Experts Invent New Technology for Animal Motion Capture

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A team of researchers from the University of Bath created a device that enables users to digitize their dogs without the need for traditional motion capture technology. Traditional motion capture requires specialists to attach sensors to a human or animal actor. These sensors are used to track and record their movements, which are transferred to a digital character. As this technology uses several cameras and other equipment, it can be costly and time-consuming, especially when applied to animals. In contrast, the new technology makes digitizing animals possible with just a single camera. The researchers used an RGBD camera, which has a depth sensor. Data recorded by RGBD cameras can be turned into 3D images. To test the RGBD camera technology, the researchers photographed 14 different breeds of dog from a local animal shelter. The researchers recorded the dogs' movements with the assistance of canine handlers. Then, they used the recorded data to generate digital models that replicated the animals' poses perfectly. Professor Darren Cosker, the director of the university's motion capture center, stated that this research will help build more realistic 3D models of animals for other purposes that go beyond film, such as in biology and veterinary medicine. After a successful attempt with dogs, the researchers are also starting to use the technology on other animals, such as horses, cats, lions, and gorillas.

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