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Graeme

Introduction to the project

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The UK Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) have provided follow on funding to support the development of an on-line, open source RTI viewer that works on all platforms. We would welcome all input to the project and we will be sharing all of our progress as the project develops. More details to follow ASAP.

There is a round-up of the activities from the previous project here: http://acrg.soton.ac.uk/tag/rtisad/

You can follow the project via @AHRCRTI and my input via @GraemeEarl @AHRCRTI

 

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Hi,

I am excited about this new project. RTI is a useful tool and the new web viewer can make it even better in documentation, examination and analysis and dissemination of
artefacts.  I list some ideas below

  1. Measurements: Measure dimensions and calculate distance between two points
  2. Snapshots metadata: to include data about the rendering mode and other parameters and light position. The best option would be the program to save the metadata of each snapshot automatically. 
  3. Rendering modes: each rendering mode can be useful in specific case studies, so all of them and not only the default and the specular enhancementare useful.
  4. Annotations: speeds up the process and enables revisiting of specific parts. In collaborative research projects professionalswith different backgrounds can contribute their expertise. It would be useful to select all the areas with common characteristics as one annotation or togroup annotations.
  5. Simultaneous viewing/ comparisons: simultaneous zooming on more than one area of the same rti or of different rti files. Ability to capture a snapshot with both areas and/or files. For example, with the development of multispectral RTI there is a need of simultaneous viewing of visible and multispectral RTI’s.  
  6. Automatic Moving: ability to move from a normal rti to a macroscopic or microscopic rti of a detail of same object (and vice versa).


I would be grateful if you could incorporate my ideas in the new web viewer.

 

Another issue is the Systematization of the rti viewing experience, making use of the already published models for artefacts examination, such as the Caple’s Visual Evidence Sequence (VES), which divides the observed phenomena on the surfaces of objects into four distinct phases of the object’s lifetime: manufacture, use, decay and
conservation. I am wondering whether this approach should be taken into consideration. This will lead the rti experience to a next level of experise or it will provide an unnecessary limitation to the user??? 


 

Best wishes!

Eleni Kotoula

 


 

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Regarding rendering modes, HP's PTMViewer has a couple of features (e.g., false-color normals map) that aren't available in the current RTIViewer, and as Carla has noted, the PTMViewer won't run on MacOS 10.7 or later.  I'm not sure whether the on-line HTML5 viewer Graeme's team is developing is intended to replace the RTIViewer or just to allow users to share RTIs on the web--I'm thinking the latter.  If that's case, perhaps more features can be added once it's up and running.  The features Eleni describes would be really useful in future versions of RTIViewer (I'm also looking forward to particle tracking). Having a viewer for sharing RTIs on the web that can handle larger data sets would be a real advance in itself, and I'm very grateful for your effort.

 

For measuring and annotations, ImageJ also provides a lot of useful tools.

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Hi Taylor,

 

we definitely aren't planning on replacing the RTI viewer. The idea of the project is to promote sharing and commenting upon RTI data and to bring it to new audiences, and given constraints on processing, network access etc. I would see the RTI viewer as the primary means of interaction in the future. COmmetns welcome though.

 

I am actually just writing a post about the plans for the project which starts officially on 1 June. As I said in the first post we are going to do all the development in the open so that way we can hopefully get loads of input from the RTI community. In the application we proposed IIP Image Moo Viewer http://iipimage.sourceforge.net/documentation/iipmooviewer/ as the framework to extend. I would really welcome thoughts on this. So far my thinking has been that IIP image has a broad user base and works well for huge images. The HTML5 viewer works well on tablets and there has been some work to give tablet-specific functionality. So, I hope this can be one direction that this project can take. A big issue of course is the management of tiled RTI data. There has been work on this already, notably using SpiderGL for rendering PTM data. Keep the ideas coming please! All the best. Graeme

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Hi,

I am excited about this new project. RTI is a useful tool and the new web viewer can make it even better in documentation, examination and analysis and dissemination of

artefacts.  I list some ideas below

  1. Measurements: Measure dimensions and calculate distance between two points
  2. Snapshots metadata: to include data about the rendering mode and other parameters and light position. The best option would be the program to save the metadata of each snapshot automatically. 
  3. Rendering modes: each rendering mode can be useful in specific case studies, so all of them and not only the default and the specular enhancementare useful.
  4. Annotations: speeds up the process and enables revisiting of specific parts. In collaborative research projects professionalswith different backgrounds can contribute their expertise. It would be useful to select all the areas with common characteristics as one annotation or togroup annotations.
  5. Simultaneous viewing/ comparisons: simultaneous zooming on more than one area of the same rti or of different rti files. Ability to capture a snapshot with both areas and/or files. For example, with the development of multispectral RTI there is a need of simultaneous viewing of visible and multispectral RTI’s.  
  6. Automatic Moving: ability to move from a normal rti to a macroscopic or microscopic rti of a detail of same object (and vice versa).

 

I would be grateful if you could incorporate my ideas in the new web viewer.

 

Another issue is the Systematization of the rti viewing experience, making use of the already published models for artefacts examination, such as the Caple’s Visual Evidence Sequence (VES), which divides the observed phenomena on the surfaces of objects into four distinct phases of the object’s lifetime: manufacture, use, decay and

conservation. I am wondering whether this approach should be taken into consideration. This will lead the rti experience to a next level of experise or it will provide an unnecessary limitation to the user??? 

 

 

Best wishes!

Eleni Kotoula

 

 

 

Thanks Eleni. These are great ideas! We know of ongoing work in most of the areas e.g. the CHI CARE tool and Lindsay Macdonald's application to interact with a pair of PTM files. In terms of the annotations one reason for choosing IIP Image (if we do in the end) will be the ongoing work on the Andrew W Mellon Foundation ResearchSpace project. All the best. Graeme

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Graeme,

Congratulations on receiving the funding for this project! When it comes to developing products I always have to review the basics. I apologize if this is too much so. 

Like everyone I turn to processing an RTI when confronted with a surface that is hard to interpret. In that situation an RTI does two things. First it allows me to develop an interpretation of the surface; then the RTI Viewer allows me to convey that interpretation to the 'unconvinced'. I find those curmudgeons are won over by THEIR being able to mouse over the trackball in the RTI Viewer, to do the 'RTI jitters', moving the light source back and forth dynamically and repeatedly to develop in their minds a 3D understanding of the surface. So it's ironic that I must make sure my captures are small enough to enable this capability of the RTI Viewer. Mouse-clicking from one light position to the next, as one does when viewing RTIs of larger files, does not have the same power. It doesn't engage our mind's ability to construct three dimensional images the way dynamic mousing does. We know from previous posts the why and how of this (see RTI Viewer: trackball).

So as the speed of our connections and the power of our computers develops I hope there will be a focus on developing our capability to dynamically present large files.

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Hi Dennis,

 

sorry this has taken so long! I agree entirely. I think that moving the light gradually and interactively is key and I envisage this being exactly the interaction with the new viewer, whatever the resolution or zoom level. What the light position bookmarks allow you to do is to contextualise annotations however. So when you are trying to convince one of your colleagues you can send them the exact light and render mode setup you used, they look at it that way, and then modify it however they like to examine the veracity of your statement. To my mind this combines the best of a published figure in a paper with access to the physical object? In fact I would see this kind of presentation completely replacing published figures in years to come, much as Adobe PDF could with 3d data, but that is getting of the track I guess.

 

Cheers, Graeme

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I am interested in finding a way to use RTI viewers in museums, as a way visitors can closely examine objects (for instance ones that are languishing in the stores, for whatever reason).  I wonder whether your open-source RTI viewer could be adapted for this sort of use.  As with other interactive use of computers in museums, I can imagine that another interface might be required in order to simplify the experience, and to limit the user's access to the computer system.

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