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Realtime ASCII Goggles

kdawson posted more than 6 years ago | from the through-crt-colored-spectacles dept.

It's funny.  Laugh. 331

jabjoe writes "Russian artists from Moscow have created goggles with realtime image filtering. Among the Photoshop-like filters that can be applied is, interestingly, ASCII: you can view the world in real time as ASCII. Pointless but cool."

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ASCII and thou shalt receive (4, Funny)

Stanistani (808333) | more than 6 years ago | (#20494653)

Tint it green, have it flow downward, and you're Keanu Reeves...

Re:ASCII and thou shalt receive (4, Funny)

gnarfel (1135055) | more than 6 years ago | (#20494697)

But will it run linux? And, better yet, if it were to kernel panic, what would the world look like?

Re:ASCII and thou shalt receive (4, Funny)

jdray (645332) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495025)

If someone mirrors this site, will all the letters show up backward?

Re:ASCII and thou shalt receive (3, Funny)

garcia (6573) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495067)

Tint it green, have it flow downward, and you're Keanu Reeves...

Totally Excellent!

Oh wait, wrong movie. Sorry, I just can't ever think of Keanu in anything but Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure. I guess there must be a glitch in the matrix or something...

Re:ASCII and thou shalt receive (5, Funny)

pragma_x (644215) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495419)

I have the same problem. While watching it, I kept expecting to have scenes like this:

Neo: I totally had this dream where I woke up in a bathtub full of snot, and my head had this gnarly plug hooked into it. Then I went down this awesome waterslide. It was like waterloo, only totally metal.
Neo: [does air guitar]

Morpheus: That was no dream. The world as you understand it exists only as a massive simulation, designed and built by the machines, to deceive mankind while harnessing their body heat for energy. You were plugged into the matrix like the others, but we rescued you.

Neo: [Looks painfully confused]

Morpheus: [sighs] Up until now, you were a lot like that dude in that song "One" by Metallica.

Neo: Excellent!

Re:ASCII and thou shalt receive (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20495077)

Singer Luciano Pavarotti dies at the age of 17. He touched everyones hearts and their pocket books too. He also touched his secretary but the less said about that the better. He will be missed.

-- Moomin troll

ObPedantic (4, Funny)

itsdapead (734413) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495139)

Tint it green, have it flow downward, and you're Keanu Reeves...

Unfortunately TFA said ASCII - the Matrix included a lot of Japanese Katakana/Hiragana script so you'd probably need JIS, Unicode or ISO something-or-other...

Also, do not try this at home unless you are The One - otherwise, after ten minutes you'd probably go green and flow downwards.

Re:ObPedantic (5, Funny)

Stanistani (808333) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495363)

Yeah, I was going to insert the clause, 'add unicode and some funky characters,' but I was distracted by the woman in the red dress.

Re:ASCII and thou shalt receive (1)

fm6 (162816) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495385)

I have to point out that Neo's green-screen vision uses Unicode [wikipedia.org] characters.

And if Neo's such a visionary, why does he use an HGC [wikipedia.org] monitor?

Pointless but cool? (4, Insightful)

biocute (936687) | more than 6 years ago | (#20494657)

It's not pointless if it's cool, it's just useless.

Re:Pointless but cool? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20494879)

So, if I shave and you look at me with them on I'd look like this? [kuro5hin.org] (I grew a goatee since this fine portrait was rendered)


Re:Pointless but cool? (5, Funny)

sayfawa (1099071) | more than 6 years ago | (#20494925)

Ah, but it's not even useless.

a) enhance the surreality of certain drugs (didn't know surreality was a word, but spellchecker isn't complaining. Interestingly, my spellchecker says spellchecker is spelled wrong.

b) make sex with unattractive people more fun. Actually, this would make sex with attractive people more fun too. As long as they don't complain about the massive stupid looking goggles you have on. Or the massive thing that powers them and keeps hitting your partner in the ribs.

Re:Pointless but cool? (1)

Penfold1234 (920794) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495281)

It's not useless... Perhaps you might need a device to aid you in tripping over things and hurting yourself?

Pointless? Useless? I Think Not (5, Interesting)

eldavojohn (898314) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495537)

Pointless but cool.
Whoever wrote that doesn't have much imagination for application.

The thing that impressed me was I believe I saw a standard Sobel operator filter that extracts lines based on the derivatives of a pixel and its neighbors. Now in computer vision oftentimes this is used to simplify complex scenes so that region/structural analysis can be done.

You know when you're developing computer vision applications for robots, it sure would help to be able to code an algorithm & take it outside to test it against different light sources and scenarios so you get an idea of what needs to be tweaked.

Plus if your robots have hardware restrictions, this system can enforce them to give you an idea of realtime lag.

I could see this being a very valuable tool in the realms of academia & robotics. I realize the original idea is for ACII art, as mentioned, but there are some real applications here.

Re:Pointless but cool? (0, Flamebait)

monk.e.boy (1077985) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495609)

It'd be nice to be able to edit out fat ugly people in real time.

Insert your own ethnic minority, xenophobic joke here :-)

ASCII (5, Insightful)

exploder (196936) | more than 6 years ago | (#20494659)

I think the ASCII mode would have been cooler if they'd run the edge detect first. As it was, it seemed like the majority of the information rendered was in the brightness of the characters, not in the choice of character for each position.

The ulimate geek necessity! (1)

downix (84795) | more than 6 years ago | (#20494663)

Now we all can live life like we are inside a comic book! Drop in the Comix plug-in, and bam!

Re:The ulimate geek necessity! (1)

HTH NE1 (675604) | more than 6 years ago | (#20494831)

Or how about image substitution so it's like you're wearing the sunglasses from They Live [imdb.com] , replacing advertisements with generic placards, and politicians look like alien zombies?

Re:The ulimate geek necessity! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20495013)

Well if you were that goofy thing in Harlem I guarantee you will get in a fight with a big black guy that will kick you in the nuts!!

Re:The ulimate geek necessity! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20495587)

Black guys don't kick. They rape. Only rape.

Matrix... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20494677)

You might see ASCII...but all I see is blonde, brunette, redhead...

Finally, a place to use this quote... (2, Funny)

NotQuiteReal (608241) | more than 6 years ago | (#20494681)

"My eyes! The goggles do nothing!"

Re:Finally, a place to use this quote... (2, Funny)

argStyopa (232550) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495127)

10 am site posted to /.
10:04 apparently it worked.
10:33 it's down.

More like "My server! The website does nothing!"

Obligatory (1)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | more than 6 years ago | (#20494685)

In Soviet Russia, world is u.

Re:Obligatory (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20495501)

I think you meant in Soviet Russia you keep saying these dumb fucking "obligitory" statements. STFU, it was only funny oh say the first 1000 or so times.

Two guys on Moscow street (3, Funny)

PinkyDead (862370) | more than 6 years ago | (#20494715)

A: I don't even see the code. All I see now is blonde, brunette, redhead.
B: I can too you idiot - take those stupid goggles off. You're embarassing me.

How long until... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20494731)

someone shoots an ASCII art porno using these things? The Internet is for porn, after all.

Re:How long until... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20495565)

I have to respectfully disagree with the AP above: The internet is a tool for exchanging ideas and information between institutions and across organizations for the greater enhancement of mankind. Sorry, I just had too..

Re:How long until... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20495653)

Why bother filming, there a dozen of free tools that'll do this with any existing video.

One camera only... (5, Insightful)

UfoZ (680310) | more than 6 years ago | (#20494751)

...means you lose depth perception.

Nice gimmick, though.

Re:One camera only... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20494935)

Yes and no. Would you say you lose depth perception while watching a movie?

Shouldn't take long... (1)

Kabuthunk (972557) | more than 6 years ago | (#20494777)

I'm going to guess it's about 2 minutes after it goes on commercial sale before some idiot tries to drive in ASCII. Depth-perception and visibility? Pfft... secondary to being able to see ASCII cars zip by :P

Still, I'd love a pair. Added difficulty to any video game by way of filtering the hell out of it :P

ASCII Goodness (5, Funny)

kribby (964773) | more than 6 years ago | (#20494795)

so it's like a pair of beer goggles for nerds?

Re:ASCII Goodness (1)

antifoidulus (807088) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495131)

would certainly make going to strip clubs more interesting.

Re:ASCII Goodness (5, Funny)

idontgno (624372) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495409)

Yeah, right. The last thing we need is a bunch of geeks in wearable computing gear shouting "Yah, Baby, shake your @s!"

Needs more overlays. (5, Funny)

Rob T Firefly (844560) | more than 6 years ago | (#20494801)

This would be really cool with some informative readouts along the edges. Battery power remaining, range to John Connor, progressive sequel crappiness quotient, that sort of thing.

See beyond the code (-1, Redundant)

imstanny (722685) | more than 6 years ago | (#20494805)

"If you're good enough, you won't even see the code anymore. You'll just see a Blonde, Brunette, Red head..." - 0

more obscure reference (2, Interesting)

Alzheimers (467217) | more than 6 years ago | (#20494823)

But will they show you recreations of the death scenes of famous celebrities based on GPS coordinates?

I wouldn't say useless. (4, Informative)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 6 years ago | (#20494833)

I could see a lot of uses for it. Not nessarly the ASCII Filter but other filters can be nice. Say a brightness filter may make you better able to see in low light. Negitive Filter may help you find Jesus, in cloth. Other Filters could aid learning artest how to draw by removing the natural shading in real life, and break things down into simple shapes. Heck the Ascii filter could probably be good for trainging for sending images on Low Bandwidth networks and having people get the images and decode them easier.

Re:I wouldn't say useless. (4, Insightful)

pragma_x (644215) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495199)

I'd say that's the tip of the iceberg. Real-time video manipulation has all kinds of crazy implications for various impairments.

Being able to simulate various types of color-blindness, or color-shift the real world to assist the color-blind are two possibilities. You could also use edge enhancement for people that can't focus too well, brightness enhancement for people who can't see in moderate light, gamma correction for night-blindness, and maybe some kind of stylized "cell shading" for people who have trouble discerning shapes and depth cues (shadows, etc).

Now, add on some binocular optics (read: conventional glasses) and you can further push the envelope by compensating for astigmatism, lazy eye, and all the rest.

Also, a lot of CCDs can see in to the near-infrared. So IR-enhanced viewing is also a distinct possibility.

Re:I wouldn't say useless. (1)

Pengunea (170972) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495531)

[...]by removing the natural shading in real life

Reduce objects to lines and voila. Finally, the world can look like the video for Take On Me by Ah-ha!

Article Tesx (3, Funny)

MyLongNickName (822545) | more than 6 years ago | (#20494855)

At the risk of being a karma whore:

"Russian artists from Moscow presented in London the totally useless but somehow cool device - goggles that you can put on and feel yourself like a robot from a Terminator movie or like somebody else from "the cyberspace". See the video below:"


World Cup in ASCII (1)

lib3rtarian (1050840) | more than 6 years ago | (#20494859)

I remember that during the last world cup there was a server that was running the coolest telnet I have ever seen. It was the world cup TV feed filtered into ASCII, so you could actually watch the games over telnet. I was all about it, although I can't remember the server address now. I would be very interested if anyone knew anything else about this, or how it's done, or how I could set it up.

Re:World Cup in ASCII (1)

Crudely_Indecent (739699) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495395)

Easy 'nuf...

Get yourself a capture card (or camera) and pipe the input through VLC at the command line. VLC can be compiled with ascii-art libraries and you can do this yourself (only, it's not just green, ascii-art library processes colors too)

It's dead simple, but not useful enough for me to do it twice.

Re:World Cup in ASCII (1)

whathappenedtomonday (581634) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495429)

I remember I tried it a dozen times and it never worked, the server was constantly stalled during games. I watched the Deep Throat ASCII conversion vid, instead. More balls in there than in any soccer game, no kidding! Can't find the bookmark right now, but google is (evil and) your friend.

Oh, how to do it / set it up? No idea, but you might just preorder the goggles from TFA. Or read up on real time image filtering of live video sources.

It reminds me of college (1)

aadvancedGIR (959466) | more than 6 years ago | (#20494881)

We had some Ultra Sparc and a few VT220 orange dummy terminals where I studied and everyone was using only the Sparcs, even to only check emails, so there were some queues to access the machine. So one day, a friend installed the ASCII version of Quake on the VT220 server to prove you could do almost anything on those craps.
It didn't change anything but damn, that was cool.

Go Osama! (1)

alta (1263) | more than 6 years ago | (#20494883)

I didn't know Osama was so interested in Art, espcially asci art... Good for him, take a break from killing the infidels and contribute something useless to society ;)

Poor russians (5, Funny)

packetmon (977047) | more than 6 years ago | (#20494887)

They don't have an ASCII representation of a /. effect. So I made one for em:

  ##      ###
##       ###

Re:Poor russians (4, Funny)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495293)

They don't have an ASCII representation of a /. effect. So I made one for em:
Here's my rendition:
404 Error - File Not Found

Noire K.W. Jeter (1)

McNihil (612243) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495045)

The books main character... McNihil... wow! where did I get my handle... goes around and sees everything in Noire kind of way.

This device is neither pointless nor useless... one can use it to enhance how people view their environs... want everybody to look like hot models... there you go.... you want everybody to be black... there you go... want everybody to look like whatever you like... there you go.

Stereo (2, Interesting)

badfringe (1123899) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495047)

It would be better if there were stereo cameras, and different video going to each eye. I can only guess at the sort of eye strain you'd get with this and ascii mode. Better still, different processing modes in each eye!

Synthetic Reality Interface Device Prototype. (2, Interesting)

TheLazySci-FiAuthor (1089561) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495069)

Its current configuration may be somewhat useless, but there is a point to goggles which allow overlay. This is essentially synthetic reality. It is my thoughts that soon "goggles" like these will be as common as bluetooth headsets are now - though they will probably be glasses rather than goggles (or perhaps even contacts, eventually).

I don't need to list the plethora of uses for synthetic reality, but even in this nascent stage I could see the ability to increase and decrease contrast as useful - perhaps in searching around for something lost.

This is simply algorithms being applied to a video - with object recognition the potential is large.

Re:Synthetic Reality Interface Device Prototype. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20495319)

Even without synthetic/augmented reality or weird ascii art, there are practical uses for real-time goggles. For instance, imagine if you could automatically black out the sun, no more squinting as you drive into the sunset (my sunglasses aren't dark enough to block the sun, and if they were, I wouldn't be able to see that much dimmer stoplight coming up).

Not Another Network Timeout Batman! (1)

Aranykai (1053846) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495095)

already slashdoted by the folks who have been using ASCII output on mplayer for years...

hmmm (1)

nomadic (141991) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495105)

You can get the same effect by combining large amounts of alcohol and playing nethack for 24 hours straight.

x-ray mode, movie night? (1)

192939495969798999 (58312) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495115)

That is the most awesome thing ever. But the important questions remain: how about x-ray mode? I guess you could simulate it with some clever color-correction and "find edges" algorithms. I suppose we can look forward to 3 years' worth of music videos filmed with this thing, if not ASCII John Wayne Movie night on Adult Swim or something similar.

X-ray mode (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20495285)

Easier than you think. Some low-end Sony video cameras were way to sensitive to IR. The result was an effect very much like X-ray vision. ie. clothing tended to disappear. Interested? Just modify the camera feeding the goggles. Here's how: http://geektechnique.org/index.php?id=254 [geektechnique.org]

Re:x-ray mode, movie night? (1)

icebrain (944107) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495447)

"ASCII John Wayne Movie night on Adult Swim..."

That would absolutely kick ass. I'd get cable just to watch it.

Videolan has ascii output (5, Interesting)

DrXym (126579) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495137)

Sad but true - you can watch movies in Videolan as rendered into ASCII. You'll find the option by opening the Preferences dialog, checking the "Advanced Options" checkbox, clicking on Output Modules, and selecting "Color ASCII art video output".

Cool but rather useless.

BTW for me at least, the OpenGL driver delivers a far better image under Vista than DirectX. Don't know if this is DRM related or not but the quality is far better.

No computer or OS? (2, Interesting)

Dan East (318230) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495433)

In the video the guy says there is no computer or operating system. Maybe its all embedded, but obviously it has a CPU running their software.

As far as being just a toy, this thing could actually be quite useful. It could be used to enhance vision, sort of like Geordi's visor in Star Trek. It could display things outside of human vision, or amplify small differences to make them more apparent. Of course it could be used for night vision too. Personally, I would be interested in the hardware if I write my own software / filters for it. The point is, with this type of augmented vision, the sky's pretty much the limit. Imagine if it was OCRing what you look at real-time, so that you could look at something, and the system could display additional information about uncommon words (nouns like place names, product names, etc).

How about the Photosynth demo [ted.com] Microsoft did, where they would take many 2D images of buildings, and reconstruct them in 3D, allowing the user to zoom in in massive detail (if someone had taken photos of that particular place). If that type of image recognition could be done real-time to match what you are currently looking at, then you could look at the inside of a building without entering it. Or zoom in or out, or pan or change your POV entirely, without actually moving your body.

Dan East

release 2.0 (1)

martyb (196687) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495515)

I've heard they already have plans for their next version! They're going to upgrade the image processing to add scene analysis with an always-on internet connection to a search engine and call them "Googles". <grin>

stupid (1)

bakamaki (1148765) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495529)

This technology appears to be a combination of virtual boy and a public access video effects board.
I like the "watcha want" vido by the Beastie Boys and prefer it to this silliness.
I guess what I'm saying is that it's cool for the purpose of art but it really doesn't live up to the name/claims/etc.

Anyone watch Serial Experiments Lain? (2, Interesting)

GammaKitsune (826576) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495541)

There's a moderately batty man who wanders through the streets with a setup that looks exactly like this. He's trying to remain permanently connected to cyberspace, or something to that effect. Not sure if anyone will know what I'm talking about, though. :)

Quake 3 overlay (3, Funny)

IckySplat (218140) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495553)

I buy one if I could overlay Q3 style textures over everything.
Say selective overlays for different people :)
Postman becomes zombies and add the sound effects for extra points
It would make my morning commute to work a little more fun

Probably require more CPU horsepower than that little unit could provide
and I suspect the batties would weigh a ton.

He Looks Like... (0, Offtopic)

eno2001 (527078) | more than 6 years ago | (#20495595)

...Rasputin. Man, I wish I could grow a beard like that. I'd love to look like an insane monk.

shitM.. (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20495681)

distribution make BitTorrent) Second, backwards. To th3 Keep unneceesary are about 7000/5 bought the farm... that he documents Need to scream that leaving core. I of the GNAA I followed. Obviously fear the reaper of reality. Keep come Here but now in the sun. In the
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