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The ICOCOON Virtual Meeting Room: A Virtual Environment as a Support Tool for Multipoint Teleconference Systems

Abstract : Globalization and increasing collaboration between remote teams drive the need for teleconference systems. However, currently no videoconferencing system matches the face-to-face experience for a business meeting with many participants in a flexible and affordable manner. In search for a better solution, we created a Virtual Meeting Room (VMR) application that visualizes key events detected using computer vision (e.g., participant entering the meeting room, talking, presenting) in a 3D virtual environment. The goal was to provide a good sense of overview to users when many meeting participants - represented by 3D avatars - from remote locations join a teleconference. In this paper, a technical overview of the working prototype - built using 3D game technology - is presented. Also, feedback from multiple user tests performed during the development of the prototype is discussed and presented as a set of recommendations. From the technical perspective, we found that existing 3D game technology is mature, affordable and contains the features needed to build the VMR application. From the users’ and experts’ feedback, we conclude that the VMR has merits as a teleconferencing support tool accompanying a video stream that conveys more detailed non-verbal communication of the active speaker.
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Aljosha Demeulemeester, Katriina Kilpi, Shirley Elprama, Sammy Lievens, Charles-Frederik Hollemeersch, et al.. The ICOCOON Virtual Meeting Room: A Virtual Environment as a Support Tool for Multipoint Teleconference Systems. 11th International Confernece on Entertainment Computing (ICEC), Sep 2012, Bremen, Germany. pp.158-171, ⟨10.1007/978-3-642-33542-6_14⟩. ⟨hal-01556163⟩

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