Abstract

During the pandemic, the impact of video communication platforms drastically increased. But in front of a screen, flexible and serendipitous interactions known from real-life settings were reduced to a minimum. Zoom fatigue occurred very quickly and early on developments were started to provide more flexible alternatives to video-focused platforms. Spatialized Video Communication Platforms (SVCP) reintroduce more flexibility, serendipity and improved dynamic group forming by providing game-like environments. After a brief review on SVCPs, we are focusing here on the highly-customizable Gather.town platform. We developed an Open-Source pipeline to create 3D-based environments that meet the demand for visual requirements from design-engineering students as well as visualization professionals. Based on three surveys, we evaluated the potential of SVCPs in the context of virtualizing learning, teaching, exhibiting as well as conferencing. Along the way we tested several new features designed for increased user engagement and creating a sense of ownership.

Keywords

virtual studio, virtual conference, design engineering, Gathertown

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License

Conference Track

Research Paper

COinS
 
Jun 25th, 9:00 AM

Spatialized video communication platforms: Applications in design education and conferencing

During the pandemic, the impact of video communication platforms drastically increased. But in front of a screen, flexible and serendipitous interactions known from real-life settings were reduced to a minimum. Zoom fatigue occurred very quickly and early on developments were started to provide more flexible alternatives to video-focused platforms. Spatialized Video Communication Platforms (SVCP) reintroduce more flexibility, serendipity and improved dynamic group forming by providing game-like environments. After a brief review on SVCPs, we are focusing here on the highly-customizable Gather.town platform. We developed an Open-Source pipeline to create 3D-based environments that meet the demand for visual requirements from design-engineering students as well as visualization professionals. Based on three surveys, we evaluated the potential of SVCPs in the context of virtualizing learning, teaching, exhibiting as well as conferencing. Along the way we tested several new features designed for increased user engagement and creating a sense of ownership.

 

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