While we've been waiting patiently for the Xbox Live Vision cam to be released the folks at HP Labs have been hard at work on a heavy-duty system for "immersive teleconferencing" that can be run on a standard PC. A recently released research paper demonstrates a rig consisting of five FireWire equipped-webcams strategically mounted to an LCD monitor. Software combines the cams' images into a real-time 3D model that looks like a character out of Tony Hawk's Pro Skater and mimics your every move, shrugs included. The creation and transmission of the virtual you into the rather drab looking virtual conference room takes up some serious resources -- the testing machines were reportedly equipped with dual Intel Xeon processors and between 1GB and 4GB RAM -- so chances are if these go into production they'll be hitting fancy corporate offices well before you'll see them conjuring up all manner of bizarre YouTube videos.

[Thanks, Staska. Warning: PDF link]

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