Face to face - in realistic 3D

March 14, 2005

Computing experts at Cardiff University, UK, are developing a super-realistic animation system that simulates the movements of a face, based on speech.

The team in the School of Computer Science has developed highly advanced software which is continually learning the facial dynamics associated with a speaker and applying this knowledge to synthesize realistic facial animations.

"Our aim is to create sophisticated facial animation through speech," explained Dr David Marshall. "The applications include a new sophistication in film, computer graphics and animation technology - not just for films and games, but also for educational, mobile telecommunications, advertising, information services and internet applications."

The team has now become the first to invest in the latest video camera technology from US company 3dMD. This latest generation "4D system" is the first commercially available product that combines the element of time with the rapid generation of medically accurate 3D surface models.

"We had exhausted the possibilities of 2D technology," said Dr Marshall. "The new camera enables us to capture high quality data at very high speed, and will provide the next level of detail to reproduce expressions and the subtle nuances that happen during speech."
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Cardiff University

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