Reach for the stars, break into the running man or slip into downward dog and General Electric's "Visible You" mimics your every move. Ultra-responsive and lighting fast, the gesture based system captures body movements, no matter how subtle or swift, and reflects these motions in a life-sized, hi-def 3D rendering that illustrates the body's four major biological systems: circulatory, digestive, respiratory and nervous. Even more impressive, "Visible You" responds as soon as you step in front of its camera, initiating the image display without instructions, position markers or control pads.
Under assignment from BBDO, multi-disciplinary creative studio Tronic designed and modeled "Visible You" to showcase the capabilities of GE's new groundbreaking body scanning technology. Astonishingly intuitive and as fun as it is functional, the system has established itself as the most popular, and provocative, exhibit in the American Pavilion at the Shanghai World Exposition, counting the likes of U.S. Secretary of State Hilary Clinton and Extra celebrity host Mario Lopez among the thousands of fair-goers who have hopped, skipped and jumped for "Visible You."
"GE's "Visible You" is a perfect example of how we use our multi-disciplinary approach to craft aesthetic experiences that create meaningful consumer interactions in the emerging gesture-based space," said Tronic partner Vivian Rosenthal, whose firm is currently producing a major project for Xerox combining touch and gesture-based interactive tools. The exhibit highlights Tronic's expertise and interest in the convergence of visual communications technologies, especially how advances in video gaming are influencing the characteristics of home media and the evolving role of branded content.
An Interactive Showcase for GE Scanner Technology
"The challenge was to create a truly engaging interactive experience that easily conveyed the features and potential applications of GE's new scanning technology," said Tronic partner Jesse Seppi. "GE wanted thousands of people to have the opportunity to use its technology in a completely natural manner using their body movements and gestures, rather than any mediating devices. "Visible You" serves an educational purpose, but more importantly, it provides an entertaining, enjoyable and therefore more memorable experience while avoiding the steep learning curves and language barriers that could have limited its appeal."
As soon as a person walks up to "Visible You," the image on the life-size vertical display automatically scales to his or her general height. The person then simply moves - waves, wiggles, leaps, or any other movement - and their action is simultaneously mimicked by the on-screen image. "It's a totally new way to interact with display technology that establishes an innate communication link between one's body and its virtual doppelganger, imitating your every action as it cycles through views of the body's four internal systems, which is exactly what the new GE scanner displays and what makes it so distinctive."
Creating 3D Models, Male and Female
To create "Visible You," Tronic designed detailed 3D models of male and female bodies and the four main biological systems, and then adapted the latest in gesture based interactive technology sensitive enough to provide real-time responses to bodily movements. "GE told us that they envisioned an x-ray look and gave us the freedom to develop a design aesthetic that captured that quality," said Tronic designer Fredi Phillips. "Using 3D Studio Max, we created an x-ray with a more refined and vibrant feel, then rendered one master model, and fine-tuned the color palette, which we used to distinguish the four bodily systems."
Tronic also rendered hi-res images from the models that will be used in an upcoming print campaign.