Tele-immersive Environments for EVErybody, or TEEVE, is a system that’s being
test-driven simultaneously across thousands of miles this spring in the labs of
Klara Nahrstedt, a computer science professor at the University of Illinois at
Urbana-Champaign, and Ruzena Bajcsy, a professor of computer science at the
University of California, Berkeley.
Click here to watch a 2-minute video clip taken at UIUC.
In technical terms, TEEVE is a distributed multi-tier application that
captures images using 3-D camera clusters and distributes them over Internet2
(the network reserved for research and corporate clients), compressing and
decompressing the 3-D video streams, rendering them into immersive video and
displaying them on one or multiple large screens.
In layman’s terms, think of TEEVE as a turbocharged version of
videoconferencing, but with some very fancy new bells and whistles. Most
notably, Nahrstedt said, TEEVE makes it possible for people to view their
counterparts at remote sites from all angles.
And an important feature that sets it apart from other tele-immersive
video-conferencing systems currently being developed or used elsewhere is its
potential for delivering high-quality images and communications using relatively
inexpensive technology and COTS ‘ or commercial-off-the-shelf products and
Among other potential applications, Nahrstedt expects TEEVE will, in the
not-too-distant future, allow for the following scenarios to take place:
# After accidents, medical patients and physiotherapists meet in cyberspace,
where the physiotherapist demonstrates muscle-strengthening exercises.
# Students are able to learn new sports or movement activities, such as tai
chi, even when living in remote locations where no local teacher is
# While communicating with an elderly parent, adult children living far away
can more accurately assess a parent’s physical condition.
Nahrstedt predicts that it will be at least five to six years before TEEVE
and other tele-immersive 3-D multi-camera collaborative environments are
routinely used in university or corporate settings.