cold feet before buying Endlighten and RP material
Posted: 25 August 2009 11:01 AM   [ Ignore ]
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Hello to all the NUI posters and lurkers. I’m building 3 tables, 16:10 aspect ratio at 40"x22.5". Putting together my overall shopping list hasn’t been too difficult (all the mistakes I made on my first 2 tables, along with this forum, has taught me well) but I am worried about my order of Endlighten and a suitable rear projection material.

the reason for my worry is because these tables are going into a well lit trade show environment. I have no experience with Endlighten or acrylic RP materials. I’ve been using clear plexi and different grades of drafting paper. I have been paying attention to some of the problems other people have had people aned come up with some questions.

I need to know that touches will work with large arc-lights as well as the possibility of some indirect sunlight. I’m using the 850nm led ribbons made by EnvironmentalLights, planning on 10mm Endlighten XL (10mm because of the size of my table), and also purchased 2 850n lasers to have LLP on the same setup for added blob brightness. I read about someone having a good setup until a bit of daylight was introduced and I don’t know if the Endlighten or the Acrylite RP material would be at fault for possibly magnifying the issue of sunlight.

Endlighten sound like a dream, but does it’s mini particulates also capture daylight from the surface and bounce it around internally? or will a non-acrylic RP surface (like Peau’s recommended IceHolo) be better for me than a frosted acrylic near daylight? What would you buy if you were in my shoes? I have a shopping cart with goodies in it over at http://www.acrylite-shop.com but hesitant to get the stuff cut and shipped.

special thanks to Peau for his quick PM’s, and thanks to you guys in advance.

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Posted: 25 August 2009 11:17 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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It doesn’t answer any of your questions, but is it possible you can spend a small amount and get sample pieces of everything you’re considering, and then do some tests on how they perform?

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Posted: 25 August 2009 11:23 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Yes definitely, i’m still trying to figure things out as best as i can since i’ll ultimately be going into an environment I can not test in.

I think I’ll be getting samples of the different RP materials but the endlighten, in a way, is kind of “installation specific” as the size and difference between L, XL, and XXL all act differently with different amounts of IR pumped into it. I’m taking the plunge on the XL since I think I need 10mm thickness for the size of the table. 8mm might sag with center touches.

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Posted: 25 August 2009 11:33 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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What is your timeline? How much time do you have before you need to deliver?

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Posted: 25 August 2009 11:49 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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i’m almost done with software now and need to get my prototype working in the next couple of weeks to get a fabricator to build the 3 final tables to be integrated into the trade show booth. so i don’t have too much time with shipping included. the rest of the tech is pretty much here and i’m a lot more confident about how to marry those parts.

thanks

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Posted: 25 August 2009 12:28 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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Have you considered doing some kind of overhead cover for your booth? Maybe a cantilevered awning or even umbrellas? Diffusing the ambient light might make it easier to control via background delete.

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Posted: 25 August 2009 12:48 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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unfortunately, i don’t have control over the booth design. I am just now starting to work with a company who designs trade show booths and i was brought in after cad animations were already created and approved. my job is to make things work around the existent design. i’m pretty sure the tech we’re talking about can handle the environment but the idea of setting up 3 tables and none of them working scares the hell out of me! I believe the word “Yikes” works well here smile

thanks for the responses thus far guys.

has anyone out there been playing with endlighten in well lit situations?

is the addition of LLP a good use of my paranoia?

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Posted: 25 August 2009 01:27 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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I’m not sure the combination of both LLP and endlighten would be worth the endlighten. The greatest contrast ratio is definitely LLP though since the intensity of light that hits the finger is greater than other technique. With that said, if there’s a decent amount of ambient light, you could always switch to front DI and track dark blobs or depending on the booth you could supply your own IR around the tables to ensure front DI will work well. It’s a tough call without seeing the space.

The best use of your budget may be in getting a high quality bandpass filter to really narrow down on the spectrum you’re looking for and weed out as much ambient light as possible.

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Posted: 25 August 2009 01:36 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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Hmm wish I could help more with this man.  My tables will be done next week sometime hopefully so that may help you.  They will have 7D513 and 1/2 Endlighten on them.
I’ve tested Endlighen in rooms with ambient sunlight coming in and with the band pass filters from my store with an m12 camera setup, the perfect focus works really well and I get great blobs.
If you use one of the cameras and point it at a light that is florescent, the bulb barely even lights up the surrounding area, so I can’t see ceiling mounted lights being a problem.

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Posted: 25 August 2009 01:38 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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as seth said: what about controlling the ambient light....
put some incandescent light bulbs around your table and you could use front di. ask user jachwe, he wrote a program thats checks the camera and then starts different versions of ccv, tracking dark or white blobs…

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Posted: 25 August 2009 01:56 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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The budget exists for both methods, I figured 2 layers of getting better blobs is great if I can afford it, and I can for this particular gig.

my worry is that endlighten will grab and trap ambient light from it’s top surface in addition to the IR i’m feeding it’s sides for ftir effect. I know normal clear plexi wouldn’t do this but I’m concerned about the endlighten because of the element that inherently makes it better, those little mirror-like particles. does it simply not work that way? am i crazy to worry about it?

I originally was just going to use lots of laser! do you think I should go back to that line of thinking?

thanks for the help guys.

ps: would anyone out there care to hit the surface of their endlighten with some ir light while their sidelights are off and see if the light is spread internally ala ftir? that would be great!

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Posted: 25 August 2009 03:55 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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Hey Alpay.

TIR requires the light to enter from the edge since anything greater than the critical angle escapes. So outside light that hits the table should already be greater than this critical angle and therefore passes through. I’m assuming the particles inside are only deflecting/spreading the light that’s initially trapped through TIR; therefore, I highly doubt that ambient light will be a factor in this regard. Keep in mind, if this were to happen, you would probably see this occur in all wavelengths. Meaning, if you shine a blue light at the acrylic from above, the enlighten would light up blue (which I don’t think is the case).

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Posted: 25 August 2009 04:08 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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good point… the whole thing would light up in a well lit environment, like embedded sparkles. you’re right. ok, i’m not worried about it, making purchases!

Thanks all.

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Posted: 25 August 2009 04:36 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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I saw somewhere that 1 company were using “company tent” above their MT. Maybe this is way.

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Posted: 25 August 2009 05:35 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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I’ve never played with DSI, but like Seth pointed out, I believe LLP is the method that gives the brightest blobs, and thus is the least sensitive to ambient light. I’m currently using 28mW 850nm lasers and I couldn’t be happier, although I have yet to test this setup under different lighting conditions.

One of the biggest advantages of LLP in my opinion is that you can use very narrow bandpass filters since lasers’ spectral bandwidth is also very narrow. The lens shift issue can be eliminated but placing the bp filter between the lens and the camera sensor. I’m using an 850DF20 filter with a very wide angle lens (2.2mm CS-mount) and there’s no difference at all between center and edge blobs.

Another advantage of LLP is that you can use higher power lasers (50 ou 60mW) and nearly close your lens iris, or reduce the camera gain if you’re using microlens. That should further reduce ambient light interference. Just take care to provide proper protection to users in case your lasers move.

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Posted: 25 August 2009 05:42 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]
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thanks for the info Gfantini… yeah, I’m a big proponent of LLP. Having played with it in “the lab” i looked fwd to making a new table from scratch with LLP in mind.

I’m also using the 28mw 850’s… like I said, double the method just in case I go into an environment that is a real challenge. Thanks for including the info about your lens and BP filter. I bought the USB Firefly’s but didn’t grab lenses yet as CS mount lenses are available locally for me.

I’ll report back on how things work out everyone.

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Posted: 25 August 2009 06:33 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 16 ]
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Nice, I’m also using the FireflyMV, but the Firewire version. Pretty identical, I believe. I’d recommend it anytime.

And about the double method, just be aware of a couple things: endlighten will shine towards both your fingers and your camera, which might reduce contrast. To me, this is the biggest disadvantage of this technique. Furthermore, leds have a much wider spectral bandwidth than lasers, so if you use a narrow bp filter, which is what you want if doing LLP, the camera may pick very little light from the leds.

I mean, I’d love to see how this setup would turn out, and I think DSI has its own merit, but I’m afraid it could be a waste if mixed up with LLP.

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Posted: 25 August 2009 07:37 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 17 ]
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I went with the usb version because I read about some troubles people had with the firewire version and CCV. Not sure if those issues still exist or if they don’t really exist for everyone but I also read about successes with the usb camera.

As for the dual method of DSI and LLP, I hear what you’re saying about the narrow bandpass. I’m going to experiment with the filters, i’ll be sure to report how things go… i’m hoping the led’s at 850nm will be mostly visible. I didn’t try to pin down the tech support guy from EnvironmentalLights on such an issue (Bill was his name, verrry helpful btw). I just figured I’m going for overkill and making sure to keep everything at 850. incidentally, a rep from Lee (the lighting filters company) told me they have a filter that would’ve suited me better than the 87’s I’ve purchased in the past - when I told him I never heard of the model number he suggested (I forget what it is offhand at the moment) he said they don’t market it, but it is available to those who ask for it specifically and they don sell it direct (since they don’t send it to dealers at all). I’ll report back on that too.

fingers are crossed that the dual method will be killer! I am only purchasing the questionable parts (like the endlighten) for one table at the moment. the parts I know I’ll stick with (like the cameras), I already purchased in triplicate.

Alpay

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Posted: 26 August 2009 08:52 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 18 ]
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Ok man, it’s making sense. I’ll be tuned in. Good luck.

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Posted: 26 August 2009 01:19 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 19 ]
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whoops, i had a typo in there that I’d like to fix…

>is available to those who ask for it specifically and they don sell it direct (since they don’t send it to dealers at all)

should read: “and they DO sell it direct (since they don’t send it to dealers at all)”

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Posted: 11 September 2009 11:21 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 20 ]
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hey guys, i got some clarification on some things, and some comments…

the mysterious Lee filter is called Lee 87c, it’s transmission is only 48% at 850nm. the tranmission of 850nm with the easy to find Lee 87 is 78%. On both the transmission starts to rise at about 790nm and then stays up. peak transmission of the 87c is 90% at 1020nm. i figured this is useful info in the forum for those doing searches in the future.

i have some custom made filters coming from Barry at Midwest Optical. Super nice guys over there, they did a bunch of legwork calling Point Grey to get mechanical drawing of some inner glass for me to replace. I’m officially a fan. I haven’t gotten the filters yet but it sounds like a win with a 99% peak at 850nm. I was a little scared of the fact that the rise stays up there but then again, the B/W usb firefly’s sensitivity peaks at about 850 then drops off drastically, so it is essentially performing the cutoff.

while expensive, I got a Computar T2Z1816CS lens. It’s got a manual ring for zoom, focus, AND iris… I believe this is going to help me greatly… in my initial test I used Lee 87 near some open windows and saw quite a bit of illumination in the room… i used the manual iris to “tune” out the environment and both the Aixis 850nm diode laser and the Environmental Light strip (which is technically about 840nm btw) were both super clear. I learned theres a big plus in having a manual iris. who knew? i was ok with doing the adjustment in software but the manual ring is neato. ofcourse all three rings have a set screw for locking it all down.

I’m cutting/drilling wood now to get all assembled. i’m worried though… my 7d513 rp acrylic doesn’t have as good of a viewing angle as I hoped for.. It was tough to make a decision from Peau’s photos, there’s a lot of good info there but I ultimately went with the several suggestions i got… I hope it acts differently once properly mounted but right now, it kind of sucks. I’m pointing a Toshiba ew25u directly up at it.

ps: thanks for your all your informative tests Peau, and thank you Obezeanka for your Endlighten pieces. and Seth is still the MT god who deserves ritual sacrifices daily.

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