basically all of those have to go off at the same time. There's a lot of timing involved because like these flashes, you're talking about the light is on for only a millisecond. So like when the cameras go off, sometimes it's like just by nature of the cameras they can be off by like a millisecond-- -Sure, sure. -Even that is enough to kill it off. So it's like it's gotta be a millisecond kind of accuracy. -So you're faced with a challenge of getting them all to fire at the same time. What about the fact that we're in the middle of Comic-Con and there's all this chaos around us. How do you deal with taking that into consideration? -So the strobes put out a lot of light in all actuality like I could have it so that this background is pretty much dark with how much light is put out. -Wow. -But I do get a bit of the light in here just to get a bit of separation because if it was just flat black in the background, then dark colors are hard enough to scan. If it's up against a black backdrop or anything it's gonna be even more difficult to scan. -Right. -So yes. It's just trying to find the balance in there. -And you were telling me something really interesting about these patterns here that look like some computer vomited them out. How does that work? -Exactly. Basically this is something that our design team put together. It's basically just a bunch of non-repeating patterns. -Right. -And it's like throw all different colors and so the idea is that basically any of the cameras by seeing any of these patterns-- -Yes. -They'll know exactly where they're looking at. It's like you know this one you'll see oh, here's the red one over here and you're going they'll be able to figure out spatially where they are. -So it's a spatial serial point. -Because basically when it's putting it together it's like it's gotta figure out where all the cameras were positioned. -Right. -So if from the side, you know, what it's seeing from that angle. -Cool. Now once you get your 89 photographs, how do they get stitched together? How does that work? -That's over in this room we've got a couple of graphics guys that are just pressing it out on computers. They've got stacks of computers for them to be working on because it takes a while for it to do all of the processing. -And then when it's all said and done, the 89 images, how big is that like stack of images? What are we talking here? -Just like the actual-- -Like file-- -Yes. -I mean it's like they're-- it's a bunch of JPEG's and stuff. -Yes. -It's only like about 130 MEGs or so-- -Just 130 MEGs. Yes. That's about 130 MEG file. Yes, that's enough, yes. All right. Cool. -So yes, yes. -Do you think what I'm wearing it'll work well with me? -Like here yes. Basically the patterns and stuff are definitely a bonus and everything for it. -Yes. -The dark colors can be a bit more difficult, but I think that with this patterning and everything I think that we can probably get something pretty interesting out of it. -All right. Let's try it out and see if we can make this work. -All right. -Cool. All right. Let's do it. -Ready? -All right. So it's been a few hours. The 89 photographs have been compiled into a 3D rendering of myself so I have it here on my computer. Let's check it out. And look at that. I can anchor it anywhere I want. That's pretty crazy. You know these are viewing angles that no one should really ever have of me, but nevertheless, it looks really cool. It's amazing how seamless the transition from each angle is. I could zoom in and out. I can see angles on my body that I've never seen before. I'm not gonna lie. Photo is a little fatter than that and this is very flattering, so I'm excited about that. So we wanna thank our buddies like GameSpot for hooking up the 3D photo. If you're here in San Diego, make sure you check out their booth for a chance to get your photo taken just like this and have a 3D rendering of yourself. From Comic-Con 2013 I'm Jeff Bakalar.