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Virtual Reality Comes to NTHU
It’s no longer necessary to tour the campus on foot! A team consisting of faculty members and students from the Department of Computer Science and the Computer Center has recreated the beautiful NTHU campus using virtual reality (VR) technology. When you put on the virtual reality headset and lightly touch the map, each campus building will vividly appears, as well as the surrounding topography. Even without the headset you can use the “real-time campus view” to visit the entire campus via the internet.
 
Professor Hao-chuan Wang, Director of the Division of Learning Technology, Computer & Communication Center, says that the distinctive feature of their system is that in addition to buildings it also includes the entire campus landscape, so as to give the viewer a complete and realistic experience. Moreover, the system was entirely created by our faculty members and students.
 
The project originated in 2010, when Hung-kuo Chu, an assistant professor of the Department of Computer Science, planned a professional development course on 3D design. The next major step came in 2013, when he organized the project team and officially launched a course titled "3D Modeling and Design." The course focused on modeling concepts and developing practical skills, and attracted over a hundred students at the very first time it was offered.
 
Professor Chu says that they started from scratch and eventually covered about 90 buildings, all with different styles and characteristics. They also included the surrounding landscape, making this a huge undertaking. Students conducted on-site inspections on each building and took photographs from multiple angles. Then they worked on the computer to create a 3D model with exact details, right down to the patterns on the walls and window sills.
 
Team member Wei-ting Ruan of the Department of Computer Science said that the most difficult part of the whole project was modeling. Of all the buildings he worked on, he said that the most difficult and time consuming one was the Humanities and Social Sciences Building, because of its large scale, multiple angles, and design complexity.
 
For those who would like to visit NTHU without even going out the door, the team has set up the “real-time campus view.” Employing a high-definition webcam and video streaming technology, the website provides a continuous feed of the campus lawn and lake, even during major storms.
 
The “real-time campus view” can be visited at: http://livecam.web.nthu.edu.tw/files/14-1931-97850.php
 
A team of faculty members and students spent three years creating a VR system of the entire NTHU campus. Wearing a head-mounted display, lightly touch the map to visit any sight on campus.

A team of faculty members and students spent three years creating a VR system of the entire NTHU campus. Wearing a head-mounted display, lightly touch the map to visit any sight on campus.

 

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