Friday, August 1, 2008


I don't even know how to categorize this. So I shall quote: "an augmented-reality spatial-memory game by Julian Oliver."

levelHead v1.0, 3 cube speed-run (spoiler!) from Julian Oliver on Vimeo.

Each cube is a separate puzzle which the player navigates by tilting and shifting - as you leave one cube, you enter the next (which increases in difficulty). There is a spatial memory aspect to the challenge, since you need to remember which doors lead to what rooms.

"levelHead deploys three small (5x5x5cm) plastic cubes with a unique image (marker) on each face. A computer running the Linux operating system is fitted with a Sony EyeToy camera sitting on a clean white surface. Computer Vision software on the host computer is trained to recognise the marker such that it can overlay 3D content on a per-face basis. This software has been designed to produce the convincing impression that each room is somehow inside the cube."

The artist plans to display this as an installation in several electronic shows, and eventually make it available for free download (you would print and fold your own cubes). You can read about the project, and its inspiration, here. Lots of fun pseudosensible artist/compu-geek babble to read, like...

"Similarly, navigating in the real world increasingly tends toward dependence on external media and locative technologies, remembering not just places but even describing vectors of movement and spatial associations for us. It is in the spirit of Memory Loci, of the configuration of place as both an associative location and container of memories, that the design for levelHead begins. It prioritises the notion that moving from one site to another inevitably produces an imaginary architecture of varying clarity and positions this memory architecture as the primary means of navigation. Only one side of the cube will reveal a room at any given time and so a memory of the last room - of the positions of entrances and exits, stairs and other features - is necessary in order to build a logic of safe forward movement."

I am duly fascinated.

1 comment:

  1. I really wish I understood this because I can tell it's awesome but have no idea why or how.