In basic terms 3D motion capture involves transforming live performance into a digital performance. It is achieved by recording a live motion event which is then translated into data allowing for a 3D recreation of the performance.
Who uses it?
Typically motion capture is associated with the creation of animations and video games, however, its presence is actually a lot more widespread throughout industries than you would think, it is used in;
- Video Games
- Feature Films
- Security and Defence
- Role Playing Engineering
What are the different types?
Motion Capture comes in two forms;
Traditional Marker-based Optical Motion Capture Systems
- This type of software and system uses computer vision, meaning digital images are processed by software in order to identify the source of movement and in turn track its motion. The typical way of achieving this, is for a group of video cameras to be set up and connected to a computer running the specialised software.
- In order for the computer to detect motion special markers designed to be identified by the image processing software are attached to the subject. Normally the markers are highly reflective balls or small bright lights which are easily identified against the background.
- Some issues with this type of motion capture include the fact that the markers must be placed precisely in order for the software to correctly estimate the subjects position. If one of the markers becomes blocked or moves the tracking will become inaccurate, this need for precision can be quite inhibiting to the process of capturing the motion..
Strengths include; Weaknesses include;
- Reliable and speedy -Expensive
- Accuracy -Set-up is time consuming
- It can capture a high volume of image -Extensive post-processing time
- High sample rate capture. -Markers need to be precise for the motion to be captured
Modern Markerless motion based capture
- As the name suggests this type of technology does not require a special suit or markers, thanks to new advanced computer vision technology. Instead when hoping to track motion in real time advanced algorithims are required.
- However this type of technology is not yet wdiely avialable as it is still an active field of reseach at top univerisities throughout the world. Organic Motions OpenStage 2 is the only system commercially avialable.
- Due to the fact it does not require suits, markers or special equipment it has basically no setup time compared to its more traditional counterpart.
-More data can be captured in less time -Implementing accurate tracking algorithms which
-Low cost well enough for real time use.
-No special set-up or equipment required
-Easier to track movement of children or those
whose condition makes wearing the suit difficult.