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GeekCon 2009: RunVas – Our project [w/ video, img]

runvasHi everyone
In the last weekend I attended GeekCon 2009, a tech-conference, with a friend and colleague Arnon (not Arnon from the blog, who recently had a birthday – Happy B-Day Arnon!). Each team that attended had to create a project they can complete in 2-days of the conference. Our project is called “RunVas”, and the basic idea was to let people run around and paint by doing so. We wanted to combine computer vision with a little artistic angle.
Here’s some more details

GeekCon you say?

First of all a few words about GeekCon itself. The conference is a “non-conference” or “un-conference”, which is a conference not focused on the business side of innovation and technology, but on the fun and creative side. The moto is something like: “geek out as hard as you possibly can in 2 days, and get it out of your system for the rest of the year”.
So teams from all corners of technology: Elect. Eng., Comp. Sci., Metal and wood works, etc., register and state their project of choice. The managment decides whether the project can actually be delivered in 2 days, and is actually a “GeekCon project”. By “GeekCon project” they mean something that demonstrates a nice concept/idea in a cool way, and is utterly useless in real life. This is the official stand.

Our project

We were accepted in with our project, RunVas. A simple idea, based around the latest fashion of getting people out of the house, away from the computer and hit the lawns running. We wanted also to combine technical and artistic point-of-views. So we create a system that tracks objects in a video scene, and sends the results to a drawing engine. The drawing will be presented on a virtual “canvas”, that the runners can view as they run, hence the name “RunVas”. We weren’t able to achieve all of that, but we had a good go at it, and delivered something nice.


The CV part, object tracking, was programmed by Arnon, using the archaic Macromedia Director, donno which version but an old one anyway. And the drawing part was created by myself using the groundwork I had done for my 3D graphics game I programmed for school using SWT/JOGL. Personally I was amazed by how quickly I was able to pick up the framework from that project and re-use it for another, completely different, project. I guess that if you write stuff in a good solid structure you can build anything on top of it.


So without further ado, here’s a short video:

And my flickr stream with photo I uploaded in real time from the conference:


The code for the canvas drawing proggy is available in the SVN repo.

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