Siggraph Mobile explores cutting edge of handheld graphics

Using mobile games for positive change and new photography techniques highlight this year’s sessions.

For the second straight year Siggraph is carving out a portion of its schedule for special sessions devoted to mobile graphics technology. This year’s Siggraph Mobile program will present the latest advances in mobile technologies, graphics, and apps. In talks, workshops, panels, and demonstrations, mobile innovators from around the world explore new graphics techniques, game production for handheld devices, visualizations with augmented reality, and how mobile games can help save the world’s rainforests.

“We are seeing a lot of innovation in graphics as well as mobile applications, and it is clear that mobile is now an established part of Siggraph,” said Lars Erik Holmquist, Siggraph Mobile Chair and Principal Research Scientist at Yahoo! Labs. “Some of the top companies in mobile graphics hardware will present their latest technologies, including ARM, Nvidia, Intel, and Qualcomm.”

According to Holmquist, some of the interesting application areas include mobile games for positive change, augmented reality for museums, and new ways to take digital photographs. There will also be workshops and talks about how to make mobile graphics and apps across many platforms. Plus, there will be a theatre group that uses iPads in live performances and a toy robot anyone can control with a mobile phone, in addition to a hands-on, interactive area.

Sessions of note in this year’s Siggraph Mobile (Sunday, July 21 through Thursday, July 25 2013 at the Anaheim Convention Center) include:

Challenges With High-Quality Mobile Graphics: Sam Martin, Geomerics Ltd.; Marius Bjørge, Sandeep Kakarlapudi, Jan-Harald Fredriksen, ARM Holdings, plc.

siggraph mobile challenges

This talk identifies and explores potential solutions to the challenges that exist in bringing AAA-quality graphics to mobile, including the new features exposed by OpenGL ES 3.0, the trend to high-resolution screens, and a novel “on chip” deferred-rendering technique for Mali GPUs.

Mobile Visual Computing in C++ on Android: Yun-Ta Tsai, Orazio Gallo, David Pajak, Kari Pulli, NVIDIA Research.

siggrpah mobile mobile visual computing

This workshop teaches the basics to get started quickly with a visual-computing project on Android using native C++ code, from setting up tools to running your first native application. The session also dives into deeper topics, including computer vision with OpenCV, camera control on FCam, and performance tuning.

Red Ball – Performing With iPads: Marla Schweppe, Rochester Institute of Technology; Darren Stevenson, PUSH Physical Theatre.

siggraph m redball ipad performance colored up

PUSH Physical Theatre, a Rochester-based group, added iPads to their traditional tools of magic, mime, and movement in the performance of Red Ball. They added five iPads to the mix, performing with graphics created by Marla Schweppe.

Social Reform Through Mobile Gaming (Seed.Genesis): Alexis Polanco, Danielle Esmaya, Nathaniel Martin, Bradley Chun, Mateusz Mrowiec, Joseph Hewitt, New Jersey Institute of Technology

siggraph mobile teamseed social reform

Team Seed believes mobile games provide the level of immersion required to renew society’s interest in protecting our rainforests.

Sphero Augmented Reality: When Balls Become Beavers: Jonathan Carroll, Fabrizio Polo, Orbotix, Inc.

siggraph mobile sphero

The moving robot “fiducial” takes augmented reality on mobile devices to an entirely new level.

The Collaborative Composite Image, the MAG Project: Susan Lakin, David Halbstein, Rochester Institute of Technology

siggraph mobile collaborative

A collaborative project involving students and faculty in the School of Photography and the 3D Digital Design Department of the School of Design at Rochester Institute of Technology with the curators of the Memorial Art Gallery (MAG) in Rochester created an augmented-reality experience using paintings from the MAG’s permanent collection.