13 June 2014 MetaTracker: integration and abstraction of 3D motion tracking data from multiple hardware systems
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Motion tracking has long been one of the primary challenges in mixed reality (MR), augmented reality (AR), and virtual reality (VR). Military and defense training can provide particularly difficult challenges for motion tracking, such as in the case of Military Operations in Urban Terrain (MOUT) and other dismounted, close quarters simulations. These simulations can take place across multiple rooms, with many fast-moving objects that need to be tracked with a high degree of accuracy and low latency. Many tracking technologies exist, such as optical, inertial, ultrasonic, and magnetic. Some tracking systems even combine these technologies to complement each other. However, there are no systems that provide a high-resolution, flexible, wide-area solution that is resistant to occlusion. While frameworks exist that simplify the use of tracking systems and other input devices, none allow data from multiple tracking systems to be combined, as if from a single system. In this paper, we introduce a method for compensating for the weaknesses of individual tracking systems by combining data from multiple sources and presenting it as a single tracking system. Individual tracked objects are identified by name, and their data is provided to simulation applications through a server program. This allows tracked objects to transition seamlessly from the area of one tracking system to another. Furthermore, it abstracts away the individual drivers, APIs, and data formats for each system, providing a simplified API that can be used to receive data from any of the available tracking systems. Finally, when single-piece tracking systems are used, those systems can themselves be tracked, allowing for real-time adjustment of the trackable area. This allows simulation operators to leverage limited resources in more effective ways, improving the quality of training.
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Ken Kopecky, Ken Kopecky, Eliot Winer, Eliot Winer, "MetaTracker: integration and abstraction of 3D motion tracking data from multiple hardware systems", Proc. SPIE 9095, Modeling and Simulation for Defense Systems and Applications IX, 909507 (13 June 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2052580; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2052580

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