Future Cinema

Course Site for Future Cinema 1 (and sometimes Future Cinema 2: Applied Theory) at York University, Canada

52 Card Psycho

York University, Future Cinema Lab,
Project: ‘52 Card Psycho’
An Augmented Reality Materialization of Cinema
Project Manager: Alan Rhodes, GARhodes@GARhodes.com

52 Card Psycho is an installation-based investigation into cinematic structures and interactive cinema viewership using augmented reality technology. The concept is simple: a deck of 52 cards, each printed with a unique identifier, are replaced in the subject’s view by the 52 individual shots that make up Hitchcock’s famous shower scene in Psycho. The cards can be manipulated by the viewer: stacked, dealt, arranged in their original order or re-composed in different configurations, creating spreads of time, and allowing a material interaction with the ‘cinema screen’— an object which normally is removed and exalted, and unchangeable in its linearity. The technology used is based on marker-based augmented reality applications, where special printed markers are recognized in the video feed, and pass data to applications regarding their unique identifier, their position, and their orientation. A camera is mounted, either viewing the entire table-top scene of cards or is attached to a ‘heads-up display’ that the viewer wears. The video signal feeds in to a computer running the augmented reality application, which then feeds a display signal out to a projection or the heads-up display of the viewer, overlaying the video clips of each shot of Psycho onto the appropriate card and continually mapping their position and orientation. This project has already been proto-typed in early 2007 as a ‘3-Card Psycho’ using GATech’s Designers’ Augmented Reality Toolkit software (see picture), and is now in the process of 2nd stage development to the full 52 cards using the NRC’s ARTag software developed by Mark Fiala. The project is slated for testing and final development in Fall 2007, and will be adjusted for proposed installation at the Toronto Science Center as part of a Future Cinema exhibition, using scenes from multiple contemporary films that children will recognize and engage with the experience of taking them in their own hands.

‘3-Card Psycho’ – an early proto-type using D.A.R.T.

Thu, October 18 2007 » Future Cinema, YSAR