Science.gov

Sample records for creating virtual humans

  1. Creating virtual humans for simulation-based training and planning

    SciTech Connect

    Stansfield, S.; Sobel, A.

    1998-05-12

    Sandia National Laboratories has developed a distributed, high fidelity simulation system for training and planning small team Operations. The system provides an immersive environment populated by virtual objects and humans capable of displaying complex behaviors. The work has focused on developing the behaviors required to carry out complex tasks and decision making under stress. Central to this work are techniques for creating behaviors for virtual humans and for dynamically assigning behaviors to CGF to allow scenarios without fixed outcomes. Two prototype systems have been developed that illustrate these capabilities: MediSim, a trainer for battlefield medics and VRaptor, a system for planning, rehearsing and training assault operations.

  2. Creating a "Virtual" Magnet School.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Goodrich, Burton E.

    1994-01-01

    Describes a "virtual" magnet school in Massachusetts for high school math and science that uses telecommunications to link students, universities, and corporate advisors. University and corporate roles are discussed, a summer institute is described, and sample research activities are included. (LRW)

  3. Student-Created Virtual Tours.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lewis, Sharon

    1995-01-01

    Describes a virtual museum tour project developed by Eastview Community School (Red Deer, Alberta) eighth grade students that used telecommunications and multimedia. Discusses the project's educational objectives, methods of collecting information, preparing hypertext documents, writing dialogue, the final presentation, and key components for a…

  4. Create products by going virtual.

    PubMed

    Hogan, J

    2005-11-01

    A virtual organisation is a business that outsources the majority of its operations. This enables it to be highly responsive to the market and to fast track the creation of specialist products. Tips for the successful implementation of this approach are offered here, with an example of one profitable business.

  5. Virtual Human Project

    SciTech Connect

    Ward, RD

    2001-06-12

    This paper describes the development of a comprehensive human modeling environment, the Virtual Human, which will be used initially to model the human respiratory system for purposes of predicting pulmonary disease or injury using lung sounds. The details of the computational environment, including the development of a Virtual Human Thorax, a database for storing models, model parameters, and experimental data, and a Virtual Human web interface are outlined. Preliminary progress in developing this environment will be presented. A separate paper at the conference describes the modeling of sound generation using computational fluid dynamics and the modeling of sound propagation in the human respiratory system.

  6. Creating an Online Library To Support a Virtual Learning Community.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sandelands, Eric

    1998-01-01

    International Management Centres (IMC), an independent business school, and Anbar Electronic Intelligence (AEI), a database publisher, have created a virtual library for IMC's virtual business school. Topics discussed include action learning; IMC's partnership with AEI; the virtual university model; designing virtual library resources; and…

  7. Envisioning the Educational Possibilities of User-Created Virtual Worlds

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Antonacci, David M.; Modaress, Nellie

    2008-01-01

    Educational games and simulations can engage students in higher-level cognitive thinking, such as interpreting, analyzing, discovering, evaluating, acting, and problem solving. Recent technical advances in multiplayer, user-created virtual worlds have significantly expanded the capabilities of user interaction and development within these…

  8. Validation of virtual spectrometer created in RADlab1.03

    PubMed Central

    Pandey, Anil Kumar; Patel, Chetan; Bal, Chandrasekhar; Kumar, Rakesh

    2015-01-01

    Spectrometer is used to perform various in vitro tests. The ability to successfully perform these tests depends on technologist's skill. Therefore, proper training of technologists is mandatory in gamma spectrometry. During the training, they need to have sufficient practice to gain sound theoretical and practical knowledge. High cost of spectrometer and risk of their damage during independent practice may hamper the process of proper training. Hence, there is a need of cheaper and more feasible option. Virtual spectrometer created in RADlab1.03 can address this issue. The immediate objective of this paper is to validate this virtual spectrometer so as to be used as an educational and research tool for trainees. Virtual spectrometer was calibrated using Cs-137 standard source and Cs-137 spectrum was recorded by positioning 28106 Bq Cs-137 source at 2.35 cm above top surface of the well, 1 cm above from the bottom of the well and at the bottom of the well. Ba-133 and Co-60 spectrum were also recorded. The experiments were repeated with real spectrometer for exactly the same conditions as applied to the virtual spectrometer. The paired t-test was applied to find the difference in mean photopeak at 5% level of significance. The sample data provided satisfactory evidence that mean photopeak obtained with real as well as virtual spectrometer were same at P value of 4.641 × 10−4,1.57 × 10−12,1.40 × 10−24, 1.26 × 10−16, and 8.7 × 10−9 for Cs-137 (photopeak: 664 keV, Co-60 (photopeak: 1181 keV), Co-60 (photopeak: Co-1348 keV), Ba-133 (photopeak: 304 keV) and Ba-133 (photopeak: 364 keV) respectively. PMID:25589799

  9. Validation of virtual spectrometer created in RADlab1.03.

    PubMed

    Pandey, Anil Kumar; Patel, Chetan; Bal, Chandrasekhar; Kumar, Rakesh

    2015-01-01

    Spectrometer is used to perform various in vitro tests. The ability to successfully perform these tests depends on technologist's skill. Therefore, proper training of technologists is mandatory in gamma spectrometry. During the training, they need to have sufficient practice to gain sound theoretical and practical knowledge. High cost of spectrometer and risk of their damage during independent practice may hamper the process of proper training. Hence, there is a need of cheaper and more feasible option. Virtual spectrometer created in RADlab1.03 can address this issue. The immediate objective of this paper is to validate this virtual spectrometer so as to be used as an educational and research tool for trainees. Virtual spectrometer was calibrated using Cs-137 standard source and Cs-137 spectrum was recorded by positioning 28106 Bq Cs-137 source at 2.35 cm above top surface of the well, 1 cm above from the bottom of the well and at the bottom of the well. Ba-133 and Co-60 spectrum were also recorded. The experiments were repeated with real spectrometer for exactly the same conditions as applied to the virtual spectrometer. The paired t-test was applied to find the difference in mean photopeak at 5% level of significance. The sample data provided satisfactory evidence that mean photopeak obtained with real as well as virtual spectrometer were same at P value of 4.641 × 10(-4),1.57 × 10(-12),1.40 × 10(-24), 1.26 × 10(-16), and 8.7 × 10(-9) for Cs-137 (photopeak: 664 keV, Co-60 (photopeak: 1181 keV), Co-60 (photopeak: Co-1348 keV), Ba-133 (photopeak: 304 keV) and Ba-133 (photopeak: 364 keV) respectively.

  10. Creating technical heritage object replicas in a virtual environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Egorova, Olga; Shcherbinin, Dmitry

    2016-03-01

    The paper presents innovative informatics methods for creating virtual technical heritage replicas, which are of significant scientific and practical importance not only to researchers but to the public in general. By performing 3D modeling and animation of aircrafts, spaceships, architectural-engineering buildings, and other technical objects, the process of learning is achieved while promoting the preservation of the replicas for future generations. Modern approaches based on the wide usage of computer technologies attract a greater number of young people to explore the history of science and technology and renew their interest in the field of mechanical engineering.

  11. Communicating with Virtual Humans.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Thalmann, Nadia Magnenat

    The face is a small part of a human, but it plays an essential role in communication. An open hybrid system for facial animation is presented. It encapsulates a considerable amount of information regarding facial models, movements, expressions, emotions, and speech. The complex description of facial animation can be handled better by assigning…

  12. i-MMOLE: Instructional Framework for Creating Virtual World Lessons

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Downey, Steve

    2011-01-01

    Today virtual world instruction faces many of the same educational challenges faced by Web-based instruction during its infancy. There is a lot of jargon and visions of the future being bandied about, but as Hirumi et al. note in the May/June and July/August 2010 issues of "TechTrends" "there little understanding of how to apply" pedagogical…

  13. Creating a Virtual Learning Environment for Gifted and Talented Learners

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mulrine, Christopher F.

    2007-01-01

    This article illustrates how teachers can infuse best practices from both gifted and talented education and information technology to benefit gifted and talented students through the creation of a virtual classroom learning environment. The author has used this assignment in an assistive technology course as an assignment for teacher preparation…

  14. Integrating multi-scale data to create a virtual physiological mouse heart.

    PubMed

    Land, Sander; Niederer, Steven A; Louch, William E; Sejersted, Ole M; Smith, Nicolas P

    2013-04-01

    While the virtual physiological human (VPH) project has made great advances in human modelling, many of the tools and insights developed as part of this initiative are also applicable for facilitating mechanistic understanding of the physiology of a range of other species. This process, in turn, has the potential to provide human relevant insights via a different scientific path. Specifically, the increasing use of mice in experimental research, not yet fully complemented by a similar increase in computational modelling, is currently missing an important opportunity for using and interpreting this growing body of experimental data to improve our understanding of cardiac function. This overview describes our work to address this issue by creating a virtual physiological mouse model of the heart. We describe the similarities between human- and mouse-focused modelling, including the reuse of VPH tools, and the development of methods for investigating parameter sensitivity that are applicable across species. We show how previous results using this approach have already provided important biological insights, and how these can also be used to advance VPH heart models. Finally, we show an example application of this approach to test competing multi-scale hypotheses by investigating variations in length-dependent properties of cardiac muscle. PMID:24427525

  15. Virtual physiological human: training challenges.

    PubMed

    Lawford, Patricia V; Narracott, Andrew V; McCormack, Keith; Bisbal, Jesus; Martin, Carlos; Bijnens, Bart; Brook, Bindi; Zachariou, Margarita; Freixa, Jordi Villà I; Kohl, Peter; Fletcher, Katherine; Diaz-Zuccarini, Vanessa

    2010-06-28

    The virtual physiological human (VPH) initiative encompasses a wide range of activities, including structural and functional imaging, data mining, knowledge discovery tool and database development, biomedical modelling, simulation and visualization. The VPH community is developing from a multitude of relatively focused, but disparate, research endeavours into an integrated effort to bring together, develop and translate emerging technologies for application, from academia to industry and medicine. This process initially builds on the evolution of multi-disciplinary interactions and abilities, but addressing the challenges associated with the implementation of the VPH will require, in the very near future, a translation of quantitative changes into a new quality of highly trained multi-disciplinary personnel. Current strategies for undergraduate and on-the-job training may soon prove insufficient for this. The European Commission seventh framework VPH network of excellence is exploring this emerging need, and is developing a framework of novel training initiatives to address the predicted shortfall in suitably skilled VPH-aware professionals. This paper reports first steps in the implementation of a coherent VPH training portfolio. PMID:20478909

  16. The assessment of virtual reality for human anatomy instruction

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Benn, Karen P.

    1994-01-01

    This research project seeks to meet the objective of science training by developing, assessing, and validating virtual reality as a human anatomy training medium. In ideal situations, anatomic models, computer-based instruction, and cadaver dissection are utilized to augment the traditional methods of instruction. At many institutions, lack of financial resources limits anatomy instruction to textbooks and lectures. However, human anatomy is three dimensional, unlike the one dimensional depiction found in textbooks and the two dimensional depiction found on the computer. Virtual reality is a breakthrough technology that allows one to step through the computer screen into a three dimensional world. This technology offers many opportunities to enhance science education. Therefore, a virtual testing environment of the abdominopelvic region of a human cadaver was created to study the placement of body parts within the nine anatomical divisions of the abdominopelvic region and the four abdominal quadrants.

  17. Human responses to augmented virtual scaffolding models.

    PubMed

    Hsiao, Hongwei; Simeonov, Peter; Dotson, Brian; Ammons, Douglas; Kau, Tsui-Ying; Chiou, Sharon

    2005-08-15

    This study investigated the effect of adding real planks, in virtual scaffolding models of elevation, on human performance in a surround-screen virtual reality (SSVR) system. Twenty-four construction workers and 24 inexperienced controls performed walking tasks on real and virtual planks at three virtual heights (0, 6 m, 12 m) and two scaffolding-platform-width conditions (30, 60 cm). Gait patterns, walking instability measurements and cardiovascular reactivity were assessed. The results showed differences in human responses to real vs. virtual planks in walking patterns, instability score and heart-rate inter-beat intervals; it appeared that adding real planks in the SSVR virtual scaffolding model enhanced the quality of SSVR as a human - environment interface research tool. In addition, there were significant differences in performance between construction workers and the control group. The inexperienced participants were more unstable as compared to construction workers. Both groups increased their stride length with repetitions of the task, indicating a possibly confidence- or habit-related learning effect. The practical implications of this study are in the adoption of augmented virtual models of elevated construction environments for injury prevention research, and the development of programme for balance-control training to reduce the risk of falls at elevation before workers enter a construction job. PMID:16253942

  18. Human responses to augmented virtual scaffolding models.

    PubMed

    Hsiao, Hongwei; Simeonov, Peter; Dotson, Brian; Ammons, Douglas; Kau, Tsui-Ying; Chiou, Sharon

    2005-08-15

    This study investigated the effect of adding real planks, in virtual scaffolding models of elevation, on human performance in a surround-screen virtual reality (SSVR) system. Twenty-four construction workers and 24 inexperienced controls performed walking tasks on real and virtual planks at three virtual heights (0, 6 m, 12 m) and two scaffolding-platform-width conditions (30, 60 cm). Gait patterns, walking instability measurements and cardiovascular reactivity were assessed. The results showed differences in human responses to real vs. virtual planks in walking patterns, instability score and heart-rate inter-beat intervals; it appeared that adding real planks in the SSVR virtual scaffolding model enhanced the quality of SSVR as a human - environment interface research tool. In addition, there were significant differences in performance between construction workers and the control group. The inexperienced participants were more unstable as compared to construction workers. Both groups increased their stride length with repetitions of the task, indicating a possibly confidence- or habit-related learning effect. The practical implications of this study are in the adoption of augmented virtual models of elevated construction environments for injury prevention research, and the development of programme for balance-control training to reduce the risk of falls at elevation before workers enter a construction job.

  19. MASCARET: creating virtual learning environments from system modelling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Querrec, Ronan; Vallejo, Paola; Buche, Cédric

    2013-03-01

    The design process for a Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) such as that put forward in the SIFORAS project (SImulation FOR training and ASsistance) means that system specifications can be differentiated from pedagogical specifications. System specifications can also be obtained directly from the specialists' expertise; that is to say directly from Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) tools. To do this, the system model needs to be considered as a piece of VLE data. In this paper we present Mascaret, a meta-model which can be used to represent such system models. In order to ensure that the meta-model is capable of describing, representing and simulating such systems, MASCARET is based SysML1, a standard defined by Omg.

  20. Human rights monitoring in virtual community.

    PubMed

    El Morr, Christo

    2012-01-01

    Holistic disability rights monitoring is essential in order to translate rights on paper into rights in reality for people with disabilities. At the same time, evidence-based knowledge produced through holistic monitoring has to be made accessible to a broad range of groups - researchers, representatives of disability community, people with disabilities, the media, policy makers, general public - and also has to contribute to building capacity within disability community around human rights issues. This article focuses on the design process of a complex Virtual Knowledge Network (VKN) as an operational tool to support mobilization and dissemination of evidence-based knowledge produced by the Disability Rights Promotion International Canada (DRPI-Canada) project. This tool is embedded in the more general framework of the project grounded in a human rights approach to disability and that acknowledges the importance of creating knowledgeable communities in order to make the disability rights monitoring efforts sustainable, advancing thus the decision making process in Canada in order to enhance the quality of life of people with disabilities.

  1. The Virtual Physiological Human ToolKit.

    PubMed

    Cooper, Jonathan; Cervenansky, Frederic; De Fabritiis, Gianni; Fenner, John; Friboulet, Denis; Giorgino, Toni; Manos, Steven; Martelli, Yves; Villà-Freixa, Jordi; Zasada, Stefan; Lloyd, Sharon; McCormack, Keith; Coveney, Peter V

    2010-08-28

    The Virtual Physiological Human (VPH) is a major European e-Science initiative intended to support the development of patient-specific computer models and their application in personalized and predictive healthcare. The VPH Network of Excellence (VPH-NoE) project is tasked with facilitating interaction between the various VPH projects and addressing issues of common concern. A key deliverable is the 'VPH ToolKit'--a collection of tools, methodologies and services to support and enable VPH research, integrating and extending existing work across Europe towards greater interoperability and sustainability. Owing to the diverse nature of the field, a single monolithic 'toolkit' is incapable of addressing the needs of the VPH. Rather, the VPH ToolKit should be considered more as a 'toolbox' of relevant technologies, interacting around a common set of standards. The latter apply to the information used by tools, including any data and the VPH models themselves, and also to the naming and categorizing of entities and concepts involved. Furthermore, the technologies and methodologies available need to be widely disseminated, and relevant tools and services easily found by researchers. The VPH-NoE has thus created an online resource for the VPH community to meet this need. It consists of a database of tools, methods and services for VPH research, with a Web front-end. This has facilities for searching the database, for adding or updating entries, and for providing user feedback on entries. Anyone is welcome to contribute. PMID:20643685

  2. Sense of presence and anxiety during virtual social interactions between a human and virtual humans

    PubMed Central

    Brinkman, Willem-Paul; Hartanto, Dwi; Emmelkamp, Paul M.G.

    2014-01-01

    Virtual reality exposure therapy (VRET) has been shown to be effective in treatment of anxiety disorders. Yet, there is lack of research on the extent to which interaction between the individual and virtual humans can be successfully implanted to increase levels of anxiety for therapeutic purposes. This proof-of-concept pilot study aimed at examining levels of the sense of presence and anxiety during exposure to virtual environments involving social interaction with virtual humans and using different virtual reality displays. A non-clinical sample of 38 participants was randomly assigned to either a head-mounted display (HMD) with motion tracker and sterescopic view condition or a one-screen projection-based virtual reality display condition. Participants in both conditions engaged in free speech dialogues with virtual humans controlled by research assistants. It was hypothesized that exposure to virtual social interactions will elicit moderate levels of sense of presence and anxiety in both groups. Further it was expected that participants in the HMD condition will report higher scores of sense of presence and anxiety than participants in the one-screen projection-based display condition. Results revealed that in both conditions virtual social interactions were associated with moderate levels of sense of presence and anxiety. Additionally, participants in the HMD condition reported significantly higher levels of presence than those in the one-screen projection-based display condition (p = .001). However, contrary to the expectations neither the average level of anxiety nor the highest level of anxiety during exposure to social virtual environments differed between the groups (p = .97 and p = .75, respectively). The findings suggest that virtual social interactions can be successfully applied in VRET to enhance sense of presence and anxiety. Furthermore, our results indicate that one-screen projection-based displays can successfully activate levels of anxiety in

  3. Estimating the gaze of a virtuality human.

    PubMed

    Roberts, David J; Rae, John; Duckworth, Tobias W; Moore, Carl M; Aspin, Rob

    2013-04-01

    The aim of our experiment is to determine if eye-gaze can be estimated from a virtuality human: to within the accuracies that underpin social interaction; and reliably across gaze poses and camera arrangements likely in every day settings. The scene is set by explaining why Immersive Virtuality Telepresence has the potential to meet the grand challenge of faithfully communicating both the appearance and the focus of attention of a remote human participant within a shared 3D computer-supported context. Within the experiment n=22 participants rotated static 3D virtuality humans, reconstructed from surround images, until they felt most looked at. The dependent variable was absolute angular error, which was compared to that underpinning social gaze behaviour in the natural world. Independent variables were 1) relative orientations of eye, head and body of captured subject; and 2) subset of cameras used to texture the form. Analysis looked for statistical and practical significance and qualitative corroborating evidence. The analysed results tell us much about the importance and detail of the relationship between gaze pose, method of video based reconstruction, and camera arrangement. They tell us that virtuality can reproduce gaze to an accuracy useful in social interaction, but with the adopted method of Video Based Reconstruction, this is highly dependent on combination of gaze pose and camera arrangement. This suggests changes in the VBR approach in order to allow more flexible camera arrangements. The work is of interest to those wanting to support expressive meetings that are both socially and spatially situated, and particular those using or building Immersive Virtuality Telepresence to accomplish this. It is also of relevance to the use of virtuality humans in applications ranging from the study of human interactions to gaming and the crossing of the stage line in films and TV. PMID:23428453

  4. Creating humans: an ethical study of human cloning.

    PubMed

    Haman, K H

    2001-01-01

    What does it mean to clone an individual? A clone is created directly from the cells of one individual through several different mechanisms. The most popular of these mechanisms, which created Dolly, is Somatic Cell Nuclear Transfer. It is this type that is predicted to accomplish the feat of cloning a human. With the increasing amount of technology readily available the ethical questions regarding human cloning must be addressed.

  5. The Human Element in the Virtual Library.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Saunders, Laverna M.

    1999-01-01

    Introduces the concept of the virtual library and explores how the increasing reliance on computers and digital information has affected library users and staff. Discusses users' expectations, democratization of access, human issues, organizational change, technostress, ergonomics, assessment, and strategies for success and survival. Contains 35…

  6. Human-Computer Interaction and Virtual Environments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Noor, Ahmed K. (Compiler)

    1995-01-01

    The proceedings of the Workshop on Human-Computer Interaction and Virtual Environments are presented along with a list of attendees. The objectives of the workshop were to assess the state-of-technology and level of maturity of several areas in human-computer interaction and to provide guidelines for focused future research leading to effective use of these facilities in the design/fabrication and operation of future high-performance engineering systems.

  7. Illustrating the "Virtual" in Virtual Schooling: Challenges and Strategies for Creating Real Tools to Prepare Virtual Teachers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Davis, Niki; Roblyer, M. D.; Charania, Amina; Ferdig, Rick; Harms, Chad; Compton, Lily Ko Li; Cho, Mi Ok

    2007-01-01

    Virtual schooling, or the practice of offering K-12 courses via distance technologies, has rapidly increased in popularity since its beginning in 1994. Although effective interaction with and support for students in these environments requires a unique set of skills and experiences, teacher education programs currently place very little emphasis…

  8. Stereoscopic visualization and haptic technology used to create a virtual environment for remote surgery - biomed 2011.

    PubMed

    Bornhoft, J M; Strabala, K W; Wortman, T D; Lehman, A C; Oleynikov, D; Farritor, S M

    2011-01-01

    The objective of this research is to study the effectiveness of using a stereoscopic visualization system for performing remote surgery. The use of stereoscopic vision has become common with the advent of the da Vinci® system (Intuitive, Sunnyvale CA). This system creates a virtual environment that consists of a 3-D display for visual feedback and haptic tactile feedback, together providing an intuitive environment for remote surgical applications. This study will use simple in vivo robotic surgical devices and compare the performance of surgeons using the stereoscopic interfacing system to the performance of surgeons using one dimensional monitors. The stereoscopic viewing system consists of two cameras, two monitors, and four mirrors. The cameras are mounted to a multi-functional miniature in vivo robot; and mimic the depth perception of the actual human eyes. This is done by placing the cameras at a calculated angle and distance apart. Live video streams from the left and right cameras are displayed on the left and right monitors, respectively. A system of angled mirrors allows the left and right eyes to see the video stream from the left and right monitor, respectively, creating the illusion of depth. The haptic interface consists of two PHANTOM Omni® (SensAble, Woburn Ma) controllers. These controllers measure the position and orientation of a pen-like end effector with three degrees of freedom. As the surgeon uses this interface, they see a 3-D image and feel force feedback for collision and workspace limits. The stereoscopic viewing system has been used in several surgical training tests and shows a potential improvement in depth perception and 3-D vision. The haptic system accurately gives force feedback that aids in surgery. Both have been used in non-survival animal surgeries, and have successfully been used in suturing and gallbladder removal. Bench top experiments using the interfacing system have also been conducted. A group of participants completed

  9. Virtual reality: Avatars in human spaceflight training

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Osterlund, Jeffrey; Lawrence, Brad

    2012-02-01

    With the advancements in high spatial and temporal resolution graphics, along with advancements in 3D display capabilities to model, simulate, and analyze human-to-machine interfaces and interactions, the world of virtual environments is being used to develop everything from gaming, movie special affects and animations to the design of automobiles. The use of multiple object motion capture technology and digital human tools in aerospace has demonstrated to be a more cost effective alternative to the cost of physical prototypes, provides a more efficient, flexible and responsive environment to changes in the design and training, and provides early human factors considerations concerning the operation of a complex launch vehicle or spacecraft. United Space Alliance (USA) has deployed this technique and tool under Research and Development (R&D) activities on both spacecraft assembly and ground processing operations design and training on the Orion Crew Module. USA utilizes specialized products that were chosen based on functionality, including software and fixed based hardware (e.g., infrared and visible red cameras), along with cyber gloves to ensure fine motor dexterity of the hands. The key findings of the R&D were: mock-ups should be built to not obstruct cameras from markers being tracked; a mock-up toolkit be assembled to facilitate dynamic design changes; markers should be placed in accurate positions on humans and flight hardware to help with tracking; 3D models used in the virtual environment be striped of non-essential data; high computational capable workstations are required to handle the large model data sets; and Technology Interchange Meetings with vendors and other industries also utilizing virtual reality applications need to occur on a continual basis enabling USA to maintain its leading edge within this technology. Parameters of interest and benefit in human spaceflight simulation training that utilizes virtual reality technologies are to

  10. Photorealistic virtual anatomy based on Chinese Visible Human data.

    PubMed

    Heng, P A; Zhang, S X; Xie, Y M; Wong, T T; Chui, Y P; Cheng, C Y

    2006-04-01

    Virtual reality based learning of human anatomy is feasible when a database of 3D organ models is available for the learner to explore, visualize, and dissect in virtual space interactively. In this article, we present our latest work on photorealistic virtual anatomy applications based on the Chinese Visible Human (CVH) data. We have focused on the development of state-of-the-art virtual environments that feature interactive photo-realistic visualization and dissection of virtual anatomical models constructed from ultra-high resolution CVH datasets. We also outline our latest progress in applying these highly accurate virtual and functional organ models to generate realistic look and feel to advanced surgical simulators.

  11. Scripting human animations in a virtual environment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Goldsby, Michael E.; Pandya, Abhilash K.; Maida, James C.

    1994-01-01

    The current deficiencies of virtual environment (VE) are well known: annoying lag time in drawing the current view, drastically simplified environments to reduce that time lag, low resolution and narrow field of view. Animation scripting is an application of VE technology which can be carried out successfully despite these deficiencies. The final product is a smoothly moving high resolution animation displaying detailed models. In this system, the user is represented by a human computer model with the same body proportions. Using magnetic tracking, the motions of the model's upper torso, head and arms are controlled by the user's movements (18 degrees of freedom). The model's lower torso and global position and orientation are controlled by a spaceball and keypad (12 degrees of freedom). Using this system human motion scripts can be extracted from the user's movements while immersed in a simplified virtual environment. Recorded data is used to define key frames; motion is interpolated between them and post processing adds a more detailed environment. The result is a considerable savings in time and a much more natural-looking movement of a human figure in a smooth and seamless animation.

  12. A Virtual Campus Based on Human Factor Engineering

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yang, Yuting; Kang, Houliang

    2014-01-01

    Three Dimensional or 3D virtual reality has become increasingly popular in many areas, especially in building a digital campus. This paper introduces a virtual campus, which is based on a 3D model of The Tourism and Culture College of Yunnan University (TCYU). Production of the virtual campus was aided by Human Factor and Ergonomics (HF&E), an…

  13. Visualization and simulated surgery of the left ventricle in the virtual pathological heart of the Virtual Physiological Human.

    PubMed

    McFarlane, N J B; Lin, X; Zhao, Y; Clapworthy, G J; Dong, F; Redaelli, A; Parodi, O; Testi, D

    2011-06-01

    Ischaemic heart failure remains a significant health and economic problem worldwide. This paper presents a user-friendly software system that will form a part of the virtual pathological heart of the Virtual Physiological Human (VPH2) project, currently being developed under the European Commission Virtual Physiological Human (VPH) programme. VPH2 is an integrated medicine project, which will create a suite of modelling, simulation and visualization tools for patient-specific prediction and planning in cases of post-ischaemic left ventricular dysfunction. The work presented here describes a three-dimensional interactive visualization for simulating left ventricle restoration surgery, comprising the operations of cutting, stitching and patching, and for simulating the elastic deformation of the ventricle to its post-operative shape. This will supply the quantitative measurements required for the post-operative prediction tools being developed in parallel in the same project. PMID:22670207

  14. Inverse focusing inside turbid media by creating an opposite virtual objective

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Yeh-Wei; Chen, Szu-Yu; Lin, Che-Chu; Sun, Ching-Cherng

    2016-07-01

    Limited by the penetration depth, imaging of thick bio-tissues can be achieved only by epi-detection geometry. Applications based on forward-emitted signals or bidirectional illumination are restricted by lack of an opposite objective. A method for creating an opposite virtual objective inside thick media through phase conjugation was first proposed. Under forward illumination, the backward scattering light from the media was collected to generate a phase conjugate wave, which was sent back to the media and formed an inverse focusing light. Samples combined with a diffuser or a mouse skin were used as specimens. Inverse focusing was successfully demonstrated by applying holography-based optical phase conjugation with a BaTiO3. This result indicates the capability to create an opposite virtual objective inside live tissues. The proposed method is compatible with current coherent imaging and super-resolution imaging technologies. It creates a possible way for forward-emitted signals collection and bidirectional illumination in thick specimens.

  15. Inverse focusing inside turbid media by creating an opposite virtual objective

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Yeh-Wei; Chen, Szu-Yu; Lin, Che-Chu; Sun, Ching-Cherng

    2016-01-01

    Limited by the penetration depth, imaging of thick bio-tissues can be achieved only by epi-detection geometry. Applications based on forward-emitted signals or bidirectional illumination are restricted by lack of an opposite objective. A method for creating an opposite virtual objective inside thick media through phase conjugation was first proposed. Under forward illumination, the backward scattering light from the media was collected to generate a phase conjugate wave, which was sent back to the media and formed an inverse focusing light. Samples combined with a diffuser or a mouse skin were used as specimens. Inverse focusing was successfully demonstrated by applying holography-based optical phase conjugation with a BaTiO3. This result indicates the capability to create an opposite virtual objective inside live tissues. The proposed method is compatible with current coherent imaging and super-resolution imaging technologies. It creates a possible way for forward-emitted signals collection and bidirectional illumination in thick specimens. PMID:27404383

  16. Virtual human hand: model and kinematics.

    PubMed

    Peña-Pitarch, Esteban; Falguera, Neus Ticó; Yang, Jingzhou James

    2014-04-01

    The human hand plays an important role in daily life. It is the interface between the human and the exterior world by positioning, orienting, touching and grasping objects. The human hand has multiple degrees of freedom (DOFs) to enable mobility and dexterity. A virtual human hand model can be inserted into CAD (Computer Aided Design) models to assess the manipulation capabilities in the early design stage to reduce design time and cost. Joystick assessment is one of the important design cases. This study is a first step towards a comprehensive hand simulation tool to simulate the manipulation and grasping of objects. This paper presents a novel 25 DOFs' hand skeletal model based on hand anatomy and hand kinematics: (1) joint range of motion, (2) Denavit-Hartenberg method to define the joint relationship and (3) finger workspace determination. Novelty for this hand model includes arching the palm with the four DOFs added in the carpometacarpal and wrist joints for the ring and small fingers.

  17. Synthetic vision and emotion calculation in intelligent virtual human modeling.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Y; Kang, J; Wright, D K

    2007-01-01

    The virtual human technique can already provide vivid and believable human behaviour in more and more scenarios. Virtual humans are expected to replace real humans in hazardous situations to undertake tests and feed back valuable information. This paper will introduce a virtual human with a novel collision-based synthetic vision, short-term memory model and a capability to implement emotion calculation and decision making. The virtual character based on this model can 'see' what is in its field of view (FOV) and remember those objects. After that, a group of affective computing equations have been introduced. These equations have been implemented into a proposed emotion calculation process to enlighten emotion for virtual intelligent humans. PMID:17487108

  18. Human Factors in Virtual Reality Development

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kaiser, Mary K.; Proffitt, Dennis R.; Null, Cynthia H. (Technical Monitor)

    1995-01-01

    This half-day tutorial will provide an overview of basic perceptual functioning as it relates to the design of virtual environment systems. The tutorial consists of three parts. First, basic issues in visual perception will be presented, including discussions of the visual sensations of brightness and color, and the visual perception of depth relationships in three-dimensional space (with a special emphasis on motion -specified depth). The second section will discuss the importance of conducting human-factors user studies and evaluations. Examples and suggestions on how best to get help with user studies will be provided. Finally, we will discuss how, by drawing on their complementary competencies, perceptual psychologists and computer engineers can work as a team to develop optimal VR systems, technologies, and techniques.

  19. Project ATHENA Creates Surrogate Human Organ Systems

    SciTech Connect

    MacQueen, Luke; Knospel, Fanny; Sherrod, Stacy; Iyer, Rashi

    2015-06-15

    The development of miniature surrogate human organs, coupled with highly sensitive mass spectrometry technologies, could one day revolutionize the way new drugs and toxic agents are studied. “By developing this ‘homo minutus,’ we are stepping beyond the need for animal or Petri dish testing: There are huge benefits in developing drug and toxicity analysis systems that can mimic the response of actual human organs,” said Rashi Iyer, a senior scientist at Los Alamos National Laboratory. ATHENA, the Advanced Tissue-engineered Human Ectypal Network Analyzer project team, is nearing the full integration of four human organ constructs — liver, heart, lung and kidney — each organ component is about the size of a smartphone screen, and the whole ATHENA “body” of interconnected organs will fit neatly on a desk. A new video available on the Los Alamos National Laboratory YouTube channel updates the ATHENA project as it begins to integrate the various organ systems into a single system (link to video here). Some 40 percent of pharmaceuticals fail their clinical trials and there are thousands of chemicals whose effects on humans are simply unknown. Providing a realistic, cost-effective and rapid screening system such as ATHENA with high-throughput capabilities could provide major benefits to the medical field, screening more accurately and offering a greater chance of clinical trial success. ATHENA is funded by the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) and is a collaboration of Los Alamos National Laboratory, Harvard University, Vanderbilt University, Charité Universitätsmedizin, Berlin, Germany, CFD Research Corporation, and the University of California San Francisco.

  20. Synthetic vision and memory model for virtual human - biomed 2010.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Yue; Kang, Jinsheng; Wright, David

    2010-01-01

    This paper describes the methods and case studies of a novel synthetic vision and memory model for virtual human. The synthetic vision module simulates the biological / optical abilities and limitations of the human vision. The module is based on a series of collision detection between the boundary of virtual humans field of vision (FOV) volume and the surface of objects in a recreated 3D environment. The memory module simulates a short-term memory capability by employing a simplified memory structure (first-in-first-out stack). The synthetic vision and memory model has been integrated into a virtual human modelling project, Intelligent Virtual Modelling. The project aimed to improve the realism and autonomy of virtual humans. PMID:20467105

  1. Partner choice creates fairness in humans

    PubMed Central

    Debove, Stéphane; André, Jean-Baptiste; Baumard, Nicolas

    2015-01-01

    Many studies demonstrate that partner choice has played an important role in the evolution of human cooperation, but little work has tested its impact on the evolution of human fairness. In experiments involving divisions of money, people become either over-generous or over-selfish when they are in competition to be chosen as cooperative partners. Hence, it is difficult to see how partner choice could result in the evolution of fair, equal divisions. Here, we show that this puzzle can be solved if we consider the outside options on which partner choice operates. We conduct a behavioural experiment, run agent-based simulations and analyse a game-theoretic model to understand how outside options affect partner choice and fairness. All support the conclusion that partner choice leads to fairness only when individuals have equal outside options. We discuss how this condition has been met in our evolutionary history, and the implications of these findings for our understanding of other aspects of fairness less specific than preferences for equal divisions of resources. PMID:25972467

  2. How Health Care Professionals Use Social Media to Create Virtual Communities: An Integrative Review

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    target group ranged from 1.6% to 29% (n=4). Evaluation using related theories of “planned behavior” and the “technology acceptance model” (n=3) suggests that social media use is mediated by an individual’s positive attitude toward and accessibility of the media, which is reinforced by credible peers. The most common reason to establish a virtual community was to create a forum where relevant specialty knowledge could be shared and professional issues discussed (n=17). Most members demonstrated low posting behaviors but more frequent reading or accessing behaviors. The most common Web-based activity was request for and supply of specialty-specific clinical information. This knowledge sharing is facilitated by a Web-based culture of collectivism, reciprocity, and a respectful noncompetitive environment. Findings suggest that health care professionals view virtual communities as valuable knowledge portals for sourcing clinically relevant and quality information that enables them to make more informed practice decisions. Conclusions There is emerging evidence that health care professionals use social media to develop virtual communities to share domain knowledge. These virtual communities, however, currently reflect tribal behaviors of clinicians that may continue to limit knowledge sharing. Further research is required to evaluate the effects of social media on knowledge distribution in clinical practice and importantly whether patient outcomes are significantly improved. PMID:27328967

  3. A posthuman liturgy? Virtual worlds, robotics, and human flourishing.

    PubMed

    Shatzer, Jacob

    2013-01-01

    In order to inspire a vision of biotechnology that affirms human dignity and human flourishing, the author poses questions about virtual reality and the use of robotics in health care. Using the concept of 'liturgy' and an anthropology of humans as lovers, the author explores how virtual reality and robotics in health care shape human moral agents, and how such shaping could influence the way we do or do not pursue a 'posthuman' future. PMID:24707596

  4. A posthuman liturgy? Virtual worlds, robotics, and human flourishing.

    PubMed

    Shatzer, Jacob

    2013-01-01

    In order to inspire a vision of biotechnology that affirms human dignity and human flourishing, the author poses questions about virtual reality and the use of robotics in health care. Using the concept of 'liturgy' and an anthropology of humans as lovers, the author explores how virtual reality and robotics in health care shape human moral agents, and how such shaping could influence the way we do or do not pursue a 'posthuman' future.

  5. The Virtual Hospital: experiences in creating and sustaining a digital library.

    PubMed Central

    D'Alessandro, M P; Galvin, J R; Erkonen, W E; Choi, T A; Lacey, D L; Colbert, S I

    1998-01-01

    A university and its faculty encompass a wealth of content, which is often freely supplied to commercial publishers who profit from it. Emerging digital library technology holds promise for allowing the creation of digital libraries and digital presses that can allow faculty and universities to bypass commercial publishers, retain control of their content, and distribute it directly to users, allowing the university and faculty to better serve their constituencies. The purpose of this paper is to show how this can be done. A methodology for overcoming the technical, social, political, and economic barriers involved in creating, distributing and organizing a digital library was developed, implemented, and refined over seven years. Over the seven years, 120 textbooks and booklets were placed in the Virtual Hospital digital library, from 159 authors in twenty-nine departments and four colleges at The University of Iowa. The digital library received extensive use by individuals around the world. A new paradigm for academic publishing was created, involving a university and faculty owned peer reviewed digital press implemented using digital library technology. The concept has been embraced by The University of Iowa, and it has pledged to sustain the digital press in order to allow. The University of Iowa to fulfill its mission of creating, organizing, and disseminating information better. PMID:9803300

  6. The Virtual Hospital: experiences in creating and sustaining a digital library.

    PubMed

    D'Alessandro, M P; Galvin, J R; Erkonen, W E; Choi, T A; Lacey, D L; Colbert, S I

    1998-10-01

    A university and its faculty encompass a wealth of content, which is often freely supplied to commercial publishers who profit from it. Emerging digital library technology holds promise for allowing the creation of digital libraries and digital presses that can allow faculty and universities to bypass commercial publishers, retain control of their content, and distribute it directly to users, allowing the university and faculty to better serve their constituencies. The purpose of this paper is to show how this can be done. A methodology for overcoming the technical, social, political, and economic barriers involved in creating, distributing and organizing a digital library was developed, implemented, and refined over seven years. Over the seven years, 120 textbooks and booklets were placed in the Virtual Hospital digital library, from 159 authors in twenty-nine departments and four colleges at The University of Iowa. The digital library received extensive use by individuals around the world. A new paradigm for academic publishing was created, involving a university and faculty owned peer reviewed digital press implemented using digital library technology. The concept has been embraced by The University of Iowa, and it has pledged to sustain the digital press in order to allow. The University of Iowa to fulfill its mission of creating, organizing, and disseminating information better.

  7. Virtual Australia and New Zealand (VANZ): Creating a piece of Digital Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haines, M.

    2014-02-01

    VANZ is an Initiative of a wide group of research, government, industry, technology and legal stakeholders in Australia and New Zealand. Its purpose is to broker development of the 'Authorised Virtual World' that brings together 3D Spatial and Building Information Modelling within a proposed new Legal Framework. The aim is to create an 'authoritative' and 'enduring' 3D model of both the 'physical attributes', and 'legal entitlements' relating to every property. This 'authorised virtual world' would be used in all 'property-related' activities - to deliver better, quicker and cheaper outcomes. It would also be used as the context for serious games and to model dynamic processes within the built environment, as well as for emergency response and disaster recovery. Productivity savings across Australia have been estimated at 5 billion pa for the design and construct phases alone. The problem for owners, bankers, insurers, architects, engineers and construction companies, and others, is that they require access to 'authoritative' and detailed 3D data for their own purposes, that must also be securely shared with others up and down the 'property' chain, and over time. All parties also need to know what are the rights, responsibilities and restrictions applying to the data, as well as to the land and buildings that it models. VANZ proposes the creation of a network of Data Banks, to hold the 'authoritative data set', 'in perpetuity', along with the associated software and virtual hardware used to model it. Under the proposal, rights of access to the 'authoritative data' will mirror each person's rights in the property that the data models. As more and more buildings are modelled (inside and out), privacy, security and liability become issues of paramount importance. This paper offers a way for the global community to address these issues. It is targeted at all who have an interest in the practical implementation of Digital Earth for the built environment - including new

  8. The role of intellectual property in creating, sharing and repurposing virtual patients.

    PubMed

    Campbell, Gabrielle; Miller, Angela; Balasubramaniam, Chara

    2009-08-01

    Medical schools are integrating more technology into the training of health care practitioners. Electronic Virtual Patients (VPs) provide interactive simulations to facilitate learning. The time, cost and effort required to create robust VPs on an individual school basis are significant; sharing of VPs by medical schools allows for access to a broad range of VPs across a variety of disciplines with lower investment. When this digital content is shared with other schools and distributed widely, digital copyright issues come into play. Unless all intellectual property rights (IPRs) and plans of the authors regarding the VP are confirmed upfront, the ability of the school to share the VP may be inhibited. Schools should also identify under what licensing/sharing model they plan to distribute the VPs - how do you plan to share the VPs and what will allow users to do with the VPs in the context of IPRs? This article highlights the role of IPRs in VPs and discusses a case-study of a European Virtual Patient collaboration to demonstrate how IPRs were managed. PMID:19811206

  9. Retargeting Human-Object Interaction to Virtual Avatars.

    PubMed

    Kim, Yeonjoon; Park, Hangil; Bang, Seungbae; Lee, Sung-Hee

    2016-11-01

    In augmented reality (AR) applications, a virtual avatar serves as a useful medium to represent a human in a different place. This paper deals with the problem of retargeting a human motion to an avatar. In particular, we present a novel method that retargets a human motion with respect to an object to that of an avatar with respect to a different object of a similar shape. To achieve this, we developed a spatial map that defines the correspondences between any points in the 3D spaces around the respective objects. The key advantage of the spatial map is that it identifies the desired locations of the avatar's body parts for any input motion of a human. Once the spatial map is created offline, the motion retargeting can be performed in real-time. The retargeted motion preserves important features of the original motion such as the human pose and the spatial relation with the object. We report the results of a number of experiments that demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed method. PMID:27479972

  10. Retargeting Human-Object Interaction to Virtual Avatars.

    PubMed

    Kim, Yeonjoon; Park, Hangil; Bang, Seungbae; Lee, Sung-Hee

    2016-11-01

    In augmented reality (AR) applications, a virtual avatar serves as a useful medium to represent a human in a different place. This paper deals with the problem of retargeting a human motion to an avatar. In particular, we present a novel method that retargets a human motion with respect to an object to that of an avatar with respect to a different object of a similar shape. To achieve this, we developed a spatial map that defines the correspondences between any points in the 3D spaces around the respective objects. The key advantage of the spatial map is that it identifies the desired locations of the avatar's body parts for any input motion of a human. Once the spatial map is created offline, the motion retargeting can be performed in real-time. The retargeted motion preserves important features of the original motion such as the human pose and the spatial relation with the object. We report the results of a number of experiments that demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed method.

  11. Going from lectures to expeditions: Creating a virtual voyage in undergraduate ocean science education

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reed, D.; Garfield, N.; Locke, J.; Anglin, J.; Karl, H.; Edwards, B.

    2003-04-01

    The WWW provides for new collaborations in distributed learning in higher education. The lead author has developed a highly successful online course at the undergraduate level with an enrollment of more than 300 non-science majors each year, We are currently initiating a new focus for the course by emphasizing sea-going research, primarily in the northeastern Pacific Ocean, through the development of a virtual oceanographic voyage over the WWW. The "virtual voyage" courseware combines elements of experiential learning with anytime, anywhere access of the WWW to stimulate inquiry-based learning in the ocean sciences. The first leg of the voyage is currently being synthesized from contemporary ocean research sponsored by a collaboration of U.S. government agencies, including NSF, NOAA, and the USGS. The initial portion of this effort involves transforming portions of USGS Circular 1198, Beyond the Golden Gate -- Oceanography, Geology, Biology, and Environmental Issues in the Gulf of the Farallones, into an interactive expedition by which students participate as scientists aboard a research vessel departing from San Francisco. Virtual experiments on the voyage are patterned after research cruises over the past decade in two national marine sanctuaries and include the technologies of data acquisition and data analysis, as well as providing insight into the methodologies of working marine scientists. Real-time data for monitoring the marine environment are embedded into several modules; for example, students will analyze data from offshore buoys and satellite imagery to assess ocean conditions prior to departing from port. Multibeam sonar is used to create seafloor maps near the Golden Gate Bridge and sediment cores provide evidence of sea-level change in the region. Environmental studies in the region include locating canisters of low-level radioactive waste and assessing potential sites for the disposal for dredged materials from the San Francisco Bay. Upon completion

  12. Virtual pharmacokinetic model of human eye.

    PubMed

    Kotha, Sreevani; Murtomäki, Lasse

    2014-07-01

    A virtual pharmacokinetic 3D model of the human eye is built using Comsol Multiphysics® software, which is based on the Finite Element Method (FEM). The model considers drug release from a polymer patch placed on sclera. The model concentrates on the posterior part of the eye, retina being the target tissue, and comprises the choroidal blood flow, partitioning of the drug between different tissues and active transport at the retina pigment epithelium (RPE)-choroid boundary. Although most straightforward, in order to check the mass balance, no protein binding or metabolism is yet included. It appeared that the most important issue in obtaining reliable simulation results is the finite element mesh, while time stepping has hardly any significance. Simulations were extended to 100,000 s. The concentration of a drug is shown as a function of time at various points of retina, as well as its average value, varying several parameters in the model. This work demonstrates how anybody with basic knowledge of calculus is able to build physically meaningful models of quite complex biological systems.

  13. Virtual pharmacokinetic model of human eye.

    PubMed

    Kotha, Sreevani; Murtomäki, Lasse

    2014-07-01

    A virtual pharmacokinetic 3D model of the human eye is built using Comsol Multiphysics® software, which is based on the Finite Element Method (FEM). The model considers drug release from a polymer patch placed on sclera. The model concentrates on the posterior part of the eye, retina being the target tissue, and comprises the choroidal blood flow, partitioning of the drug between different tissues and active transport at the retina pigment epithelium (RPE)-choroid boundary. Although most straightforward, in order to check the mass balance, no protein binding or metabolism is yet included. It appeared that the most important issue in obtaining reliable simulation results is the finite element mesh, while time stepping has hardly any significance. Simulations were extended to 100,000 s. The concentration of a drug is shown as a function of time at various points of retina, as well as its average value, varying several parameters in the model. This work demonstrates how anybody with basic knowledge of calculus is able to build physically meaningful models of quite complex biological systems. PMID:24721554

  14. Human Rights and Private Ordering in Virtual Worlds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oosterbaan, Olivier

    This paper explores the application of human rights in (persistent) virtual world environments. The paper begins with describing a number of elements that most virtual environments share and that are relevant for the application of human rights in such a setting; and by describing in a general nature the application of human rights between private individuals. The paper then continues by discussing the application in virtual environments of two universally recognized human rights, namely freedom of expression, and freedom from discrimination. As these specific rights are discussed, a number of more general conclusions on the application of human rights in virtual environments are drawn. The first general conclusion being that, because virtual worlds are private environments, participants are subject to private ordering. The second general conclusion being that participants and non-participants alike have to accept at times that in-world expressions are to an extent private speech. The third general conclusion is that, where participants represent themselves in-world, other participants cannot assume that such in-world representation share the characteristics of the human player; and that where virtual environments contain game elements, participants and non-participants alike should not take everything that happens in the virtual environment at face value or literally, which does however not amount to having to accept a higher level of infringement on their rights for things that happen in such an environment.

  15. Using Concept Mapping to Develop a Conceptual Framework for Creating Virtual Communities of Practice to Translate Cancer Research into Practice

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Introduction Translating government-funded cancer research into clinical practice can be accomplished via virtual communities of practice that include key players in the process: researchers, health care practitioners, and intermediaries. This study, conducted from November 2012 through January 2013, examined issues that key stakeholders believed should be addressed to create and sustain government-sponsored virtual communities of practice to integrate cancer control research, practice, and policy and demonstrates how concept mapping can be used to present relevant issues. Methods Key stakeholders brainstormed statements describing what is needed to create and sustain virtual communities of practice for moving cancer control research into practice. Participants rated them on importance and feasibility, selected most relevant statements, and sorted them into clusters. I used concept mapping to examine the issues identified and multidimensional scaling analyses to create a 2-dimensional conceptual map of the statement clusters. Results Participants selected 70 statements and sorted them into 9 major clusters related to creating and sustaining virtual communities of practice: 1) standardization of best practices, 2) external validity, 3) funding and resources, 4) social learning and collaboration, 5) cooperation, 6) partnerships, 7) inclusiveness, 8) social determinants and cultural competency, and 9) preparing the environment. Researchers, health care practitioners, and intermediaries were in relative agreement regarding issues of importance for creating these communities. Conclusion Virtual communities of practice can be created to address the needs of researchers, health care practitioners, and intermediaries by using input from these key stakeholders. Increasing linkages between these subgroups can improve the translation of research into practice. Similarities and differences between groups can provide valuable information to assist the government in developing

  16. Towards the Integration of APECS with VE-Suite to Create a Comprehensive Virtual Engineering Environment

    SciTech Connect

    McCorkle, D.; Yang, C.; Jordan, T.; Swensen, D.; Zitney, S.E.; Bryden, M.

    2007-06-01

    Modeling and simulation tools are becoming pervasive in the process engineering practice of designing advanced power generation facilities. These tools enable engineers to explore many what-if scenarios before cutting metal or constructing a pilot scale facility. While such tools enable investigation of crucial plant design aspects, typical commercial process simulation tools such as Aspen Plus®, gPROMS®, and HYSYS® still do not explore some plant design information, including computational fluid dynamics (CFD) models for complex thermal and fluid flow phenomena, economics models for policy decisions, operational data after the plant is constructed, and as-built information for use in as-designed models. Software tools must be created that allow disparate sources of information to be integrated if environments are to be constructed where process simulation information can be accessed. At the Department of Energy’s (DOE) National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL), the Advanced Process Engineering Co-Simulator (APECS) has been developed as an integrated software suite that combines process simulation (e.g., Aspen Plus) and high-fidelity equipment simulation (e.g., Fluent® CFD), together with advanced analysis capabilities including case studies, sensitivity analysis, stochastic simulation for risk/uncertainty analysis, and multi-objective optimization. In this paper, we discuss the initial phases of integrating APECS with the immersive and interactive virtual engineering software, VE-Suite, developed at Iowa State University and Ames Laboratory. VE-Suite utilizes the ActiveX (OLE Automation) controls in Aspen Plus wrapped by the CASI library developed by Reaction Engineering International to run the process simulation and query for unit operation results. This integration permits any application that uses the VE-Open interface to integrate with APECS co-simulations, enabling construction of the comprehensive virtual engineering environment needed for the

  17. Creating Humane Climates Outdoors: A People Skills Primer.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Knapp, Clifford E.

    Designed to provide practical assistance in implementing outdoor learning experiences for youth and adults, this book helps professionals plan their leadership development programs and create more humane climates in a variety of outdoor settings. The book treats the three topics of self-knowledge, human communities, and outdoor-environmental…

  18. Conditioned place preferences in humans using virtual reality.

    PubMed

    Astur, Robert S; Carew, Andrew W; Deaton, Bonnie E

    2014-07-01

    To extend a standard paradigm of conditioning in nonhumans to humans, we created a virtual reality (VR) conditioned place preference task, with real-life food rewards. Undergraduates were placed into a VR environment consisting of 2 visually distinct rooms. On Day 1, participants underwent 6 pairing sessions in which they were confined into one of the two rooms and explored the VR environment. Room A was paired with real-life M&Ms for 3 sessions, and Room B was paired with no food for 3 sessions. Day 2 was the test day, administered the next day, and participants were given free access to the entire VR environment for 5min. In experiment 1, participants were food restricted, and we observed that on the test day, participants display a significant conditioned place preference for the VR room previously paired with food (p<0.001). Additionally, they display a significant explicit preference for the M&M-paired room in a forced-choice of "Which room do you like best?". In experiment 2, when participants were not food restricted, there was no evidence of a place preference, either implicitly (e.g. dwell time) or explicitly. Hence, we show that we can reliably establish a place preference in humans, but that the preference is contingent on the participants' hunger state. Future research will examine the extent to which these preferences can be blocked or extinguished as well as whether these preferences are evident using other reinforcers.

  19. NanTroSEIZE in 3-D: Creating a Virtual Research Experience in Undergraduate Geoscience Courses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reed, D. L.; Bangs, N. L.; Moore, G. F.; Tobin, H.

    2009-12-01

    Marine research programs, both large and small, have increasingly added a web-based component to facilitate outreach to K-12 and the public, in general. These efforts have included, among other activities, information-rich websites, ship-to-shore communication with scientists during expeditions, blogs at sea, clips on YouTube, and information about daily shipboard activities. Our objective was to leverage a portion of the vast collection of data acquired through the NSF-MARGINS program to create a learning tool with a long lifespan for use in undergraduate geoscience courses. We have developed a web-based virtual expedition, NanTroSEIZE in 3-D, based on a seismic survey associated with the NanTroSEIZE program of NSF-MARGINS and IODP to study the properties of the plate boundary fault system in the upper limit of the seismogenic zone off Japan. The virtual voyage can be used in undergraduate classes at anytime, since it is not directly tied to the finite duration of a specific seagoing project. The website combines text, graphics, audio and video to place learning in an experiential framework as students participate on the expedition and carry out research. Students learn about the scientific background of the program, especially the critical role of international collaboration, and meet the chief scientists before joining the sea-going expedition. Students are presented with the principles of 3-D seismic imaging, data processing and interpretation while mapping and identifying the active faults that were the likely sources of devastating earthquakes and tsunamis in Japan in 1944 and 1948. They also learn about IODP drilling that began in 2007 and will extend through much of the next decade. The website is being tested in undergraduate classes in fall 2009 and will be distributed through the NSF-MARGINS website (http://www.nsf-margins.org/) and the MARGINS Mini-lesson section of the Science Education Resource Center (SERC) (http

  20. Evaluation of human behavior in collision avoidance: a study inside immersive virtual reality.

    PubMed

    Ouellette, Michel; Chagnon, Miguel; Faubert, Jocelyn

    2009-04-01

    During our daily displacements, we should consider the individuals advancing toward us in order to avoid a possible collision with our congeneric. We developed an experimental design in a virtual immersion room, which allows us to evaluate human capacities for avoiding collisions with other people. In addition, the design allows participants to interact naturally inside this immersive virtual reality setup when a pedestrian is moving toward them, creating a possible risk of collision. Results suggest that the performance is associated with visual and motor capacities and could be adjusted by cognitive social perception. PMID:19250010

  1. Human Machine Interfaces for Teleoperators and Virtual Environments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Durlach, Nathaniel I. (Compiler); Sheridan, Thomas B. (Compiler); Ellis, Stephen R. (Compiler)

    1991-01-01

    In Mar. 1990, a meeting organized around the general theme of teleoperation research into virtual environment display technology was conducted. This is a collection of conference-related fragments that will give a glimpse of the potential of the following fields and how they interplay: sensorimotor performance; human-machine interfaces; teleoperation; virtual environments; performance measurement and evaluation methods; and design principles and predictive models.

  2. Technological and administrative factors implementing a virtual human biospecimen repository.

    PubMed

    Kroth, Philip J; Schaffner, Vann; Lipscomb, Mary

    2005-01-01

    The value of human biospecimens available for research dramatically increases when linked with their accumulated clinical and molecular (genomic, proteomic, subcellular modeling) data. Further, informatics tools make it possible for researchers (both intra- and inter-institutionally) to locate tissue needed for research faster and more reliably. We are developing a virtual human biospecimen repository to both inventory and link all human biospecimens with clinical and genomics data to optimize their value for research, while satisfying all privacy and human subjects protections regulations.

  3. Getting the point across: exploring the effects of dynamic virtual humans in an interactive museum exhibit on user perceptions.

    PubMed

    Rivera-Gutierrez, Diego; Ferdig, Rick; Li, Jian; Lok, Benjamin

    2014-04-01

    We have created “You, M.D.”, an interactive museum exhibit in which users learn about topics in public health literacy while interacting with virtual humans. You, M.D. is equipped with a weight sensor, a height sensor and a Microsoft Kinect that gather basic user information. Conceptually, You, M.D. could use this user information to dynamically select the appearance of the virtual humans in the interaction attempting to improve learning outcomes and user perception for each particular user. For this concept to be possible, a better understanding of how different elements of the visual appearance of a virtual human affects user perceptions is required. In this paper, we present the results of an initial user study with a large sample size (n =333) ran using You, M.D. The study measured users’ reactions based on the user’s gender and body-mass index (BMI) when facing virtual humans with BMI either concordant or discordant from the user’s BMI. The results of the study indicate that concordance between the users’ BMI and the virtual human’s BMI affects male and female users differently. The results also show that female users rate virtual humans as more knowledgeable than male users rate the same virtual humans.

  4. Getting the point across: exploring the effects of dynamic virtual humans in an interactive museum exhibit on user perceptions.

    PubMed

    Rivera-Gutierrez, Diego; Ferdig, Rick; Li, Jian; Lok, Benjamin

    2014-04-01

    We have created “You, M.D.”, an interactive museum exhibit in which users learn about topics in public health literacy while interacting with virtual humans. You, M.D. is equipped with a weight sensor, a height sensor and a Microsoft Kinect that gather basic user information. Conceptually, You, M.D. could use this user information to dynamically select the appearance of the virtual humans in the interaction attempting to improve learning outcomes and user perception for each particular user. For this concept to be possible, a better understanding of how different elements of the visual appearance of a virtual human affects user perceptions is required. In this paper, we present the results of an initial user study with a large sample size (n =333) ran using You, M.D. The study measured users’ reactions based on the user’s gender and body-mass index (BMI) when facing virtual humans with BMI either concordant or discordant from the user’s BMI. The results of the study indicate that concordance between the users’ BMI and the virtual human’s BMI affects male and female users differently. The results also show that female users rate virtual humans as more knowledgeable than male users rate the same virtual humans. PMID:24650991

  5. Building Virtuality into University-Based Human Resources Policy in China's Universities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Guoliang, Zhang

    2005-01-01

    On the basis of discussing the notion of virtual human resources and its structure, this paper analyzes the necessity of building up virtual university teaching staff and proposes a model for the structural makeup of virtual university teaching staff.

  6. [Virtual Campus of Public Health: six years of human resources education in Mexico].

    PubMed

    Ramos Herrera, Igor; Alfaro Alfaro, Noé; Fonseca León, Joel; García Sandoval, Cristóbal; González Castañeda, Miguel; López Zermeño, María Del Carmen; Benítez Morales, Ricardo

    2014-11-01

    This paper discusses the gestation process, implementation methodology, and results obtained from the initiative to use e-learning to train human resources for health, six years after the launch of the Virtual Campus of Public Health of the University of Guadalajara (Mexico); the discussion is framed by Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) standards and practices. This is a special report on the work done by the institutional committee of the Virtual Campus in western Mexico to create an Internet portal that follows the guidelines of the strategic model established by Nodo México and PAHO for the Region of the Americas. This Virtual Campus began its activities in 2007, on the basis of the use of free software and institutional collaboration. Since the initial year of implementation of the node, over 500 health professionals have been trained using virtual courses, the node's educational platform, and a repository of virtual learning resources that are interoperable with other repositories in Mexico and the Region of the Americas. The University of Guadalajara Virtual Campus committee has followed the proposed model as much as possible, thereby achieving most of the goals set in the initial work plan, despite a number of administrative challenges and the difficulty of motivating committee members.

  7. [Virtual Campus of Public Health: six years of human resources education in Mexico].

    PubMed

    Ramos Herrera, Igor; Alfaro Alfaro, Noé; Fonseca León, Joel; García Sandoval, Cristóbal; González Castañeda, Miguel; López Zermeño, María Del Carmen; Benítez Morales, Ricardo

    2014-11-01

    This paper discusses the gestation process, implementation methodology, and results obtained from the initiative to use e-learning to train human resources for health, six years after the launch of the Virtual Campus of Public Health of the University of Guadalajara (Mexico); the discussion is framed by Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) standards and practices. This is a special report on the work done by the institutional committee of the Virtual Campus in western Mexico to create an Internet portal that follows the guidelines of the strategic model established by Nodo México and PAHO for the Region of the Americas. This Virtual Campus began its activities in 2007, on the basis of the use of free software and institutional collaboration. Since the initial year of implementation of the node, over 500 health professionals have been trained using virtual courses, the node's educational platform, and a repository of virtual learning resources that are interoperable with other repositories in Mexico and the Region of the Americas. The University of Guadalajara Virtual Campus committee has followed the proposed model as much as possible, thereby achieving most of the goals set in the initial work plan, despite a number of administrative challenges and the difficulty of motivating committee members. PMID:25604105

  8. Using virtual reality technology and hand tracking technology to create software for training surgical skills in 3D game

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zakirova, A. A.; Ganiev, B. A.; Mullin, R. I.

    2015-11-01

    The lack of visible and approachable ways of training surgical skills is one of the main problems in medical education. Existing simulation training devices are not designed to teach students, and are not available due to the high cost of the equipment. Using modern technologies such as virtual reality and hands movements fixation technology we want to create innovative method of learning the technics of conducting operations in 3D game format, which can make education process interesting and effective. Creating of 3D format virtual simulator will allow to solve several conceptual problems at once: opportunity of practical skills improvement unlimited by the time without the risk for patient, high realism of environment in operational and anatomic body structures, using of game mechanics for information perception relief and memorization of methods acceleration, accessibility of this program.

  9. Human Resource Management in Virtual Organizations. Research in Human Resource Management Series.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Heneman, Robert L., Ed.; Greenberger, David B., Ed.

    This document contains 14 papers on human resources (HR) and human resource management (HRM) in virtual organizations. The following papers are included: "Series Preface" (Rodger Griffeth); "Volume Preface" (Robert L. Heneman, David B. Greenberger); "The Virtual Organization: Definition, Description, and Identification" (David B. Greenberger,…

  10. Creating an interdisciplinary medical home for survivors of human trafficking.

    PubMed

    McNiel, Melinda; Held, Theodore; Busch-Armendariz, Noël

    2014-09-01

    Health care providers play an important role in identifying victims of human trafficking and addressing their unique medical needs. In response to a recently published call to action in Obstetrics & Gynecology, an interdisciplinary medical home has been created in central Texas to serve as a model for delivery of care to survivors of human trafficking that is sensitive to their history of trauma, or "trauma-informed." An overview of the topic is provided along with a description of the stakeholders involved and the steps that were taken to create the clinic. This information is presented with the intention of educating health care providers on the long-term medical needs of survivors and on how they can establish a similar clinic in other parts of the country.

  11. Virtual Environment Computer Simulations to Support Human Factors Engineering and Operations Analysis for the RLV Program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lunsford, Myrtis Leigh

    1998-01-01

    The Army-NASA Virtual Innovations Laboratory (ANVIL) was recently created to provide virtual reality tools for performing Human Engineering and operations analysis for both NASA and the Army. The author's summer research project consisted of developing and refining these tools for NASA's Reusable Launch Vehicle (RLV) program. Several general simulations were developed for use by the ANVIL for the evaluation of the X34 Engine Changeout procedure. These simulations were developed with the software tool dVISE 4.0.0 produced by Division Inc. All software was run on an SGI Indigo2 High Impact. This paper describes the simulations, various problems encountered with the simulations, other summer activities, and possible work for the future. We first begin with a brief description of virtual reality systems.

  12. Empathy toward virtual humans depicting a known or unknown person expressing pain.

    PubMed

    Bouchard, Stéphane; Bernier, François; Boivin, Éric; Dumoulin, Stéphanie; Laforest, Mylène; Guitard, Tanya; Robillard, Geneviève; Monthuy-Blanc, Johana; Renaud, Patrice

    2013-01-01

    This study is about pain expressed by virtual humans and empathy in users immersed in virtual reality. It focuses on whether people feel more empathy toward the pain of a virtual human when the virtual human is a realistic representation of a known individual, as opposed to an unknown person, and if social presence is related to users' empathy toward a virtual human's pain. The 42 participants were immersed in virtual reality using a large immersive cube with images retro projected on all six faces (CAVE-Like system) where they can interact in real time with virtual characters. The first immersion (baseline/control) was with a virtual animal, followed by immersions involving discussions with a known virtual human (i.e., the avatar of a person they were familiar with) or an unknown virtual human. During the verbal exchanges in virtual reality, the virtual humans expressed acute and very strong pain. The pain reactions were identical in terms of facial expressions, and verbal and nonverbal behaviors. The Conditions by Time interactions in the repeated measures analyses of variance revealed that participants were empathic toward both virtual humans, yet more empathic toward the known virtual human. Multivariate regression analyses revealed that participants' feeling of social presence--impression that the known virtual character is really there, with them--was a significant predictor of empathy.

  13. The German VR Simulation Realism Scale--psychometric construction for virtual reality applications with virtual humans.

    PubMed

    Poeschl, Sandra; Doering, Nicola

    2013-01-01

    Virtual training applications with high levels of immersion or fidelity (for example for social phobia treatment) produce high levels of presence and therefore belong to the most successful Virtual Reality developments. Whereas display and interaction fidelity (as sub-dimensions of immersion) and their influence on presence are well researched, realism of the displayed simulation depends on the specific application and is therefore difficult to measure. We propose to measure simulation realism by using a self-report questionnaire. The German VR Simulation Realism Scale for VR training applications was developed based on a translation of scene realism items from the Witmer-Singer-Presence Questionnaire. Items for realism of virtual humans (for example for social phobia training applications) were supplemented. A sample of N = 151 students rated simulation realism of a Fear of Public Speaking application. Four factors were derived by item- and principle component analysis (Varimax rotation), representing Scene Realism, Audience Behavior, Audience Appearance and Sound Realism. The scale developed can be used as a starting point for future research and measurement of simulation realism for applications including virtual humans.

  14. Human Interfaces In Teleoperations And Virtual Environments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Durlach, Nathaniel I.; Sheridan, Thomas B.; Ellis, Stephen R.

    1995-01-01

    Conference report contains compilation of papers relating to interactions between humans and machines from perspectives of telepresence and sensorimotor adaptation, measurement and evaluation of performance, and design principles and predictive models. Topics discussed include neural networks, sensory technology, display, and feedback controls. Covers state of art of remote sensing and control by humans for space or other operations.

  15. Touring by Design: Using Information Architecture To Create a Virtual Library Tour.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kittelson, Pat; Jones, Sarah

    2002-01-01

    Describes the development of a Web-based virtual tour of the University of Otago (New Zealand) science library. Highlights include information literacy learning outcomes; information architecture, including information organization and navigation; integrating the tour into course work; and evaluation results. (LRW)

  16. Creating a Virtual Information Organization: Collaborative Relationships between Libraries and Computing Centers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Creth, Sheila D.

    1993-01-01

    Discussion of changes in higher education as a result of advances in information technology focuses on the relationship between academic libraries and computing centers. Highlights include collaborative relationships; virtual information organizations; libraries as knowledge management centers; support for curriculum development; teaching…

  17. Creating a Virtual World Mindset: A Guide for First Time Second Life Teachers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stoerger, Sharon

    2010-01-01

    Education technology proponents argue that tech-savvy students want active learning opportunities that enable them to produce, as well as consume, content. Some educators have responded to this rhetoric by appropriating virtual worlds such as Second Life (SL) for teaching and learning. While SL rewards exploration and experimentation, the…

  18. Object Creation and Human Factors Evaluation for Virtual Environments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lindsey, Patricia F.

    1998-01-01

    The main objective of this project is to provide test objects for simulated environments utilized by the recently established Army/NASA Virtual Innovations Lab (ANVIL) at Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, Al. The objective of the ANVIL lab is to provide virtual reality (VR) models and environments and to provide visualization and manipulation methods for the purpose of training and testing. Visualization equipment used in the ANVIL lab includes head-mounted and boom-mounted immersive virtual reality display devices. Objects in the environment are manipulated using data glove, hand controller, or mouse. These simulated objects are solid or surfaced three dimensional models. They may be viewed or manipulated from any location within the environment and may be viewed on-screen or via immersive VR. The objects are created using various CAD modeling packages and are converted into the virtual environment using dVise. This enables the object or environment to be viewed from any angle or distance for training or testing purposes.

  19. The potential for telehealth technologies to facilitate charity care. Creating virtual dental homes.

    PubMed

    Glassman, Paul; Harrington, Maureen; Namakian, Maysa; Harrison-Noonan, Jesse

    2014-01-01

    The dramatic increase in broadband connectivity is opening up the possibility for using telehealth-connected teams in an improved system for charity care. The Virtual Dental Home demonstration taking place in California provides a model for the development and deployment of such teams. Teams using telehealth connections to provide oral health care can transform episodic or one-time visits into an ongoing system of care with a much greater emphasis on prevention and early intervention techniques and a greater likelihood of improved oral health for the population.

  20. Multi-parallel open technology to enable collaborative volume visualization: how to create global immersive virtual anatomy classrooms.

    PubMed

    Silverstein, Jonathan C; Walsh, Colin; Dech, Fred; Olson, Eric; E, Michael; Parsad, Nigel; Stevens, Rick

    2008-01-01

    Many prototype projects aspire to develop a sustainable model of immersive radiological volume visualization for virtual anatomic education. Some have focused on distributed or parallel architectures. However, very few, if any others, have combined multi-location, multi-directional, multi-stream sharing of video, audio, desktop applications, and parallel stereo volume rendering, to converge on an open, globally scalable, and inexpensive collaborative architecture and implementation method for anatomic teaching using radiological volumes. We have focused our efforts on bringing this all together for several years. We outline here the technology we're making available to the open source community and a system implementation suggestion for how to create global immersive virtual anatomy classrooms. With the releases of Access Grid 3.1 and our parallel stereo volume rendering code, inexpensive globally scalable technology is available to enable collaborative volume visualization upon an award-winning framework. Based upon these technologies, immersive virtual anatomy classrooms that share educational or clinical principles can be constructed with the setup described with moderate technological expertise and global scalability.

  1. Creating a virtual pharmacology curriculum in a problem-based learning environment: one medical school's experience.

    PubMed

    Karpa, Kelly Dowhower; Vrana, Kent E

    2013-02-01

    Integrating pharmacology education into a problem-based learning (PBL) curriculum has proven challenging for many medical schools, including the Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine (Penn State COM). In response to pharmacology content gaps in its PBL-intensive curriculum, Penn State COM in 2003 hired a director of medical pharmacology instruction to oversee efforts to improve the structure of pharmacology education in the absence of a stand-alone course. In this article, the authors describe the ongoing development of the virtual pharmacology curriculum, which weaves pharmacology instruction through the entire medical school curriculum with particular emphasis on the organ-based second year. Pharmacology is taught in a spiraling manner designed to add to and build upon students' knowledge and competency. Key aspects of the virtual curriculum (as of 2011) include clearly stated and behaviorally oriented pharmacology learning objectives, pharmacology study guides that correspond to each PBL case, pharmacology review sessions that feature discussions of United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE)-type questions, and pharmacology questions for each PBL case on course examinations to increase student accountability. The authors report a trend toward improved USMLE Step 1 scores since these initiatives were introduced. Furthermore, graduates' ratings of their pharmacology education have improved on the Medical School Graduation Questionnaire. The authors suggest that the initiatives they describe for enhancing pharmacology medical education are relevant to other medical schools that are also seeking ways to better integrate pharmacology into PBL-based curricula.

  2. Creating Data that Never Die: Building a Spectrograph Data Pipeline in the Virtual Observatory Era

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mink, D. J.; Wyatt, W. F.; Roll, J. B.; Tokarz, S. P.; Conroy, M. A.; Caldwell, N.; Kurtz, M.; Geller, M. J.

    2005-12-01

    Data pipelines for modern complex astronomical instruments do not begin when the data is taken and end when it is delivered to the user. Information must flow between the observatory and the observer from the time a project is conceived and between the observatory and the world well past the time when the original observers have extracted all the information they want from the data. For the 300-fiber Hectospec low dispersion spectrograph on the MMT, the SAO Telescope Data Center is constructing a data pipeline which provides assistance from preparing and submitting observing proposals through observation, reduction, and analysis to publication and an afterlife in the Virtual Observatory. We will describe our semi-automatic pipeline and how it has evolved over the first nine months of operation.

  3. A JAVA User Interface for the Virtual Human

    SciTech Connect

    Easterly, C E; Strickler, D J; Tolliver, J S; Ward, R C

    1999-10-13

    A human simulation environment, the Virtual Human (VH), is under development at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL). Virtual Human connects three-dimensional (3D) anatomical models of the body with dynamic physiological models to investigate a wide range of human biological and physical responses to stimuli. We have utilized the Java programming language to develop a flexible user interface to the VH. The Java prototype interface has been designed to display dynamic results from selected physiological models, with user control of the initial model parameters and ability to steer the simulation as it is proceeding. Taking advantage of Java's Remote Method Invocation (RMI) features, the interface runs as a Java client that connects to a Java RMI server process running on a remote server machine. The RMI server can couple to physiological models written in Java, or in other programming languages, including C and FORTRAN. Future versions of the interface will be linked to 3D anatomical models of the human body to complete the development of the VH.

  4. Human Machine Interfaces for Teleoperators and Virtual Environments Conference

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1990-01-01

    In a teleoperator system the human operator senses, moves within, and operates upon a remote or hazardous environment by means of a slave mechanism (a mechanism often referred to as a teleoperator). In a virtual environment system the interactive human machine interface is retained but the slave mechanism and its environment are replaced by a computer simulation. Video is replaced by computer graphics. The auditory and force sensations imparted to the human operator are similarly computer generated. In contrast to a teleoperator system, where the purpose is to extend the operator's sensorimotor system in a manner that facilitates exploration and manipulation of the physical environment, in a virtual environment system, the purpose is to train, inform, alter, or study the human operator to modify the state of the computer and the information environment. A major application in which the human operator is the target is that of flight simulation. Although flight simulators have been around for more than a decade, they had little impact outside aviation presumably because the application was so specialized and so expensive.

  5. Creating a virtual community of practice to investigate legitimate peripheral participation by African American middle school girls in science activities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Edwards, Leslie D.

    How do teenage girls develop an interest in science? What kinds of opportunities can science teachers present to female students that support their engagement with learning science? I studied one aspect of this issue by focusing on ways students could use science to enhance or gain identities that they (probably) already valued. To do that I created technology-rich activities and experiences for an after school class in science and technology for middle school girls who lived in a low socio-economic urban neighborhood. These activities and experiences were designed to create a virtual community of practice whose members used science in diverse ways. Student interest was made evident in their responses to the activities. Four conclusions emerged. (1) Opportunities to learn about the lives and work of admired African American business women interested students in learning by linking it to their middle-class aspirations and their interest in things that money and status can buy. (2) Opportunities to learn about the lives and work of African American women experts in science in a classroom context where students then practiced similar kinds of actual scientific tasks engaged students in relations of legitimate peripheral participation in a virtual and diverse community of practice focused on science which was created in the after-school classes. (3) Opportunities where students used science to show off for family, friends, and supporters of the after-school program, identities they valued, interested them enough that they engaged in long-term science and technology projects that required lots of revisions. (4) In response to the opportunities presented, new and enhanced identities developed around becoming a better student or becoming some kind of scientist.

  6. Openwebglobe - AN Open Source Sdk for Creating Large-Scale Virtual Globes on a Webgl Basis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Loesch, B.; Christen, M.; Nebiker, S.

    2012-07-01

    This paper introduces the OpenWebGlobe project (www.openwebglobe.org) and the OpenWebGlobe SDK (Software Development Kit) - an open source virtual globe environment using WebGL. Unlike other (web-based) 3d geovisualisation technologies and toolkits, the OpenWebGlobe SDK not only supports the content authoring and web visualization aspects, but also the data processing functionality for generating multi-terabyte terrain, image, map and 3d point cloud data sets in high-performance and cloud-based parallel computing environments. The OpenWebGlobe architecture is described and the paper outlines the processing and the viewer functionality provided by the OpenWebGlobe SDK. It then discusses the generation and updating of a global 3d base map using OpenStreetMap data and finally presents two show cases employing the technology a) for implementing an interactive national 3d geoportal incorporating high resolution national geodata sets and b) for implementing a 3d geoinformation service supporting the real-time incorporation of 3d point cloud data.

  7. Creating knowledge structures in the pharmaceutical industry: the increasing significance of virtual organisation.

    PubMed

    Salazar, A; Howells, J

    2000-01-01

    This paper explores the specific trend and challenges facing the pharmaceutical industry regarding the exploitation of Internet e-commerce technology and virtual organisation to develop and maintain competitive advantage. There are two important facets of the current trend. One is the rapid development of a complex network of alliances between the established pharmaceutical companies and the specialised biotechnology company start-ups. The other is the rapid growth of internet e-commerce companies dedicated to developing specialised technological platforms for acquiring and selling genetic and biochemical knowledge. The underlying challenge is how big pharmaceutical companies can emulate some of the innovation processes of smaller biotechnology company start-ups, and how they can appropriate and applied new technological knowledge on the development of new drugs. Pharmaceutical companies in order to retain competitive advantage need to continuously monitor all aspects of knowledge management with regard to the R&D and manufacturing process (as well as customer management and marketing). Technological change and organisational restructuring should be aimed at boosting the capacity of large firms to innovate rapidly. PMID:11214458

  8. Creating knowledge structures in the pharmaceutical industry: the increasing significance of virtual organisation.

    PubMed

    Salazar, A; Howells, J

    2000-01-01

    This paper explores the specific trend and challenges facing the pharmaceutical industry regarding the exploitation of Internet e-commerce technology and virtual organisation to develop and maintain competitive advantage. There are two important facets of the current trend. One is the rapid development of a complex network of alliances between the established pharmaceutical companies and the specialised biotechnology company start-ups. The other is the rapid growth of internet e-commerce companies dedicated to developing specialised technological platforms for acquiring and selling genetic and biochemical knowledge. The underlying challenge is how big pharmaceutical companies can emulate some of the innovation processes of smaller biotechnology company start-ups, and how they can appropriate and applied new technological knowledge on the development of new drugs. Pharmaceutical companies in order to retain competitive advantage need to continuously monitor all aspects of knowledge management with regard to the R&D and manufacturing process (as well as customer management and marketing). Technological change and organisational restructuring should be aimed at boosting the capacity of large firms to innovate rapidly.

  9. Errors in Seismic Hazard Assessment are Creating Huge Human Losses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bela, J.

    2015-12-01

    GSHAP team; even though the obvious inadequacy of the GSHAP map could have been established in the course of a simple check before the project completion. The doctrine of "psha exceptionalism" that created the maps can only be esponged by carefully examining the facts . . . which unfortunately include huge human losses!

  10. Strategic Tool for Students with Disabilities: Creating and Implementing Virtual Learning Environments without Barriers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Barrett, Bob G., Jr.

    2011-01-01

    While some organizations have made strides in employing workers with disabilities as an act of social responsibility, other entities have started to realize the need and value of this untapped human resource (Thakker, 1997). Research has shown that employees with disabilities have low turnover rates, low absenteeism, and high motivation to prove…

  11. Enhancing Geologic Education in Grades 5-12: Creating Virtual Field Trips

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vitek, J. D.; Gamache, K. R.; Giardino, J. R.; Schroeder, C. E.

    2011-12-01

    New tools of technology enhance and facilitate the ability to bring the "field experience" into the classroom as part of the effort necessary to turn students onto the geosciences. The real key is high-speed computers and high-definition cameras with which to capture visual images. Still and movie data are easily obtained as are large and small-scale images from space, available through "Google Earth°". GPS information provides accurate location data to enhance mapping efforts. One no longer needs to rely on commercial ventures to show students any aspect of the "real" world. The virtual world is a viable replacement. The new cost-effective tools mean everyone can be a producer of information critical to understanding Earth. During the last four summers (2008-2011), Texas teachers have participated in G-Camp, an effort to instill geologic and geomorphic knowledge such that the information will make its way into classrooms. Teachers have acquired thousands of images and developed concepts that are being used to enhance their ability to promote geology in their classrooms. Texas will soon require four years of science at the high-school level, and we believe that geology or Earth science needs to be elevated to the required level of biology, chemistry and physics. Teachers need to be trained and methodology developed that is exciting to students. After all, everyone on Earth needs to be aware of the hazardous nature of geologic events not just to pass an exam, but for a lifetime. We use a video, which is a composite of our ventures, to show how data collected during these trips can be used in the classroom. . Social media, Facebook°, blogs, and email facilitate sharing information such that everyone can learn from each other about the best way to do things. New tools of technology are taking their place in every classroom to take advantage of the skills students bring to the learning environment. Besides many of these approaches are common to video gaming, and

  12. Creating Virtual Fieldwork Experiences of Geoheritage Sites as Educator Professional Development (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Duggan-Haas, D.

    2013-12-01

    Geoheritage sites are identified as such because they include excellent examples of geologic features or processes, or they have played an important role in the development of geologic understandings. These characteristics also make them excellent sites for teaching in the field, for teaching educators about the nature of fieldwork, and for making Virtual Fieldwork Experiences (VFEs, multimedia representations of field sites). Through the NSF-funded Regional and Local Earth (ReaL) Earth Inquiry Project, we have engaged educators in these practices. The nature of geoheritage sites is anomalous -- if this were not the case, the sites would not gain recognition. Anomalous features or processes can be powerful learning tools when placed into comparison with the more mundane, and the Earth system science of sites local to schools is likely to be mundane. By comparing the mundane and the extraordinary, it is hoped we can learn more about both. The professional development (PD) in ReaL Earth Inquiry begins with a face-to-face workshop within the teachers' region at a site that is interesting from an Earth system science perspective. Though we recognize and emphasize that all sites are interesting from an ESS perspective if you know how to look, the sites typically have features worthy of geoheritage designation. PD does not end with the end of the workshop but continues with online study groups where teachers work together to complete the workshop site VFE, and transition to work on VFEs of sites local to their schools. Throughout the program, participants engage in: - mentored fieldwork that pays attention to the skills and knowledge needed to lead fieldwork; - instruction in and use of a wide range of technologies for making VFEs; - study of a coherent conceptual framework connected to the project's driving question: Why does this place look the way it does? - and, use of resources for supporting all of the above The resources include templates for making VFEs and a

  13. Symbiota - A virtual platform for creating voucher-based biodiversity information communities.

    PubMed

    Gries, Corinna; Gilbert, Edward E; Franz, Nico M

    2014-01-01

    We review the Symbiota software platform for creating voucher-based biodiversity information portals and communities. Symbiota was originally conceived to promote small- to medium-sized, regionally and/or taxonomically themed collaborations of natural history collections. Over the past eight years the taxonomically diverse portals have grown into an important resource in North America and beyond for mobilizing, integrating, and using specimen- and observation-based occurrence records and derivative biodiversity information products. Designed to mirror the conceptual structure of traditional floras and faunas, Symbiota is exclusively web-based and employs a novel data model, information linking, and algorithms to provide highly dynamic customization. The themed portals enable meaningful access to biodiversity data for anyone from specialist to high school student. Symbiota emulates functionality of modern Content Management Systems, providing highly sophisticated yet intuitive user interfaces for data entry, batch processes, and editing. Each kind of content provision may be selectively accessed by authenticated information providers. Occupying a fairly specific niche in the biodiversity informatics arena, Symbiota provides extensive data exchange facilities and collaborates with other development projects to incorporate and not duplicate functionality as appropriate. PMID:25057252

  14. Symbiota – A virtual platform for creating voucher-based biodiversity information communities

    PubMed Central

    Gilbert, Edward E.; Franz, Nico M.

    2014-01-01

    Abstract We review the Symbiota software platform for creating voucher-based biodiversity information portals and communities. Symbiota was originally conceived to promote small- to medium-sized, regionally and/or taxonomically themed collaborations of natural history collections. Over the past eight years the taxonomically diverse portals have grown into an important resource in North America and beyond for mobilizing, integrating, and using specimen- and observation-based occurrence records and derivative biodiversity information products. Designed to mirror the conceptual structure of traditional floras and faunas, Symbiota is exclusively web-based and employs a novel data model, information linking, and algorithms to provide highly dynamic customization. The themed portals enable meaningful access to biodiversity data for anyone from specialist to high school student. Symbiota emulates functionality of modern Content Management Systems, providing highly sophisticated yet intuitive user interfaces for data entry, batch processes, and editing. Each kind of content provision may be selectively accessed by authenticated information providers. Occupying a fairly specific niche in the biodiversity informatics arena, Symbiota provides extensive data exchange facilities and collaborates with other development projects to incorporate and not duplicate functionality as appropriate. PMID:25057252

  15. The (human) science of medical virtual learning environments

    PubMed Central

    Stone, Robert J.

    2011-01-01

    The uptake of virtual simulation technologies in both military and civilian surgical contexts has been both slow and patchy. The failure of the virtual reality community in the 1990s and early 2000s to deliver affordable and accessible training systems stems not only from an obsessive quest to develop the ‘ultimate’ in so-called ‘immersive’ hardware solutions, from head-mounted displays to large-scale projection theatres, but also from a comprehensive lack of attention to the needs of the end users. While many still perceive the science of simulation to be defined by technological advances, such as computing power, specialized graphics hardware, advanced interactive controllers, displays and so on, the true science underpinning simulation—the science that helps to guarantee the transfer of skills from the simulated to the real—is that of human factors, a well-established discipline that focuses on the abilities and limitations of the end user when designing interactive systems, as opposed to the more commercially explicit components of technology. Based on three surgical simulation case studies, the importance of a human factors approach to the design of appropriate simulation content and interactive hardware for medical simulation is illustrated. The studies demonstrate that it is unnecessary to pursue real-world fidelity in all instances in order to achieve psychological fidelity—the degree to which the simulated tasks reproduce and foster knowledge, skills and behaviours that can be reliably transferred to real-world training applications. PMID:21149363

  16. The (human) science of medical virtual learning environments.

    PubMed

    Stone, Robert J

    2011-01-27

    The uptake of virtual simulation technologies in both military and civilian surgical contexts has been both slow and patchy. The failure of the virtual reality community in the 1990s and early 2000s to deliver affordable and accessible training systems stems not only from an obsessive quest to develop the 'ultimate' in so-called 'immersive' hardware solutions, from head-mounted displays to large-scale projection theatres, but also from a comprehensive lack of attention to the needs of the end users. While many still perceive the science of simulation to be defined by technological advances, such as computing power, specialized graphics hardware, advanced interactive controllers, displays and so on, the true science underpinning simulation--the science that helps to guarantee the transfer of skills from the simulated to the real--is that of human factors, a well-established discipline that focuses on the abilities and limitations of the end user when designing interactive systems, as opposed to the more commercially explicit components of technology. Based on three surgical simulation case studies, the importance of a human factors approach to the design of appropriate simulation content and interactive hardware for medical simulation is illustrated. The studies demonstrate that it is unnecessary to pursue real-world fidelity in all instances in order to achieve psychological fidelity--the degree to which the simulated tasks reproduce and foster knowledge, skills and behaviours that can be reliably transferred to real-world training applications. PMID:21149363

  17. Virtual sound for virtual reality

    SciTech Connect

    Blattner, M.M. ||; Papp, A.L. III |

    1993-02-01

    The computational limitations of real-time interactive computing do not meet our requirements for producing realistic images for virtual reality in a convincing manner. Regardless of the real-time restrictions on virtual reality interfaces, the representations can be no better than the graphics. Computer graphics is still limited in its ability to generate complex objects such as landscapes and humans. Nevertheless, useful and convincing visualizations are made through a variety of techniques. The central theme of this article is that a similar situation is true with sound for virtual reality. It is beyond our abilityto create interactive soundscapes that create a faithful reproduction of real world sounds, however, by choosing one`s application carefully and using sound to enhance a display rather than only mimic real-world scenes, a very effective use of sound can be made.

  18. Virtual sound for virtual reality

    SciTech Connect

    Blattner, M.M. Cancer Center, Houston, TX . Dept. of Biomathematics Lawrence Livermore National Lab., CA California Univ., Davis, CA ); Papp, A.L. III Lawrence Livermore National Lab., CA )

    1993-02-01

    The computational limitations of real-time interactive computing do not meet our requirements for producing realistic images for virtual reality in a convincing manner. Regardless of the real-time restrictions on virtual reality interfaces, the representations can be no better than the graphics. Computer graphics is still limited in its ability to generate complex objects such as landscapes and humans. Nevertheless, useful and convincing visualizations are made through a variety of techniques. The central theme of this article is that a similar situation is true with sound for virtual reality. It is beyond our abilityto create interactive soundscapes that create a faithful reproduction of real world sounds, however, by choosing one's application carefully and using sound to enhance a display rather than only mimic real-world scenes, a very effective use of sound can be made.

  19. Simulating the decentralized processes of the human immune system in a virtual anatomy model

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Many physiological processes within the human body can be perceived and modeled as large systems of interacting particles or swarming agents. The complex processes of the human immune system prove to be challenging to capture and illustrate without proper reference to the spacial distribution of immune-related organs and systems. Our work focuses on physical aspects of immune system processes, which we implement through swarms of agents. This is our first prototype for integrating different immune processes into one comprehensive virtual physiology simulation. Results Using agent-based methodology and a 3-dimensional modeling and visualization environment (LINDSAY Composer), we present an agent-based simulation of the decentralized processes in the human immune system. The agents in our model - such as immune cells, viruses and cytokines - interact through simulated physics in two different, compartmentalized and decentralized 3-dimensional environments namely, (1) within the tissue and (2) inside a lymph node. While the two environments are separated and perform their computations asynchronously, an abstract form of communication is allowed in order to replicate the exchange, transportation and interaction of immune system agents between these sites. The distribution of simulated processes, that can communicate across multiple, local CPUs or through a network of machines, provides a starting point to build decentralized systems that replicate larger-scale processes within the human body, thus creating integrated simulations with other physiological systems, such as the circulatory, endocrine, or nervous system. Ultimately, this system integration across scales is our goal for the LINDSAY Virtual Human project. Conclusions Our current immune system simulations extend our previous work on agent-based simulations by introducing advanced visualizations within the context of a virtual human anatomy model. We also demonstrate how to distribute a collection of

  20. Creating a Tiny Human Body on a Chip

    ScienceCinema

    Hunsberger, Maren; Soscia, Dave; Moya, Monica

    2016-07-12

    LLNL science communicator Maren Hunsberger takes us "Inside the Lab" to learn about the iChip (In-vitro Chip-based Human Investigational Platform) project at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. "One application of the iChip system would be to develop new pharmaceutical drugs," explains Dave Soscia, LLNL postdoc. "When you test in a mouse for example, it's not as close to the human system as you can get. If we can take human cells and put them on devices and actually mimic the structure and function of the organ systems in the human, we can actually replace animal testing and even make a better system for testing pharmaceutical drugs."

  1. A Test of Spatial Contiguity for Virtual Human's Gestures in Multimedia Learning Environments

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Craig, Scotty D.; Twyford, Jessica; Irigoyen, Norma; Zipp, Sarah A.

    2015-01-01

    Virtual humans are becoming an easily available and popular component of multimedia learning that are often used in online learning environments. There is still a need for systematic research into their effectiveness. The current study investigates the positioning of a virtual human's gestures when guiding the learner through a multimedia…

  2. Virtual PD Creates Connections

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Education Week, 2011

    2011-01-01

    This special report examines how K-12 professional development is taking a more digital and freewheeling approach to educator training. The report--which also features a webinar and online chat--shows how professional development programs are now blending face-to-face and online training, incorporating social networking tools, offering…

  3. Human Rights Education: Imaginative Possibilities for Creating Change

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bajaj, Monisha

    2015-01-01

    Background/Context: Human rights education has proliferated in the past four decades and can be found in policy discussions, textbook reforms, and grassroots initiatives across the globe. This article specifically explores the role of creativity and imagination in human rights education (HRE) by focusing on a case study of one non-governmental…

  4. Genetic recombination between human and animal parasites creates novel strains of human pathogen.

    PubMed

    Gibson, Wendy; Peacock, Lori; Ferris, Vanessa; Fischer, Katrin; Livingstone, Jennifer; Thomas, James; Bailey, Mick

    2015-03-01

    Genetic recombination between pathogens derived from humans and livestock has the potential to create novel pathogen strains, highlighted by the influenza pandemic H1N1/09, which was derived from a re-assortment of swine, avian and human influenza A viruses. Here we investigated whether genetic recombination between subspecies of the protozoan parasite, Trypanosoma brucei, from humans and animals can generate new strains of human pathogen, T. b. rhodesiense (Tbr) responsible for sleeping sickness (Human African Trypanosomiasis, HAT) in East Africa. The trait of human infectivity in Tbr is conferred by a single gene, SRA, which is potentially transferable to the animal pathogen Tbb by sexual reproduction. We tracked the inheritance of SRA in crosses of Tbr and Tbb set up by co-transmitting genetically-engineered fluorescent parental trypanosome lines through tsetse flies. SRA was readily transferred into new genetic backgrounds by sexual reproduction between Tbr and Tbb, thus creating new strains of the human pathogen, Tbr. There was no evidence of diminished growth or transmissibility of hybrid trypanosomes carrying SRA. Although expression of SRA is critical to survival of Tbr in the human host, we show that the gene exists as a single copy in a representative collection of Tbr strains. SRA was found on one homologue of chromosome IV in the majority of Tbr isolates examined, but some Ugandan Tbr had SRA on both homologues. The mobility of SRA by genetic recombination readily explains the observed genetic variability of Tbr in East Africa. We conclude that new strains of the human pathogen Tbr are being generated continuously by recombination with the much larger pool of animal-infective trypanosomes. Such novel recombinants present a risk for future outbreaks of HAT. PMID:25816228

  5. Genetic recombination between human and animal parasites creates novel strains of human pathogen.

    PubMed

    Gibson, Wendy; Peacock, Lori; Ferris, Vanessa; Fischer, Katrin; Livingstone, Jennifer; Thomas, James; Bailey, Mick

    2015-03-01

    Genetic recombination between pathogens derived from humans and livestock has the potential to create novel pathogen strains, highlighted by the influenza pandemic H1N1/09, which was derived from a re-assortment of swine, avian and human influenza A viruses. Here we investigated whether genetic recombination between subspecies of the protozoan parasite, Trypanosoma brucei, from humans and animals can generate new strains of human pathogen, T. b. rhodesiense (Tbr) responsible for sleeping sickness (Human African Trypanosomiasis, HAT) in East Africa. The trait of human infectivity in Tbr is conferred by a single gene, SRA, which is potentially transferable to the animal pathogen Tbb by sexual reproduction. We tracked the inheritance of SRA in crosses of Tbr and Tbb set up by co-transmitting genetically-engineered fluorescent parental trypanosome lines through tsetse flies. SRA was readily transferred into new genetic backgrounds by sexual reproduction between Tbr and Tbb, thus creating new strains of the human pathogen, Tbr. There was no evidence of diminished growth or transmissibility of hybrid trypanosomes carrying SRA. Although expression of SRA is critical to survival of Tbr in the human host, we show that the gene exists as a single copy in a representative collection of Tbr strains. SRA was found on one homologue of chromosome IV in the majority of Tbr isolates examined, but some Ugandan Tbr had SRA on both homologues. The mobility of SRA by genetic recombination readily explains the observed genetic variability of Tbr in East Africa. We conclude that new strains of the human pathogen Tbr are being generated continuously by recombination with the much larger pool of animal-infective trypanosomes. Such novel recombinants present a risk for future outbreaks of HAT.

  6. Genetic Recombination between Human and Animal Parasites Creates Novel Strains of Human Pathogen

    PubMed Central

    Gibson, Wendy; Peacock, Lori; Ferris, Vanessa; Fischer, Katrin; Livingstone, Jennifer; Thomas, James; Bailey, Mick

    2015-01-01

    Genetic recombination between pathogens derived from humans and livestock has the potential to create novel pathogen strains, highlighted by the influenza pandemic H1N1/09, which was derived from a re-assortment of swine, avian and human influenza A viruses. Here we investigated whether genetic recombination between subspecies of the protozoan parasite, Trypanosoma brucei, from humans and animals can generate new strains of human pathogen, T. b. rhodesiense (Tbr) responsible for sleeping sickness (Human African Trypanosomiasis, HAT) in East Africa. The trait of human infectivity in Tbr is conferred by a single gene, SRA, which is potentially transferable to the animal pathogen Tbb by sexual reproduction. We tracked the inheritance of SRA in crosses of Tbr and Tbb set up by co-transmitting genetically-engineered fluorescent parental trypanosome lines through tsetse flies. SRA was readily transferred into new genetic backgrounds by sexual reproduction between Tbr and Tbb, thus creating new strains of the human pathogen, Tbr. There was no evidence of diminished growth or transmissibility of hybrid trypanosomes carrying SRA. Although expression of SRA is critical to survival of Tbr in the human host, we show that the gene exists as a single copy in a representative collection of Tbr strains. SRA was found on one homologue of chromosome IV in the majority of Tbr isolates examined, but some Ugandan Tbr had SRA on both homologues. The mobility of SRA by genetic recombination readily explains the observed genetic variability of Tbr in East Africa. We conclude that new strains of the human pathogen Tbr are being generated continuously by recombination with the much larger pool of animal-infective trypanosomes. Such novel recombinants present a risk for future outbreaks of HAT. PMID:25816228

  7. Metaphysical and ethical perspectives on creating animal-human chimeras.

    PubMed

    Eberl, Jason T; Ballard, Rebecca A

    2009-10-01

    This paper addresses several questions related to the nature, production, and use of animal-human (a-h) chimeras. At the heart of the issue is whether certain types of a-h chimeras should be brought into existence, and, if they are, how we should treat such creatures. In our current research environment, we recognize a dichotomy between research involving nonhuman animal subjects and research involving human subjects, and the classification of a research protocol into one of these categories will trigger different ethical standards as to the moral permissibility of the research in question. Are a-h chimeras entitled to the more restrictive and protective ethical standards applied to human research subjects? We elucidate an Aristotelian-Thomistic metaphysical framework in which to argue how such chimeras ought to be defined ontologically. We then examine when the creation of, and experimentation upon, certain types of a-h chimeras may be morally permissible.

  8. Human brain functional MRI and DTI visualization with virtual reality.

    PubMed

    Chen, Bin; Moreland, John; Zhang, Jingyu

    2011-12-01

    Magnetic resonance diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) and functional MRI (fMRI) are two active research areas in neuroimaging. DTI is sensitive to the anisotropic diffusion of water exerted by its macromolecular environment and has been shown useful in characterizing structures of ordered tissues such as the brain white matter, myocardium, and cartilage. The diffusion tensor provides two new types of information of water diffusion: the magnitude and the spatial orientation of water diffusivity inside the tissue. This information has been used for white matter fiber tracking to review physical neuronal pathways inside the brain. Functional MRI measures brain activations using the hemodynamic response. The statistically derived activation map corresponds to human brain functional activities caused by neuronal activities. The combination of these two methods provides a new way to understand human brain from the anatomical neuronal fiber connectivity to functional activities between different brain regions. In this study, virtual reality (VR) based MR DTI and fMRI visualization with high resolution anatomical image segmentation and registration, ROI definition and neuronal white matter fiber tractography visualization and fMRI activation map integration is proposed. Rationale and methods for producing and distributing stereoscopic videos are also discussed. PMID:23256049

  9. Closed-loop dialog model of face-to-face communication with a photo-real virtual human

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kiss, Bernadette; Benedek, Balázs; Szijárto, Gábor; Takács, Barnabás

    2004-01-01

    We describe an advanced Human Computer Interaction (HCI) model that employs photo-realistic virtual humans to provide digital media users with information, learning services and entertainment in a highly personalized and adaptive manner. The system can be used as a computer interface or as a tool to deliver content to end-users. We model the interaction process between the user and the system as part of a closed loop dialog taking place between the participants. This dialog, exploits the most important characteristics of a face-to-face communication process, including the use of non-verbal gestures and meta communication signals to control the flow of information. Our solution is based on a Virtual Human Interface (VHI) technology that was specifically designed to be able to create emotional engagement between the virtual agent and the user, thus increasing the efficiency of learning and/or absorbing any information broadcasted through this device. The paper reviews the basic building blocks and technologies needed to create such a system and discusses its advantages over other existing methods.

  10. What about the Firewall? Creating Virtual Worlds in a Public Primary School Using Sim-on-a-Stick

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jacka, Lisa; Booth, Kate

    2012-01-01

    Virtual worlds are highly immersive, engaging and popular computer mediated environments being explored by children and adults. Why then aren't more teachers using virtual worlds in the classroom with primary and secondary school students? Reasons often cited are the learning required to master the technology, low-end graphics cards, poor…

  11. The Use of Virtual Reality for Creating Unusual Environmental Stimulation to Motivate Students to Explore Creative Ideas

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lau, Kung Wong; Lee, Pui Yuen

    2015-01-01

    This paper discusses the roles of simulation in creativity education and how to apply immersive virtual environments to enhance students' learning experiences in university, through the provision of interactive simulations. An empirical study of a simulated virtual reality was carried out in order to investigate the effectiveness of providing…

  12. The human side of design: creating a new film library.

    PubMed

    Gottardi, L

    1998-01-01

    The use of continuous quality improvement may keep your film library processes running smoothly, but your staff may still struggle daily with its inadequate design. As the experts who work and live within the design, staff members deserve to play an active role in its improvement. When plans for a construction project that would include a larger film storage area were approved at Tampa General Healthcare, the administrative manager of the film library studied the first generation of blueprints. Encouraged to speak to the designer about her ideas, she presented sketches she had traced over blueprints to relocate the office entrance. Her design suggestions were welcomed. With the film library supervisors now wanting to involve staff members, the administrative manager created a wish list survey asking staff about positive and negative aspects of their work space, and for their suggestions on improving it, if given the chance. They responded with ideas for more soundproofing, better lighting and better storage space. Others recommended better ergonomic design for keyboard height, drawers and even the height of the sliding-glass window in the reception area. These suggestions did not account for the process delays the library experienced, however. Spending time in each of four work areas, the administrative manager found wasted movement, crowding of staff, film and equipment, and inadequate storage. This was the right time for change, she felt, an opportunity that shouldn't slip by. Various plans were created, not only to isolate office workers from noise and traffic, but to include items from the wish list. When it was time for the specifications, staff feedback became critical. The administrative manager consulted with staff members on various shifts and worked with staff ideas and sketches. The time the designer spent visiting the many work areas was critical to finalizing plans. The construction phase came next, after careful planning for carrying out work during

  13. Mars One; creating a human settlement on Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wielders, A.; Lansdorp, B.; Flinkenflögel, S.; Versteeg, B.; Kraft, N.; Vaandrager, E.; Wagensveld, M.; Dogra, A.; Casagrande, B.; Aziz, N.

    2013-09-01

    Mars One will take humanity to Mars in 2023, to establish a permanent settlement from which human kind will prosper, learn, and grow. Before the first crew lands, Mars One will have established a habitable, sustainable outpost designed to receive new astronauts every two years. To accomplish this, Mars One has developed a precise, realistic plan based entirely upon proven technologies. It is both economically and logistically feasible, and already underway with the aggregation and appointment of hardware suppliers and experts in space exploration. In this paper Mars One discusses the benefits of the mission for planetary science in general and Mars studies in particular. Furthermore potential contributions from the planetary community to the Mars One project will be identified.

  14. Ethical aspects of creating human-nonhuman chimeras capable of human gamete production and human pregnancy.

    PubMed

    Palacios-González, César

    2015-01-01

    In this paper I explore some of the moral issues that could emerge from the creation of human-nonhuman chimeras (HNH-chimeras) capable of human gamete production and human pregnancy. First I explore whether there is a cogent argument against the creation of HNH-chimeras that could produce human gametes. I conclude that so far there is none, and that in fact there is at least one good moral reason for producing such types of creatures. Afterwards I explore some of the moral problems that could emerge from the fact that a HNH-chimera could become pregnant with a human conceptus. I focus on two sets of problems: problems that would arise by virtue of the fact that a human is gestated by a nonhuman creature, and problems that would emerge from the fact that such pregnancies could affect the health of the HNH-chimera.

  15. Spontaneous Recovery of Human Spatial Memory in a Virtual Water Maze

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Luna, David; Martínez, Héctor

    2015-01-01

    The occurrence of spontaneous recovery in human spatial memory was assessed using a virtual environment. In Experiment 1, spatial memory was established by training participants to locate a hidden platform in a virtual water maze using a set of four distal landmarks. In Experiment 2, after learning about the location of a hidden platform, the…

  16. Creating Concepts from Converging Features in Human Cortex.

    PubMed

    Coutanche, Marc N; Thompson-Schill, Sharon L

    2015-09-01

    To make sense of the world around us, our brain must remember the overlapping features of millions of objects. Crucially, it must also represent each object's unique feature-convergence. Some theories propose that an integration area (or "convergence zone") binds together separate features. We report an investigation of our knowledge of objects' features and identity, and the link between them. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging to record neural activity, as humans attempted to detect a cued fruit or vegetable in visual noise. Crucially, we analyzed brain activity before a fruit or vegetable was present, allowing us to interrogate top-down activity. We found that pattern-classification algorithms could be used to decode the detection target's identity in the left anterior temporal lobe (ATL), its shape in lateral occipital cortex, and its color in right V4. A novel decoding-dependency analysis revealed that identity information in left ATL was specifically predicted by the temporal convergence of shape and color codes in early visual regions. People with stronger feature-and-identity dependencies had more similar top-down and bottom-up activity patterns. These results fulfill three key requirements for a neural convergence zone: a convergence result (object identity), ingredients (color and shape), and the link between them.

  17. Human Robotic Study at Houghton Crater - virtual reality study from NASA Ames (FFC) Future Fight

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    Human Robotic Study at Houghton Crater - virtual reality study from NASA Ames (FFC) Future Fight Central simulator tower L-R: Dr Geoffrey Briggs; Jen Jasper (seated); Dr Jan Akins and Mr. Tony Gross, Ames

  18. Ecological validity of virtual environments to assess human navigation ability

    PubMed Central

    van der Ham, Ineke J. M.; Faber, Annemarie M. E.; Venselaar, Matthijs; van Kreveld, Marc J.; Löffler, Maarten

    2015-01-01

    Route memory is frequently assessed in virtual environments. These environments can be presented in a fully controlled manner and are easy to use. Yet they lack the physical involvement that participants have when navigating real environments. For some aspects of route memory this may result in reduced performance in virtual environments. We assessed route memory performance in four different environments: real, virtual, virtual with directional information (compass), and hybrid. In the hybrid environment, participants walked the route outside on an open field, while all route information (i.e., path, landmarks) was shown simultaneously on a handheld tablet computer. Results indicate that performance in the real life environment was better than in the virtual conditions for tasks relying on survey knowledge, like pointing to start and end point, and map drawing. Performance in the hybrid condition however, hardly differed from real life performance. Performance in the virtual environment did not benefit from directional information. Given these findings, the hybrid condition may offer the best of both worlds: the performance level is comparable to that of real life for route memory, yet it offers full control of visual input during route learning. PMID:26074831

  19. Realistic facial expression of virtual human based on color, sweat, and tears effects.

    PubMed

    Alkawaz, Mohammed Hazim; Basori, Ahmad Hoirul; Mohamad, Dzulkifli; Mohamed, Farhan

    2014-01-01

    Generating extreme appearances such as scared awaiting sweating while happy fit for tears (cry) and blushing (anger and happiness) is the key issue in achieving the high quality facial animation. The effects of sweat, tears, and colors are integrated into a single animation model to create realistic facial expressions of 3D avatar. The physical properties of muscles, emotions, or the fluid properties with sweating and tears initiators are incorporated. The action units (AUs) of facial action coding system are merged with autonomous AUs to create expressions including sadness, anger with blushing, happiness with blushing, and fear. Fluid effects such as sweat and tears are simulated using the particle system and smoothed-particle hydrodynamics (SPH) methods which are combined with facial animation technique to produce complex facial expressions. The effects of oxygenation of the facial skin color appearance are measured using the pulse oximeter system and the 3D skin analyzer. The result shows that virtual human facial expression is enhanced by mimicking actual sweating and tears simulations for all extreme expressions. The proposed method has contribution towards the development of facial animation industry and game as well as computer graphics. PMID:25136663

  20. Realistic facial expression of virtual human based on color, sweat, and tears effects.

    PubMed

    Alkawaz, Mohammed Hazim; Basori, Ahmad Hoirul; Mohamad, Dzulkifli; Mohamed, Farhan

    2014-01-01

    Generating extreme appearances such as scared awaiting sweating while happy fit for tears (cry) and blushing (anger and happiness) is the key issue in achieving the high quality facial animation. The effects of sweat, tears, and colors are integrated into a single animation model to create realistic facial expressions of 3D avatar. The physical properties of muscles, emotions, or the fluid properties with sweating and tears initiators are incorporated. The action units (AUs) of facial action coding system are merged with autonomous AUs to create expressions including sadness, anger with blushing, happiness with blushing, and fear. Fluid effects such as sweat and tears are simulated using the particle system and smoothed-particle hydrodynamics (SPH) methods which are combined with facial animation technique to produce complex facial expressions. The effects of oxygenation of the facial skin color appearance are measured using the pulse oximeter system and the 3D skin analyzer. The result shows that virtual human facial expression is enhanced by mimicking actual sweating and tears simulations for all extreme expressions. The proposed method has contribution towards the development of facial animation industry and game as well as computer graphics.

  1. Realistic Facial Expression of Virtual Human Based on Color, Sweat, and Tears Effects

    PubMed Central

    Alkawaz, Mohammed Hazim; Basori, Ahmad Hoirul; Mohamad, Dzulkifli; Mohamed, Farhan

    2014-01-01

    Generating extreme appearances such as scared awaiting sweating while happy fit for tears (cry) and blushing (anger and happiness) is the key issue in achieving the high quality facial animation. The effects of sweat, tears, and colors are integrated into a single animation model to create realistic facial expressions of 3D avatar. The physical properties of muscles, emotions, or the fluid properties with sweating and tears initiators are incorporated. The action units (AUs) of facial action coding system are merged with autonomous AUs to create expressions including sadness, anger with blushing, happiness with blushing, and fear. Fluid effects such as sweat and tears are simulated using the particle system and smoothed-particle hydrodynamics (SPH) methods which are combined with facial animation technique to produce complex facial expressions. The effects of oxygenation of the facial skin color appearance are measured using the pulse oximeter system and the 3D skin analyzer. The result shows that virtual human facial expression is enhanced by mimicking actual sweating and tears simulations for all extreme expressions. The proposed method has contribution towards the development of facial animation industry and game as well as computer graphics. PMID:25136663

  2. Obtaining High-Quality, "Low-Maintenance" Stakeholder Input: How to Create a Virtual Statewide Extension Program Advisory Committee

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    O'Neill, Barbara

    2010-01-01

    Effective advisory committees are the cornerstone of relevant, quality Extension programs. They provide stakeholder input to Extension personnel, which is required under the Agricultural Research, Extension, and Education Reform Act (AREERA) of 1998. This article describes the implementation of a virtual statewide Extension program advisory…

  3. Virtual Project Management: Examining the Roles and Functions of Online Instructors in Creating Learning Applications with Value

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Barrett, Bob

    2012-01-01

    While many students and instructors are transitioning from the brick-and-mortar classrooms to virtual classrooms, labs, and simulations, this requires a higher-level of expertise, control, and perseverance by the instructor. Traditional methods of teaching, leading, managing, and organizing learn activities has changed in terms of the virtual…

  4. Content, Community, and Collaboration at ESRI Virtual Campus: A GIS Company's Perspective on Creating an Online Learning Resource

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Johnson, Ann B.; Boyd, Judy M.

    2005-01-01

    GIS requires training to use it to its potential. In 1996, ESRI began exploring ways to expand its successful educational programmes to a worldwide audience via the Web. The ESRI Virtual Campus (VC) opened in July 1997. The paper discusses a few of the many lessons learned during the operation of VC, related to content, community and…

  5. Effects of virtual human animation on emotion contagion in simulated inter-personal experiences.

    PubMed

    Wu, Yanxiang; Babu, Sabarish V; Armstrong, Rowan; Bertrand, Jeffrey W; Luo, Jun; Roy, Tania; Daily, Shaundra B; Dukes, Lauren Cairco; Hodges, Larry F; Fasolino, Tracy

    2014-04-01

    We empirically examined the impact of virtual human animation on the emotional responses of participants in a medical virtual reality system for education in the signs and symptoms of patient deterioration. Participants were presented with one of two virtual human conditions in a between-subjects experiment, static (non-animated) and dynamic (animated). Our objective measures included the use of psycho-physical Electro Dermal Activity (EDA) sensors, and subjective measures inspired by social psychology research included the Differential Emotions Survey (DES IV) and Positive and Negative Affect Survey (PANAS). We analyzed the quantitative and qualitative measures associated with participants’ emotional state at four distinct time-steps in the simulated interpersonal experience as the virtual patient’s medical condition deteriorated. Results suggest that participants in the dynamic condition with animations exhibited a higher sense of co-presence and greater emotional response as compared to participants in the static condition, corresponding to the deterioration in the medical condition of the virtual patient. Negative affect of participants in the dynamic condition increased at a higher rate than for participants in the static condition. The virtual human animations elicited a stronger response in negative emotions such as anguish, fear, and anger as the virtual patient’s medical condition worsened.

  6. Effects of virtual human animation on emotion contagion in simulated inter-personal experiences.

    PubMed

    Wu, Yanxiang; Babu, Sabarish V; Armstrong, Rowan; Bertrand, Jeffrey W; Luo, Jun; Roy, Tania; Daily, Shaundra B; Dukes, Lauren Cairco; Hodges, Larry F; Fasolino, Tracy

    2014-04-01

    We empirically examined the impact of virtual human animation on the emotional responses of participants in a medical virtual reality system for education in the signs and symptoms of patient deterioration. Participants were presented with one of two virtual human conditions in a between-subjects experiment, static (non-animated) and dynamic (animated). Our objective measures included the use of psycho-physical Electro Dermal Activity (EDA) sensors, and subjective measures inspired by social psychology research included the Differential Emotions Survey (DES IV) and Positive and Negative Affect Survey (PANAS). We analyzed the quantitative and qualitative measures associated with participants’ emotional state at four distinct time-steps in the simulated interpersonal experience as the virtual patient’s medical condition deteriorated. Results suggest that participants in the dynamic condition with animations exhibited a higher sense of co-presence and greater emotional response as compared to participants in the static condition, corresponding to the deterioration in the medical condition of the virtual patient. Negative affect of participants in the dynamic condition increased at a higher rate than for participants in the static condition. The virtual human animations elicited a stronger response in negative emotions such as anguish, fear, and anger as the virtual patient’s medical condition worsened. PMID:24650990

  7. Using Virtual Technology to Promote Functional Communication in Aphasia: Preliminary Evidence From Interactive Dialogues With Human and Virtual Clinicians

    PubMed Central

    Martin, Nadine; Keshner, Emily; Rudnicky, Alex; Shi, Justin; Teodoro, Gregory

    2015-01-01

    Purpose We investigated the feasibility of using a virtual clinician (VC) to promote functional communication abilities of persons with aphasia (PWAs). We aimed to determine whether the quantity and quality of verbal output in dialogues with a VC would be the same or greater than those with a human clinician (HC). Method Four PWAs practiced dialogues for 2 sessions each with a HC and VC. Dialogues from before and after practice were transcribed and analyzed for content. We compared measures taken before and after practice in the VC and HC conditions. Results Results were mixed. Participants either produced more verbal output with the VC or showed no difference on this measure between the VC and HC conditions. Participants also showed some improvement in postpractice narratives. Conclusion Results provide support for the feasibility and applicability of virtual technology to real-life communication contexts to improve functional communication in PWAs. PMID:26431390

  8. Suitability of virtual prototypes to support human factors/ergonomics evaluation during the design.

    PubMed

    Aromaa, Susanna; Väänänen, Kaisa

    2016-09-01

    In recent years, the use of virtual prototyping has increased in product development processes, especially in the assessment of complex systems targeted at end-users. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the suitability of virtual prototyping to support human factors/ergonomics evaluation (HFE) during the design phase. Two different virtual prototypes were used: augmented reality (AR) and virtual environment (VE) prototypes of a maintenance platform of a rock crushing machine. Nineteen designers and other stakeholders were asked to assess the suitability of the prototype for HFE evaluation. Results indicate that the system model characteristics and user interface affect the experienced suitability. The VE system was valued as being more suitable to support the assessment of visibility, reach, and the use of tools than the AR system. The findings of this study can be used as a guidance for the implementing virtual prototypes in the product development process. PMID:27184306

  9. The EuroPhysiome, STEP and a roadmap for the virtual physiological human.

    PubMed

    Fenner, J W; Brook, B; Clapworthy, G; Coveney, P V; Feipel, V; Gregersen, H; Hose, D R; Kohl, P; Lawford, P; McCormack, K M; Pinney, D; Thomas, S R; Van Sint Jan, S; Waters, S; Viceconti, M

    2008-09-13

    Biomedical science and its allied disciplines are entering a new era in which computational methods and technologies are poised to play a prevalent role in supporting collaborative investigation of the human body. Within Europe, this has its focus in the virtual physiological human (VPH), which is an evolving entity that has emerged from the EuroPhysiome initiative and the strategy for the EuroPhysiome (STEP) consortium. The VPH is intended to be a solution to common infrastructure needs for physiome projects across the globe, providing a unifying architecture that facilitates integration and prediction, ultimately creating a framework capable of describing Homo sapiens in silico. The routine reliance of the biomedical industry, biomedical research and clinical practice on information technology (IT) highlights the importance of a tailor-made and robust IT infrastructure, but numerous challenges need to be addressed if the VPH is to become a mature technological reality. Appropriate investment will reap considerable rewards, since it is anticipated that the VPH will influence all sectors of society, with implications predominantly for improved healthcare, improved competitiveness in industry and greater understanding of (patho)physiological processes. This paper considers issues pertinent to the development of the VPH, highlighted by the work of the STEP consortium. PMID:18559316

  10. Learning Intercultural Communication Skills with Virtual Humans: Feedback and Fidelity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lane, H. Chad; Hays, Matthew Jensen; Core, Mark G.; Auerbach, Daniel

    2013-01-01

    In the context of practicing intercultural communication skills, we investigated the role of fidelity in a game-based, virtual learning environment as well as the role of feedback delivered by an intelligent tutoring system. In 2 experiments, we compared variations on the game interface, use of the tutoring system, and the form of the feedback.…

  11. Immersive Virtual Worlds in University-Level Human Geography Courses

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dittmer, Jason

    2010-01-01

    This paper addresses the potential for increased deployment of immersive virtual worlds in higher geographic education. An account of current practice regarding popular culture in the geography classroom is offered, focusing on the objectification of popular culture rather than its constitutive role vis-a-vis place. Current e-learning practice is…

  12. Creating Clay Models of a Human Torso as an Alternative to Dissection

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shipley, Gwendolyn

    2010-01-01

    Instead of dissecting animals, students create small clay models of human internal organs to demonstrate their understanding of the positioning and interlocking shapes of the organs. Not only is this approach more environmentally friendly, it also forces them to learn human anatomy--which is more relevant to them than the anatomy of other…

  13. The use of a low-cost visible light 3D scanner to create virtual reality environment models of actors and objects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Straub, Jeremy

    2015-05-01

    A low-cost 3D scanner has been developed with a parts cost of approximately USD $5,000. This scanner uses visible light sensing to capture both structural as well as texture and color data of a subject. This paper discusses the use of this type of scanner to create 3D models for incorporation into a virtual reality environment. It describes the basic scanning process (which takes under a minute for a single scan), which can be repeated to collect multiple positions, if needed for actor model creation. The efficacy of visible light versus other scanner types is also discussed.

  14. Complementary Machine Intelligence and Human Intelligence in Virtual Teaching Assistant for Tutoring Program Tracing

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chou, Chih-Yueh; Huang, Bau-Hung; Lin, Chi-Jen

    2011-01-01

    This study proposes a virtual teaching assistant (VTA) to share teacher tutoring tasks in helping students practice program tracing and proposes two mechanisms of complementing machine intelligence and human intelligence to develop the VTA. The first mechanism applies machine intelligence to extend human intelligence (teacher answers) to evaluate…

  15. A rapid algorithm for realistic human reaching and its use in a virtual reality system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Aldridge, Ann; Pandya, Abhilash; Goldsby, Michael; Maida, James

    1994-01-01

    The Graphics Analysis Facility (GRAF) at JSC has developed a rapid algorithm for computing realistic human reaching. The algorithm was applied to GRAF's anthropometrically correct human model and used in a 3D computer graphics system and a virtual reality system. The nature of the algorithm and its uses are discussed.

  16. Human sex differences in solving a virtual navigation problem.

    PubMed

    Astur, Robert S; Purton, Andrea J; Zaniewski, Melanie J; Cimadevilla, Jose; Markus, Etan J

    2016-07-15

    The current study examined sex differences in initial and subsequent strategies in solving a navigational problem within a virtual reality environment. We tested 163 undergraduates on a virtual T-maze task that included probe trials designed to assess whether participants were responding using either a place or response strategy. Participants were also tested on a mental rotation task and memory of the details of the virtual room. There were no differences between the sexes in copying or recalling a map of the room or on first trial performance of the T-maze. However, at trial two, males show a significant advantage in solving the task, and approximately 80% of the males adopt a place strategy to solve the T-maze whereas females at that point showed no strategy preference. Across all testing, both males and females preferentially used a place strategy. We discuss how factors such as spatial priming affect strategy preferences and how such factors may differentially affect males and females. PMID:27108050

  17. Human Lung Cancer Cells Grown on Acellular Rat Lung Matrix Create Perfusable Tumor Nodules

    PubMed Central

    Mishra, Dhruva K.; Thrall, Michael J.; Baird, Brandi N.; Ott, Harald C.; Blackmon, Shanda H.; Kurie, Jonathan M.; Kim, Min P.

    2015-01-01

    Background Extracellular matrix allows lung cancer to form its shape and grow. Recent studies on organ reengineering for orthotopic transplantation have provided a new avenue for isolating purified native matrix to use for growing cells. Whether human lung cancer cells grown in a decellularized rat lung matrix would create perfusable human lung cancer nodules was tested. Methods Rat lungs were harvested and native cells were removed using sodium dodecyl sulfate and Triton X-100 in a decellularization chamber to create a decellularized rat lung matrix. Human A549, H460, or H1299 lung cancer cells were placed into the decellularized rat lung matrix and grown in a customized bioreactor with perfusion of oxygenated media for 7 to 14 days. Results Decellularized rat lung matrix showed preservation of matrix architecture devoid of all rat cells. All three human lung cancer cell lines grown in the bioreactor developed tumor nodules with intact vasculature. Moreover, the lung cancer cells developed a pattern of growth similar to the original human lung cancer. Conclusions Overall, this study shows that human lung cancer cells form perfusable tumor nodules in a customized bioreactor on a decellularized rat lung matrix created by a customized decellularization chamber. The lung cancer cells grown in the matrix had features similar to the original human lung cancer. This ex vivo model can be used potentially to gain a deeper understanding of the biologic processes involved in human lung cancer. PMID:22385822

  18. Image Montaging for Creating a Virtual Pathology Slide: An Innovative and Economical Tool to Obtain a Whole Slide Image

    PubMed Central

    Pandurangappa, Rohit; Annavajjula, Saileela; Rajashekaraiah, Premalatha Bidadi

    2016-01-01

    Background. Microscopes are omnipresent throughout the field of biological research. With microscopes one can see in detail what is going on at the cellular level in tissues. Though it is a ubiquitous tool, the limitation is that with high magnification there is a small field of view. It is often advantageous to see an entire sample at high magnification. Over the years technological advancements in optics have helped to provide solutions to this limitation of microscopes by creating the so-called dedicated “slide scanners” which can provide a “whole slide digital image.” These scanners can provide seamless, large-field-of-view, high resolution image of entire tissue section. The only disadvantage of such complete slide imaging system is its outrageous cost, thereby hindering their practical use by most laboratories, especially in developing and low resource countries. Methods. In a quest for their substitute, we tried commonly used image editing software Adobe Photoshop along with a basic image capturing device attached to a trinocular microscope to create a digital pathology slide. Results. The seamless image created using Adobe Photoshop maintained its diagnostic quality. Conclusion. With time and effort photomicrographs obtained from a basic camera-microscope set up can be combined and merged in Adobe Photoshop to create a whole slide digital image of practically usable quality at a negligible cost. PMID:27747147

  19. Effects of Virtual Human Appearance Fidelity on Emotion Contagion in Affective Inter-Personal Simulations.

    PubMed

    Volante, Matias; Babu, Sabarish V; Chaturvedi, Himanshu; Newsome, Nathan; Ebrahimi, Elham; Roy, Tania; Daily, Shaundra B; Fasolino, Tracy

    2016-04-01

    Realistic versus stylized depictions of virtual humans in simulated inter-personal situations and their ability to elicit emotional responses in users has been an open question for artists and researchers alike. We empirically evaluated the effects of near visually realistic vs. non-realistic stylized appearance of virtual humans on the emotional response of participants in a medical virtual reality system that was designed to educate users in recognizing the signs and symptoms of patient deterioration. In a between-subjects experiment protocol, participants interacted with one of three different appearances of a virtual patient, namely visually realistic, cartoon-shaded and charcoal-sketch like conditions in a mixed reality simulation. Emotional impact were measured via a combination of quantitative objective measures were gathered using skin Electrodermal Activity (EDA) sensors, and quantitative subjective measures such as the Differential Emotion Survey (DES IV), Positive and Negative Affect Schedule (PANAS), and Social Presence questionnaire. The emotional states of the participants were analyzed across four distinct time steps during which the medical condition of the virtual patient deteriorated (an emotionally stressful interaction), and were contrasted to a baseline affective state. Objective EDA results showed that in all three conditions, male participants exhibited greater levels of arousal as compared to female participants. We found that negative affect levels were significantly lower in the visually realistic condition, as compared to the stylized appearance conditions. Furthermore, in emotional dimensions of interest-excitement, surprise, anger, fear and guilt participants in all conditions responded similarly. However, in social emotional constructs of shyness, presence, perceived personality, and enjoyment-joy, we found that participants responded differently in the visually realistic condition as compared to the cartoon and sketch conditions. Our

  20. Creating the optimal workspace for hospital staff using human centred design.

    PubMed

    Cawood, T; Saunders, E; Drennan, C; Cross, N; Nicholl, D; Kenny, A; Meates, D; Laing, R

    2016-07-01

    We were tasked with creating best possible non-clinical workspace solutions for approximately 450 hospital staff across 11 departments encompassing medical, nursing, allied health, administrative and other support staff. We used a Human-Centred Design process, involving 'Hear, Create and Deliver' stages. We used observations, contextual enquiry and role-specific workshops to understand needs, key interactions and drivers of behaviour. Co-design workshops were then used to explore and prototype-test concepts for the final design. With extensive employee engagement and design process expertise, an innovative solution was created that focussed on meeting the functional workspace needs of a diverse group of staff requiring a range of different spaces, incorporating space constraints and equity. This project demonstrated the strength of engaging employees in an expert-led Human-Centred Design process. We believe this is a successful blueprint process for other institutions to embrace when facing similar workspace design challenges. PMID:27405891

  1. Creating the optimal workspace for hospital staff using human centred design.

    PubMed

    Cawood, T; Saunders, E; Drennan, C; Cross, N; Nicholl, D; Kenny, A; Meates, D; Laing, R

    2016-07-01

    We were tasked with creating best possible non-clinical workspace solutions for approximately 450 hospital staff across 11 departments encompassing medical, nursing, allied health, administrative and other support staff. We used a Human-Centred Design process, involving 'Hear, Create and Deliver' stages. We used observations, contextual enquiry and role-specific workshops to understand needs, key interactions and drivers of behaviour. Co-design workshops were then used to explore and prototype-test concepts for the final design. With extensive employee engagement and design process expertise, an innovative solution was created that focussed on meeting the functional workspace needs of a diverse group of staff requiring a range of different spaces, incorporating space constraints and equity. This project demonstrated the strength of engaging employees in an expert-led Human-Centred Design process. We believe this is a successful blueprint process for other institutions to embrace when facing similar workspace design challenges.

  2. The use of scenario-based-learning interactive software to create custom virtual laboratory scenarios for teaching genetics.

    PubMed

    Breakey, Kate M; Levin, Daniel; Miller, Ian; Hentges, Kathryn E

    2008-07-01

    Mutagenesis screens and analysis of mutant phenotypes are one of the most powerful approaches for the study of genetics. Yet genetics students often have difficulty understanding the experimental procedures and breeding crosses required in mutagenesis screens and linking mutant phenotypes to molecular defects. Performing these experiments themselves often aids students in understanding the methodology. However, there are limitations to performing genetics experiments in a student laboratory. For example, the generation time of laboratory model organisms is considerable, and a laboratory exercise that involves many rounds of breeding or analysis of many mutants is not often feasible. Additionally, the cost of running a laboratory practical, along with safety considerations for particular reagents or protocols, often dictates the experiments that students can perform. To provide an alternative to a traditional laboratory module, we have used Scenario-Based-Learning Interactive (SBLi) software to develop a virtual laboratory to support a second year undergraduate course entitled "Genetic Analysis." This resource allows students to proceed through the steps of a genetics experiment, without the time, cost, or safety constraints of a traditional laboratory exercise.

  3. The Parametric Model of the Human Mandible Coronoid Process Created by Method of Anatomical Features

    PubMed Central

    Vitković, Nikola; Mitić, Jelena; Manić, Miodrag; Trajanović, Miroslav; Husain, Karim; Petrović, Slađana; Arsić, Stojanka

    2015-01-01

    Geometrically accurate and anatomically correct 3D models of the human bones are of great importance for medical research and practice in orthopedics and surgery. These geometrical models can be created by the use of techniques which can be based on input geometrical data acquired from volumetric methods of scanning (e.g., Computed Tomography (CT)) or on the 2D images (e.g., X-ray). Geometrical models of human bones created in such way can be applied for education of medical practitioners, preoperative planning, etc. In cases when geometrical data about the human bone is incomplete (e.g., fractures), it may be necessary to create its complete geometrical model. The possible solution for this problem is the application of parametric models. The geometry of these models can be changed and adapted to the specific patient based on the values of parameters acquired from medical images (e.g., X-ray). In this paper, Method of Anatomical Features (MAF) which enables creation of geometrically precise and anatomically accurate geometrical models of the human bones is implemented for the creation of the parametric model of the Human Mandible Coronoid Process (HMCP). The obtained results about geometrical accuracy of the model are quite satisfactory, as it is stated by the medical practitioners and confirmed in the literature. PMID:26064183

  4. The Parametric Model of the Human Mandible Coronoid Process Created by Method of Anatomical Features.

    PubMed

    Vitković, Nikola; Mitić, Jelena; Manić, Miodrag; Trajanović, Miroslav; Husain, Karim; Petrović, Slađana; Arsić, Stojanka

    2015-01-01

    Geometrically accurate and anatomically correct 3D models of the human bones are of great importance for medical research and practice in orthopedics and surgery. These geometrical models can be created by the use of techniques which can be based on input geometrical data acquired from volumetric methods of scanning (e.g., Computed Tomography (CT)) or on the 2D images (e.g., X-ray). Geometrical models of human bones created in such way can be applied for education of medical practitioners, preoperative planning, etc. In cases when geometrical data about the human bone is incomplete (e.g., fractures), it may be necessary to create its complete geometrical model. The possible solution for this problem is the application of parametric models. The geometry of these models can be changed and adapted to the specific patient based on the values of parameters acquired from medical images (e.g., X-ray). In this paper, Method of Anatomical Features (MAF) which enables creation of geometrically precise and anatomically accurate geometrical models of the human bones is implemented for the creation of the parametric model of the Human Mandible Coronoid Process (HMCP). The obtained results about geometrical accuracy of the model are quite satisfactory, as it is stated by the medical practitioners and confirmed in the literature. PMID:26064183

  5. Study of Human Barriers upon Development of Virtual Disciplines at University of Isfahan

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nikoonezhad, Sepideh; Nili, Mohammadreza; Esfahani, Ahmadreza Nasr

    2015-01-01

    The present study has been carried out to investigate the human barriers of developing virtual majors at Isfahan University; therefore, considering its objective, it is a functional research. It was conducted in combined (quantitative-qualitative) manner via descriptive survey method. In order to do the research, investigating the texts, interview…

  6. Computational Virtual Reality (VR) as a human-computer interface in the operation of telerobotic systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bejczy, Antal K.

    1995-01-01

    This presentation focuses on the application of computer graphics or 'virtual reality' (VR) techniques as a human-computer interface tool in the operation of telerobotic systems. VR techniques offer very valuable task realization aids for planning, previewing and predicting robotic actions, operator training, and for visual perception of non-visible events like contact forces in robotic tasks. The utility of computer graphics in telerobotic operation can be significantly enhanced by high-fidelity calibration of virtual reality images to actual TV camera images. This calibration will even permit the creation of artificial (synthetic) views of task scenes for which no TV camera views are available.

  7. Varieties of virtualization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ellis, Stephen R.

    1991-01-01

    Natural environments have a content, i.e., the objects in them; a geometry, i.e., a pattern of rules for positioning and displacing the objects; and a dynamics, i.e., a system of rules describing the effects of forces acting on the objects. Human interaction with most common natural environments has been optimized by centuries of evolution. Virtual environments created through the human-computer interface similarly have a content, geometry, and dynamics, but the arbitrary character of the computer simulation creating them does not insure that human interaction with these virtual environments will be natural. The interaction, indeed, could be supernatural but it also could be impossible. An important determinant of the comprehensibility of a virtual environment is the correspondence between the environmental frames of reference and those associated with the control of environmental objects. The effects of rotation and displacement of control frames of reference with respect to corresponding environmental references differ depending upon whether perceptual judgement or manual tracking performance is measured. The perceptual effects of frame of reference displacement may be analyzed in terms of distortions in the process of virtualizing the synthetic environment space. The effects of frame of reference displacement and rotation have been studied by asking subjects to estimate exocentric direction in a virtual space.

  8. Formulation of wire control mechanism for surgical robot to create virtual reality environment aimed at conducting surgery inside the body.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Naoki; Hattori, Asaki; Ieiri, Satoshi; Tomikawa, Morimasa; Kenmotsu, Hajime; Hashizume, Makoto

    2013-01-01

    We here report on the process of developing a surgical robot that can conduct operation "going inside the body without spreading the operational region". The endoscopic robot that we are developing now has a flexible cylindrical body with functions of a set of human arms at the tip and also with vision and haptic sense functions. We evaluated necessary technology factor to complete this robot into categories such as, transmission of energy, adaptation to insides of the body. PMID:23400196

  9. A grounded theory of faculty's use of humanization to create online course climate.

    PubMed

    Cox-Davenport, Rebecca A

    2014-03-01

    The purpose of this research was to study the way faculty establish course social presence in an online course. The community of inquiry model by Garrison, Anderson, and Archer distinguished the area of social presence as an important component of online learning, and this study sought to understand how faculty perceive and create social presence in their online classroom. By employing a grounded theory approach, a substantive theory was developed to explain the way in which faculty create and maintain an online course climate. The sample consisted of 10 nursing faculty teaching various master's in nursing courses. Through a rigorous qualitative process using nursing faculty interviews and online course analysis, humanization was found to be the core category in setting online course climate. Faculty's efforts to humanize the climate lead each member of the community to view the other members as real, thereby enabling the establishment of online social presence.

  10. Virtual histology of the human heart using optical coherence tomography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ambrosi, Christina M.; Moazami, Nader; Rollins, Andrew M.; Efimov, Igor R.

    2009-09-01

    Optical coherence tomography (OCT) allows for the visualization of micron-scale structures within nontransparent biological tissues. For the first time, we demonstrate the use of OCT in identifying components of the cardiac conduction system and other structures in the explanted human heart. Reconstructions of cardiac structures up to 2 mm below the tissue surface were achieved and validated with Masson Trichrome histology in atrial, ventricular, sinoatrial nodal, and atrioventricular nodal preparations. The high spatial resolution of OCT provides visualization of cardiac fibers within the myocardium, as well as elements of the cardiac conduction system; however, a limiting factor remains its depth penetration, demonstrated to be ~2 mm in cardiac tissues. Despite its currently limited imaging depth, the use of OCT to identify the structural determinants of both normal and abnormal function in the intact human heart is critical in its development as a potential aid to intracardiac arrhythmia diagnosis and therapy.

  11. Where to look? Automating attending behaviors of virtual human characters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chopra Khullar, S.; Badler, N. I.

    2001-01-01

    This research proposes a computational framework for generating visual attending behavior in an embodied simulated human agent. Such behaviors directly control eye and head motions, and guide other actions such as locomotion and reach. The implementation of these concepts, referred to as the AVA, draws on empirical and qualitative observations known from psychology, human factors and computer vision. Deliberate behaviors, the analogs of scanpaths in visual psychology, compete with involuntary attention capture and lapses into idling or free viewing. Insights provided by implementing this framework are: a defined set of parameters that impact the observable effects of attention, a defined vocabulary of looking behaviors for certain motor and cognitive activity, a defined hierarchy of three levels of eye behavior (endogenous, exogenous and idling) and a proposed method of how these types interact.

  12. Web GIS in practice III: creating a simple interactive map of England's Strategic Health Authorities using Google Maps API, Google Earth KML, and MSN Virtual Earth Map Control

    PubMed Central

    Boulos, Maged N Kamel

    2005-01-01

    This eye-opener article aims at introducing the health GIS community to the emerging online consumer geoinformatics services from Google and Microsoft (MSN), and their potential utility in creating custom online interactive health maps. Using the programmable interfaces provided by Google and MSN, we created three interactive demonstrator maps of England's Strategic Health Authorities. These can be browsed online at – Google Maps API (Application Programming Interface) version, – Google Earth KML (Keyhole Markup Language) version, and – MSN Virtual Earth Map Control version. Google and MSN's worldwide distribution of "free" geospatial tools, imagery, and maps is to be commended as a significant step towards the ultimate "wikification" of maps and GIS. A discussion is provided of these emerging online mapping trends, their expected future implications and development directions, and associated individual privacy, national security and copyrights issues. Although ESRI have announced their planned response to Google (and MSN), it remains to be seen how their envisaged plans will materialize and compare to the offerings from Google and MSN, and also how Google and MSN mapping tools will further evolve in the near future. PMID:16176577

  13. Web GIS in practice III: creating a simple interactive map of England's Strategic Health Authorities using Google Maps API, Google Earth KML, and MSN Virtual Earth Map Control.

    PubMed

    Boulos, Maged N Kamel

    2005-09-21

    This eye-opener article aims at introducing the health GIS community to the emerging online consumer geoinformatics services from Google and Microsoft (MSN), and their potential utility in creating custom online interactive health maps. Using the programmable interfaces provided by Google and MSN, we created three interactive demonstrator maps of England's Strategic Health Authorities. These can be browsed online at http://www.healthcybermap.org/GoogleMapsAPI/ - Google Maps API (Application Programming Interface) version, http://www.healthcybermap.org/GoogleEarthKML/ - Google Earth KML (Keyhole Markup Language) version, and http://www.healthcybermap.org/MSNVirtualEarth/ - MSN Virtual Earth Map Control version. Google and MSN's worldwide distribution of "free" geospatial tools, imagery, and maps is to be commended as a significant step towards the ultimate "wikification" of maps and GIS. A discussion is provided of these emerging online mapping trends, their expected future implications and development directions, and associated individual privacy, national security and copyrights issues. Although ESRI have announced their planned response to Google (and MSN), it remains to be seen how their envisaged plans will materialize and compare to the offerings from Google and MSN, and also how Google and MSN mapping tools will further evolve in the near future.

  14. Is it the real deal? Perception of virtual characters versus humans: an affective cognitive neuroscience perspective.

    PubMed

    de Borst, Aline W; de Gelder, Beatrice

    2015-01-01

    Recent developments in neuroimaging research support the increased use of naturalistic stimulus material such as film, avatars, or androids. These stimuli allow for a better understanding of how the brain processes information in complex situations while maintaining experimental control. While avatars and androids are well suited to study human cognition, they should not be equated to human stimuli. For example, the uncanny valley hypothesis theorizes that artificial agents with high human-likeness may evoke feelings of eeriness in the human observer. Here we review if, when, and how the perception of human-like avatars and androids differs from the perception of humans and consider how this influences their utilization as stimulus material in social and affective neuroimaging studies. First, we discuss how the appearance of virtual characters affects perception. When stimuli are morphed across categories from non-human to human, the most ambiguous stimuli, rather than the most human-like stimuli, show prolonged classification times and increased eeriness. Human-like to human stimuli show a positive linear relationship with familiarity. Secondly, we show that expressions of emotions in human-like avatars can be perceived similarly to human emotions, with corresponding behavioral, physiological and neuronal activations, with exception of physical dissimilarities. Subsequently, we consider if and when one perceives differences in action representation by artificial agents versus humans. Motor resonance and predictive coding models may account for empirical findings, such as an interference effect on action for observed human-like, natural moving characters. However, the expansion of these models to explain more complex behavior, such as empathy, still needs to be investigated in more detail. Finally, we broaden our outlook to social interaction, where virtual reality stimuli can be utilized to imitate complex social situations. PMID:26029133

  15. Is it the real deal? Perception of virtual characters versus humans: an affective cognitive neuroscience perspective.

    PubMed

    de Borst, Aline W; de Gelder, Beatrice

    2015-01-01

    Recent developments in neuroimaging research support the increased use of naturalistic stimulus material such as film, avatars, or androids. These stimuli allow for a better understanding of how the brain processes information in complex situations while maintaining experimental control. While avatars and androids are well suited to study human cognition, they should not be equated to human stimuli. For example, the uncanny valley hypothesis theorizes that artificial agents with high human-likeness may evoke feelings of eeriness in the human observer. Here we review if, when, and how the perception of human-like avatars and androids differs from the perception of humans and consider how this influences their utilization as stimulus material in social and affective neuroimaging studies. First, we discuss how the appearance of virtual characters affects perception. When stimuli are morphed across categories from non-human to human, the most ambiguous stimuli, rather than the most human-like stimuli, show prolonged classification times and increased eeriness. Human-like to human stimuli show a positive linear relationship with familiarity. Secondly, we show that expressions of emotions in human-like avatars can be perceived similarly to human emotions, with corresponding behavioral, physiological and neuronal activations, with exception of physical dissimilarities. Subsequently, we consider if and when one perceives differences in action representation by artificial agents versus humans. Motor resonance and predictive coding models may account for empirical findings, such as an interference effect on action for observed human-like, natural moving characters. However, the expansion of these models to explain more complex behavior, such as empathy, still needs to be investigated in more detail. Finally, we broaden our outlook to social interaction, where virtual reality stimuli can be utilized to imitate complex social situations.

  16. Is it the real deal? Perception of virtual characters versus humans: an affective cognitive neuroscience perspective

    PubMed Central

    de Borst, Aline W.; de Gelder, Beatrice

    2015-01-01

    Recent developments in neuroimaging research support the increased use of naturalistic stimulus material such as film, avatars, or androids. These stimuli allow for a better understanding of how the brain processes information in complex situations while maintaining experimental control. While avatars and androids are well suited to study human cognition, they should not be equated to human stimuli. For example, the uncanny valley hypothesis theorizes that artificial agents with high human-likeness may evoke feelings of eeriness in the human observer. Here we review if, when, and how the perception of human-like avatars and androids differs from the perception of humans and consider how this influences their utilization as stimulus material in social and affective neuroimaging studies. First, we discuss how the appearance of virtual characters affects perception. When stimuli are morphed across categories from non-human to human, the most ambiguous stimuli, rather than the most human-like stimuli, show prolonged classification times and increased eeriness. Human-like to human stimuli show a positive linear relationship with familiarity. Secondly, we show that expressions of emotions in human-like avatars can be perceived similarly to human emotions, with corresponding behavioral, physiological and neuronal activations, with exception of physical dissimilarities. Subsequently, we consider if and when one perceives differences in action representation by artificial agents versus humans. Motor resonance and predictive coding models may account for empirical findings, such as an interference effect on action for observed human-like, natural moving characters. However, the expansion of these models to explain more complex behavior, such as empathy, still needs to be investigated in more detail. Finally, we broaden our outlook to social interaction, where virtual reality stimuli can be utilized to imitate complex social situations. PMID:26029133

  17. Can artificial techniques supply morally neutral human embryos for research? Part I. Creating novel categories of human embryos.

    PubMed

    Jones, Nancy L; Cheshire, William P

    2005-01-01

    Manipulations of the molecular composition and formation of human embryos are posing vital new challenges to traditional concepts of human identity and procreation. Current trends in embryology in particular are reshaping the ethical question of how scientific research should treat experimentally derived embryos. Some investigators have argued that embryos created through artificial means are technologically novel entities that should be exempt from ethical restraints placed on research involving human embryos that come into being through natural processes. These include uniparental embryos derived through cloning or parthenogenesis, as well as multiparental, hybrid-parental, and xenohybrid-parental embryos. If confined to natural means many of these genetic unions could not occur, but through the intervention of technology, it is becoming possible to design and grow strange and unusual forms of embryos, in some cases using human gametes. Regardless of the genetic contributors or the processes used to fertilize and stimulate egg activation, in each case the new embryo represents an individual organism that begins a process of development. We conclude that the prospect of creating or redesigning new human life should be held to a stringent ethical standard of precaution, even higher than that of deciding to destroy existing embryonic life. Accordingly, we urge cautious ethical reflection and broad public discussion prior to deciding whether to permit embryologic research into novel forms of procreative means in nonhuman animals, to be further extended to humans.

  18. Virtual Habitat -a dynamic simulation of closed life support systems -human model status

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Markus Czupalla, M. Sc.; Zhukov, Anton; Hwang, Su-Au; Schnaitmann, Jonas

    In order to optimize Life Support Systems on a system level, stability questions must be in-vestigated. To do so the exploration group of the Technical University of Munich (TUM) is developing the "Virtual Habitat" (V-HAB) dynamic LSS simulation software. V-HAB shall provide the possibility to conduct dynamic simulations of entire mission scenarios for any given LSS configuration. The Virtual Habitat simulation tool consists of four main modules: • Closed Environment Module (CEM) -monitoring of compounds in a closed environment • Crew Module (CM) -dynamic human simulation • P/C Systems Module (PCSM) -dynamic P/C subsystems • Plant Module (PM) -dynamic plant simulation The core module of the simulation is the dynamic and environment sensitive human module. Introduced in its basic version in 2008, the human module has been significantly updated since, increasing its capabilities and maturity significantly. In this paper three newly added human model subsystems (thermal regulation, digestion and schedule controller) are introduced touching also on the human stress subsystem which is cur-rently under development. Upon the introduction of these new subsystems, the integration of these into the overall V-HAB human model is discussed, highlighting the impact on the most important I/F. The overall human model capabilities shall further be summarized and presented based on meaningful test cases. In addition to the presentation of the results, the correlation strategy for the Virtual Habitat human model shall be introduced assessing the models current confidence level and giving an outlook on the future correlation strategy. Last but not least, the remaining V-HAB mod-ules shall be introduced shortly showing how the human model is integrated into the overall simulation.

  19. Globalisation and health inequalities: can a human rights paradigm create space for civil society action?

    PubMed

    London, Leslie; Schneider, Helen

    2012-01-01

    While neoliberal globalisation is associated with increasing inequalities, global integration has simultaneously strengthened the dissemination of human rights discourse across the world. This paper explores the seeming contradiction that globalisation is conceived as disempowering nations states' ability to act in their population's interests, yet implementation of human rights obligations requires effective states to deliver socio-economic entitlements, such as health. Central to the actions required of the state to build a health system based on a human rights approach is the notion of accountability. Two case studies are used to explore the constraints on states meeting their human rights obligations regarding health, the first drawing on data from interviews with parliamentarians responsible for health in East and Southern Africa, and the second reflecting on the response to the HIV/AIDS epidemic in South Africa. The case studies illustrate the importance of a human rights paradigm in strengthening parliamentary oversight over the executive in ways that prioritise pro-poor protections and in increasing leverage for resources for the health sector within parliamentary processes. Further, a rights framework creates the space for civil society action to engage with the legislature to hold public officials accountable and confirms the importance of rights as enabling civil society mobilization, reinforcing community agency to advance health rights for poor communities. In this context, critical assessment of state incapacity to meet claims to health rights raises questions as to the diffusion of accountability rife under modern international aid systems. Such diffusion of accountability opens the door to 'cunning' states to deflect rights claims of their populations. We argue that human rights, as both a normative framework for legal challenges and as a means to create room for active civil society engagement provide a means to contest both the real and the

  20. Globalisation and health inequalities: can a human rights paradigm create space for civil society action?

    PubMed

    London, Leslie; Schneider, Helen

    2012-01-01

    While neoliberal globalisation is associated with increasing inequalities, global integration has simultaneously strengthened the dissemination of human rights discourse across the world. This paper explores the seeming contradiction that globalisation is conceived as disempowering nations states' ability to act in their population's interests, yet implementation of human rights obligations requires effective states to deliver socio-economic entitlements, such as health. Central to the actions required of the state to build a health system based on a human rights approach is the notion of accountability. Two case studies are used to explore the constraints on states meeting their human rights obligations regarding health, the first drawing on data from interviews with parliamentarians responsible for health in East and Southern Africa, and the second reflecting on the response to the HIV/AIDS epidemic in South Africa. The case studies illustrate the importance of a human rights paradigm in strengthening parliamentary oversight over the executive in ways that prioritise pro-poor protections and in increasing leverage for resources for the health sector within parliamentary processes. Further, a rights framework creates the space for civil society action to engage with the legislature to hold public officials accountable and confirms the importance of rights as enabling civil society mobilization, reinforcing community agency to advance health rights for poor communities. In this context, critical assessment of state incapacity to meet claims to health rights raises questions as to the diffusion of accountability rife under modern international aid systems. Such diffusion of accountability opens the door to 'cunning' states to deflect rights claims of their populations. We argue that human rights, as both a normative framework for legal challenges and as a means to create room for active civil society engagement provide a means to contest both the real and the

  1. Pacemaker Created in Human Ventricle by Depressing Inward-Rectifier K+ Current: A Simulation Study

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yue; Li, Qince; Zhang, Henggui

    2016-01-01

    Cardiac conduction disorders are common diseases which cause slow heart rate and syncope. The best way to treat these diseases by now is to implant electronic pacemakers, which, yet, have many disadvantages, such as the limited battery life and infection. Biopacemaker has been expected to replace the electronic devices. Automatic ventricular myocytes (VMs) could show pacemaker activity, which was induced by depressing inward-rectifier K+ current (IK1). In this study, a 2D model of human biopacemaker was created from the ventricular endocardial myocytes. We examined the stability of the created biopacemaker and investigated its driving capability by finding the suitable size and spatial distribution of the pacemaker for robust pacing and driving the surrounding quiescent cardiomyocytes. Our results suggest that the rhythm of the pacemaker is similar to that of the single cell at final stable state. The driving force of the biopacemaker is closely related to the pattern of spatial distribution of the pacemaker. PMID:26998484

  2. Virtuality in human supervisory control: assessing the effects of psychological and social remoteness.

    PubMed

    Stanton, Neville A; Ashleigh, Melanie J; Roberts, Anthony D; Xu, Francis

    2003-10-10

    Virtuality would seem to offer certain advantages for human supervisory control. First, it could provide a physical analogue of the 'real world' environment. Second, it does not require control room engineers to be in the same place as each other. In order to investigate these issues, a low-fidelity simulation of an energy distribution network was developed. The main aims of the research were to assess some of the psychological concerns associated with virtual environments. First, it may result in the social isolation of the people, and it may have dramatic effects upon the nature of the work. Second, a direct physical correspondence with the 'real world' may not best support human supervisory control activities. Experimental teams were asked to control an energy distribution network. Measures of team performance, group identity and core job characteristics were taken. In general terms, the results showed that teams working in the same location performed better than teams who were remote from one another.

  3. Understanding Human Perception of Building Categories in Virtual 3d Cities - a User Study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tutzauer, P.; Becker, S.; Niese, T.; Deussen, O.; Fritsch, D.

    2016-06-01

    Virtual 3D cities are becoming increasingly important as a means of visually communicating diverse urban-related information. To get a deeper understanding of a human's cognitive experience of virtual 3D cities, this paper presents a user study on the human ability to perceive building categories (e.g. residential home, office building, building with shops etc.) from geometric 3D building representations. The study reveals various dependencies between geometric properties of the 3D representations and the perceptibility of the building categories. Knowledge about which geometries are relevant, helpful or obstructive for perceiving a specific building category is derived. The importance and usability of such knowledge is demonstrated based on a perception-guided 3D building abstraction process.

  4. Comprehensive structural and functional characterization of the human kinome by protein structure modeling and ligand virtual screening

    PubMed Central

    Brylinski, Michal

    2010-01-01

    The growing interest in the identification of kinase inhibitors, promising therapeutics in the treatment of many diseases, has created a demand for the structural characterization of the entire human kinome. At the outset of the drug development process, the lead-finding stage, approaches that enrich the screening library with bioactive compounds are needed. Here, protein structure-based methods can play an important role, but despite structural genomics efforts, it is unlikely that the three-dimensional structures of the entire kinome will be available soon. Therefore, at the proteome level, structure-based approaches must rely on predicted models, with a key issue being their utility in virtual ligand screening. In this study, we employ the recently developed FINDSITE/Q-Dock Ligand Homology Modeling approach, which is well suited for proteome-scale applications using predicted structures, to provide extensive structural and functional characterization of the human kinome. Specifically, we construct structure models for the human kinome; these are subsequently subject to virtual screening against a library of more than 2 million compounds. To rank the compounds, we employ a hierarchical approach that combines ligand- and structure-based filters. Modeling accuracy is carefully validated using available experimental data with particularly encouraging results found for the ability to identify, without prior knowledge, specific kinase inhibitors. More generally, the modeling procedure results in a large number of predicted molecular interactions between kinases and small ligands that should be of practical use in the development of novel inhibitors. The dataset is freely available to the academic community a user-friendly web interface at http://cssb.biology.gatech.edu/kinomelhm/as well as the ZINC website (http://zinc.docking.org/applications/2010Apr/Brylinski-2010.tar.gz). PMID:20853887

  5. Speed-accuracy characteristics of human-machine cooperative manipulation using virtual fixtures with variable admittance.

    PubMed

    Marayong, Panadda; Okamura, Allison M

    2004-01-01

    This work explores the effect of virtual fixture admittance on the performance, defined by error and time, of task execution with a human-machine cooperative system. A desired path is obtained using computer vision, and virtual fixtures for assistance in planar path following were implemented on an admittance-controlled robot. The admittance controller uses a velocity gain, so that the speed of the robot is proportional to the force applied by the operator. The level of virtual fixture guidance is determined by the admittance ratio, which is the ratio of the admittance gain of the force components orthogonal to the path to the gain of the force components parallel to the path. In Experiment 1, we found a linear relationship between admittance ratio and performance. In Experiment 2, we examined the effect of admittance ratio on the performance of three tasks: path following, off-path targeting, and obstacle avoidance. An algorithm was developed to select an appropriate admittance ratio based on the nature of the task. Automatic admittance ratio tuning is recommended for next-generation virtual fixtures. Actual or potential applications of this research include surgery, assembly, and manipulation at the macro and micro scales.

  6. The Virtual Teacher (VT) Paradigm: Learning New Patterns of Interpersonal Coordination Using the Human Dynamic Clamp.

    PubMed

    Kostrubiec, Viviane; Dumas, Guillaume; Zanone, Pier-Giorgio; Kelso, J A Scott

    2015-01-01

    The Virtual Teacher paradigm, a version of the Human Dynamic Clamp (HDC), is introduced into studies of learning patterns of inter-personal coordination. Combining mathematical modeling and experimentation, we investigate how the HDC may be used as a Virtual Teacher (VT) to help humans co-produce and internalize new inter-personal coordination pattern(s). Human learners produced rhythmic finger movements whilst observing a computer-driven avatar, animated by dynamic equations stemming from the well-established Haken-Kelso-Bunz (1985) and Schöner-Kelso (1988) models of coordination. We demonstrate that the VT is successful in shifting the pattern co-produced by the VT-human system toward any value (Experiment 1) and that the VT can help humans learn unstable relative phasing patterns (Experiment 2). Using transfer entropy, we find that information flow from one partner to the other increases when VT-human coordination loses stability. This suggests that variable joint performance may actually facilitate interaction, and in the long run learning. VT appears to be a promising tool for exploring basic learning processes involved in social interaction, unraveling the dynamics of information flow between interacting partners, and providing possible rehabilitation opportunities.

  7. The Virtual Teacher (VT) Paradigm: Learning New Patterns of Interpersonal Coordination Using the Human Dynamic Clamp

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    The Virtual Teacher paradigm, a version of the Human Dynamic Clamp (HDC), is introduced into studies of learning patterns of inter-personal coordination. Combining mathematical modeling and experimentation, we investigate how the HDC may be used as a Virtual Teacher (VT) to help humans co-produce and internalize new inter-personal coordination pattern(s). Human learners produced rhythmic finger movements whilst observing a computer-driven avatar, animated by dynamic equations stemming from the well-established Haken-Kelso-Bunz (1985) and Schöner-Kelso (1988) models of coordination. We demonstrate that the VT is successful in shifting the pattern co-produced by the VT-human system toward any value (Experiment 1) and that the VT can help humans learn unstable relative phasing patterns (Experiment 2). Using transfer entropy, we find that information flow from one partner to the other increases when VT-human coordination loses stability. This suggests that variable joint performance may actually facilitate interaction, and in the long run learning. VT appears to be a promising tool for exploring basic learning processes involved in social interaction, unraveling the dynamics of information flow between interacting partners, and providing possible rehabilitation opportunities. PMID:26569608

  8. Creating a Reinforcement Learning Controller for Functional Electrical Stimulation of a Human Arm.

    PubMed

    Thomas, Philip S; Branicky, Michael; van den Bogert, Antonie; Jagodnik, Kathleen

    2008-01-01

    Clinical tests have shown that the dynamics of a human arm, controlled using Functional Electrical Stimulation (FES), can vary significantly between and during trials. In this paper, we study the application of Reinforcement Learning to create a controller that can adapt to these changing dynamics of a human arm. Development and tests were done in simulation using a two-dimensional arm model and Hill-based muscle dynamics. An actor-critic architecture is used with artificial neural networks for both the actor and the critic. We begin by training it using a Proportional Derivative (PD) controller as a supervisor. We then make clinically relevant changes to the dynamics of the arm and test the actor-critic's ability to adapt without supervision in a reasonable number of episodes. PMID:22081795

  9. The demonstration projects: creating the capacity for nursing health human resource planning in Ontario's healthcare organizations.

    PubMed

    Burkoski, Vanessa; Tepper, Joshua

    2010-05-01

    Timely access to healthcare services requires the right number, mix and distribution of appropriately educated nurses, physicians and other healthcare professionals. In Ontario, as in several other jurisdictions, changing demographics, patterns of health service utilization and an aging workforce have created challenges related to the supply of nurses available now and in the future to deliver quality patient care. From 2006 to 2009, the Nursing Secretariat (NS) of Ontario's Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (the ministry) undertook a progressive and comprehensive approach to address the issue of nursing supply across the province through the introduction of 17 Nursing Health Human Resources Demonstration Projects (demonstration projects). The demonstration projects initiative has led to the creation of a unique collection of best practices, tools and resources aimed at improving organizational planning capacity. Evaluation of the initiative generated recommendations that may guide the ministry toward policy and program development to foster improved nursing health human resource planning capacity in Ontario healthcare organizations.

  10. Virtual angioscopy in human coronary arteries with visualization of computational hemodynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wahle, Andreas; Mitchell, Steven C.; Ramaswamy, Sharan D.; Chandran, Krishnan B.; Sonka, Milan

    2001-05-01

    We are presenting a comprehensive system for fusion of intravascular ultrasound (IVUS) data and x-ray angiography, aiming to create a geometrically accurate 3-D or 4-D (3-D plus time) model of the coronary vasculature. For hemodynamic analyses, methods of computational fluid dynamics (CFD) are applied to the reconstructed data, resulting in quantitative estimates of the wall shear stress. Visualization is performed using the Virtual Reality Modeling Language (VRML). Lumen and adventitia borders are modeled as surfaces using indexed face sets; quantitative results are encoded as color per vertex. The endoscopic mode (virtual angioscopy) allows an interactive fly-through animation with variable speed along with arbitrary positioning within the vessel. Since this functionality exceeds those of the standard VRML animation nodes, an external prototype library containing VRML and JavaScript definitions has been developed that provides a 3-D graphical user interface to navigate within the endoscopic mode. The control panel is available on demand, but does neither obstruct any vessel features when not needed, nor does it limit the viewport for the scene. Preliminary results showed a good feasibility of the overall procedure, and a high reliability of the fusion and CFD methods as well as the visualization with the virtual endoscopy VRML library.

  11. A new dynamic 3D virtual methodology for teaching the mechanics of atrial septation as seen in the human heart

    PubMed Central

    Schleich, Jean-Marc; Dillenseger, Jean-Louis; Houyel, Lucile; Almange, Claude; Anderson, Robert H.

    2009-01-01

    Background Learning embryology remains difficult, since it requires understanding of many complex phenomena. The temporal evolution of developmental events has classically been illustrated using cartoons, which create difficulty in linking spatial and temporal aspects, such correlation being the keystone of descriptive embryology. Methods We synthesized the bibliographic data from recent studies of atrial septal development. On the basis of this synthesis, consensus on the stages of atrial septation as seen in the human heart has been reached by a group of experts in cardiac embryology and paediatric cardiology. This has permitted the preparation of three-dimensional (3-D) computer graphic objects for the anatomical components involved in the different stages of normal human atrial septation. Results We have provided a virtual guide to the process of normal atrial septation, the animation providing an appreciation of the temporal and morphologic events necessary to separate the systemic and pulmonary venous returns. Conclusion We have shown that our animations of normal human atrial septation increase significantly the teaching of the complex developmental processes involved, and provide a new dynamic for the process of learning. PMID:19363807

  12. A new dynamic 3D virtual methodology for teaching the mechanics of atrial septation as seen in the human heart.

    PubMed

    Schleich, Jean-Marc; Dillenseger, Jean-Louis; Houyel, Lucile; Almange, Claude; Anderson, Robert H

    2009-01-01

    Learning embryology remains difficult, since it requires understanding of many complex phenomena. The temporal evolution of developmental events has classically been illustrated using cartoons, which create difficulty in linking spatial and temporal aspects, such correlation being the keystone of descriptive embryology. We synthesized the bibliographic data from recent studies of atrial septal development. On the basis of this synthesis, consensus on the stages of atrial septation as seen in the human heart has been reached by a group of experts in cardiac embryology and pediatric cardiology. This has permitted the preparation of three-dimensional (3D) computer graphic objects for the anatomical components involved in the different stages of normal human atrial septation. We have provided a virtual guide to the process of normal atrial septation, the animation providing an appreciation of the temporal and morphologic events necessary to separate the systemic and pulmonary venous returns. We have shown that our animations of normal human atrial septation increase significantly the teaching of the complex developmental processes involved, and provide a new dynamic for the process of learning. PMID:19363807

  13. Web-based e-learning and virtual lab of human-artificial immune system.

    PubMed

    Gong, Tao; Ding, Yongsheng; Xiong, Qin

    2014-05-01

    Human immune system is as important in keeping the body healthy as the brain in supporting the intelligence. However, the traditional models of the human immune system are built on the mathematics equations, which are not easy for students to understand. To help the students to understand the immune systems, a web-based e-learning approach with virtual lab is designed for the intelligent system control course by using new intelligent educational technology. Comparing the traditional graduate educational model within the classroom, the web-based e-learning with the virtual lab shows the higher inspiration in guiding the graduate students to think independently and innovatively, as the students said. It has been found that this web-based immune e-learning system with the online virtual lab is useful for teaching the graduate students to understand the immune systems in an easier way and design their simulations more creatively and cooperatively. The teaching practice shows that the optimum web-based e-learning system can be used to increase the learning effectiveness of the students.

  14. Virtual test: A student-centered software to measure student's critical thinking on human disease

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rusyati, Lilit; Firman, Harry

    2016-02-01

    The study "Virtual Test: A Student-Centered Software to Measure Student's Critical Thinking on Human Disease" is descriptive research. The background is importance of computer-based test that use element and sub element of critical thinking. Aim of this study is development of multiple choices to measure critical thinking that made by student-centered software. Instruments to collect data are (1) construct validity sheet by expert judge (lecturer and medical doctor) and professional judge (science teacher); and (2) test legibility sheet by science teacher and junior high school student. Participants consisted of science teacher, lecturer, and medical doctor as validator; and the students as respondent. Result of this study are describe about characteristic of virtual test that use to measure student's critical thinking on human disease, analyze result of legibility test by students and science teachers, analyze result of expert judgment by science teachers and medical doctor, and analyze result of trial test of virtual test at junior high school. Generally, result analysis shown characteristic of multiple choices to measure critical thinking was made by eight elements and 26 sub elements that developed by Inch et al.; complete by relevant information; and have validity and reliability more than "enough". Furthermore, specific characteristic of multiple choices to measure critical thinking are information in form science comic, table, figure, article, and video; correct structure of language; add source of citation; and question can guide student to critical thinking logically.

  15. Web-based e-learning and virtual lab of human-artificial immune system.

    PubMed

    Gong, Tao; Ding, Yongsheng; Xiong, Qin

    2014-05-01

    Human immune system is as important in keeping the body healthy as the brain in supporting the intelligence. However, the traditional models of the human immune system are built on the mathematics equations, which are not easy for students to understand. To help the students to understand the immune systems, a web-based e-learning approach with virtual lab is designed for the intelligent system control course by using new intelligent educational technology. Comparing the traditional graduate educational model within the classroom, the web-based e-learning with the virtual lab shows the higher inspiration in guiding the graduate students to think independently and innovatively, as the students said. It has been found that this web-based immune e-learning system with the online virtual lab is useful for teaching the graduate students to understand the immune systems in an easier way and design their simulations more creatively and cooperatively. The teaching practice shows that the optimum web-based e-learning system can be used to increase the learning effectiveness of the students. PMID:24816704

  16. Discovery of Novel Human Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor-2 Inhibitors by Structure-based Virtual Screening

    PubMed Central

    Shi, Zheng; Yu, Tian; Sun, Rong; Wang, Shan; Chen, Xiao-Qian; Cheng, Li-Jia; Liu, Rong

    2016-01-01

    Background: Human epidermal growth factor receptor-2 (HER2) is a trans-membrane receptor like protein, and aberrant signaling of HER2 is implicated in many human cancers, such as ovarian cancer, gastric cancer, and prostate cancer, most notably breast cancer. Moreover, it has been in the spotlight in the recent years as a promising new target for therapy of breast cancer. Objective: Since virtual screening has become an integral part of the drug discovery process, it is of great significant to identify novel HER2 inhibitors by structure-based virtual screening. Materials and Methods: In this study, we carried out a series of elegant bioinformatics approaches, such as virtual screening and molecular dynamics (MD) simulations to identify HER2 inhibitors from Food and Drug Administration-approved small molecule drug as potential “new use” drugs. Results: Molecular docking identified top 10 potential drugs which showed spectrum affinity to HER2. Moreover, MD simulations suggested that ZINC08214629 (Nonoxynol-9) and ZINC03830276 (Benzonatate) might exert potential inhibitory effects against HER2-targeted anti-breast cancer therapeutics. Conclusion: Together, our findings may provide successful application of virtual screening studies in the lead discovery process, and suggest that our discovered small molecules could be effective HER2 inhibitor candidates for further study. SUMMARY A series of elegant bioinformatics approaches, including virtual screening and molecular dynamics (MD) simulations were took advantage to identify human epidermal growth factor receptor-2 (HER2) inhibitors. Molecular docking recognized top 10 candidate compounds, which showed spectrum affinity to HER2. Further, MD simulations suggested that ZINC08214629 (Nonoxynol-9) and ZINC03830276 (Benzonatate) in candidate compounds were identified as potential “new use” drugs against HER2-targeted anti-breast cancer therapeutics. Abbreviations used: HER2: Human epidermal growth factor receptor-2

  17. How Human Factors Drove the Design and Implementation of the Virtual Windtunnel

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bryson, Steve; Gerald-Yamasaki, Michael (Technical Monitor)

    1998-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation describes decisions made at the NASA Ames Research Center during its development of a virtual windtunnel to assist humans in visualizing computational fluid dynamics simulations. User requirements for the system include the simulation of vortical structure, pressure distribution, and overall sense of flow. In addition, the system needs to support a variety of interfaces, excluding head mounts, and needs to use an object oriented approach. Direct manipulation of the system is most user-friendly when limited to only grab and point gestures. 'Visualization control tools' (vtools) improve the realism of the system. The necessary object oriented programming is in C++ and openGL. Users interact with objects called 'tools', which include vtools and tools which control the virtual wind tunnel environment. Other objects include data objects accessed by the visualizations. Visualizations can be added to the system by the user. The presentation includes a discussion of run-time architecture, and issues related to computation and implementation.

  18. The development, assessment and validation of virtual reality for human anatomy instruction

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Marshall, Karen Benn

    1996-01-01

    This research project seeks to meet the objective of science training by developing, assessing, validating and utilizing VR as a human anatomy training medium. Current anatomy instruction is primarily in the form of lectures and usage of textbooks. In ideal situations, anatomic models, computer-based instruction, and cadaver dissection are utilized to augment traditional methods of instruction. At many institutions, lack of financial resources limits anatomy instruction to textbooks and lectures. However, human anatomy is three-dimensional, unlike the one-dimensional depiction found in textbooks and the two-dimensional depiction found on the computer. Virtual reality allows one to step through the computer screen into a 3-D artificial world. The primary objective of this project is to produce a virtual reality application of the abdominopelvic region of a human cadaver that can be taken back to the classroom. The hypothesis is that an immersive learning environment affords quicker anatomic recognition and orientation and a greater level of retention in human anatomy instruction. The goal is to augment not replace traditional modes of instruction.

  19. Creating a Controlled Vocabulary for the Ethics of Human Research: Towards a Biomedical Ethics Ontology

    PubMed Central

    Koepsell, David; Arp, Robert; Fostel, Jennifer; Smith, Barry

    2009-01-01

    Ontologies describe reality in specific domains in ways that can bridge various disciplines and languages. They allow easier access and integration of information that is collected by different groups. Ontologies are currently used in the biomedical sciences, geography, and law. A Biomedical Ethics Ontology (BMEO) would benefit members of ethics committees who deal with protocols and consent forms spanning numerous fields of inquiry. There already exists the Ontology for Biomedical Investigations (OBI); the proposed BMEO would interoperate with OBI, creating a powerful information tool. We define a domain ontology and begin to construct a BMEO, focused on the process of evaluating human research protocols. Finally, we show how our BMEO can have practical applications for ethics committees. This paper describes ongoing research and a strategy for its broader continuation and cooperation. PMID:19374479

  20. Human Motion Tracking and Glove-Based User Interfaces for Virtual Environments in ANVIL

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dumas, Joseph D., II

    2002-01-01

    The Army/NASA Virtual Innovations Laboratory (ANVIL) at Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) provides an environment where engineers and other personnel can investigate novel applications of computer simulation and Virtual Reality (VR) technologies. Among the many hardware and software resources in ANVIL are several high-performance Silicon Graphics computer systems and a number of commercial software packages, such as Division MockUp by Parametric Technology Corporation (PTC) and Jack by Unigraphics Solutions, Inc. These hardware and software platforms are used in conjunction with various VR peripheral I/O (input / output) devices, CAD (computer aided design) models, etc. to support the objectives of the MSFC Engineering Systems Department/Systems Engineering Support Group (ED42) by studying engineering designs, chiefly from the standpoint of human factors and ergonomics. One of the more time-consuming tasks facing ANVIL personnel involves the testing and evaluation of peripheral I/O devices and the integration of new devices with existing hardware and software platforms. Another important challenge is the development of innovative user interfaces to allow efficient, intuitive interaction between simulation users and the virtual environments they are investigating. As part of his Summer Faculty Fellowship, the author was tasked with verifying the operation of some recently acquired peripheral interface devices and developing new, easy-to-use interfaces that could be used with existing VR hardware and software to better support ANVIL projects.

  1. Assessing endocranial variations in great apes and humans using 3D data from virtual endocasts.

    PubMed

    Bienvenu, Thibaut; Guy, Franck; Coudyzer, Walter; Gilissen, Emmanuel; Roualdès, Georges; Vignaud, Patrick; Brunet, Michel

    2011-06-01

    Modern humans are characterized by their large, complex, and specialized brain. Human brain evolution can be addressed through direct evidence provided by fossil hominid endocasts (i.e. paleoneurology), or through indirect evidence of extant species comparative neurology. Here we use the second approach, providing an extant comparative framework for hominid paleoneurological studies. We explore endocranial size and shape differences among great apes and humans, as well as between sexes. We virtually extracted 72 endocasts, sampling all extant great ape species and modern humans, and digitized 37 landmarks on each for 3D generalized Procrustes analysis. All species can be differentiated by their endocranial shape. Among great apes, endocranial shapes vary from short (orangutans) to long (gorillas), perhaps in relation to different facial orientations. Endocranial shape differences among African apes are partly allometric. Major endocranial traits distinguishing humans from great apes are endocranial globularity, reflecting neurological reorganization, and features linked to structural responses to posture and bipedal locomotion. Human endocasts are also characterized by posterior location of foramina rotunda relative to optic canals, which could be correlated to lesser subnasal prognathism compared to living great apes. Species with larger brains (gorillas and humans) display greater sexual dimorphism in endocranial size, while sexual dimorphism in endocranial shape is restricted to gorillas, differences between males and females being at least partly due to allometry. Our study of endocranial variations in extant great apes and humans provides a new comparative dataset for studies of fossil hominid endocasts.

  2. A Layered Approach for Robust Spatial Virtual Human Pose Reconstruction Using a Still Image.

    PubMed

    Guo, Chengyu; Ruan, Songsong; Liang, Xiaohui; Zhao, Qinping

    2016-02-20

    Pedestrian detection and human pose estimation are instructive for reconstructing a three-dimensional scenario and for robot navigation, particularly when large amounts of vision data are captured using various data-recording techniques. Using an unrestricted capture scheme, which produces occlusions or breezing, the information describing each part of a human body and the relationship between each part or even different pedestrians must be present in a still image. Using this framework, a multi-layered, spatial, virtual, human pose reconstruction framework is presented in this study to recover any deficient information in planar images. In this framework, a hierarchical parts-based deep model is used to detect body parts by using the available restricted information in a still image and is then combined with spatial Markov random fields to re-estimate the accurate joint positions in the deep network. Then, the planar estimation results are mapped onto a virtual three-dimensional space using multiple constraints to recover any deficient spatial information. The proposed approach can be viewed as a general pre-processing method to guide the generation of continuous, three-dimensional motion data. The experiment results of this study are used to describe the effectiveness and usability of the proposed approach.

  3. A Layered Approach for Robust Spatial Virtual Human Pose Reconstruction Using a Still Image

    PubMed Central

    Guo, Chengyu; Ruan, Songsong; Liang, Xiaohui; Zhao, Qinping

    2016-01-01

    Pedestrian detection and human pose estimation are instructive for reconstructing a three-dimensional scenario and for robot navigation, particularly when large amounts of vision data are captured using various data-recording techniques. Using an unrestricted capture scheme, which produces occlusions or breezing, the information describing each part of a human body and the relationship between each part or even different pedestrians must be present in a still image. Using this framework, a multi-layered, spatial, virtual, human pose reconstruction framework is presented in this study to recover any deficient information in planar images. In this framework, a hierarchical parts-based deep model is used to detect body parts by using the available restricted information in a still image and is then combined with spatial Markov random fields to re-estimate the accurate joint positions in the deep network. Then, the planar estimation results are mapped onto a virtual three-dimensional space using multiple constraints to recover any deficient spatial information. The proposed approach can be viewed as a general pre-processing method to guide the generation of continuous, three-dimensional motion data. The experiment results of this study are used to describe the effectiveness and usability of the proposed approach. PMID:26907289

  4. PICU Nurses' Pain Assessments And Intervention Choices for Virtual Human And Written Vignettes

    PubMed Central

    LaFond, Cynthia M.; Vincent, Catherine Van Hulle; Corte, Colleen; Hershberger, Patricia E.; Johnson, Andrew; Park, Chang G.; Wilkie, Diana J.

    2015-01-01

    The purpose of this concurrent mixed-methods study was to 1) examine the factors pediatric intensive care unit nurses consider when assessing and intervening for children who report severe pain and to 2) determine the effect of child behavior and diagnosis on the nurses’ pain ratings and intervention choices for written and virtual human vignettes. Quantitative and qualitative results substantiated that despite recommendations to use self-report, many PICU nurses use behavior as the primary indicator to assess and treat pain, even when a child is old enough to articulate pain intensity and there is sufficient cause for pain to be present. PMID:25682019

  5. Development of realistic physical breast phantoms matched to virtual breast phantoms based on human subject data

    SciTech Connect

    Kiarashi, Nooshin; Nolte, Adam C.; Sturgeon, Gregory M.; Ghate, Sujata V.; Segars, William P.; Nolte, Loren W.; Samei, Ehsan; and others

    2015-07-15

    Purpose: Physical phantoms are essential for the development, optimization, and evaluation of x-ray breast imaging systems. Recognizing the major effect of anatomy on image quality and clinical performance, such phantoms should ideally reflect the three-dimensional structure of the human breast. Currently, there is no commercially available three-dimensional physical breast phantom that is anthropomorphic. The authors present the development of a new suite of physical breast phantoms based on human data. Methods: The phantoms were designed to match the extended cardiac-torso virtual breast phantoms that were based on dedicated breast computed tomography images of human subjects. The phantoms were fabricated by high-resolution multimaterial additive manufacturing (3D printing) technology. The glandular equivalency of the photopolymer materials was measured relative to breast tissue-equivalent plastic materials. Based on the current state-of-the-art in the technology and available materials, two variations were fabricated. The first was a dual-material phantom, the Doublet. Fibroglandular tissue and skin were represented by the most radiographically dense material available; adipose tissue was represented by the least radiographically dense material. The second variation, the Singlet, was fabricated with a single material to represent fibroglandular tissue and skin. It was subsequently filled with adipose-equivalent materials including oil, beeswax, and permanent urethane-based polymer. Simulated microcalcification clusters were further included in the phantoms via crushed eggshells. The phantoms were imaged and characterized visually and quantitatively. Results: The mammographic projections and tomosynthesis reconstructed images of the fabricated phantoms yielded realistic breast background. The mammograms of the phantoms demonstrated close correlation with simulated mammographic projection images of the corresponding virtual phantoms. Furthermore, power

  6. Optical versus Virtual: Teaching Assistant Perceptions of the Use of Virtual Microscopy in an Undergraduate Human Anatomy Course

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Collier, Larissa; Dunham, Stacey; Braun, Mark W.; O'Loughlin, Valerie Dean

    2012-01-01

    Many studies that evaluate the introduction of technology in the classroom focus on student performance and student evaluations. This study focuses on instructor evaluation of the introduction of virtual microscopy into an undergraduate anatomy class. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with graduate teaching assistants (TA) and analyzed…

  7. Future Evolution of Virtual Worlds as Communication Environments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prisco, Giulio

    Extensive experience creating locations and activities inside virtual worlds provides the basis for contemplating their future. Users of virtual worlds are diverse in their goals for these online environments; for example, immersionists want them to be alternative realities disconnected from real life, whereas augmentationists want them to be communication media supporting real-life activities. As the technology improves, the diversity of virtual worlds will increase along with their significance. Many will incorporate more advanced virtual reality, or serve as major media for long-distance collaboration, or become the venues for futurist social movements. Key issues are how people can create their own virtual worlds, travel across worlds, and experience a variety of multimedia immersive environments. This chapter concludes by noting the view among some computer scientists that future technologies will permit uploading human personalities to artificial intelligence avatars, thereby enhancing human beings and rendering the virtual worlds entirely real.

  8. To react or not to react? Intrinsic stochasticity of human control in virtual stick balancing

    PubMed Central

    Zgonnikov, Arkady; Lubashevsky, Ihor; Kanemoto, Shigeru; Miyazawa, Toru; Suzuki, Takashi

    2014-01-01

    Understanding how humans control unstable systems is central to many research problems, with applications ranging from quiet standing to aircraft landing. Increasingly, much evidence appears in favour of event-driven control hypothesis: human operators only start actively controlling the system when the discrepancy between the current and desired system states becomes large enough. The event-driven models based on the concept of threshold can explain many features of the experimentally observed dynamics. However, much still remains unclear about the dynamics of human-controlled systems, which likely indicates that humans use more intricate control mechanisms. This paper argues that control activation in humans may be not threshold-driven, but instead intrinsically stochastic, noise-driven. Specifically, we suggest that control activation stems from stochastic interplay between the operator's need to keep the controlled system near the goal state, on the one hand, and the tendency to postpone interrupting the system dynamics, on the other hand. We propose a model capturing this interplay and show that it matches the experimental data on human balancing of virtual overdamped stick. Our results illuminate that the noise-driven activation mechanism plays a crucial role at least in the considered task, and, hypothetically, in a broad range of human-controlled processes. PMID:25056217

  9. Virtual dissection and comparative connectivity of the superior longitudinal fasciculus in chimpanzees and humans

    PubMed Central

    Hecht, Erin E.; Gutman, David A.; Bradley, Bruce A.; Preuss, Todd M.; Stout, Dietrich

    2015-01-01

    Many of the behavioral capacities that distinguish humans from other primates rely on fronto-parietal circuits. The superior longitudinal fasciculus (SLF) is the primary white matter tract connecting lateral frontal with lateral parietal regions; it is distinct from the arcuate fasciculus, which interconnects the frontal and temporal lobes. Here we report a direct, quantitative comparison of SLF connectivity using virtual in vivo dissection of the SLF in chimpanzees and humans. SLF I, the superior-most branch of the SLF, showed similar patterns of connectivity between humans and chimpanzees, and was proportionally volumetrically larger in chimpanzees. SLF II, the middle branch, and SLF III, the inferior-most branch, showed species differences in frontal connectivity. In humans, SLF II showed greater connectivity with dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, whereas in chimps SLF II showed greater connectivity with the inferior frontal gyrus. SLF III was right-lateralized and proportionally volumetrically larger in humans, and human SLF III showed relatively reduced connectivity with dorsal premotor cortex and greater extension into the anterior inferior frontal gyrus, especially in the right hemisphere. These results have implications for the evolution of fronto-parietal functions including spatial attention to observed actions, social learning, and tool use, and are in line with previous research suggesting a unique role for the right anterior inferior frontal gyrus in the evolution of human fronto-parietal network architecture. PMID:25534109

  10. How the human brain goes virtual: distinct cortical regions of the person-processing network are involved in self-identification with virtual agents.

    PubMed

    Ganesh, Shanti; van Schie, Hein T; de Lange, Floris P; Thompson, Evan; Wigboldus, Daniël H J

    2012-07-01

    Millions of people worldwide engage in online role-playing with their avatar, a virtual agent that represents the self. Previous behavioral studies have indicated that many gamers identify more strongly with their avatar than with their biological self. Through their avatar, gamers develop social networks and learn new social-cognitive skills. The cognitive neurosciences have yet to identify the neural processes that underlie self-identification with these virtual agents. We applied functional neuroimaging to 22 long-term online gamers and 21 nongaming controls, while they rated personality traits of self, avatar, and familiar others. Strikingly, neuroimaging data revealed greater avatar-referential cortical activity in the left inferior parietal lobe, a region associated with self-identification from a third-person perspective. The magnitude of this brain activity correlated positively with the propensity to incorporate external body enhancements into one's bodily identity. Avatar-referencing furthermore recruited greater activity in the rostral anterior cingulate gyrus, suggesting relatively greater emotional self-involvement with one's avatar. Post-scanning behavioral data revealed superior recognition memory for avatar relative to others. Interestingly, memory for avatar positively covaried with play duration. These findings significantly advance our knowledge about the brain's plasticity to self-identify with virtual agents and the human cognitive-affective potential to live and learn in virtual worlds.

  11. Human fear conditioning conducted in full immersion 3-dimensional virtual reality.

    PubMed

    Huff, Nicole C; Zeilinski, David J; Fecteau, Matthew E; Brady, Rachael; LaBar, Kevin S

    2010-01-01

    Fear conditioning is a widely used paradigm in non-human animal research to investigate the neural mechanisms underlying fear and anxiety. A major challenge in conducting conditioning studies in humans is the ability to strongly manipulate or simulate the environmental contexts that are associated with conditioned emotional behaviors. In this regard, virtual reality (VR) technology is a promising tool. Yet, adapting this technology to meet experimental constraints requires special accommodations. Here we address the methodological issues involved when conducting fear conditioning in a fully immersive 6-sided VR environment and present fear conditioning data. In the real world, traumatic events occur in complex environments that are made up of many cues, engaging all of our sensory modalities. For example, cues that form the environmental configuration include not only visual elements, but aural, olfactory, and even tactile. In rodent studies of fear conditioning animals are fully immersed in a context that is rich with novel visual, tactile and olfactory cues. However, standard laboratory tests of fear conditioning in humans are typically conducted in a nondescript room in front of a flat or 2D computer screen and do not replicate the complexity of real world experiences. On the other hand, a major limitation of clinical studies aimed at reducing (extinguishing) fear and preventing relapse in anxiety disorders is that treatment occurs after participants have acquired a fear in an uncontrolled and largely unknown context. Thus the experimenters are left without information about the duration of exposure, the true nature of the stimulus, and associated background cues in the environment. In the absence of this information it can be difficult to truly extinguish a fear that is both cue and context-dependent. Virtual reality environments address these issues by providing the complexity of the real world, and at the same time allowing experimenters to constrain fear

  12. Instructional Design Practices in the Design and Development of Digital Humanities Virtual Environments (DH-VEs)

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kelly, Valerie Hunter

    2011-01-01

    Virtual environments, virtual worlds, simulations, 3D models are loaded with potential, promise, and problems. While learning in virtual settings is still being researched, instructional designers are challenged as to which instructional design practices are best suited for virtual environments (VEs). The problem is there is a lack of a conceptual…

  13. Using comparative genomics to reorder the human genome sequence into a virtual sheep genome

    PubMed Central

    Dalrymple, Brian P; Kirkness, Ewen F; Nefedov, Mikhail; McWilliam, Sean; Ratnakumar, Abhirami; Barris, Wes; Zhao, Shaying; Shetty, Jyoti; Maddox, Jillian F; O'Grady, Margaret; Nicholas, Frank; Crawford, Allan M; Smith, Tim; de Jong, Pieter J; McEwan, John; Oddy, V Hutton; Cockett, Noelle E

    2007-01-01

    Background Is it possible to construct an accurate and detailed subgene-level map of a genome using bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) end sequences, a sparse marker map, and the sequences of other genomes? Results A sheep BAC library, CHORI-243, was constructed and the BAC end sequences were determined and mapped with high sensitivity and low specificity onto the frameworks of the human, dog, and cow genomes. To maximize genome coverage, the coordinates of all BAC end sequence hits to the cow and dog genomes were also converted to the equivalent human genome coordinates. The 84,624 sheep BACs (about 5.4-fold genome coverage) with paired ends in the correct orientation (tail-to-tail) and spacing, combined with information from sheep BAC comparative genome contigs (CGCs) built separately on the dog and cow genomes, were used to construct 1,172 sheep BAC-CGCs, covering 91.2% of the human genome. Clustered non-tail-to-tail and outsize BACs located close to the ends of many BAC-CGCs linked BAC-CGCs covering about 70% of the genome to at least one other BAC-CGC on the same chromosome. Using the BAC-CGCs, the intrachromosomal and interchromosomal BAC-CGC linkage information, human/cow and vertebrate synteny, and the sheep marker map, a virtual sheep genome was constructed. To identify BACs potentially located in gaps between BAC-CGCs, an additional set of 55,668 sheep BACs were positioned on the sheep genome with lower confidence. A coordinate conversion process allowed us to transfer human genes and other genome features to the virtual sheep genome to display on a sheep genome browser. Conclusion We demonstrate that limited sequencing of BACs combined with positioning on a well assembled genome and integrating locations from other less well assembled genomes can yield extensive, detailed subgene-level maps of mammalian genomes, for which genomic resources are currently limited. PMID:17663790

  14. Implementing a virtual reality paradigm in human anatomy/physiology college curricula.

    PubMed

    St Aubin, H

    2001-01-01

    Modes of instruction in the college course called Human Anatomy/Physiology are changing. Due to ethical concerns and the ever-increasing source of new physiological data, there is a need for enhancements to assist the instructor and student. The computer science of virtual reality (VR) provides a method to electronically educate, train, prototype, test and evaluate new enhancements to the college curricula. This study detailed the modeling and simulation of a skeletal human hand with degrees of freedom of movement, which provided the students with a physiological representation of some of the movements of the hand. The primary objectives of the study were to assess the use of the VR simulation by college students and to assess the potential learning outcomes of students in their use of the VR simulation. The simulation was implemented into classes of Human Anatomy/Physiology as an adjunct enhancement for the students' use. The expectation centered on the constructivist theory that students develop an analytic outlook to the various articulations of the human skeleton. Positive results were shown based on the answers to the questionnaire, summary and post-test taken by the students, after their use of the VR simulation. The results supported the constructivist theory that critical thinking took place. The results showed that the virtual reality simulation enhanced the learning ability of the students. The recommendations of the study include future experimentation to be done on increasing the number of VR simulations, incorporating the VR simulations into undergraduate courses, testing the outcomes, and following the progression of students into graduate programs that are using VR simulations. Faculty and administration are advised to consider implementing the paradigm of VR simulations in undergraduate courses of Human Anatomy/Physiology.

  15. Virtual Worlds for Educators

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dembo, Steve

    2008-01-01

    This article describes an online experience that has not only created a fantasy world for the general public but has enabled some tech-savvy educators to create virtual educational opportunities. Second Life, or SL, is a 3-D Internet-based virtual world created by Linden Lab and populated by nearly 1,000,000 active users worldwide since 2003.…

  16. The Water Suitcase of Migrants: Assessing Virtual Water Fluxes Associated to Human Migration.

    PubMed

    Metulini, Rodolfo; Tamea, Stefania; Laio, Francesco; Riccaboni, Massimo

    2016-01-01

    Disentangling the relations between human migrations and water resources is relevant for food security and trade policy in water-scarce countries. It is commonly believed that human migrations are beneficial to the water endowments of origin countries for reducing the pressure on local resources. We show here that such belief is over-simplistic. We reframe the problem by considering the international food trade and the corresponding virtual water fluxes, which quantify the water used for the production of traded agricultural commodities. By means of robust analytical tools, we show that migrants strengthen the commercial links between countries, triggering trade fluxes caused by food consumption habits persisting after migration. Thus migrants significantly increase the virtual water fluxes and the use of water in the countries of origin. The flux ascribable to each migrant, i.e. the "water suitcase", is found to have increased from 321 m3/y in 1990 to 1367 m3/y in 2010. A comparison with the water footprint of individuals shows that where the water suitcase exceeds the water footprint of inhabitants, migrations turn out to be detrimental to the water endowments of origin countries, challenging the common perception that migrations tend to relieve the pressure on the local (water) resources of origin countries.

  17. The Water Suitcase of Migrants: Assessing Virtual Water Fluxes Associated to Human Migration.

    PubMed

    Metulini, Rodolfo; Tamea, Stefania; Laio, Francesco; Riccaboni, Massimo

    2016-01-01

    Disentangling the relations between human migrations and water resources is relevant for food security and trade policy in water-scarce countries. It is commonly believed that human migrations are beneficial to the water endowments of origin countries for reducing the pressure on local resources. We show here that such belief is over-simplistic. We reframe the problem by considering the international food trade and the corresponding virtual water fluxes, which quantify the water used for the production of traded agricultural commodities. By means of robust analytical tools, we show that migrants strengthen the commercial links between countries, triggering trade fluxes caused by food consumption habits persisting after migration. Thus migrants significantly increase the virtual water fluxes and the use of water in the countries of origin. The flux ascribable to each migrant, i.e. the "water suitcase", is found to have increased from 321 m3/y in 1990 to 1367 m3/y in 2010. A comparison with the water footprint of individuals shows that where the water suitcase exceeds the water footprint of inhabitants, migrations turn out to be detrimental to the water endowments of origin countries, challenging the common perception that migrations tend to relieve the pressure on the local (water) resources of origin countries. PMID:27124488

  18. The Water Suitcase of Migrants: Assessing Virtual Water Fluxes Associated to Human Migration

    PubMed Central

    Metulini, Rodolfo; Tamea, Stefania; Laio, Francesco; Riccaboni, Massimo

    2016-01-01

    Disentangling the relations between human migrations and water resources is relevant for food security and trade policy in water-scarce countries. It is commonly believed that human migrations are beneficial to the water endowments of origin countries for reducing the pressure on local resources. We show here that such belief is over-simplistic. We reframe the problem by considering the international food trade and the corresponding virtual water fluxes, which quantify the water used for the production of traded agricultural commodities. By means of robust analytical tools, we show that migrants strengthen the commercial links between countries, triggering trade fluxes caused by food consumption habits persisting after migration. Thus migrants significantly increase the virtual water fluxes and the use of water in the countries of origin. The flux ascribable to each migrant, i.e. the “water suitcase”, is found to have increased from 321 m3/y in 1990 to 1367 m3/y in 2010. A comparison with the water footprint of individuals shows that where the water suitcase exceeds the water footprint of inhabitants, migrations turn out to be detrimental to the water endowments of origin countries, challenging the common perception that migrations tend to relieve the pressure on the local (water) resources of origin countries. PMID:27124488

  19. Virtual Prototyping of a Lander for the Fast Transfer of Humans to Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paton, M.; McSorley, A.

    This paper uses virtual prototyping as a technique to elucidate the challenging problem of landing humans on Mars. If no countermeasures are taken during the transit from Earth the capability of humans to perform effectively on the surface of Mars will be seriously compromised. Microgravity will cause atrophy of load bearing bones and muscles weakening the crew. New treatments and technologies together with a fast transfer to Mars could help mitigate these effects. A consequence of using fast interplanetary trajectories, however, is the high arrival speed at Mars and if aerocapture is used, high mechanical and heat loads on the lander. The high decelerations could be non-survivable for weakened crewmembers. It is therefore highly desirable to use a vehicle aeroshell that can reduce the g levels to a safe level. Aeroshell options in terms of g-levels were considered using computer simulations together with other mission requirements such as sufficient living space and good payload mass efficiency. The results were then used to choose an aeroshell for the lander. Some details of the lander, such as internal layout, aerodynamic control surfaces, location of rocket engines, were then further prototyped in virtual environments.

  20. Using Virtual Reality to Investigate Comparative Spatial Cognitive Abilities in Chimpanzees and Humans

    PubMed Central

    Dolins, Francine L.; Klimowicz, Christopher; Kelley, John; Menzel, Charles R.

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of the present study was to determine the efficacy of investigating spatial cognitive abilities across two primate species using virtual reality. In this study, we presented four captive adult chimpanzees and sixteen humans (twelve children and four adults) with simulated environments of increasing complexity and size to compare species’ attention to visuo-spatial features during navigation. The specific task required participants to attend to landmarks in navigating along routes in order to localize the goal site. Both species were found to discriminate effectively between positive and negative landmarks. Assessing path efficiency revealed that both species and all age groups used relatively efficient, distance reducing routes during navigation. Compared to the chimpanzees and adult humans however, younger children’s performance decreased as maze complexity and size increased. Surprisingly, in the most complex maze category the humans’ performance was less accurate compared to one female chimpanzee. These results suggest that the method of using virtual reality to test captive primates, and in particular, chimpanzees, affords significant cross-species investigations of spatial cognitive and developmental comparisons. PMID:24390812

  1. Virtual Reality for Artificial Intelligence: human-centered simulation for social science.

    PubMed

    Cipresso, Pietro; Riva, Giuseppe

    2015-01-01

    There is a long last tradition in Artificial Intelligence as use of Robots endowing human peculiarities, from a cognitive and emotional point of view, and not only in shape. Today Artificial Intelligence is more oriented to several form of collective intelligence, also building robot simulators (hardware or software) to deeply understand collective behaviors in human beings and society as a whole. Modeling has also been crucial in the social sciences, to understand how complex systems can arise from simple rules. However, while engineers' simulations can be performed in the physical world using robots, for social scientist this is impossible. For decades, researchers tried to improve simulations by endowing artificial agents with simple and complex rules that emulated human behavior also by using artificial intelligence (AI). To include human beings and their real intelligence within artificial societies is now the big challenge. We present an hybrid (human-artificial) platform where experiments can be performed by simulated artificial worlds in the following manner: 1) agents' behaviors are regulated by the behaviors shown in Virtual Reality involving real human beings exposed to specific situations to simulate, and 2) technology transfers these rules into the artificial world. These form a closed-loop of real behaviors inserted into artificial agents, which can be used to study real society. PMID:26799903

  2. Virtual Reality for Artificial Intelligence: human-centered simulation for social science.

    PubMed

    Cipresso, Pietro; Riva, Giuseppe

    2015-01-01

    There is a long last tradition in Artificial Intelligence as use of Robots endowing human peculiarities, from a cognitive and emotional point of view, and not only in shape. Today Artificial Intelligence is more oriented to several form of collective intelligence, also building robot simulators (hardware or software) to deeply understand collective behaviors in human beings and society as a whole. Modeling has also been crucial in the social sciences, to understand how complex systems can arise from simple rules. However, while engineers' simulations can be performed in the physical world using robots, for social scientist this is impossible. For decades, researchers tried to improve simulations by endowing artificial agents with simple and complex rules that emulated human behavior also by using artificial intelligence (AI). To include human beings and their real intelligence within artificial societies is now the big challenge. We present an hybrid (human-artificial) platform where experiments can be performed by simulated artificial worlds in the following manner: 1) agents' behaviors are regulated by the behaviors shown in Virtual Reality involving real human beings exposed to specific situations to simulate, and 2) technology transfers these rules into the artificial world. These form a closed-loop of real behaviors inserted into artificial agents, which can be used to study real society.

  3. Large-Scale Population Study of Human Cell Lines Indicates that Dosage Compensation Is Virtually Complete

    PubMed Central

    Johnston, Colette M; Lovell, Frances L; Leongamornlert, Daniel A; Stranger, Barbara E; Dermitzakis, Emmanouil T; Ross, Mark T

    2008-01-01

    X chromosome inactivation in female mammals results in dosage compensation of X-linked gene products between the sexes. In humans there is evidence that a substantial proportion of genes escape from silencing. We have carried out a large-scale analysis of gene expression in lymphoblastoid cell lines from four human populations to determine the extent to which escape from X chromosome inactivation disrupts dosage compensation. We conclude that dosage compensation is virtually complete. Overall expression from the X chromosome is only slightly higher in females and can largely be accounted for by elevated female expression of approximately 5% of X-linked genes. We suggest that the potential contribution of escape from X chromosome inactivation to phenotypic differences between the sexes is more limited than previously believed. PMID:18208332

  4. Role of Broca's area in encoding sequential human actions: a virtual lesion study.

    PubMed

    Clerget, Emeline; Winderickx, Aline; Fadiga, Luciano; Olivier, Etienne

    2009-10-28

    The exact contribution of Broca's area to motor cognition is still controversial. Here we used repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (5 Hz, five pulses) to interfere transiently with the function of left BA44 in 13 healthy individuals; the task consisted of reordering human actions or nonbiological events based on three pictures presented on a computer screen and extracted from a video showing the entire sequence beforehand. We found that a virtual lesion of left BA44 impairs individual performance only for biological actions, and more specifically for object-oriented syntactic actions. Our finding provides evidence that Broca's area plays a crucial role in encoding complex human movements, a process which may be crucial for understanding and/or programming actions. PMID:19809371

  5. BrainK for Structural Image Processing: Creating Electrical Models of the Human Head

    PubMed Central

    Li, Kai; Papademetris, Xenophon; Tucker, Don M.

    2016-01-01

    BrainK is a set of automated procedures for characterizing the tissues of the human head from MRI, CT, and photogrammetry images. The tissue segmentation and cortical surface extraction support the primary goal of modeling the propagation of electrical currents through head tissues with a finite difference model (FDM) or finite element model (FEM) created from the BrainK geometries. The electrical head model is necessary for accurate source localization of dense array electroencephalographic (dEEG) measures from head surface electrodes. It is also necessary for accurate targeting of cerebral structures with transcranial current injection from those surface electrodes. BrainK must achieve five major tasks: image segmentation, registration of the MRI, CT, and sensor photogrammetry images, cortical surface reconstruction, dipole tessellation of the cortical surface, and Talairach transformation. We describe the approach to each task, and we compare the accuracies for the key tasks of tissue segmentation and cortical surface extraction in relation to existing research tools (FreeSurfer, FSL, SPM, and BrainVisa). BrainK achieves good accuracy with minimal or no user intervention, it deals well with poor quality MR images and tissue abnormalities, and it provides improved computational efficiency over existing research packages. PMID:27293419

  6. Hypoxia Created Human Mesenchymal Stem Cell Sheet for Prevascularized 3D Tissue Construction.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Lijun; Xing, Qi; Qian, Zichen; Tahtinen, Mitchell; Zhang, Zhaoqiang; Shearier, Emily; Qi, Shaohai; Zhao, Feng

    2016-02-01

    3D tissue based on human mesenchymal stem cell (hMSC) sheets offers many interesting opportunities for regenerating multiple types of connective tissues. Prevascularizing hMSC sheets with endothelial cells (ECs) will improve 3D tissue performance by supporting cell survival and accelerating integration with host tissue. It is hypothesized that hypoxia cultured hMSC sheets can promote microvessel network formation and preserve stemness of hMSCs. This study investigates the vascularization of hMSC sheets under different oxygen tensions. It is found that the HN condition, in which hMSC sheets formed under physiological hypoxia (2% O2 ) and then cocultured with ECs under normoxia (20% O2 ), enables longer and more branched microvessel network formation. The observation is corroborated by higher levels of angiogenic factors in coculture medium. Additionally, the hypoxic hMSC sheet is more uniform and less defective, which facilitates fabrication of 3D prevascularized tissue construct by layering the prevascularized hMSC sheets and maturing in rotating wall vessel bioreactor. The hMSCs in the 3D construct still maintain multilineage differentiation ability, which indicates the possible application of the 3D construct for various connective tissues regeneration. These results demonstrate that hypoxia created hMSC sheets benefit the microvessel growth and it is feasible to construct 3D prevascularized tissue construct using the prevascularized hMSC sheets.

  7. BrainK for Structural Image Processing: Creating Electrical Models of the Human Head.

    PubMed

    Li, Kai; Papademetris, Xenophon; Tucker, Don M

    2016-01-01

    BrainK is a set of automated procedures for characterizing the tissues of the human head from MRI, CT, and photogrammetry images. The tissue segmentation and cortical surface extraction support the primary goal of modeling the propagation of electrical currents through head tissues with a finite difference model (FDM) or finite element model (FEM) created from the BrainK geometries. The electrical head model is necessary for accurate source localization of dense array electroencephalographic (dEEG) measures from head surface electrodes. It is also necessary for accurate targeting of cerebral structures with transcranial current injection from those surface electrodes. BrainK must achieve five major tasks: image segmentation, registration of the MRI, CT, and sensor photogrammetry images, cortical surface reconstruction, dipole tessellation of the cortical surface, and Talairach transformation. We describe the approach to each task, and we compare the accuracies for the key tasks of tissue segmentation and cortical surface extraction in relation to existing research tools (FreeSurfer, FSL, SPM, and BrainVisa). BrainK achieves good accuracy with minimal or no user intervention, it deals well with poor quality MR images and tissue abnormalities, and it provides improved computational efficiency over existing research packages. PMID:27293419

  8. Micro and nanoparticle deposition in human nasal passage pre and post virtual maxillary sinus endoscopic surgery.

    PubMed

    Abouali, Omid; Keshavarzian, Erfan; Farhadi Ghalati, Pejman; Faramarzi, Abolhasan; Ahmadi, Goodarz; Bagheri, Mohammad Hadi

    2012-05-31

    Realistic 3-D models of the human nasal passages were developed pre and post virtual uncinectomy and Middle Meatal Antrostomy. A 3-D computational domain was constructed by a series of coronal CT scan images from a healthy subject. Then a virtual uncinectomy intervention and maxillary antrostomy were performed on the left nasal passage by removing the uncinate process and exposing the maxillary sinus antrum. For several breathing rates corresponding to low or moderate activities, the airflows in the nasal passages were simulated numerically pre and post virtual routine maxillary sinus endoscopic surgery. The airflow distribution in the nasal airway, maxillary and frontal sinuses were analyzed and compared between pre and post surgery cases. A Lagrangian trajectory analysis approach was used for evaluating the path and deposition of microparticles in the nasal passages and maxillary sinuses. A diffusion model was used for nanoparticle transport and deposition analysis. The deposition rate of the inhaled micro and nanoparticles in the sinuses were evaluated and compared for pre and post operation conditions. The results showed that after maxillary sinus endoscopic surgery, the inhaled nano and microparticles can easily enter this sinus due to penetration of the airflow into the sinus cavity. This was in contrast to the preoperative condition in which almost no particles entered the sinuses. These results could be of importance for a better understanding of the effect of sinus endoscopic surgery on patient exposure to particulate pollution and inhalation drug delivery. The significantly higher airflow rate and particle deposition in the sinus could be a reason for the discomfort reported by some patient after maxillary sinus endoscopic surgery. PMID:22465001

  9. Virtual head rotation reveals a process of route reconstruction from human vestibular signals.

    PubMed

    Day, Brian L; Fitzpatrick, Richard C

    2005-09-01

    The vestibular organs can feed perceptual processes that build a picture of our route as we move about in the world. However, raw vestibular signals do not define the path taken because, during travel, the head can undergo accelerations unrelated to the route and also be orientated in any direction to vary the signal. This study investigated the computational process by which the brain transforms raw vestibular signals for the purpose of route reconstruction. We electrically stimulated the vestibular nerves of human subjects to evoke a virtual head rotation fixed in skull co-ordinates and measure its perceptual effect. The virtual head rotation caused subjects to perceive an illusory whole-body rotation that was a cyclic function of head-pitch angle. They perceived whole-body yaw rotation in one direction with the head pitched forwards, the opposite direction with the head pitched backwards, and no rotation with the head in an intermediate position. A model based on vector operations and the anatomy and firing properties of semicircular canals precisely predicted these perceptions. In effect, a neural process computes the vector dot product between the craniocentric vestibular vector of head rotation and the gravitational unit vector. This computation yields the signal of body rotation in the horizontal plane that feeds our perception of the route travelled.

  10. Human intestinal transporter database: QSAR modeling and virtual profiling of drug uptake, efflux and interactions

    PubMed Central

    Sedykh, Alexander; Fourches, Denis; Duan, Jianmin; Hucke, Oliver; Garneau, Michel; Zhu, Hao; Bonneau, Pierre; Tropsha, Alexander

    2013-01-01

    Purpose Membrane transporters mediate many biological effects of chemicals and play a major role in pharmacokinetics and drug resistance. The selection of viable drug candidates among biologically active compounds requires the assessment of their transporter interaction profiles. Methods Using public sources, we have assembled and curated the largest, to our knowledge, human intestinal transporter database (>5,000 interaction entries for >3,700 molecules). This data was used to develop thoroughly validated classification Quantitative Structure-Activity Relationship (QSAR) models of transport and/or inhibition of several major transporters including MDR1, BCRP, MRP1-4, PEPT1, ASBT, OATP2B1, OCT1, and MCT1. Results & Conclusions QSAR models have been developed with advanced machine learning techniques such as Support Vector Machines, Random Forest, and k Nearest Neighbors using Dragon and MOE chemical descriptors. These models afforded high external prediction accuracies of 71–100% estimated by 5-fold external validation, and showed hit retrieval rates with up to 20-fold enrichment in the virtual screening of DrugBank compounds. The compendium of predictive QSAR models developed in this study can be used for virtual profiling of drug candidates and/or environmental agents with the optimal transporter profiles. PMID:23269503

  11. Virtual Satellite

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hammrs, Stephan R.

    2008-01-01

    Virtual Satellite (VirtualSat) is a computer program that creates an environment that facilitates the development, verification, and validation of flight software for a single spacecraft or for multiple spacecraft flying in formation. In this environment, enhanced functionality and autonomy of navigation, guidance, and control systems of a spacecraft are provided by a virtual satellite that is, a computational model that simulates the dynamic behavior of the spacecraft. Within this environment, it is possible to execute any associated software, the development of which could benefit from knowledge of, and possible interaction (typically, exchange of data) with, the virtual satellite. Examples of associated software include programs for simulating spacecraft power and thermal- management systems. This environment is independent of the flight hardware that will eventually host the flight software, making it possible to develop the software simultaneously with, or even before, the hardware is delivered. Optionally, by use of interfaces included in VirtualSat, hardware can be used instead of simulated. The flight software, coded in the C or C++ programming language, is compilable and loadable into VirtualSat without any special modifications. Thus, VirtualSat can serve as a relatively inexpensive software test-bed for development test, integration, and post-launch maintenance of spacecraft flight software.

  12. Virtual seminars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nelson, H. Roice

    1997-06-01

    A virtual seminar (SM) is an economic and effective instructional tool for teaching students who are at a distance from their instructor. Like conventional class room teaching, a virtual seminar requires an instructor, a student, and a method of communication. Teleconferencing, video conferencing, intranets and the Internet give learners in a Virtual Seminar the ability to interact immediately with their mentors and receive real and relevant answers. This paper shows how industry and academia can benefit from using methods developed and experience gained in presenting the first virtual seminars to academic and petroleum industry participants in mid-1996. The information explosion in industry means that business or technical information is worthless until it is assimilated into a corporate knowledge management system. A search for specific information often turns into a filtering exercise or an attempt to find patterns and classify retrieved material. In the setting of an interactive corporate information system, virtual seminars meet the need for a productive new relationship between creative people and the flux of corporate knowledge. Experience shows that it is more efficient to circulate timesensitive and confidential information electronically through a virtual seminar. Automating the classification of information and removing that task from the usual work load creates an electronic corporate memory and enhances the value of the knowledge to both users and a corporation. Catalogued benchmarks, best-practice standards, and Knowledge Maps (SM) of experience serve as key aids to communicating knowledge through virtual seminars and converting that knowledge into a profit-making asset.

  13. Interevent time distributions of human multi-level activity in a virtual world

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mryglod, O.; Fuchs, B.; Szell, M.; Holovatch, Yu.; Thurner, S.

    2015-02-01

    Studying human behavior in virtual environments provides extraordinary opportunities for a quantitative analysis of social phenomena with levels of accuracy that approach those of the natural sciences. In this paper we use records of player activities in the massive multiplayer online game Pardus over 1238 consecutive days, and analyze dynamical features of sequences of actions of players. We build on previous work where temporal structures of human actions of the same type were quantified, and provide an empirical understanding of human actions of different types. This study of multi-level human activity can be seen as a dynamic counterpart of static multiplex network analysis. We show that the interevent time distributions of actions in the Pardus universe follow highly non-trivial distribution functions, from which we extract action-type specific characteristic 'decay constants'. We discuss characteristic features of interevent time distributions, including periodic patterns on different time scales, bursty dynamics, and various functional forms on different time scales. We comment on gender differences of players in emotional actions, and find that while males and females act similarly when performing some positive actions, females are slightly faster for negative actions. We also observe effects on the age of players: more experienced players are generally faster in making decisions about engaging in and terminating enmity and friendship, respectively.

  14. [ABILITY OF STAPHYLOCOCCUS OF VARIOUS STRAINS TO CREATE BIOFILMS AND THEIR EFFECT ON HUMAN BODY CELLS].

    PubMed

    Kornienko, M A; Kopyltsov, V N; Shevlyagina, N V; Didenko, L V; Lyubasovskaya, L A; Priputnevich, T V; Ilina, E N

    2016-01-01

    The urgency of the staphylococcus research is due to its ability to cause severe infections: softtissue infections, endocarditis, sepsis, toxic shock syndrome, and food poisoning. Coagulase-positive Staphylococcus aureus is the main infection agent of intrahospital infections. This agent has many factors of pathogenicity, which are well known. Among the coagulase-negative staphylococcus (CNS) strains, S. haemolyticus and S. epidermidis are clinically important, because they cause infections in patients with weak immune system. The mechanisms of the CNS pathogenicity are insufficiently understood. The goal of this work was to evaluate the potential pathogenicity of clinical strains of CNS from their capacity to create biofilms and the character of their interaction with human body cells by the example of the HT-29 cell culture. The research was carried out in laboratory strain S. aureus ATCC 29213 and clinical strains S. haemolyticus SH39, S. epidermidis SE36-1 isolated from the neonatal autopsy materials. The visual tests of biofilm formation by each strain and testing of the impact of the strains on the cell culture HT-29 was carried out in this work. The two species of CNS form biofilms at a higher rate than S. aureus. Upon incubation for 2 h of HT-29 cells with staphylococcus strains tested in this work, adhesion of bacteria on cell surface was observed. The adhesion was most pronounced in case of S. aureus ATCC 29213 and S. haemolyticus SH39. Upon 3 h of incubation with S. aureus ATCC 29213 and S. haemolyticus SH39, destruction of cell HT-29 monolayer was observed. The incubation for 24 h with the 3 strains tested in this work caused complete destruction of cell HT-29 monolayer. The maximal toxic effect on HT-29 cells was inherent in the strain S. haemolyticus SH39. The aggregate of the results obtained in this work indicates the presence of the pathogenicity factors in the strains S. haemolyticus SH39, which require additional research.

  15. The impact of social context on learning and cognitive demands for interactive virtual human simulations.

    PubMed

    Lyons, Rebecca; Johnson, Teresa R; Khalil, Mohammed K; Cendán, Juan C

    2014-01-01

    Interactive virtual human (IVH) simulations offer a novel method for training skills involving person-to-person interactions. This article examines the effectiveness of an IVH simulation for teaching medical students to assess rare cranial nerve abnormalities in both individual and small-group learning contexts. Individual (n = 26) and small-group (n = 30) interaction with the IVH system was manipulated to examine the influence on learning, learner engagement, perceived cognitive demands of the learning task, and instructional efficiency. Results suggested the IVH activity was an equally effective and engaging instructional tool in both learning structures, despite learners in the group learning contexts having to share hands-on access to the simulation interface. Participants in both conditions demonstrated a significant increase in declarative knowledge post-training. Operation of the IVH simulation technology imposed moderate cognitive demand but did not exceed the demands of the task content or appear to impede learning. PMID:24883241

  16. Audited credential delegation: a usable security solution for the virtual physiological human toolkit.

    PubMed

    Haidar, Ali N; Zasada, Stefan J; Coveney, Peter V; Abdallah, Ali E; Beckles, Bruce; Jones, Mike A S

    2011-06-01

    We present applications of audited credential delegation (ACD), a usable security solution for authentication, authorization and auditing in distributed virtual physiological human (VPH) project environments that removes the use of digital certificates from end-users' experience. Current security solutions are based on public key infrastructure (PKI). While PKI offers strong security for VPH projects, it suffers from serious usability shortcomings in terms of end-user acquisition and management of credentials which deter scientists from exploiting distributed VPH environments. By contrast, ACD supports the use of local credentials. Currently, a local ACD username-password combination can be used to access grid-based resources while Shibboleth support is underway. Moreover, ACD provides seamless and secure access to shared patient data, tools and infrastructure, thus supporting the provision of personalized medicine for patients, scientists and clinicians participating in e-health projects from a local to the widest international scale. PMID:22670214

  17. A vision and strategy for the virtual physiological human in 2010 and beyond.

    PubMed

    Hunter, Peter; Coveney, Peter V; de Bono, Bernard; Diaz, Vanessa; Fenner, John; Frangi, Alejandro F; Harris, Peter; Hose, Rod; Kohl, Peter; Lawford, Pat; McCormack, Keith; Mendes, Miriam; Omholt, Stig; Quarteroni, Alfio; Skår, John; Tegner, Jesper; Randall Thomas, S; Tollis, Ioannis; Tsamardinos, Ioannis; van Beek, Johannes H G M; Viceconti, Marco

    2010-06-13

    European funding under framework 7 (FP7) for the virtual physiological human (VPH) project has been in place now for nearly 2 years. The VPH network of excellence (NoE) is helping in the development of common standards, open-source software, freely accessible data and model repositories, and various training and dissemination activities for the project. It is also helping to coordinate the many clinically targeted projects that have been funded under the FP7 calls. An initial vision for the VPH was defined by framework 6 strategy for a European physiome (STEP) project in 2006. It is now time to assess the accomplishments of the last 2 years and update the STEP vision for the VPH. We consider the biomedical science, healthcare and information and communications technology challenges facing the project and we propose the VPH Institute as a means of sustaining the vision of VPH beyond the time frame of the NoE. PMID:20439264

  18. The impact of social context on learning and cognitive demands for interactive virtual human simulations

    PubMed Central

    Lyons, Rebecca; Johnson, Teresa R.; Khalil, Mohammed K.

    2014-01-01

    Interactive virtual human (IVH) simulations offer a novel method for training skills involving person-to-person interactions. This article examines the effectiveness of an IVH simulation for teaching medical students to assess rare cranial nerve abnormalities in both individual and small-group learning contexts. Individual (n = 26) and small-group (n = 30) interaction with the IVH system was manipulated to examine the influence on learning, learner engagement, perceived cognitive demands of the learning task, and instructional efficiency. Results suggested the IVH activity was an equally effective and engaging instructional tool in both learning structures, despite learners in the group learning contexts having to share hands-on access to the simulation interface. Participants in both conditions demonstrated a significant increase in declarative knowledge post-training. Operation of the IVH simulation technology imposed moderate cognitive demand but did not exceed the demands of the task content or appear to impede learning. PMID:24883241

  19. A vision and strategy for the virtual physiological human in 2010 and beyond

    PubMed Central

    Hunter, Peter; Coveney, Peter V.; de Bono, Bernard; Diaz, Vanessa; Fenner, John; Frangi, Alejandro F.; Harris, Peter; Hose, Rod; Kohl, Peter; Lawford, Pat; McCormack, Keith; Mendes, Miriam; Omholt, Stig; Quarteroni, Alfio; Skår, John; Tegner, Jesper; Randall Thomas, S.; Tollis, Ioannis; Tsamardinos, Ioannis; van Beek, Johannes H. G. M.; Viceconti, Marco

    2010-01-01

    European funding under framework 7 (FP7) for the virtual physiological human (VPH) project has been in place now for nearly 2 years. The VPH network of excellence (NoE) is helping in the development of common standards, open-source software, freely accessible data and model repositories, and various training and dissemination activities for the project. It is also helping to coordinate the many clinically targeted projects that have been funded under the FP7 calls. An initial vision for the VPH was defined by framework 6 strategy for a European physiome (STEP) project in 2006. It is now time to assess the accomplishments of the last 2 years and update the STEP vision for the VPH. We consider the biomedical science, healthcare and information and communications technology challenges facing the project and we propose the VPH Institute as a means of sustaining the vision of VPH beyond the time frame of the NoE. PMID:20439264

  20. Virtual Worlds for Virtual Organizing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rhoten, Diana; Lutters, Wayne

    The members and resources of a virtual organization are dispersed across time and space, yet they function as a coherent entity through the use of technologies, networks, and alliances. As virtual organizations proliferate and become increasingly important in society, many may exploit the technical architecture s of virtual worlds, which are the confluence of computer-mediated communication, telepresence, and virtual reality originally created for gaming. A brief socio-technical history describes their early origins and the waves of progress followed by stasis that brought us to the current period of renewed enthusiasm. Examination of contemporary examples demonstrates how three genres of virtual worlds have enabled new arenas for virtual organizing: developer-defined closed worlds, user-modifiable quasi-open worlds, and user-generated open worlds. Among expected future trends are an increase in collaboration born virtually rather than imported from existing organizations, a tension between high-fidelity recreations of the physical world and hyper-stylized imaginations of fantasy worlds, and the growth of specialized worlds optimized for particular sectors, companies, or cultures.

  1. Automatic Behavior Analysis During a Clinical Interview with a Virtual Human.

    PubMed

    Rizzo, Albert; Lucas, Gale; Gratch, Jonathan; Stratou, Giota; Morency, Louis-Philippe; Chavez, Kenneth; Shilling, Russ; Scherer, Stefan

    2016-01-01

    SimSensei is a Virtual Human (VH) interviewing platform that uses off-the-shelf sensors (i.e., webcams, Microsoft Kinect and a microphone) to capture and interpret real-time audiovisual behavioral signals from users interacting with the VH system. The system was specifically designed for clinical interviewing and health care support by providing a face-to-face interaction between a user and a VH that can automatically react to the inferred state of the user through analysis of behavioral signals gleaned from the user's facial expressions, body gestures and vocal parameters. Akin to how non-verbal behavioral signals have an impact on human-to-human interaction and communication, SimSensei aims to capture and infer user state from signals generated from user non-verbal communication to improve engagement between a VH and a user and to quantify user state from the data captured across a 20 minute interview. Results from of sample of service members (SMs) who were interviewed before and after a deployment to Afghanistan indicate that SMs reveal more PTSD symptoms to the VH than they report on the Post Deployment Health Assessment. Pre/Post deployment facial expression analysis indicated more sad expressions and few happy expressions at post deployment. PMID:27046598

  2. Quantitative and Qualitative Changes in Teaching Histology by Means of Virtual Microscopy in an Introductory Course in Human Anatomy

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Husmann, Polly R.; O'Loughlin, Valerie Dean; Braun, Mark W.

    2009-01-01

    This study compares overall laboratory averages and individual test scores along with a student survey to determine the effects of using virtual microscopy in place of optical microscopes in a large undergraduate human anatomy course. T-tests revealed that the first two laboratory examinations (of four) and the overall laboratory averages were…

  3. On the Development of Human Representational Competence from an Evolutionary Point of View: From Episodic to Virtual Culture.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kaput, James J.

    Via computational media, humans are entering a fifth stage of cognitive development leading to a virtual culture. This culture is seen as replacing the writing-based theoretic culture. Background information about the first four stages of mental evolution or cognitive development is provided. It is suggested that the evolutionary perspective needs…

  4. Virtual Reality Anatomy: Is It Comparable with Traditional Methods in the Teaching of Human Forearm Musculoskeletal Anatomy?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Codd, Anthony M.; Choudhury, Bipasha

    2011-01-01

    The use of cadavers to teach anatomy is well established, but limitations with this approach have led to the introduction of alternative teaching methods. One such method is the use of three-dimensional virtual reality computer models. An interactive, three-dimensional computer model of human forearm anterior compartment musculoskeletal anatomy…

  5. Rat model of cholelithiasis with human gallstones implanted in cholestasis-induced virtual gallbladder

    PubMed Central

    Cona, Marlein Miranda; Liu, Yewei; Yin, Ting; Feng, Yuanbo; Chen, Feng; Mulier, Stefaan; Li, Yue; Zhang, Jian; Oyen, Raymond; Ni, Yicheng

    2016-01-01

    AIM: To facilitate translational research on cholelithiasis, we have developed a rat model of human gallstones by exploiting the unique biliopancreatic features of this species. METHODS: Under anesthesia, 16 adult rats of equal genders underwent two times of abdominal surgery. First, their common bile duct (CBD) was ligated to cause cholestasis by total biliary obstruction (TBO). On day 0, 1, 3, 7, 14, 21 and 28 after TBO, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was conducted to monitor the dilatation of the CBD, and blood was sampled to analyze total serum bilirubin (TSB). Secondly, on day 30, the abdomen was re-opened and gallstone(s) collected from human patients were implanted in the dilated CBD as a virtual gallbladder (VGB), which was closed by suture ligation. This rat cholelithiasis model was examined by MRI, clinical observation, microcholangiography and histology. RESULTS: All rats survived two laparotomies. After ligation, the CBD was dilated to a stable size of 4 to 30 mm in diameter on day 21-28, which became a VGB. The rats initially showed signs of jaundice that diminished over time, which paralleled with the evolving TSB levels from 0.6 ± 0.3 mg/dL before ligation, through a peak of 10.9 ± 1.9 mg/dL on day 14, until a nearly normalized value after day 28. The dilated CBD with thickened wall allowed an incision for implantation of human gallstones of 1-10 mm in diameter. The rat cholelithiasis was proven by in vivo MRI and postmortem microcholangiography and histomorphology. CONCLUSION: A rat model cholelithiasis with human gallstones has been established, which proves feasible, safe, reliable, nontoxic and cost-effective. Given the gallstones of human origin, applications of this model may be of help in translational research such as optical detection and lysis of gallstones by systemic drug administration. PMID:27376020

  6. Extinction in multiple virtual reality contexts diminishes fear reinstatement in humans.

    PubMed

    Dunsmoor, Joseph E; Ahs, Fredrik; Zielinski, David J; LaBar, Kevin S

    2014-09-01

    Although conditioned fear can be effectively extinguished by unreinforced exposure to a threat cue, fear responses tend to return when the cue is encountered some time after extinction (spontaneous recovery), in a novel environment (renewal), or following presentation of an aversive stimulus (reinstatement). As extinction represents a context-dependent form of new learning, one possible strategy to circumvent the return of fear is to conduct extinction across several environments. Here, we tested the effectiveness of multiple context extinction in a two-day fear conditioning experiment using 3-D virtual reality technology to create immersive, ecologically-valid context changes. Fear-potentiated startle served as the dependent measure. All three experimental groups initially acquired fear in a single context. A multiple extinction group then underwent extinction in three contexts, while a second group underwent extinction in the acquisition context and a third group underwent extinction in a single different context. All groups returned 24h later to test for return of fear in the extinction context (spontaneous recovery) and a novel context (renewal and reinstatement/test). Extinction in multiple contexts attenuated reinstatement of fear but did not reduce spontaneous recovery. Results from fear renewal were tendential. Our findings suggest that multi-context extinction can reduce fear relapse following an aversive event--an event that often induces return of fear in real-world settings--and provides empirical support for conducting exposure-based clinical treatments across a variety of environments. PMID:24583374

  7. Not My Problem: Vicarious Conflict Adaptation with Human and Virtual Co-actors

    PubMed Central

    Spapé, Michiel M.; Ravaja, Niklas

    2016-01-01

    The Simon effect refers to an incompatibility between stimulus and response locations resulting in a conflict situation and, consequently, slower responses. Like other conflict effects, it is commonly reduced after repetitions, suggesting an executive control ability, which flexibly rewires cognitive processing and adapts to conflict. Interestingly, conflict is not necessarily individually defined: the Social Simon effect refers to a scenario where two people who share a task show a conflict effect where a single person does not. Recent studies showed these observations might converge into what could be called vicarious conflict adaptation, with evidence indicating that observing someone else's conflict may subsequently reduce one's own. While plausible, there is reason for doubt: both the social aspect of the Simon Effect, and the degree to which executive control accounts for the conflict adaptation effect, have become foci of debate in recent studies. Here, we present two experiments that were designed to test the social dimension of the effect by varying the social relationship between the actor and the co-actor. In Experiment 1, participants performed a conflict task with a virtual co-actor, while the actor-observer relationship was manipulated as a function of the similarity between response modalities. In Experiment 2, the same task was performed both with a virtual and with a human co-actor, while heart-rate measurements were taken to measure the impact of observed conflict on autonomous activity. While both experiments replicated the interpersonal conflict adaptation effects, neither showed evidence of the critical social dimension. We consider the findings as demonstrating that vicarious conflict adaptation does not rely on the social relationship between the actor and co-actor. PMID:27199839

  8. Not My Problem: Vicarious Conflict Adaptation with Human and Virtual Co-actors.

    PubMed

    Spapé, Michiel M; Ravaja, Niklas

    2016-01-01

    The Simon effect refers to an incompatibility between stimulus and response locations resulting in a conflict situation and, consequently, slower responses. Like other conflict effects, it is commonly reduced after repetitions, suggesting an executive control ability, which flexibly rewires cognitive processing and adapts to conflict. Interestingly, conflict is not necessarily individually defined: the Social Simon effect refers to a scenario where two people who share a task show a conflict effect where a single person does not. Recent studies showed these observations might converge into what could be called vicarious conflict adaptation, with evidence indicating that observing someone else's conflict may subsequently reduce one's own. While plausible, there is reason for doubt: both the social aspect of the Simon Effect, and the degree to which executive control accounts for the conflict adaptation effect, have become foci of debate in recent studies. Here, we present two experiments that were designed to test the social dimension of the effect by varying the social relationship between the actor and the co-actor. In Experiment 1, participants performed a conflict task with a virtual co-actor, while the actor-observer relationship was manipulated as a function of the similarity between response modalities. In Experiment 2, the same task was performed both with a virtual and with a human co-actor, while heart-rate measurements were taken to measure the impact of observed conflict on autonomous activity. While both experiments replicated the interpersonal conflict adaptation effects, neither showed evidence of the critical social dimension. We consider the findings as demonstrating that vicarious conflict adaptation does not rely on the social relationship between the actor and co-actor. PMID:27199839

  9. Creating human organs in chimaera pigs: an ethical source of immunocompatible organs?

    PubMed

    Shaw, David; Dondorp, Wybo; Geijsen, Niels; de Wert, Guido

    2015-12-01

    New techniques in regenerative medicine may soon enable the creation of human organs inside animals using induced pluripotent stem cells. This technology has the potential to solve the organ scarcity problem by providing a limitless source of personalised organs for transplantation, but also raises several ethical issues, particularly concerning animal welfare, the 'human features' problem and human dignity. PMID:25378549

  10. Creating human organs in chimaera pigs: an ethical source of immunocompatible organs?

    PubMed

    Shaw, David; Dondorp, Wybo; Geijsen, Niels; de Wert, Guido

    2015-12-01

    New techniques in regenerative medicine may soon enable the creation of human organs inside animals using induced pluripotent stem cells. This technology has the potential to solve the organ scarcity problem by providing a limitless source of personalised organs for transplantation, but also raises several ethical issues, particularly concerning animal welfare, the 'human features' problem and human dignity.

  11. Virtual navigation in humans: the impact of age, sex, and hormones on place learning.

    PubMed

    Driscoll, Ira; Hamilton, Derek A; Yeo, Ronald A; Brooks, William M; Sutherland, Robert J

    2005-03-01

    Certain cognitive processes, including spatial ability, decline with normal aging. Spatial ability is also a cognitive domain with robust sex differences typically favoring males. However, tests of spatial ability do not seem to measure a homogeneous class of processes. For many, mentally matching rotated three-dimensional images is the gold standard for measuring spatial cognition in humans, while the Morris water task (MWT) is a preferred method in the domain of nonhuman animal research. The MWT is sensitive to hippocampal damage, a structure critical for normal learning and memory and often implicated in age-related cognitive decline. A computerized (virtual) version of the MWT (VMWT) appears to require and engage human hippocampal circuitry, and has proven useful in studying sex differences and testing spatial learning theories. In Experiment 1, we tested participants (20-90 years of age) in the VMWT and compared their performance to that on the Vandenberg Mental Rotation Test. We report an age-related deficit in performance on both tasks. In Experiment 2, we tested young (age 20-39) and elderly (age >60) participants in the VMWT and correlated their performance to the circulating levels of testosterone and cortisol. Our findings indicate that the persistence of male spatial advantage may be related to circulating testosterone, but not cortisol levels, and independent of generalized age-related cognitive decline.

  12. Smart Sensors and Virtual Physiology Human Approach as a Basis of Personalized Therapies in Diabetes Mellitus

    PubMed Central

    Fernández Peruchena, Carlos M; Prado-Velasco, Manuel

    2010-01-01

    Diabetes mellitus (DM) has a growing incidence and prevalence in modern societies, pushed by the aging and change of life styles. Despite the huge resources dedicated to improve their quality of life, mortality and morbidity rates, these are still very poor. In this work, DM pathology is revised from clinical and metabolic points of view, as well as mathematical models related to DM, with the aim of justifying an evolution of DM therapies towards the correction of the physiological metabolic loops involved. We analyze the reliability of mathematical models, under the perspective of virtual physiological human (VPH) initiatives, for generating and integrating customized knowledge about patients, which is needed for that evolution. Wearable smart sensors play a key role in this frame, as they provide patient’s information to the models. A telehealthcare computational architecture based on distributed smart sensors (first processing layer) and personalized physiological mathematical models integrated in Human Physiological Images (HPI) computational components (second processing layer), is presented. This technology was designed for a renal disease telehealthcare in earlier works and promotes crossroads between smart sensors and the VPH initiative. We suggest that it is able to support a truly personalized, preventive, and predictive healthcare model for the delivery of evolved DM therapies. PMID:21625646

  13. The virtual morphology and the main movements of the human neck simulations used for car crash studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ciunel, St.; Tica, B.

    2016-08-01

    The paper presents the studies made on a similar biomechanical system composed by neck, head and thorax bones. The models were defined in a CAD environment which includes Adams algorithm for dynamic simulations. The virtual models and the entire morphology were obtained starting with CT images made on a living human subject. The main movements analyzed were: axial rotation (left-right), lateral bending (left-right) and flexion- extension movement. After simulation was obtained the entire biomechanical behavior based on data tables or diagrams. That virtual model composed by neck and head can be included in complex system (as a car system) and supposed to several impact simulations (virtual crash tests). Also, our research team built main components of a testing device for dummy car crash neck-head system using anatomical data.

  14. Body Image and Anti-Fat Attitudes: An Experimental Study Using a Haptic Virtual Reality Environment to Replicate Human Touch.

    PubMed

    Tremblay, Line; Roy-Vaillancourt, Mélina; Chebbi, Brahim; Bouchard, Stéphane; Daoust, Michael; Dénommée, Jessica; Thorpe, Moriah

    2016-02-01

    It is well documented that anti-fat attitudes influence the interactions individuals have with overweight people. However, testing attitudes through self-report measures is challenging. In the present study, we explore the use of a haptic virtual reality environment to physically interact with overweight virtual human (VH). We verify the hypothesis that duration and strength of virtual touch vary according to the characteristics of VH in ways similar to those encountered from interaction with real people in anti-fat attitude studies. A group of 61 participants were randomly assigned to one of the experimental conditions involving giving a virtual hug to a female or a male VH of either normal or overweight. We found significant associations between body image satisfaction and anti-fat attitudes and sex differences on these measures. We also found a significant interaction effect of the sex of the participants, sex of the VH, and the body size of the VH. Female participants hugged longer the overweight female VH than overweight male VH. Male participants hugged longer the normal-weight VH than the overweight VH. We conclude that virtual touch is a promising method of measuring attitudes, emotion and social interactions.

  15. Body Image and Anti-Fat Attitudes: An Experimental Study Using a Haptic Virtual Reality Environment to Replicate Human Touch.

    PubMed

    Tremblay, Line; Roy-Vaillancourt, Mélina; Chebbi, Brahim; Bouchard, Stéphane; Daoust, Michael; Dénommée, Jessica; Thorpe, Moriah

    2016-02-01

    It is well documented that anti-fat attitudes influence the interactions individuals have with overweight people. However, testing attitudes through self-report measures is challenging. In the present study, we explore the use of a haptic virtual reality environment to physically interact with overweight virtual human (VH). We verify the hypothesis that duration and strength of virtual touch vary according to the characteristics of VH in ways similar to those encountered from interaction with real people in anti-fat attitude studies. A group of 61 participants were randomly assigned to one of the experimental conditions involving giving a virtual hug to a female or a male VH of either normal or overweight. We found significant associations between body image satisfaction and anti-fat attitudes and sex differences on these measures. We also found a significant interaction effect of the sex of the participants, sex of the VH, and the body size of the VH. Female participants hugged longer the overweight female VH than overweight male VH. Male participants hugged longer the normal-weight VH than the overweight VH. We conclude that virtual touch is a promising method of measuring attitudes, emotion and social interactions. PMID:26741706

  16. Creating Cooperation: How States Develop Human Capital in Europe. Cornell Studies in Political Economy.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Culpepper, Pepper D.

    This book looks at ways European governments can create changes in institutions that will foster cooperation among states, focusing on company investment in general skills and using data from France and Germany. Chapter one provides a general description of the challenges governments face in developing policies to change company-level vocational…

  17. The Transformation of Ms. Corazon: Creating Humanizing Spaces for Mexican Immigrant Students in Secondary ESL Classrooms

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Salazar, Maria del Carmen; Franquiz, Maria E.

    2008-01-01

    This article explores the journey of one English as a Second Language (ESL) teacher who held rigid boundaries that negatively impacted the academic resiliency of her Mexican immigrant students. As she transformed her pedagogical orientation, she created permeability in her curricular practices. With the elements of "respeto" (respect), "confianza"…

  18. Interpersonal distance in immersive virtual environments.

    PubMed

    Bailenson, Jeremy N; Blascovich, Jim; Beall, Andrew C; Loomis, Jack M

    2003-07-01

    Digital immersive virtual environment technology (IVET) enables behavioral scientists to conduct ecologically realistic experiments with near-perfect experimental control. The authors employed IVET to study the interpersonal distance maintained between participants and virtual humans. In Study 1, participants traversed a three-dimensional virtual room in which a virtual human stood. In Study 2, a virtual human approached participants. In both studies, participant gender, virtual human gender, virtual human gaze behavior, and whether virtual humans were allegedly controlled by humans (i.e., avatars) or computers (i.e., agents) were varied. Results indicated that participants maintained greater distance from virtual humans when approaching their fronts compared to their backs. In addition, participants gave more personal space to virtual agents who engaged them in mutual gaze. Moreover, when virtual humans invaded their personal space, participants moved farthest from virtual human agents. The advantages and disadvantages of IVET for the study of human behavior are discussed.

  19. Eye-movement study and human performance using telepathology virtual slides: implications for medical education and differences with experience.

    PubMed

    Krupinski, Elizabeth A; Tillack, Allison A; Richter, Lynne; Henderson, Jeffrey T; Bhattacharyya, Achyut K; Scott, Katherine M; Graham, Anna R; Descour, Michael R; Davis, John R; Weinstein, Ronald S

    2006-12-01

    A core skill in diagnostic pathology is light microscopy. Remarkably little is known about human factors that affect the proficiency of pathologists as light microscopists. The cognitive skills of pathologists have received relatively little attention in comparison with the large literature on human performance studies in radiology. One reason for this lack of formal visual search studies in pathology has been the physical restrictions imposed by the close positioning of a microscope operator's head to the microscope's eyepieces. This blocks access to the operator's eyes and precludes assessment of the microscopist's eye movements. Virtual slide microscopy now removes this barrier and opens the door for studies on human factors and visual search strategies in light microscopy. The aim of this study was to assess eye movements of medical students, pathology residents, and practicing pathologists examining virtual slides on a digital display monitor. Whole histopathology glass slide digital images, so-called virtual slides, of 20 consecutive breast core biopsy cases were used in a retrospective study. These high-quality virtual slides were produced with an array-microscope equipped DMetrix DX-40 ultrarapid virtual slide processor (DMetrix, Tucson, Ariz). Using an eye-tracking device, we demonstrated for the first time that when a virtual slide reader initially looks at a virtual slide his or her eyes are very quickly attracted to regions of interest (ROIs) within the slide and that these ROIs are likely to contain diagnostic information. In a matter of seconds, critical decisions are made on the selection of ROIs for further examination at higher magnification. We recorded: (1) the time virtual slide readers spent fixating on self-selected locations on the video monitor; (2) the characteristics of the ways the eyes jumped between fixation locations; and (3) x and y coordinates for each virtual slide marking the sites the virtual slide readers manually selected for

  20. Virtual impact: visualizing the potential effects of cosmic impact in human history

    SciTech Connect

    Masse, W Bruce; Janecky, David R; Forte, Maurizio; Barrientos, Gustavo

    2009-01-01

    Current models indicate that catastrophic impacts by asteroids and comets capable of killing more than one quarter of Earth's human population have occurred on average once every million years; smaller impacts, such the 1908 Tunguska impact that leveled more than 2,000 square km of Siberian forest, occur every 200-300 years. Therefore, cosmic impact likely significantly affected hominine evolution and conceivably played a role in Holocene period human culture history. Regrettably, few archaeologists are trained to appreciate the nature and potential effects of cosmic impact. We have developed a conceptual model for an extensible set of educational and research tools based on virtual reality collaborative environments to engage archaeologists and the general public on the topic of the role of cosmic impact in human history. Our initial focus is on two documented asteroid impacts in Argentina during the period of 4000 to 1000 B.C. Campo del Cicio resulted in an energy release of around 2-3 megatons (100-150 times the Hiroshima atomic weapon), and left several craters and a strewn field covering 493 km{sup 2} in northeastern Argentina. Rio Cuarto was likely more than 1000 megatons and may have devastated an area greater than 50,000 km{sup 2} in central Argentina. We are focusing on reconstructions of these events and their potential effects on contemporary hunter and gatherers. Our vinual reality tools also introduce interactive variables (e.g., impactor physical properties, climate, vegetation, topography, and social complexity) to allow researchers and students to better investigate and evaluate the factors that significantly influence cosmic impact effects.

  1. Virtual goods recommendations in virtual worlds.

    PubMed

    Chen, Kuan-Yu; Liao, Hsiu-Yu; Chen, Jyun-Hung; Liu, Duen-Ren

    2015-01-01

    Virtual worlds (VWs) are computer-simulated environments which allow users to create their own virtual character as an avatar. With the rapidly growing user volume in VWs, platform providers launch virtual goods in haste and stampede users to increase sales revenue. However, the rapidity of development incurs virtual unrelated items which will be difficult to remarket. It not only wastes virtual global companies' intelligence resources, but also makes it difficult for users to find suitable virtual goods fit for their virtual home in daily virtual life. In the VWs, users decorate their houses, visit others' homes, create families, host parties, and so forth. Users establish their social life circles through these activities. This research proposes a novel virtual goods recommendation method based on these social interactions. The contact strength and contact influence result from interactions with social neighbors and influence users' buying intention. Our research highlights the importance of social interactions in virtual goods recommendation. The experiment's data were retrieved from an online VW platform, and the results show that the proposed method, considering social interactions and social life circle, has better performance than existing recommendation methods. PMID:25834837

  2. Virtual goods recommendations in virtual worlds.

    PubMed

    Chen, Kuan-Yu; Liao, Hsiu-Yu; Chen, Jyun-Hung; Liu, Duen-Ren

    2015-01-01

    Virtual worlds (VWs) are computer-simulated environments which allow users to create their own virtual character as an avatar. With the rapidly growing user volume in VWs, platform providers launch virtual goods in haste and stampede users to increase sales revenue. However, the rapidity of development incurs virtual unrelated items which will be difficult to remarket. It not only wastes virtual global companies' intelligence resources, but also makes it difficult for users to find suitable virtual goods fit for their virtual home in daily virtual life. In the VWs, users decorate their houses, visit others' homes, create families, host parties, and so forth. Users establish their social life circles through these activities. This research proposes a novel virtual goods recommendation method based on these social interactions. The contact strength and contact influence result from interactions with social neighbors and influence users' buying intention. Our research highlights the importance of social interactions in virtual goods recommendation. The experiment's data were retrieved from an online VW platform, and the results show that the proposed method, considering social interactions and social life circle, has better performance than existing recommendation methods.

  3. Virtual Goods Recommendations in Virtual Worlds

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Kuan-Yu; Liao, Hsiu-Yu; Chen, Jyun-Hung; Liu, Duen-Ren

    2015-01-01

    Virtual worlds (VWs) are computer-simulated environments which allow users to create their own virtual character as an avatar. With the rapidly growing user volume in VWs, platform providers launch virtual goods in haste and stampede users to increase sales revenue. However, the rapidity of development incurs virtual unrelated items which will be difficult to remarket. It not only wastes virtual global companies' intelligence resources, but also makes it difficult for users to find suitable virtual goods fit for their virtual home in daily virtual life. In the VWs, users decorate their houses, visit others' homes, create families, host parties, and so forth. Users establish their social life circles through these activities. This research proposes a novel virtual goods recommendation method based on these social interactions. The contact strength and contact influence result from interactions with social neighbors and influence users' buying intention. Our research highlights the importance of social interactions in virtual goods recommendation. The experiment's data were retrieved from an online VW platform, and the results show that the proposed method, considering social interactions and social life circle, has better performance than existing recommendation methods. PMID:25834837

  4. Pharmacophore-Based Virtual Screening to Discover New Active Compounds for Human Choline Kinase α1.

    PubMed

    Serrán-Aguilera, Lucía; Nuti, Roberto; López-Cara, Luisa C; Mezo, Miguel Á Gallo; Macchiarulo, Antonio; Entrena, Antonio; Hurtado-Guerrero, Ramón

    2015-06-01

    Choline kinase (CK) catalyses the transfer of the ATP γ-phosphate to choline to generate phosphocholine and ADP in the presence of magnesium leading to the synthesis of phosphatidylcholine. Of the three isoforms of CK described in humans, only the α isoforms (HsCKα) are strongly associated with cancer and have been validated as drug targets to treat this disease. Over the years, a large number of Hemicholinium-3 (HC-3)-based HsCKα biscationic inhibitors have been developed though the relevant common features important for the biological function have not been defined. Here, selecting a large number of previous HC-3-based inhibitors, we discover through computational studies a pharmacophore model formed by five moieties that are included in the 1-benzyl-4-(N-methylaniline)pyridinium fragment. Using a pharmacophore-guided virtual screening, we then identified 6 molecules that showed binding affinities in the low μM range to HsCKα1. Finally, protein crystallization studies suggested that one of these molecules is bound to the choline and ATP-binding sites. In conclusion, we have developed a pharmacophore model that not only allowed us to dissect the structural important features of the previous HC-3 derivatives, but also enabled the identification of novel chemical tools with good ligand efficiencies to investigate the biological functions of HsCKα1. PMID:27490389

  5. Identification of the lateral position of a virtual object based on echoes by humans.

    PubMed

    Rowan, Daniel; Papadopoulos, Timos; Edwards, David; Holmes, Hannah; Hollingdale, Anna; Evans, Leah; Allen, Robert

    2013-06-01

    Echolocation offers a promising approach to improve the quality of life of people with blindness although little is known about the factors influencing object localisation using a 'searching' strategy. In this paper, we describe a series of experiments using sighted and blind human listeners and a 'virtual auditory space' technique to investigate the effects of the distance and orientation of a reflective object and the effect of stimulus bandwidth on ability to identify the right-versus-left position of the object, with bands of noise and durations from 10-400 ms. We found that performance reduced with increasing object distance. This was more rapid for object orientations where mirror-like reflection paths do not exist to both ears (i.e., most possible orientations); performance with these orientations was indistinguishable from chance at 1.8 m for even the best performing listeners in other conditions. Above-chance performance extended to larger distances when the echo was artificially presented in isolation, as might be achieved in practice by an assistive device. We also found that performance was primarily based on information above 2 kHz. Further research should extend these investigations to include other factors that are relevant to real-life echolocation. PMID:23538130

  6. Virtual Screening and Biological Evaluation of Piperazine Derivatives as Human Acetylcholinesterase Inhibitors

    PubMed Central

    Varadaraju, Kavitha Raj; Kumar, Jajur Ramanna; Mallesha, Lingappa; Muruli, Archana; Mohana, Kikkeri Narasimha Shetty; Mukunda, Chethan Kumar; Sharanaiah, Umesha

    2013-01-01

    The piperazine derivatives have been shown to inhibit human acetylcholinesterase. Virtual screening by molecular docking of piperazine derivatives 1-(1,4-benzodioxane-2-carbonyl) piperazine (K), 4-(4-methyl)-benzenesulfonyl-1-(1,4-benzodioxane-2-carbonyl) piperazine (S1), and 4-(4-chloro)-benzenesulfonyl-1-(1,4-benzodioxane-2-carbonyl) piperazine (S3) has been shown to bind at peripheral anionic site and catalytic sites, whereas 4-benzenesulfonyl-1-(1,4-benzodioxane-2-carbonyl) piperazine (S4) and 4-(2,5-dichloro)-benzenesulfonyl-1-(1,4-benzodioxane-2-carbonyl) piperazine (S7) do not bind either to peripheral anionic site or catalytic site with hydrogen bond. All the derivatives have differed in number of H-bonds and hydrophobic interactions. The peripheral anionic site interacting molecules have proven to be potential therapeutics in inhibiting amyloid peptides aggregation in Alzheimer's disease. All the piperazine derivatives follow Lipinski's rule of five. Among all the derivatives 1-(1,4-benzodioxane-2-carbonyl) piperazine (K) was found to have the lowest TPSA value. PMID:24288651

  7. The Virtual Tablet: Virtual Reality as a Control System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chronister, Andrew

    2016-01-01

    In the field of human-computer interaction, Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) have been rapidly growing areas of interest and concerted development effort thanks to both private and public research. At NASA, a number of groups have explored the possibilities afforded by AR and VR technology, among which is the IT Advanced Concepts Lab (ITACL). Within ITACL, the AVR (Augmented/Virtual Reality) Lab focuses on VR technology specifically for its use in command and control. Previous work in the AVR lab includes the Natural User Interface (NUI) project and the Virtual Control Panel (VCP) project, which created virtual three-dimensional interfaces that users could interact with while wearing a VR headset thanks to body- and hand-tracking technology. The Virtual Tablet (VT) project attempts to improve on these previous efforts by incorporating a physical surrogate which is mirrored in the virtual environment, mitigating issues with difficulty of visually determining the interface location and lack of tactile feedback discovered in the development of previous efforts. The physical surrogate takes the form of a handheld sheet of acrylic glass with several infrared-range reflective markers and a sensor package attached. Using the sensor package to track orientation and a motion-capture system to track the marker positions, a model of the surrogate is placed in the virtual environment at a position which corresponds with the real-world location relative to the user's VR Head Mounted Display (HMD). A set of control mechanisms is then projected onto the surface of the surrogate such that to the user, immersed in VR, the control interface appears to be attached to the object they are holding. The VT project was taken from an early stage where the sensor package, motion-capture system, and physical surrogate had been constructed or tested individually but not yet combined or incorporated into the virtual environment. My contribution was to combine the pieces of

  8. Virtual Specimens

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Paor, D. G.

    2009-12-01

    Virtual Field Trips have been around almost as long as the Worldwide Web itself yet virtual explorers do not generally return to their desktops with folders full of virtual hand specimens. Collection of real specimens on fields trips for later analysis in the lab (or at least in the pub) has been an important part of classical field geoscience education and research for generations but concern for the landscape and for preservation of key outcrops from wanton destruction has lead to many restrictions. One of the author’s favorite outcrops was recently vandalized presumably by a geologist who felt the need to bash some of the world’s most spectacular buckle folds with a rock sledge. It is not surprising, therefore, that geologists sometimes leave fragile localities out of field trip itineraries. Once analyzed, most specimens repose in drawers or bins, never to be seen again. Some end up in teaching collections but recent pedagogical research shows that undergraduate students have difficulty relating specimens both to their collection location and ultimate provenance in the lithosphere. Virtual specimens can be created using 3D modeling software and imported into virtual globes such as Google Earth (GE) where, they may be linked to virtual field trip stops or restored to their source localities on the paleo-globe. Sensitive localities may be protected by placemark approximation. The GE application program interface (API) has a distinct advantage over the stand-alone GE application when it comes to viewing and manipulating virtual specimens. When instances of the virtual globe are embedded in web pages using the GE plug-in, Collada models of specimens can be manipulated with javascript controls residing in the enclosing HTML, permitting specimens to be magnified, rotated in 3D, and sliced. Associated analytical data may be linked into javascript and localities for comparison at various points on the globe referenced by ‘fetching’ KML. Virtual specimens open up

  9. Scaffold-Free Human Cardiac Tissue Patch Created from Embryonic Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Stevens, Kelly R.; Pabon, Lil; Muskheli, Veronica

    2009-01-01

    Progress in cardiac tissue engineering has been limited by (1) unfavorable cell and host responses to biomaterial scaffolds, (2) lack of suitable human cardiomyocyte sources, and (3) lack of fabrication techniques for scalable production of engineered tissue constructs. Here we report a novel and scalable method to generate scaffold-free human cardiac tissue patches. Human embryonic stem cells were differentiated to cardiomyocytes using activin A and BMP4 and placed into suspension on a rotating orbital shaker. Cells aggregated to form macroscopic disc-shaped patches of beating tissue after 2 days. Patch diameter was directly proportional to input cell number (approximately 11 mm with 12 million cells), and patches were 300–600 μm thick. Cardiomyocytes were concentrated around the patch edges and exhibited increased purity and maturation with time, comprising approximately 80% of total cells after 11 days. Noncardiac cell elements, primarily epithelium, were present at day 2 but were diminished markedly at later time points. Cardiomyocyte proliferation occurred throughout the patches at day 2 but declined by day 8. Patches exhibited automaticity and synchronous calcium transients, indicating electromechanical coupling. These novel scaffold-free human myocardial patches address critical challenges related to human cell sourcing and tissue fabrication that previously inhibited progress in cardiac tissue engineering. PMID:19063661

  10. Virtually There.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lanier, Jaron

    2001-01-01

    Describes tele-immersion, a new medium for human interaction enabled by digital technologies. It combines the display and interaction techniques of virtual reality with new vision technologies that transcend the traditional limitations of a camera. Tele-immersion stations observe people as moving sculptures without favoring a single point of view.…

  11. Special Issue: Creating a Tipping Point--Strategic Human Resources in Higher Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Evans, Alvin; Chun, Edna

    2012-01-01

    This monograph examines the emergence of strategic human resource (HR) practices in higher education at a time when the budgetary crisis in public higher education has never been more acute. The wave of financial pressures on public research universities today heralds the advent of an era of unprecedented change. Financial upheaval resulting from…

  12. Policies to Create and Destroy Human Capital in Europe. NBER Working Paper No. 15742

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Heckman, James J.; Jacobs, Bas

    2010-01-01

    Trends in skill bias and greater turbulence in modern labor markets put wages and employment prospects of unskilled workers under pressure. Weak incentives to utilize and maintain skills over the life-cycle become manifest with the ageing of the population. Policies to promote human capital formation reduce welfare state dependency among the…

  13. A Human Relations Curriculum Development Project Created by the PACE Association.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Program for Action by Citizens in Education, Cleveland, OH.

    After two years of experimental teaching and research in suburban high schools, the Cleveland area Human Relations Curriculum Program is being expanded to include the inner-city and elementary schools. In an attempt to increase man's ability to get along with his fellow man, it employs a multimedia approach including films, documentaries, news…

  14. Quantitative and qualitative changes in teaching histology by means of virtual microscopy in an introductory course in human anatomy.

    PubMed

    Husmann, Polly R; O'Loughlin, Valerie Dean; Braun, Mark W

    2009-10-01

    This study compares overall laboratory averages and individual test scores along with a student survey to determine the effects of using virtual microscopy in place of optical microscopes in a large undergraduate human anatomy course. T-tests revealed that the first two laboratory examinations (of four) and the overall laboratory averages were significantly increased compared with the previous year. We hypothesize that this is due to students' ability to use and understand the technology quickly as opposed to learning how to maneuver an optical microscope. Students also responded positively in a survey about the virtual microscope, indicating that increased accessibility, ease of use, and the ability to understand the material were important components of the virtual microscope. In addition, an increase in student collaboration was noted because multiple students were able to view the image at a time. This level of acceptance of virtual microscopy has been reported in previous studies, though this level of increased examination scores is rare. We attribute this to differences between the medical students, with whom this technology has been researched in the past, and undergraduate introductory students.

  15. Aqueous humor outflow effects of partial thickness channel created by a femtosecond laser in ex-vivo human eyes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chai, Dongyul; Chaudhary, Gautam; Kurtz, Ron; Juhasz, Tibor

    2007-02-01

    The reduced outflow rate caused by the increased resistance through trabecular meshwork (TM) has been thought to be the main reason for elevated intraocular pressure (IOP). It has been demonstrated that femtosecond laser pulses tuned to 1.7 μm wavelength can create the partial thickness channel in the sclera in ex vivo human eyes [1] and aqueous outflow can be increased by these channels in porcine eyes [2]. It was also shown that the outflow rate is reduced over time in ex vivo human eyes [3]. Therefore, the control experiment without laser treatment at the same condition was conducted and showed that outflow was reduced by 1.5 +/- 0.8 μl/min at 15mmHg and 1.8 +/- 1.0 μl/min at 25mmHg. However, the outflow rate increased by 0.26 μl/min at 15mmHg and 0.15 μl/min at 25mmHg after the partial thickness channel was created, meaning the amount of increased outflow rate might be more than measured considering the outflow reduction in control experiment. We suggest that the femtosecond laser created partial thickness channel can increase the outflow rate and delay the progression of glaucoma.

  16. Human Engineered Cardiac Tissues Created Using Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells Reveal Functional Characteristics of BRAF-Mediated Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy.

    PubMed

    Cashman, Timothy J; Josowitz, Rebecca; Johnson, Bryce V; Gelb, Bruce D; Costa, Kevin D

    2016-01-01

    Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is a leading cause of sudden cardiac death that often goes undetected in the general population. HCM is also prevalent in patients with cardio-facio-cutaneous syndrome (CFCS), which is a genetic disorder characterized by aberrant signaling in the RAS/MAPK signaling cascade. Understanding the mechanisms of HCM development in such RASopathies may lead to novel therapeutic strategies, but relevant experimental models of the human condition are lacking. Therefore, the objective of this study was to develop the first 3D human engineered cardiac tissue (hECT) model of HCM. The hECTs were created using human cardiomyocytes obtained by directed differentiation of induced pluripotent stem cells derived from a patient with CFCS due to an activating BRAF mutation. The mutant myocytes were directly conjugated at a 3:1 ratio with a stromal cell population to create a tissue of defined composition. Compared to healthy patient control hECTs, BRAF-hECTs displayed a hypertrophic phenotype by culture day 6, with significantly increased tissue size, twitch force, and atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP) gene expression. Twitch characteristics reflected increased contraction and relaxation rates and shorter twitch duration in BRAF-hECTs, which also had a significantly higher maximum capture rate and lower excitation threshold during electrical pacing, consistent with a more arrhythmogenic substrate. By culture day 11, twitch force was no longer different between BRAF and wild-type hECTs, revealing a temporal aspect of disease modeling with tissue engineering. Principal component analysis identified diastolic force as a key factor that changed from day 6 to day 11, supported by a higher passive stiffness in day 11 BRAF-hECTs. In summary, human engineered cardiac tissues created from BRAF mutant cells recapitulated, for the first time, key aspects of the HCM phenotype, offering a new in vitro model for studying intrinsic mechanisms and screening new

  17. Human Engineered Cardiac Tissues Created Using Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells Reveal Functional Characteristics of BRAF-Mediated Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Bryce V.; Gelb, Bruce D.; Costa, Kevin D.

    2016-01-01

    Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is a leading cause of sudden cardiac death that often goes undetected in the general population. HCM is also prevalent in patients with cardio-facio-cutaneous syndrome (CFCS), which is a genetic disorder characterized by aberrant signaling in the RAS/MAPK signaling cascade. Understanding the mechanisms of HCM development in such RASopathies may lead to novel therapeutic strategies, but relevant experimental models of the human condition are lacking. Therefore, the objective of this study was to develop the first 3D human engineered cardiac tissue (hECT) model of HCM. The hECTs were created using human cardiomyocytes obtained by directed differentiation of induced pluripotent stem cells derived from a patient with CFCS due to an activating BRAF mutation. The mutant myocytes were directly conjugated at a 3:1 ratio with a stromal cell population to create a tissue of defined composition. Compared to healthy patient control hECTs, BRAF-hECTs displayed a hypertrophic phenotype by culture day 6, with significantly increased tissue size, twitch force, and atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP) gene expression. Twitch characteristics reflected increased contraction and relaxation rates and shorter twitch duration in BRAF-hECTs, which also had a significantly higher maximum capture rate and lower excitation threshold during electrical pacing, consistent with a more arrhythmogenic substrate. By culture day 11, twitch force was no longer different between BRAF and wild-type hECTs, revealing a temporal aspect of disease modeling with tissue engineering. Principal component analysis identified diastolic force as a key factor that changed from day 6 to day 11, supported by a higher passive stiffness in day 11 BRAF-hECTs. In summary, human engineered cardiac tissues created from BRAF mutant cells recapitulated, for the first time, key aspects of the HCM phenotype, offering a new in vitro model for studying intrinsic mechanisms and screening new

  18. Sounds of silence: How to animate virtual worlds with sound

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Astheimer, Peter

    1993-01-01

    Sounds are an integral and sometimes annoying part of our daily life. Virtual worlds which imitate natural environments gain a lot of authenticity from fast, high quality visualization combined with sound effects. Sounds help to increase the degree of immersion for human dwellers in imaginary worlds significantly. The virtual reality toolkit of IGD (Institute for Computer Graphics) features a broad range of standard visual and advanced real-time audio components which interpret an object-oriented definition of the scene. The virtual reality system 'Virtual Design' realized with the toolkit enables the designer of virtual worlds to create a true audiovisual environment. Several examples on video demonstrate the usage of the audio features in Virtual Design.

  19. Automated virtual colonoscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hunt, Gordon W.; Hemler, Paul F.; Vining, David J.

    1997-05-01

    Virtual colonscopy (VC) is a minimally invasive alternative to conventional fiberoptic endoscopy for colorectal cancer screening. The VC technique involves bowel cleansing, gas distension of the colon, spiral computed tomography (CT) scanning of a patient's abdomen and pelvis, and visual analysis of multiplanar 2D and 3D images created from the spiral CT data. Despite the ability of interactive computer graphics to assist a physician in visualizing 3D models of the colon, a correct diagnosis hinges upon a physician's ability to properly identify small and sometimes subtle polyps or masses within hundreds of multiplanar and 3D images. Human visual analysis is time-consuming, tedious, and often prone to error of interpretation.We have addressed the problem of visual analysis by creating a software system that automatically highlights potential lesions in the 2D and 3D images in order to expedite a physician's interpretation of the colon data.

  20. Creating Communications, Computing, and Networking Technology Development Road Maps for Future NASA Human and Robotic Missions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhasin, Kul; Hayden, Jeffrey L.

    2005-02-01

    For human and robotic exploration missions envisioned in the Vision for Exploration, roadmaps are needed for capability development and investments based on advanced technology developments. A roadmap development process was undertaken for the needed communications, computing, and networking capabilities and technologies for the future human and robotics missions. The underlying processes are derived from work carried out during development of the future space communications architecture, and NASA's Space Architect Office (SAO) defined formats and structures for accumulating data. Interrelationships were established among emerging requirements, the capability analysis and technology status, and performance data. After developing an architectural communications and networking framework structured around the assumed needs for human and robotic exploration, in the vicinity of Earth, Moon, along the path to Mars, and in the vicinity of Mars, information was gathered from expert participants. This information was used to identify the capabilities expected from the new infrastructure and the technological gaps in the way of obtaining them. We define realistic, long-term space communication architectures based on emerging needs and translate the needs into interfaces, functions, and computer processing that will be required. In developing our roadmapping process, we defined requirements for achieving end-to-end activities that will be carried out by future NASA human and robotic missions. This paper describes: 1) the architectural framework developed for analysis; 2) our approach to gathering and analyzing data from NASA, industry, and academia; 3) an outline of the technology research to be done, including milestones for technology research and demonstrations with timelines; and 4) the technology roadmaps themselves.

  1. Creating Communications, Computing, and Networking Technology Development Road Maps for Future NASA Human and Robotic Missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bhasin, Kul; Hayden, Jeffrey L.

    2005-01-01

    For human and robotic exploration missions in the Vision for Exploration, roadmaps are needed for capability development and investments based on advanced technology developments. A roadmap development process was undertaken for the needed communications, and networking capabilities and technologies for the future human and robotics missions. The underlying processes are derived from work carried out during development of the future space communications architecture, an d NASA's Space Architect Office (SAO) defined formats and structures for accumulating data. Interrelationships were established among emerging requirements, the capability analysis and technology status, and performance data. After developing an architectural communications and networking framework structured around the assumed needs for human and robotic exploration, in the vicinity of Earth, Moon, along the path to Mars, and in the vicinity of Mars, information was gathered from expert participants. This information was used to identify the capabilities expected from the new infrastructure and the technological gaps in the way of obtaining them. We define realistic, long-term space communication architectures based on emerging needs and translate the needs into interfaces, functions, and computer processing that will be required. In developing our roadmapping process, we defined requirements for achieving end-to-end activities that will be carried out by future NASA human and robotic missions. This paper describes: 10 the architectural framework developed for analysis; 2) our approach to gathering and analyzing data from NASA, industry, and academia; 3) an outline of the technology research to be done, including milestones for technology research and demonstrations with timelines; and 4) the technology roadmaps themselves.

  2. Evidence for large diversity in the human transcriptome created by Alu RNA editing.

    PubMed

    Barak, Michal; Levanon, Erez Y; Eisenberg, Eli; Paz, Nurit; Rechavi, Gideon; Church, George M; Mehr, Ramit

    2009-11-01

    Adenosine-to-inosine (A-to-I) RNA editing alters the original genomic content of the human transcriptome and is essential for maintenance of normal life in mammals. A-to-I editing in Alu repeats is abundant in the human genome, with many thousands of expressed Alu sequences undergoing editing. Little is known so far about the contribution of Alu editing to transcriptome complexity. Transcripts derived from a single edited Alu sequence can be edited in multiple sites, and thus could theoretically generate a large number of different transcripts. Here we explored whether the combinatorial potential nature of edited Alu sequences is actually fulfilled in the human transcriptome. We analyzed datasets of editing sites and performed an analysis of a detailed transcript set of one edited Alu sequence. We found that editing appears at many more sites than detected by earlier genomic screens. To a large extent, editing of different sites within the same transcript is only weakly correlated. Thus, rather than finding a few versions of each transcript, a large number of edited variants arise, resulting in immense transcript diversity that eclipses alternative splicing as mechanism of transcriptome diversity, although with less impact on the proteome. PMID:19740767

  3. Evidence for large diversity in the human transcriptome created by Alu RNA editing.

    PubMed

    Barak, Michal; Levanon, Erez Y; Eisenberg, Eli; Paz, Nurit; Rechavi, Gideon; Church, George M; Mehr, Ramit

    2009-11-01

    Adenosine-to-inosine (A-to-I) RNA editing alters the original genomic content of the human transcriptome and is essential for maintenance of normal life in mammals. A-to-I editing in Alu repeats is abundant in the human genome, with many thousands of expressed Alu sequences undergoing editing. Little is known so far about the contribution of Alu editing to transcriptome complexity. Transcripts derived from a single edited Alu sequence can be edited in multiple sites, and thus could theoretically generate a large number of different transcripts. Here we explored whether the combinatorial potential nature of edited Alu sequences is actually fulfilled in the human transcriptome. We analyzed datasets of editing sites and performed an analysis of a detailed transcript set of one edited Alu sequence. We found that editing appears at many more sites than detected by earlier genomic screens. To a large extent, editing of different sites within the same transcript is only weakly correlated. Thus, rather than finding a few versions of each transcript, a large number of edited variants arise, resulting in immense transcript diversity that eclipses alternative splicing as mechanism of transcriptome diversity, although with less impact on the proteome.

  4. Alternative splicing creates two new architectures for human tyrosyl-tRNA synthetase.

    PubMed

    Wei, Zhiyi; Xu, Zhiwen; Liu, Xiaotian; Lo, Wing-Sze; Ye, Fei; Lau, Ching-Fun; Wang, Feng; Zhou, Jie J; Nangle, Leslie A; Yang, Xiang-Lei; Zhang, Mingjie; Schimmel, Paul

    2016-02-18

    Many human tRNA synthetases evolved alternative functions outside of protein synthesis. These functions are associated with over 200 splice variants (SVs), most of which are catalytic nulls that engender new biology. While known to regulate non-translational activities, little is known about structures resulting from natural internal ablations of any protein. Here, we report analysis of two closely related, internally deleted, SVs of homodimeric human tyrosyl-tRNA synthetase (TyrRS). In spite of both variants ablating a portion of the catalytic core and dimer-interface contacts of native TyrRS, each folded into a distinct stable structure. Biochemical and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) analysis showed that the internal deletion of TyrRSΔE2-4 SV gave an alternative, neomorphic dimer interface 'orthogonal' to that of native TyrRS. In contrast, the internal C-terminal splice site of TyrRSΔE2-3 prevented either dimerization interface from forming, and yielded a predominantly monomeric protein. Unlike ubiquitous TyrRS, the neomorphs showed clear tissue preferences, which were distinct from each other. The results demonstrate a sophisticated structural plasticity of a human tRNA synthetase for architectural reorganizations that are preferentially elicited in specific tissues. PMID:26773056

  5. A vision and strategy for the virtual physiological human: 2012 update

    PubMed Central

    Hunter, Peter; Chapman, Tara; Coveney, Peter V.; de Bono, Bernard; Diaz, Vanessa; Fenner, John; Frangi, Alejandro F.; Harris, Peter; Hose, Rod; Kohl, Peter; Lawford, Pat; McCormack, Keith; Mendes, Miriam; Omholt, Stig; Quarteroni, Alfio; Shublaq, Nour; Skår, John; Stroetmann, Karl; Tegner, Jesper; Thomas, S. Randall; Tollis, Ioannis; Tsamardinos, Ioannis; van Beek, Johannes H. G. M.; Viceconti, Marco

    2013-01-01

    European funding under Framework 7 (FP7) for the virtual physiological human (VPH) project has been in place now for 5 years. The VPH Network of Excellence (NoE) has been set up to help develop common standards, open source software, freely accessible data and model repositories, and various training and dissemination activities for the project. It is also working to coordinate the many clinically targeted projects that have been funded under the FP7 calls. An initial vision for the VPH was defined by the FP6 STEP project in 2006. In 2010, we wrote an assessment of the accomplishments of the first two years of the VPH in which we considered the biomedical science, healthcare and information and communications technology challenges facing the project (Hunter et al. 2010 Phil. Trans. R. Soc. A 368, 2595–2614 (doi:10.1098/rsta.2010.0048)). We proposed that a not-for-profit professional umbrella organization, the VPH Institute, should be established as a means of sustaining the VPH vision beyond the time-frame of the NoE. Here, we update and extend this assessment and in particular address the following issues raised in response to Hunter et al.: (i) a vision for the VPH updated in the light of progress made so far, (ii) biomedical science and healthcare challenges that the VPH initiative can address while also providing innovation opportunities for the European industry, and (iii) external changes needed in regulatory policy and business models to realize the full potential that the VPH has to offer to industry, clinics and society generally. PMID:24427536

  6. Inhibitor Discovery for the Human GLUT1 from Homology Modeling and Virtual Screening.

    PubMed

    Ung, Peter Man-Un; Song, Wenxin; Cheng, Lili; Zhao, Xinbin; Hu, Hailin; Chen, Ligong; Schlessinger, Avner

    2016-07-15

    The human Glucose Transporter 1 (hGLUT1 or SLC2A1) is a facilitative membrane transporter found in the liver, intestines, kidney, and brain, where it transports sugars such as d-glucose and d-galactose. Genetic variations in hGLUT1 are associated with a broad range of diseases and metabolic disorders. For example, hGLUT1 is upregulated in various cancer types (e.g., breast carcinoma) to support the increased anaerobic glycolysis and the Warburg effect. Thus, hGLUT1 is an emerging therapeutic target, which also transports commonly used cancer biomarkers (e.g., (18)F-DG). In this study, we use computational prediction followed by experimental testing, to characterize hGLUT1. We construct homology models of hGLUT1 in a partially occluded outward open ("occluded") conformation based on the X-ray structure of the E. coli xylose transporter, XylE. Comparison of the binding site of the occluded models to experimentally determined hGLUT structures revealed a hydrophobic pocket adjacent to the sugar-binding site, which was tested experimentally via site-directed mutagenesis. Virtual screening of various libraries of purchasable compounds against the occluded models, followed by experimental testing with cellular assays revealed seven previously unknown hGLUT1 ligands with IC50 values ranging from 0.45 μM to 59 μM. These ligands represent three unique chemotypes that are chemically different from any other known hGLUT1 ligands. The newly characterized hydrophobic pocket can potentially be utilized by the new ligands for increased affinity. Furthermore, the previously unknown hGLUT1 ligands can serve as chemical tools to further characterize hGLUT1 function or lead molecules for future drug development. PMID:27128978

  7. A vision and strategy for the virtual physiological human: 2012 update.

    PubMed

    Hunter, Peter; Chapman, Tara; Coveney, Peter V; de Bono, Bernard; Diaz, Vanessa; Fenner, John; Frangi, Alejandro F; Harris, Peter; Hose, Rod; Kohl, Peter; Lawford, Pat; McCormack, Keith; Mendes, Miriam; Omholt, Stig; Quarteroni, Alfio; Shublaq, Nour; Skår, John; Stroetmann, Karl; Tegner, Jesper; Thomas, S Randall; Tollis, Ioannis; Tsamardinos, Ioannis; van Beek, Johannes H G M; Viceconti, Marco

    2013-04-01

    European funding under Framework 7 (FP7) for the virtual physiological human (VPH) project has been in place now for 5 years. The VPH Network of Excellence (NoE) has been set up to help develop common standards, open source software, freely accessible data and model repositories, and various training and dissemination activities for the project. It is also working to coordinate the many clinically targeted projects that have been funded under the FP7 calls. An initial vision for the VPH was defined by the FP6 STEP project in 2006. In 2010, we wrote an assessment of the accomplishments of the first two years of the VPH in which we considered the biomedical science, healthcare and information and communications technology challenges facing the project (Hunter et al. 2010 Phil. Trans. R. Soc. A 368, 2595-2614 (doi:10.1098/rsta.2010.0048)). We proposed that a not-for-profit professional umbrella organization, the VPH Institute, should be established as a means of sustaining the VPH vision beyond the time-frame of the NoE. Here, we update and extend this assessment and in particular address the following issues raised in response to Hunter et al.: (i) a vision for the VPH updated in the light of progress made so far, (ii) biomedical science and healthcare challenges that the VPH initiative can address while also providing innovation opportunities for the European industry, and (iii) external changes needed in regulatory policy and business models to realize the full potential that the VPH has to offer to industry, clinics and society generally. PMID:24427536

  8. A vision and strategy for the virtual physiological human: 2012 update.

    PubMed

    Hunter, Peter; Chapman, Tara; Coveney, Peter V; de Bono, Bernard; Diaz, Vanessa; Fenner, John; Frangi, Alejandro F; Harris, Peter; Hose, Rod; Kohl, Peter; Lawford, Pat; McCormack, Keith; Mendes, Miriam; Omholt, Stig; Quarteroni, Alfio; Shublaq, Nour; Skår, John; Stroetmann, Karl; Tegner, Jesper; Thomas, S Randall; Tollis, Ioannis; Tsamardinos, Ioannis; van Beek, Johannes H G M; Viceconti, Marco

    2013-04-01

    European funding under Framework 7 (FP7) for the virtual physiological human (VPH) project has been in place now for 5 years. The VPH Network of Excellence (NoE) has been set up to help develop common standards, open source software, freely accessible data and model repositories, and various training and dissemination activities for the project. It is also working to coordinate the many clinically targeted projects that have been funded under the FP7 calls. An initial vision for the VPH was defined by the FP6 STEP project in 2006. In 2010, we wrote an assessment of the accomplishments of the first two years of the VPH in which we considered the biomedical science, healthcare and information and communications technology challenges facing the project (Hunter et al. 2010 Phil. Trans. R. Soc. A 368, 2595-2614 (doi:10.1098/rsta.2010.0048)). We proposed that a not-for-profit professional umbrella organization, the VPH Institute, should be established as a means of sustaining the VPH vision beyond the time-frame of the NoE. Here, we update and extend this assessment and in particular address the following issues raised in response to Hunter et al.: (i) a vision for the VPH updated in the light of progress made so far, (ii) biomedical science and healthcare challenges that the VPH initiative can address while also providing innovation opportunities for the European industry, and (iii) external changes needed in regulatory policy and business models to realize the full potential that the VPH has to offer to industry, clinics and society generally.

  9. IAB presidential address: bioethics in a globalized world: creating space for flourishing human relationships.

    PubMed

    Biller-Andorno, Nikola

    2011-10-01

    Bioethics in a globalized world is meeting a number of challenges - fundamentalism in its different forms, and a focus on economic growth neglecting issues such as equity and sustainability, being prominent among them. How well are we as bioethicists equipped to make meaningful contributions in these times? The paper identifies a number of restraints and proceeds to probe potential resources such as the capability approach, care ethics, cosmopolitanism, and pragmatism. These elements serve to outline a perspective that focuses on the preconditions for flourishing human relationships as a way to address bioethical challenges in a globalized world. PMID:21929701

  10. IAB presidential address: bioethics in a globalized world: creating space for flourishing human relationships.

    PubMed

    Biller-Andorno, Nikola

    2011-10-01

    Bioethics in a globalized world is meeting a number of challenges - fundamentalism in its different forms, and a focus on economic growth neglecting issues such as equity and sustainability, being prominent among them. How well are we as bioethicists equipped to make meaningful contributions in these times? The paper identifies a number of restraints and proceeds to probe potential resources such as the capability approach, care ethics, cosmopolitanism, and pragmatism. These elements serve to outline a perspective that focuses on the preconditions for flourishing human relationships as a way to address bioethical challenges in a globalized world.

  11. Virtual reality anatomy: is it comparable with traditional methods in the teaching of human forearm musculoskeletal anatomy?

    PubMed

    Codd, Anthony M; Choudhury, Bipasha

    2011-01-01

    The use of cadavers to teach anatomy is well established, but limitations with this approach have led to the introduction of alternative teaching methods. One such method is the use of three-dimensional virtual reality computer models. An interactive, three-dimensional computer model of human forearm anterior compartment musculoskeletal anatomy was produced using the open source 3D imaging program "Blender." The aim was to evaluate the use of 3D virtual reality when compared with traditional anatomy teaching methods. Three groups were identified from the University of Manchester second year Human Anatomy Research Skills Module class: a "control" group (no prior knowledge of forearm anatomy), a "traditional methods" group (taught using dissection and textbooks), and a "model" group (taught solely using e-resource). The groups were assessed on anatomy of the forearm by a ten question practical examination. ANOVA analysis showed the model group mean test score to be significantly higher than the control group (mean 7.25 vs. 1.46, P < 0.001) and not significantly different to the traditional methods group (mean 6.87, P > 0.5). Feedback from all users of the e-resource was positive. Virtual reality anatomy learning can be used to compliment traditional teaching methods effectively.

  12. Creating capillary networks within human engineered tissues: impact of adipocytes and their secretory products.

    PubMed

    Aubin, Kim; Vincent, Caroline; Proulx, Maryse; Mayrand, Dominique; Fradette, Julie

    2015-01-01

    The development of tissue-engineered substitutes of substantial volume is closely associated with the need to ensure rapid vascularization upon grafting. Strategies promoting angiogenesis include the in vitro formation of capillary-like networks within engineered substitutes. We generated both connective and adipose tissues based on a cell sheet technology using human adipose-derived stromal cells. This study evaluates the morphology and extent of the capillary networks that developed upon seeding of human microvascular endothelial cells during tissue production. We posited that adipocyte presence/secretory products could modulate the resulting capillary network when compared to connective substitutes. Analyses including confocal imaging of CD31-labeled capillary-like networks indicated slight differences in their morphological appearance. However, the total volume occupied by the networks as well as the frequency distribution of the structure's volumes were similar between connective and adipose tissues. The average diameter of the capillary structures tended to be 20% higher in reconstructed adipose tissues. Quantification of pro-angiogenic molecules in conditioned media showed greater amounts of leptin (15×), angiopoietin-1 (3.4×) and HGF (1.7×) secreted from adipose than connective tissues at the time of endothelial cell seeding. However, this difference was attenuated during the following coculture period in endothelial cell-containing media, correlating with the minor differences noted between the networks. Taken together, we developed a protocol allowing reconstruction of both connective and adipose tissues featuring well-developed capillary networks in vitro. We performed a detailed characterization of the network architecture within engineered tissues that is relevant for graft assessment before implantation as well as for in vitro screening of angiogenic modulators using three-dimensional models.

  13. A Virtual Good Idea

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bolch, Matt

    2009-01-01

    School districts across the country have always had to do more with less. Funding goes only so far, leaving administrators and IT staff to find innovative ways to save money while maintaining a high level of academic quality. Creating virtual servers accomplishes both tasks, district technology personnel say. Virtual environments not only allow…

  14. An epidermal stem cells niche microenvironment created by engineered human amniotic membrane.

    PubMed

    Ji, Shi-zhao; Xiao, Shi-chu; Luo, Peng-fei; Huang, Guo-feng; Wang, Guang-yi; Zhu, Shi-hui; Wu, Min-juan; Xia, Zhao-fan

    2011-11-01

    How to amplify epidermal stem cells (ESCs) rapidly is a challenging crux in skin tissue engineering research. The present study describes the preparation of 3D micronized (300-600 μm) amniotic membrane (mAM) by means of repeated freeze-thawing cycles to deplete cell components and homogenized with a macrohomogenizer in liquid nitrogen. This newly prepared mAM not only possessed the characteristics of a microcarrier but completely retained the basement membrane structure and abundant active substances such as NGF, HGF, KGF, bFGF, TGF-β1 and EGF in the AM matrix. The result showed that mAM combined with rotary cell culture system (RCCS) was able to amplify ESCs quickly. The relative cell viability at day 7 and 14 was significantly higher than that of the conventional 2D plate culture (326 ± 28% and 535 ± 47% versus 232 ± 21% and 307 ± 32%, P < 0.05). In addition, the new method was able to prevent cell differentiation effectively and retain the characteristics of stem cells. When mAM loaded with ESCs (ESC-mAM) was further transplanted to full-thickness skin defects in nude mice, ESCs survived well and formed a new epidermis. Four weeks after transplantation, papilla-like structures were observed, and collagen fibers were well and regularly arranged in the newly formed dermal layer. In conclusion, the mAM as a novel natural microcarrier possesses an intact basement membrane structure and bioactivities. It not only provides the microenvironment similar to the stem cell niche within the human body favorable for ex vivo culture and amplification of ESCs but can be used as the dermal scaffold in constructing a skin substitute containing ESCs for the repair of full-thickness skin defects.

  15. An epidermal stem cells niche microenvironment created by engineered human amniotic membrane.

    PubMed

    Ji, Shi-zhao; Xiao, Shi-chu; Luo, Peng-fei; Huang, Guo-feng; Wang, Guang-yi; Zhu, Shi-hui; Wu, Min-juan; Xia, Zhao-fan

    2011-11-01

    How to amplify epidermal stem cells (ESCs) rapidly is a challenging crux in skin tissue engineering research. The present study describes the preparation of 3D micronized (300-600 μm) amniotic membrane (mAM) by means of repeated freeze-thawing cycles to deplete cell components and homogenized with a macrohomogenizer in liquid nitrogen. This newly prepared mAM not only possessed the characteristics of a microcarrier but completely retained the basement membrane structure and abundant active substances such as NGF, HGF, KGF, bFGF, TGF-β1 and EGF in the AM matrix. The result showed that mAM combined with rotary cell culture system (RCCS) was able to amplify ESCs quickly. The relative cell viability at day 7 and 14 was significantly higher than that of the conventional 2D plate culture (326 ± 28% and 535 ± 47% versus 232 ± 21% and 307 ± 32%, P < 0.05). In addition, the new method was able to prevent cell differentiation effectively and retain the characteristics of stem cells. When mAM loaded with ESCs (ESC-mAM) was further transplanted to full-thickness skin defects in nude mice, ESCs survived well and formed a new epidermis. Four weeks after transplantation, papilla-like structures were observed, and collagen fibers were well and regularly arranged in the newly formed dermal layer. In conclusion, the mAM as a novel natural microcarrier possesses an intact basement membrane structure and bioactivities. It not only provides the microenvironment similar to the stem cell niche within the human body favorable for ex vivo culture and amplification of ESCs but can be used as the dermal scaffold in constructing a skin substitute containing ESCs for the repair of full-thickness skin defects. PMID:21803416

  16. ISIS Workshops Using Virtualization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Becker, K. J.; Becker, T. L.

    2015-06-01

    ISIS workshops are now using virtualization technology to improve the user experience and create a stable, consistent and useful ISIS installation for educational purposes as well as future processing needs.

  17. Human Activity Behavior and Gesture Generation in Virtual Worlds for Long- Duration Space Missions. Chapter 8

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sierhuis, Maarten; Clancey, William J.; Damer, Bruce; Brodsky, Boris; vanHoff, Ron

    2007-01-01

    A virtual worlds presentation technique with embodied, intelligent agents is being developed as an instructional medium suitable to present in situ training on long term space flight. The system combines a behavioral element based on finite state automata, a behavior based reactive architecture also described as subsumption architecture, and a belief-desire-intention agent structure. These three features are being integrated to describe a Brahms virtual environment model of extravehicular crew activity which could become a basis for procedure training during extended space flight.

  18. Objective and subjective quality assessment of geometry compression of reconstructed 3D humans in a 3D virtual room

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mekuria, Rufael; Cesar, Pablo; Doumanis, Ioannis; Frisiello, Antonella

    2015-09-01

    Compression of 3D object based video is relevant for 3D Immersive applications. Nevertheless, the perceptual aspects of the degradation introduced by codecs for meshes and point clouds are not well understood. In this paper we evaluate the subjective and objective degradations introduced by such codecs in a state of art 3D immersive virtual room. In the 3D immersive virtual room, users are captured with multiple cameras, and their surfaces are reconstructed as photorealistic colored/textured 3D meshes or point clouds. To test the perceptual effect of compression and transmission, we render degraded versions with different frame rates in different contexts (near/far) in the scene. A quantitative subjective study with 16 users shows that negligible distortion of decoded surfaces compared to the original reconstructions can be achieved in the 3D virtual room. In addition, a qualitative task based analysis in a full prototype field trial shows increased presence, emotion, user and state recognition of the reconstructed 3D Human representation compared to animated computer avatars.

  19. Hiding and Searching Strategies of Adult Humans in a Virtual and a Real-Space Room

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Talbot, Katherine J.; Legge, Eric L. G.; Bulitko, Vadim; Spetch, Marcia L.

    2009-01-01

    Adults searched for or cached three objects in nine hiding locations in a virtual room or a real-space room. In both rooms, the locations selected by participants differed systematically between searching and hiding. Specifically, participants moved farther from origin and dispersed their choices more when hiding objects than when searching for…

  20. Employing Virtual Humans for Education and Training in X3D/VRML Worlds

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ieronutti, Lucio; Chittaro, Luca

    2007-01-01

    Web-based education and training provides a new paradigm for imparting knowledge; students can access the learning material anytime by operating remotely from any location. Web3D open standards, such as X3D and VRML, support Web-based delivery of Educational Virtual Environments (EVEs). EVEs have a great potential for learning and training…

  1. Humans with traumatic brain injuries show place-learning deficits in computer-generated virtual space.

    PubMed

    Skelton, R W; Bukach, C M; Laurance, H E; Thomas, K G; Jacobs, J W

    2000-04-01

    Spatial learning and memory has been linked to the hippocampus and temporal lobes and though these areas are often damaged in traumatic brain injury (TBI), spatial learning deficits after TBI have not received much attention. In the present study, a virtual environment was used to challenge people with TBI to solve a task comparable to the Morris water maze, which in turn has been shown to be highly sensitive to hippocampal and frontal lobe dysfunction in laboratory animals. A regular computer monitor was used to present 12 participants with TBI and 12 age- and sex-matched comparison participants with a computer-generated, three-dimensional "virtual arena maze," consisting of a large round arena within a very large square room. Participants were required to learn the place of an invisible target on the floor of the room based solely on distal cues on the walls of the room. Eight of the 12 participants with moderate to severe TBI showed substantial place-learning deficits in comparison to the uninjured participants. Performance in the virtual environment correlated with self-reported frequency of wayfinding problems in everyday life and with scores on a test of episodic memory, the Rivermead Behavioural Memory Task. These data confirm that deficits in spatial learning and memory follow TBI, and suggest that the virtual arena maze may provide a new method for objectively assessing them.

  2. Posterior parahippocampal gyrus lesions in the human impair egocentric learning in a virtual environment.

    PubMed

    Weniger, Godehard; Irle, Eva

    2006-10-01

    Functional imaging studies have shown that the posterior parahippocampal gyrus (PHG) is involved in allocentric (world-centered) object and scene recognition. However, the putative role of the posterior PHG in egocentric (body-centered) spatial memory has received only limited systematic investigation. Thirty-one subjects with pharmacoresistant medial temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) and temporal lobe removal were compared with 19 matched healthy control subjects on a virtual reality task affording the navigation in a virtual maze (egocentric memory). Lesions of the hippocampus and PHG of TLE subjects were determined by three-dimensional magnetic resonance imaging volumetric assessment. The results indicate that TLE subjects with right-sided posterior PHG lesions were impaired on virtual maze acquisition when compared with controls and TLE subjects with anterior PHG lesions. Larger posterior PHG lesions were significantly related to stronger impairments in virtual maze performance. Our results point to a role of the right-sided posterior PHG for the representation and storage of egocentric information. Moreover, access to both allocentric and egocentric streams of spatial information may enable the posterior PHG to construct a global and comprehensive representation of spatial environments.

  3. Virtual screening using ligand-based pharmacophores for inhibitors of human tyrosyl-DNA phospodiesterase (hTdp1)

    PubMed Central

    Weidlich, Iwona E.; Dexheimer, Thomas; Marchand, Christophe; Antony, Smitha; Pommier, Yves; Nicklaus, Marc C.

    2012-01-01

    Human tyrosyl-DNA phosphodiesterase (hTdp1) inhibitors have become a major area of drug research and structure-based design since they have been shown to work synergistically with camptothecin (CPT) and selectively in cancer cells. The pharmacophore features of 14 hTdp1 inhibitors were used as a filter to screen the ChemNavigator iResearch Library of about 27 million purchasable samples. Docking of the inhibitors and hits obtained from virtual screening was performed into a structural model of hTdp1 based on a high resolution X-ray crystal structure of human Tdp1 in complex with vanadate, DNA and a human topoisomerase I (TopI)-derived peptide (PDB code: 1NOP). We present and discuss in some detail 46 compounds matching the three-dimensional arrangement of the pharmacophoric features. The presented novel chemotypes may provide new scaffolds for developing inhibitors of Tdp1. PMID:19963390

  4. Virtual reality as a distraction technique in chronic pain patients.

    PubMed

    Wiederhold, Brenda K; Gao, Kenneth; Sulea, Camelia; Wiederhold, Mark D

    2014-06-01

    We explored the use of virtual reality distraction techniques for use as adjunctive therapy to treat chronic pain. Virtual environments were specifically created to provide pleasant and engaging experiences where patients navigated on their own through rich and varied simulated worlds. Real-time physiological monitoring was used as a guide to determine the effectiveness and sustainability of this intervention. Human factors studies showed that virtual navigation is a safe and effective method for use with chronic pain patients. Chronic pain patients demonstrated significant relief in subjective ratings of pain that corresponded to objective measurements in peripheral, noninvasive physiological measures.

  5. Neurocognitive and psychophysiological analysis of human performance within virtual reality environments.

    PubMed

    Parsons, Thomas D; Iyer, Arvind; Cosand, Louise; Courtney, Chris; Rizzo, Albert A

    2009-01-01

    Monitoring the neurocognitive and psychophysiological activity of persons operating within a complex environment poses exacting measurement challenges. Three experiments are reported in this paper. In these experiments we made use of VRCPAT to assess persons' neurocognitive and psychophysiological responses to high-fidelity, immersive virtual environments. The first experiment provided continued support for the validity of the VRCPAT as a measure of learning and memory through the use of an increased sample size. In the second experiment we aimed at assessing whether an increase in stimulus complexity would result in a significant decrease in performance on attentional tasks. We also wanted to see whether an increase in stimulus intensity would result in a significant decrease in performance on attentional tasks. The third experiment looked at participants' psychophysiological responses in both low and high immersion virtual environments. PMID:19377160

  6. Embodied social interaction constitutes social cognition in pairs of humans: A minimalist virtual reality experiment

    PubMed Central

    Froese, Tom; Iizuka, Hiroyuki; Ikegami, Takashi

    2014-01-01

    Scientists have traditionally limited the mechanisms of social cognition to one brain, but recent approaches claim that interaction also realizes cognitive work. Experiments under constrained virtual settings revealed that interaction dynamics implicitly guide social cognition. Here we show that embodied social interaction can be constitutive of agency detection and of experiencing another's presence. Pairs of participants moved their “avatars” along an invisible virtual line and could make haptic contact with three identical objects, two of which embodied the other's motions, but only one, the other's avatar, also embodied the other's contact sensor and thereby enabled responsive interaction. Co-regulated interactions were significantly correlated with identifications of the other's avatar and reports of the clearest awareness of the other's presence. These results challenge folk psychological notions about the boundaries of mind, but make sense from evolutionary and developmental perspectives: an extendible mind can offload cognitive work into its environment. PMID:24419102

  7. Embodied social interaction constitutes social cognition in pairs of humans: a minimalist virtual reality experiment.

    PubMed

    Froese, Tom; Iizuka, Hiroyuki; Ikegami, Takashi

    2014-01-14

    Scientists have traditionally limited the mechanisms of social cognition to one brain, but recent approaches claim that interaction also realizes cognitive work. Experiments under constrained virtual settings revealed that interaction dynamics implicitly guide social cognition. Here we show that embodied social interaction can be constitutive of agency detection and of experiencing another's presence. Pairs of participants moved their "avatars" along an invisible virtual line and could make haptic contact with three identical objects, two of which embodied the other's motions, but only one, the other's avatar, also embodied the other's contact sensor and thereby enabled responsive interaction. Co-regulated interactions were significantly correlated with identifications of the other's avatar and reports of the clearest awareness of the other's presence. These results challenge folk psychological notions about the boundaries of mind, but make sense from evolutionary and developmental perspectives: an extendible mind can offload cognitive work into its environment.

  8. MITRE's virtual model shop

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wingfield, Michael A.

    1995-04-01

    The exploration of visual data and the use of visual information during the design process can be greatly enhanced by working within the virtual environment where the user is closely coupled to the data by means of immersive technologies and natural user interfaces. Current technology enables us to construct a virtual environment utilizing 3D graphics projection, object generated stereo sound, tactile feedback, and voice command input. Advances in software architectures and user interfaces enable us to focus on enhancing the design process within the virtual environment. These explorations at MITRE have evolved into an application which focuses on the ability to create, manipulate, and explore photo and audio realistic 3D models of work spaces, office complexes, and entire communities in real-time. This application, the Virtual Interactive Planning System, is a component of the MITRE virtual model shop, a suite of applications which permits the user to design and manipulate computer graphics models within the virtual environment.

  9. Headphone and Head-Mounted Visual Displays for Virtual Environments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Begault, Duran R.; Ellis, Stephen R.; Wenzel, Elizabeth M.; Trejo, Leonard J. (Technical Monitor)

    1998-01-01

    A realistic auditory environment can contribute to both the overall subjective sense of presence in a virtual display, and to a quantitative metric predicting human performance. Here, the role of audio in a virtual display and the importance of auditory-visual interaction are examined. Conjectures are proposed regarding the effectiveness of audio compared to visual information for creating a sensation of immersion, the frame of reference within a virtual display, and the compensation of visual fidelity by supplying auditory information. Future areas of research are outlined for improving simulations of virtual visual and acoustic spaces. This paper will describe some of the intersensory phenomena that arise during operator interaction within combined visual and auditory virtual environments. Conjectures regarding audio-visual interaction will be proposed.

  10. Web-based three-dimensional Virtual Body Structures: W3D-VBS.

    PubMed

    Temkin, Bharti; Acosta, Eric; Hatfield, Paul; Onal, Erhan; Tong, Alex

    2002-01-01

    Major efforts are being made to improve the teaching of human anatomy to foster cognition of visuospatial relationships. The Visible Human Project of the National Library of Medicine makes it possible to create virtual reality-based applications for teaching anatomy. Integration of traditional cadaver and illustration-based methods with Internet-based simulations brings us closer to this goal. Web-based three-dimensional Virtual Body Structures (W3D-VBS) is a next-generation immersive anatomical training system for teaching human anatomy over the Internet. It uses Visible Human data to dynamically explore, select, extract, visualize, manipulate, and stereoscopically palpate realistic virtual body structures with a haptic device. Tracking user's progress through evaluation tools helps customize lesson plans. A self-guided "virtual tour" of the whole body allows investigation of labeled virtual dissections repetitively, at any time and place a user requires it. PMID:12223495

  11. Web-based Three-dimensional Virtual Body Structures: W3D-VBS

    PubMed Central

    Temkin, Bharti; Acosta, Eric; Hatfield, Paul; Onal, Erhan; Tong, Alex

    2002-01-01

    Major efforts are being made to improve the teaching of human anatomy to foster cognition of visuospatial relationships. The Visible Human Project of the National Library of Medicine makes it possible to create virtual reality-based applications for teaching anatomy. Integration of traditional cadaver and illustration-based methods with Internet-based simulations brings us closer to this goal. Web-based three-dimensional Virtual Body Structures (W3D-VBS) is a next-generation immersive anatomical training system for teaching human anatomy over the Internet. It uses Visible Human data to dynamically explore, select, extract, visualize, manipulate, and stereoscopically palpate realistic virtual body structures with a haptic device. Tracking user’s progress through evaluation tools helps customize lesson plans. A self-guided “virtual tour” of the whole body allows investigation of labeled virtual dissections repetitively, at any time and place a user requires it. PMID:12223495

  12. Virtually Ostracized: Studying Ostracism in Immersive Virtual Environments

    PubMed Central

    Wesselmann, Eric D.; Law, Alvin Ty; Williams, Kipling D.

    2012-01-01

    Abstract Electronic-based communication (such as Immersive Virtual Environments; IVEs) may offer new ways of satisfying the need for social connection, but they also provide ways this need can be thwarted. Ostracism, being ignored and excluded, is a common social experience that threatens fundamental human needs (i.e., belonging, control, self-esteem, and meaningful existence). Previous ostracism research has made use of a variety of paradigms, including minimal electronic-based interactions (e.g., Cyberball) and communication (e.g., chatrooms and Short Message Services). These paradigms, however, lack the mundane realism that many IVEs now offer. Further, IVE paradigms designed to measure ostracism may allow researchers to test more nuanced hypotheses about the effects of ostracism. We created an IVE in which ostracism could be manipulated experimentally, emulating a previously validated minimal ostracism paradigm. We found that participants who were ostracized in this IVE experienced the same negative effects demonstrated in other ostracism paradigms, providing, to our knowledge, the first evidence of the negative effects of ostracism in virtual environments. Though further research directly exploring these effects in online virtual environments is needed, this research suggests that individuals encountering ostracism in other virtual environments (such as massively multiplayer online role playing games; MMORPGs) may experience negative effects similar to those of being ostracized in real life. This possibility may have serious implications for individuals who are marginalized in their real life and turn to IVEs to satisfy their need for social connection. PMID:22897472

  13. FINDSITE(X): a structure-based, small molecule virtual screening approach with application to all identified human GPCRs.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Hongyi; Skolnick, Jeffrey

    2012-06-01

    We have developed FINDSITE(X), an extension of FINDSITE, a protein threading based algorithm for the inference of protein binding sites, biochemical function and virtual ligand screening, that removes the limitation that holo protein structures (those containing bound ligands) of a sufficiently large set of distant evolutionarily related proteins to the target be solved; rather, predicted protein structures and experimental ligand binding information are employed. To provide the predicted protein structures, a fast and accurate version of our recently developed TASSER(VMT), TASSER(VMT)-lite, for template-based protein structural modeling applicable up to 1000 residues is developed and tested, with comparable performance to the top CASP9 servers. Then, a hybrid approach that combines structure alignments with an evolutionary similarity score for identifying functional relationships between target and proteins with binding data has been developed. By way of illustration, FINDSITE(X) is applied to 998 identified human G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs). First, TASSER(VMT)-lite provides updates of all human GPCR structures previously modeled in our lab. We then use these structures and the new function similarity detection algorithm to screen all human GPCRs against the ZINC8 nonredundant (TC < 0.7) ligand set combined with ligands from the GLIDA database (a total of 88,949 compounds). Testing (excluding GPCRs whose sequence identity > 30% to the target from the binding data library) on a 168 human GPCR set with known binding data, the average enrichment factor in the top 1% of the compound library (EF(0.01)) is 22.7, whereas EF(0.01) by FINDSITE is 7.1. For virtual screening when just the target and its native ligands are excluded, the average EF(0.01) reaches 41.4. We also analyze off-target interactions for the 168 protein test set. All predicted structures, virtual screening data and off-target interactions for the 998 human GPCRs are available at http://cssb.biology.gatech.edu/skolnick/webservice/gpcr/index.html .

  14. A Novel Multi-step Virtual Screening for the Identification of Human and Mouse mPGES-1 Inhibitors.

    PubMed

    Corso, G; Alisi, M A; Cazzolla, N; Coletta, I; Furlotti, G; Garofalo, B; Mangano, G; Mancini, F; Vitiello, M; Ombrato, Rosella

    2016-09-01

    We present here the development of a novel virtual screening protocol combining Structure-based and Ligand-based drug design approaches for the identification of mouse mPGES-1 inhibitors. We used the existing 3D structural data of the murine enzyme to hypothesize the inhibitors binding mode, which was the starting point for docking simulations, shape screening, and pharmacophore hypothesis screening. The protocol allowed the identification of 16 mouse mPGES-1 inhibitors with low micromolar activity, which, notably, also inhibit the human enzyme in the same concentration range. The inhibitors predicted binding mode is expected to be the base for the rational drug design of new potent dual species inhibitors of human and murine mPGES-1. PMID:27546040

  15. Background: What the States Created

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cox, James C.

    2009-01-01

    Prior to 2003, virtual universities were being created at a rate that would question the usual perception that higher education rarely changed, or changed (if at all) at a glacial speed. No comprehensive study of what was actually being created had been done; nor had anyone tapped the experiences of the developers in the states to see what was…

  16. Structure-based virtual screening and experimental validation of the discovery of inhibitors targeted towards the human coronavirus nucleocapsid protein.

    PubMed

    Chang, Chung-ke; Jeyachandran, Sivakamavalli; Hu, Nien-Jen; Liu, Chia-Ling; Lin, Shing-Yen; Wang, Yong-Sheng; Chang, Yu-Ming; Hou, Ming-Hon

    2016-01-01

    Nucleocapsid protein (NP), an essential RNA-binding viral protein in human coronavirus (CoV)-infected cells, is required for the replication and transcription of viral RNA. Recent studies suggested that human CoV NP is a valid target for antiviral drug development. Based on this aspect, structure-based virtual screening targeting nucleocapsid protein (NP) was performed to identify good chemical starting points for medicinal chemistry. The present study utilized structure-based virtual screening against human CoV-OC43 using the Zinc database, which is performed through docking with varying precisions and computational intensities to identify eight potential compounds. The chosen potential leads were further validated experimentally using biophysical means. Surface plasmon resonance (SPR) analysis indicated that one among the potential leads, 6-chloro-7-(2-morpholin-4-yl-ethylamino) quinoxaline-5,8-dione (small-compound H3), exhibited a significant decrease of RNA-binding capacity of NP by more than 20%. The loss of binding activity was manifested as a 20% decrease in the minimum on-rate accompanied with a 70% increase in the maximum off-rate. Fluorescence titration and X-ray crystallography studies indicated that H3 antagonizes the binding between HCoV-OC43 NP and RNA by interacting with the N-terminal domain of the NP. Our findings provide insight into the development of new therapeutics that disrupt the interaction between RNA and viral NP in the HCoV. The discovery of the new compound would be an impetus to design novel NP inhibitors against human CoV.

  17. A Game-Based Simulation Utilizing Virtual Humans to Train Physicians to Screen and Manage the Care of Patients with Mental Health Disorders.

    PubMed

    Albright, Glenn; Adam, Cyrille; Goldman, Ron; Serri, Deborah

    2013-10-01

    Every year, one in four American adults suffers from a diagnosable mental disorder, yet most of them go untreated, creating a significant public health challenge. This challenge is compounded by large-scale disasters, which can cause an influx of primary care patients presenting with physical symptoms that mask mental health disorders. Primary care providers (PCPs) are usually the first point of contact for those patients; thus there exist crucial opportunities to detect and address nonphysical disorders in primary care settings that would improve patient outcomes and quality of care. Unfortunately, many PCPs view mental health as separate from the services that they provide, and the majority of them have received little training during or after medical or nursing school about risk factors, symptoms, and treatment options. To help integrate behavioral health into primary care, Kognito Interactive developed "At-Risk in Primary Care," an online game-based simulation that integrates role-play conversations with virtual humans to train PCPs to screen patients for mental health disorders, perform brief behavioral interventions using motivational interviewing (MI), refer patients, and integrate behavioral health into their treatment while building patients' intrinsic motivation to adhere to it. Preliminary findings on the implementation of this game in New York City show significant increases in skill and motivation to screen patients, conduct behavioral interventions, and refer patients to specialized care. These results show the promise of innovative technology-based solutions to integrate mental health training in primary care. PMID:26196927

  18. Visible humans, vanishing bodies, and virtual nursing: complications of life, presence, place, and identity.

    PubMed

    Sandelowski, Margarete

    2002-03-01

    The emergence of the posthuman body and the disappearance of the humanist body serve as background for the rediscovery of the body as resource and problem in nursing. At the precise moment when the fleshy body is deemed increasingly irrelevant and immaterial in cyberspace come divergent moves in nursing toward not only resurrecting this body, but also toward virtual environments of nursing care, where fleshy bodies never encounter each other. The posthuman conflation of bodies and information poses the greatest challenge yet to the secure place, presence, and identity of nursing in health care.

  19. Distributed virtual environment for emergency medical training

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stytz, Martin R.; Banks, Sheila B.; Garcia, Brian W.; Godsell-Stytz, Gayl M.

    1997-07-01

    paper we report on our prototype VER system and its distributed system architecture for an emergency department distributed virtual environment for emergency medical staff training. The virtual environment enables emergency department physicians and staff to develop their diagnostic and treatment skills using the virtual tools they need to perform diagnostic and treatment tasks. Virtual human imagery, and real-time virtual human response are used to create the virtual patient and present a scenario. Patient vital signs are available to the emergency department team as they manage the virtual case. The work reported here consists of the system architectures we developed for the distributed components of the virtual emergency room. The architectures we describe consist of the network level architecture as well as the software architecture for each actor within the virtual emergency room. We describe the role of distributed interactive simulation and other enabling technologies within the virtual emergency room project.

  20. NASA'S Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute: An international approach toward bringing science and human exploration together for mutual benefit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schmidt, Gregory

    2016-07-01

    The NASA Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI) is a virtual institute focused on research at the intersection of science and explora-tion, training the next generation of lunar scientists, and community development. The institute is a hub for opportunities that engage the larger scientific and exploration communities in order to form new interdis-ciplinary, research-focused collaborations. Its relative-ly large domestic teams work together along with in-ternational partners in both traditional and virtual set-tings to bring disparate approaches together for mutual benefit. This talk will describe the research efforts of the nine domestic teams that constitute the U.S. com-plement of the Institute and how it is engaging the in-ternational science and exploration communities through workshops, conferences, online seminars and classes, student exchange programs and internships. The Institute is centered on the scientific aspects of exploration as they pertain to the Moon, Near Earth Asteroids (NEAs) and the moons of Mars. It focuses on interdisciplinary, exploration-related science cen-tered around all airless bodies targeted as potential human destinations. Areas of study reported here will represent the broad spectrum of lunar, NEA, and Mar-tian moon sciences encompassing investigations of the surface, interior, exosphere, and near-space environ-ments as well as science uniquely enabled from these bodies. The technical focus ranges from investigations of plasma physics, geology/geochemistry, technology integration, solar system origins/evolution, regolith geotechnical properties, analogues, volatiles, ISRU and exploration potential of the target bodies. SSERVI enhances the widening knowledgebase of planetary research by acting as a bridge between several differ-ent groups and bringing together researchers from the scientific and exploration communities, multiple disci-plines across the full range of planetary sciences, and domestic and

  1. Foreign language learning in immersive virtual environments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chang, Benjamin; Sheldon, Lee; Si, Mei; Hand, Anton

    2012-03-01

    Virtual reality has long been used for training simulations in fields from medicine to welding to vehicular operation, but simulations involving more complex cognitive skills present new design challenges. Foreign language learning, for example, is increasingly vital in the global economy, but computer-assisted education is still in its early stages. Immersive virtual reality is a promising avenue for language learning as a way of dynamically creating believable scenes for conversational training and role-play simulation. Visual immersion alone, however, only provides a starting point. We suggest that the addition of social interactions and motivated engagement through narrative gameplay can lead to truly effective language learning in virtual environments. In this paper, we describe the development of a novel application for teaching Mandarin using CAVE-like VR, physical props, human actors and intelligent virtual agents, all within a semester-long multiplayer mystery game. Students travel (virtually) to China on a class field trip, which soon becomes complicated with intrigue and mystery surrounding the lost manuscript of an early Chinese literary classic. Virtual reality environments such as the Forbidden City and a Beijing teahouse provide the setting for learning language, cultural traditions, and social customs, as well as the discovery of clues through conversation in Mandarin with characters in the game.

  2. Development of virtual environment for treating acrophobia.

    PubMed

    Ku, J; Jang, D; Shin, M; Jo, H; Ahn, H; Lee, J; Cho, B; Kim, S I

    2001-01-01

    Virtual Reality (VR) is a new technology that makes humans communicate with computer. It allows the user to see, hear, feel and interact in a three-dimensional virtual world created graphically. Virtual Reality Therapy (VRT), based on this sophisticated technology, has been recently used in the treatment of subjects diagnosed with acrophobia, a disorder that is characterized by marked anxiety upon exposure to heights, avoidance of heights, and a resulting interference in functioning. Conventional virtual reality system for the treatment of acrophobia has a limitation in scope that it is based on over-costly devices or somewhat unrealistic graphic scene. The goal of this study was to develop a inexpensive and more realistic virtual environment for the exposure therapy of acrophobia. We constructed two types virtual environment. One is constituted a bungee-jump tower in the middle of a city. It includes the open lift surrounded by props beside tower that allowed the patient to feel sense of heights. Another is composed of diving boards which have various heights. It provides a view of a lower diving board and people swimming in the pool to serve the patient stimuli upon exposure to heights.

  3. The Joy of Creating Virtual Mathematical Sculptures.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chuan, Jen-chung

    The process of turning symbols into a mathematical sculpture has never been easier. A copy of Maple V release five and a Web browser configured with a VRML plug-in such as the Cosmo Player is necessary to do these activities. Maple V furnishes the computing environment with the capability of allowing for concentration on the mathematical…

  4. Sex differences in human EEG theta oscillations during spatial navigation in virtual reality.

    PubMed

    Kober, Silvia Erika; Neuper, Christa

    2011-03-01

    The present study examines theta oscillations (electroencephalographic (EEG) activity with a frequency of 4-8 Hz) in male and female young adults during spatial navigation in virtual environments. Twenty-seven participants (13 males and 14 females) performed a spatial navigation task in a virtual maze where they had to find the shortest ways between landmarks. Absolute theta band power and event-related desynchronisation/synchronisation (ERD/ERS) in the theta frequency band was used to analyze the EEG data. Processing of spatial cues or landmarks induced cortical theta activity compared to a baseline condition, confirming the hypothesis that theta oscillations reflect sensorimotor integration. The sensorimotor integration hypothesis proposes that theta oscillations coordinate sensory information with a motor plan to direct wayfinding behaviour to known goal locations. No sex differences were found in spatial performance. However, female participants showed a stronger increase in theta oscillations during processing of landmarks as navigational aids compared to a baseline condition than men. Additionally, a higher theta power was associated with an increased navigation performance in women, whereas an increase in theta power was associated with a decreased navigation performance in men. These results might indicate a stronger sensorimotor integration in females than in males. Possible explanations for the emerged sex differences in cortical theta activity are discussed. PMID:21146566

  5. Exploration of natural product ingredients as inhibitors of human HMG-CoA reductase through structure-based virtual screening

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Shih-Hung; Huang, Kao-Jean; Weng, Ching-Feng; Shiuan, David

    2015-01-01

    Cholesterol plays an important role in living cells. However, a very high level of cholesterol may lead to atherosclerosis. HMG-CoA (3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl coenzyme A) reductase is the key enzyme in the cholesterol biosynthesis pathway, and the statin-like drugs are inhibitors of human HMG-CoA reductase (hHMGR). The present study aimed to virtually screen for potential hHMGR inhibitors from natural product to discover hypolipidemic drug candidates with fewer side effects and lesser toxicities. We used the 3D structure 1HWK from the PDB (Protein Data Bank) database of hHMGR as the target to screen for the strongly bound compounds from the traditional Chinese medicine database. Many interesting molecules including polyphenolic compounds, polisubstituted heterocyclics, and linear lipophilic alcohols were identified and their ADMET (absorption, disrtibution, metabolism, excretion, toxicity) properties were predicted. Finally, four compounds were obtained for the in vitro validation experiments. The results indicated that curcumin and salvianolic acid C can effectively inhibit hHMGR, with IC50 (half maximal inhibitory concentration) values of 4.3 µM and 8 µM, respectively. The present study also demonstrated the feasibility of discovering new drug candidates through structure-based virtual screening. PMID:26170618

  6. Lost in Virtual Space: Studies in Human and Ideal Spatial Navigation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stankiewicz, Brian J.; Legge, Gordon E.; Mansfield, J. Stephen; Schlicht, Erik J.

    2006-01-01

    The authors describe 3 human spatial navigation experiments that investigate how limitations of perception, memory, uncertainty, and decision strategy affect human spatial navigation performance. To better understand the effect of these variables on human navigation performance, the authors developed an ideal-navigator model for indoor navigation…

  7. When Virtual Worlds Expand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bainbridge, William Sims

    The future of a virtual world depends on whether it can grow in subjective size, cultural content, and numbers of human participants. In one form of growth, exemplified by Second Life, the scope of a world increases gradually as new sponsors pay for new territory and inhabitants create content. A very different form of growth is sudden expansion, as when World of Warcraft (WoW) added entire new continents in its Burning Crusade and Lich King expansions (Lummis and Kern 2006, 2008; Corneliussen and Rettberg 2008; Sims et al. 2008). Well-established gamelike worlds have often undergone many expansions. Both the pioneer science fiction game Anarchy Online, which was launched in 2001, and Star Wars Galaxies dating from 2003, have had three, and EVE Online also from 2003 has had nine, although smaller ones. This chapter reports research on WoW's 2008 Lich King expansion, using both quantitative and qualitative methods, in order to develop theoretical ideas of the implications of expansion for virtual worlds.

  8. The Persuasive Power of Virtual Reality: Effects of Simulated Human Distress on Attitudes towards Fire Safety

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chittaro, Luca; Zangrando, Nicola

    Although virtual reality (VR) is a powerful simulation tool that can allow users to experience the effects of their actions in vivid and memorable ways, explorations of VR as a persuasive technology are rare. In this paper, we focus on different ways of providing negative feedback for persuasive purposes through simulated experiences in VR. The persuasive goal we consider concerns awareness of personal fire safety issues and the experiment we describe focuses on attitudes towards smoke in evacuating buildings. We test two techniques: the first technique simulates the damaging effects of smoke on the user through a visualization that should not evoke strong emotions, while the second is aimed at partially reproducing the anxiety of an emergency situation. The results of the study show that the second technique is able to increase user's anxiety as well as producing better results in attitude change.

  9. Policy needs and options for a common approach towards modelling and simulation of human physiology and diseases with a focus on the virtual physiological human.

    PubMed

    Viceconti, Marco; McCulloch, Andrew D

    2011-01-01

    Life is the result of an intricate systemic interaction between many processes occurring at radically different spatial and temporal scales. Every day, worldwide biomedical research and clinical practice produce a huge amount of information on such processes. However, this information being highly fragmented, its integration is largely left to the human actors who find this task increasingly and ever more demanding in a context where the information available continues to increase exponentially. Investments in the Virtual Physiological Human (VPH) research are largely motivated by the need for integration in healthcare. As all health information becomes digital, the complexity of health care will continue to evolve, translating into an ever increasing pressure which will result from a growing demand in parallel to limited budgets. Hence, the best way to achieve the dream of personalised, preventive, and participative medicine at sustainable costs will be through the integration of all available data, information and knowledge. PMID:21893899

  10. Crystal structure-based virtual screening for novel fragment-like ligands of the human histamine H1 receptor

    PubMed Central

    de Graaf, C.; Kooistra, A.J.; Vischer, H.F.; Katritch, V.; Kuijer, M.; Shiroishi, M.; Iwata, S.; Shimamura, T.; Stevens, R.C.; de Esch, I.J.P.; Leurs, R.

    2011-01-01

    The recent crystal structure determinations of druggable class A G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) has opened up excellent opportunities in structure-based ligand discovery for this pharmaceutically important protein family. We have developed and validated a customized structure-based virtual fragment screening method against the recently determined human histamine H1 receptor (H1R) crystal structure. The method combines molecular docking simulations with a protein-ligand interaction fingerprint (IFP) scoring method. The optimized in silico screening approach was successfully applied to identify a chemically diverse set of novel fragment-like (≤ 22 heavy atoms) H1R ligands with an exceptionally high hit rate of 73%. Of the 26 tested fragments, 19 compounds had affinities ranging from 10 μM to 6 nM. The current study shows the potential of in silico screening against GPCR crystal structures to explore novel, fragment-like GPCR ligand space. PMID:22007643

  11. Intelligent virtual teacher

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Takács, Ondřej; Kostolányová, Kateřina

    2016-06-01

    This paper describes the Virtual Teacher that uses a set of rules to automatically adapt the way of teaching. These rules compose of two parts: conditions on various students' properties or learning situation; conclusions that specify different adaptation parameters. The rules can be used for general adaptation of each subject or they can be specific to some subject. The rule based system of Virtual Teacher is dedicated to be used in pedagogical experiments in adaptive e-learning and is therefore designed for users without education in computer science. The Virtual Teacher was used in dissertation theses of two students, who executed two pedagogical experiments. This paper also describes the phase of simulating and modeling of the theoretically prepared adaptive process in the modeling tool, which has all the required parameters and has been created especially for the occasion. The experiments are being conducted on groups of virtual students and by using a virtual study material.

  12. Discovery of a specific inhibitor of human GLUT5 by virtual screening and in vitro transport evaluation

    PubMed Central

    George Thompson, Alayna M.; Ursu, Oleg; Babkin, Petr; Iancu, Cristina V.; Whang, Alex; Oprea, Tudor I.; Choe, Jun-yong

    2016-01-01

    GLUT5, a fructose-transporting member of the facilitative glucose transporter (GLUT, SLC2) family, is a therapeutic target for diabetes and cancer but has no potent inhibitors. We virtually screened a library of 6 million chemicals onto a GLUT5 model and identified N-[4-(methylsulfonyl)-2-nitrophenyl]-1,3-benzodioxol-5-amine (MSNBA) as an inhibitor of GLUT5 fructose transport in proteoliposomes. MSNBA inhibition was specific to GLUT5; this inhibitor did not affect the fructose transport of human GLUT2 or the glucose transport of human GLUT1-4 or bacterial GlcPSe. In MCF7 cells, a human breast cancer cell line, MSNBA competitively inhibited GLUT5 fructose uptake with a KI of 3.2 ± 0.4 μM. Ligand docking, mutagenesis and functional studies indicate that MSNBA binds near the active site and inhibitor discrimination involves H387 of GLUT5. Thus, MSNBA is a selective and potent inhibitor of fructose transport via GLUT5, and the first chemical probe for this transporter. Our data indicate that active site differences in GLUT members could be exploited to further enhance ligand specificity. PMID:27074918

  13. A video, text, and speech-driven realistic 3-d virtual head for human-machine interface.

    PubMed

    Yu, Jun; Wang, Zeng-Fu

    2015-05-01

    A multiple inputs-driven realistic facial animation system based on 3-D virtual head for human-machine interface is proposed. The system can be driven independently by video, text, and speech, thus can interact with humans through diverse interfaces. The combination of parameterized model and muscular model is used to obtain a tradeoff between computational efficiency and high realism of 3-D facial animation. The online appearance model is used to track 3-D facial motion from video in the framework of particle filtering, and multiple measurements, i.e., pixel color value of input image and Gabor wavelet coefficient of illumination ratio image, are infused to reduce the influence of lighting and person dependence for the construction of online appearance model. The tri-phone model is used to reduce the computational consumption of visual co-articulation in speech synchronized viseme synthesis without sacrificing any performance. The objective and subjective experiments show that the system is suitable for human-machine interaction. PMID:25122851

  14. Inhibitors of human tyrosyl-DNA phospodiesterase (hTdp1) developed by virtual screening using ligand-based pharmacophores.

    PubMed

    Weidlich, Iwona E; Dexheimer, Thomas; Marchand, Christophe; Antony, Smitha; Pommier, Yves; Nicklaus, Marc C

    2010-01-01

    Human tyrosyl-DNA phosphodiesterase (hTdp1) inhibitors have become a major area of drug research and structure-based design since they have been shown to work synergistically with camptothecin (CPT) and selectively in cancer cells. The pharmacophore features of 14 hTdp1 inhibitors were used as a filter to screen the ChemNavigator iResearch Library of about 27 million purchasable samples. Docking of the inhibitors and hits obtained from virtual screening was performed into a structural model of hTdp1 based on a high resolution X-ray crystal structure of human Tdp1 in complex with vanadate, DNA and a human topoisomerase I (TopI)-derived peptide (PDB code: 1NOP). A total of 46 compounds matching the three-dimensional arrangement of the pharmacophoric features were assayed. Using a high-throughput screening assay, we have identified an 1H-indol-3-yl-acetic acid derivative as a potent Tdp1 inhibitor with an IC(50) value of 7.94 microM. The obtained novel chemotype may provide a new scaffold for developing inhibitors of Tdp1. PMID:19963390

  15. A video, text, and speech-driven realistic 3-d virtual head for human-machine interface.

    PubMed

    Yu, Jun; Wang, Zeng-Fu

    2015-05-01

    A multiple inputs-driven realistic facial animation system based on 3-D virtual head for human-machine interface is proposed. The system can be driven independently by video, text, and speech, thus can interact with humans through diverse interfaces. The combination of parameterized model and muscular model is used to obtain a tradeoff between computational efficiency and high realism of 3-D facial animation. The online appearance model is used to track 3-D facial motion from video in the framework of particle filtering, and multiple measurements, i.e., pixel color value of input image and Gabor wavelet coefficient of illumination ratio image, are infused to reduce the influence of lighting and person dependence for the construction of online appearance model. The tri-phone model is used to reduce the computational consumption of visual co-articulation in speech synchronized viseme synthesis without sacrificing any performance. The objective and subjective experiments show that the system is suitable for human-machine interaction.

  16. Studying and Improving Human Response to Natural Hazards: Lessons from the Virtual Hurricane Lab

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meyer, R.; Broad, K.; Orlove, B. S.

    2010-12-01

    One of the most critical challenges facing communities in areas prone to natural hazards is how to best encourage residents to invest in individual and collective actions that would reduce the damaging impact of low-probability, high-consequence, environmental events. Unfortunately, what makes this goal difficult to achieve is that the relative rarity natural hazards implies that many who face the risk of natural hazards have no previous experience to draw on when making preparation decisions, or have prior experience that provides misleading guidance on how best to prepare. For example, individuals who have experienced strings of minor earthquakes or near-misses from tropical cyclones may become overly complacent about the risks that extreme events actually pose. In this presentation we report the preliminary findings of a program of work that explores the use of realistic multi-media hazard simulations designed for two purposes: 1) to serve as a basic research tool for studying of how individuals make decisions to prepare for rare natural hazards in laboratory settings; and 2) to serve as an educational tool for giving people in hazard-prone areas virtual experience in hazard preparation. We demonstrate a prototype simulation in which participants experience the approach of a virtual hurricane, where they have the opportunity to invest in different kinds of action to protect their home from damage. As the hurricane approaches participants have access to an “information dashboard” in which they can gather information about the storm threat from a variety of natural sources, including mock television weather broadcasts, web sites, and conversations with neighbors. In response to this information they then have the opportunity to invest in different levels of protective actions. Some versions of the simulation are designed as games, where participants are rewarded based on their ability to make the optimal trade-off between under and over-preparing for the

  17. Behavioral responses to epidemics in an online experiment: using virtual diseases to study human behavior.

    PubMed

    Chen, Frederick; Griffith, Amanda; Cottrell, Allin; Wong, Yue-Ling

    2013-01-01

    We report the results of a study we conducted using a simple multiplayer online game that simulates the spread of an infectious disease through a population composed of the players. We use our virtual epidemics game to examine how people respond to epidemics. The analysis shows that people's behavior is responsive to the cost of self-protection, the reported prevalence of disease, and their experiences earlier in the epidemic. Specifically, decreasing the cost of self-protection increases the rate of safe behavior. Higher reported prevalence also raises the likelihood that individuals would engage in self-protection, where the magnitude of this effect depends on how much time has elapsed in the epidemic. Individuals' experiences in terms of how often an infection was acquired when they did not engage in self-protection are another factor that determines whether they will invest in preventive measures later on. All else being equal, individuals who were infected at a higher rate are more likely to engage in self-protective behavior compared to those with a lower rate of infection. Lastly, fixing everything else, people's willingness to engage in safe behavior waxes or wanes over time, depending on the severity of an epidemic: when prevalence is high, people are more likely to adopt self-protective measures as time goes by; when prevalence is low, a 'self-protection fatigue' effect sets in whereby individuals are less willing to engage in safe behavior over time.

  18. Can natural and virtual environments be used to promote improved human health and wellbeing?

    PubMed

    Depledge, M H; Stone, R J; Bird, W J

    2011-06-01

    Exposure of individuals to natural environments, such as forests and coastlines, can promote stress reduction and assist in mental recovery following intensive cognitive activities. Settings as simple as hospital window views onto garden-like scenes can also be influential in reducing patients' postoperative recovery periods and analgesic requirements. This paper reviews the evidence supporting the exploitation of these restorative natural environments in future healthcare strategies. The paper also describes early research addressing the development of multisensory, computer-generated restorative environments for the benefit of patients with a variety of psychologically related conditions (including depression, attention deficit disorder, pain, and sleep deficit), who may be unable to access and experience real natural environments, such as those in hospices, military rehabilitation centers, and long-term care facilities. The Table of Contents art is a virtual reconstruction of Wembury Bay, in the southwest of the UK, based on imported Digital Terrain Elevation Data (DTED) to provide the topography and a high-resolution aerial image to provide a template for the location of 3D building and vegetation models, rock features, and pathways. The 3D environment is rendered using the Unity 3 Game Development Tool and includes spatial sound effects (waves, wind, birdsong, etc.), physics-based features (such as early morning sea mist), time-of-day cycles, and real-time weather changes. The Village Church of St. Werburgh can also be seen in this image.

  19. Spatial working memory in immersive virtual reality foraging: path organization, traveling distance and search efficiency in humans (Homo sapiens).

    PubMed

    De Lillo, Carlo; Kirby, Melissa; James, Frances C

    2014-05-01

    Search and serial recall tasks were used in the present study to characterize the factors affecting the ability of humans to keep track of a set of spatial locations while traveling in an immersive virtual reality foraging environment. The first experiment required the exhaustive exploration of a set of locations following a procedure previously used with other primate and non-primate species to assess their sensitivity to the geometric arrangement of foraging sites. The second experiment assessed the dependency of search performance on search organization by requiring the participants to recall specific trajectories throughout the foraging space. In the third experiment, the distance between the foraging sites was manipulated in order to contrast the effects of organization and traveling distance on recall accuracy. The results show that humans benefit from the use of organized search patterns when attempting to monitor their travel though either a clustered "patchy" space or a matrix of locations. Their ability to recall a series of locations is dependent on whether the order in which they are explored conformed or did not conform to specific organization principles. Moreover, the relationship between search efficiency and search organization is not confounded by effects of traveling distance. These results indicate that in humans, organizational factors may play a large role in their ability to forage efficiently. The extent to which such dependency may pertain to other primates and could be accounted for by visual organization processes is discussed on the basis of previous studies focused on perceptual grouping, search, and serial recall in non-human species. PMID:24038208

  20. Spatial working memory in immersive virtual reality foraging: path organization, traveling distance and search efficiency in humans (Homo sapiens).

    PubMed

    De Lillo, Carlo; Kirby, Melissa; James, Frances C

    2014-05-01

    Search and serial recall tasks were used in the present study to characterize the factors affecting the ability of humans to keep track of a set of spatial locations while traveling in an immersive virtual reality foraging environment. The first experiment required the exhaustive exploration of a set of locations following a procedure previously used with other primate and non-primate species to assess their sensitivity to the geometric arrangement of foraging sites. The second experiment assessed the dependency of search performance on search organization by requiring the participants to recall specific trajectories throughout the foraging space. In the third experiment, the distance between the foraging sites was manipulated in order to contrast the effects of organization and traveling distance on recall accuracy. The results show that humans benefit from the use of organized search patterns when attempting to monitor their travel though either a clustered "patchy" space or a matrix of locations. Their ability to recall a series of locations is dependent on whether the order in which they are explored conformed or did not conform to specific organization principles. Moreover, the relationship between search efficiency and search organization is not confounded by effects of traveling distance. These results indicate that in humans, organizational factors may play a large role in their ability to forage efficiently. The extent to which such dependency may pertain to other primates and could be accounted for by visual organization processes is discussed on the basis of previous studies focused on perceptual grouping, search, and serial recall in non-human species.

  1. Numerical simulation of airflow and micro-particle deposition in human nasal airway pre- and post-virtual sphenoidotomy surgery.

    PubMed

    Bahmanzadeh, Hojat; Abouali, Omid; Faramarzi, Mohammad; Ahmadi, Goodarz

    2015-06-01

    In the present study, the effects of endoscopic sphenoidotomy surgery on the flow patterns and deposition of micro-particles in the human nasal airway and sphenoid sinus were investigated. A realistic model of a human nasal passage including nasal cavity and paranasal sinuses was constructed using a series of CT scan images of a healthy subject. Then, a virtual sphenoidotomy by endoscopic sinus surgery was performed in the left nasal passage and sphenoid sinus. Transient airflow patterns pre- and post-surgery during a full breathing cycle (inhalation and exhalation) were simulated numerically under cyclic flow condition. The Lagrangian approach was used for evaluating the transport and deposition of inhaled micro-particles. An unsteady particle tracking was performed for the inhalation phase of the breathing cycle for the case that particles were continuously entering into the nasal airway. The total deposition pattern and sphenoid deposition fraction of micro-particles were evaluated and compared for pre- and post-surgery cases. The presented results show that sphenoidotomy increased the airflow into the sphenoid sinus, which led to increased deposition of micro-particles in this region. Particles up to 25 μm were able to penetrate into the sphenoid in the post-operation case, and the highest deposition in the sphenoid for the resting breathing rate occurred for 10 μm particles at about 1.5%.

  2. Variability in cardiac electrophysiology: Using experimentally-calibrated populations of models to move beyond the single virtual physiological human paradigm

    PubMed Central

    Muszkiewicz, Anna; Britton, Oliver J.; Gemmell, Philip; Passini, Elisa; Sánchez, Carlos; Zhou, Xin; Carusi, Annamaria; Quinn, T. Alexander; Burrage, Kevin; Bueno-Orovio, Alfonso; Rodriguez, Blanca

    2016-01-01

    Physiological variability manifests itself via differences in physiological function between individuals of the same species, and has crucial implications in disease progression and treatment. Despite its importance, physiological variability has traditionally been ignored in experimental and computational investigations due to averaging over samples from multiple individuals. Recently, modelling frameworks have been devised for studying mechanisms underlying physiological variability in cardiac electrophysiology and pro-arrhythmic risk under a variety of conditions and for several animal species as well as human. One such methodology exploits populations of cardiac cell models constrained with experimental data, or experimentally-calibrated populations of models. In this review, we outline the considerations behind constructing an experimentally-calibrated population of models and review the studies that have employed this approach to investigate variability in cardiac electrophysiology in physiological and pathological conditions, as well as under drug action. We also describe the methodology and compare it with alternative approaches for studying variability in cardiac electrophysiology, including cell-specific modelling approaches, sensitivity-analysis based methods, and populations-of-models frameworks that do not consider the experimental calibration step. We conclude with an outlook for the future, predicting the potential of new methodologies for patient-specific modelling extending beyond the single virtual physiological human paradigm. PMID:26701222

  3. Virtual ancestor reconstruction: Revealing the ancestor of modern humans and Neandertals.

    PubMed

    Mounier, Aurélien; Mirazón Lahr, Marta

    2016-02-01

    The timing and geographic origin of the common ancestor of modern humans and Neandertals remain controversial. A poor Pleistocene hominin fossil record and the evolutionary complexities introduced by dispersals and regionalisation of lineages have fuelled taxonomic uncertainty, while new ancient genomic data have raised completely new questions. Here, we use maximum likelihood and 3D geometric morphometric methods to predict possible morphologies of the last common ancestor of modern humans and Neandertals from a simplified, fully resolved phylogeny. We describe the fully rendered 3D shapes of the predicted ancestors of humans and Neandertals, and assess their similarity to individual fossils or populations of fossils of Pleistocene age. Our results support models of an Afro-European ancestral population in the Middle Pleistocene (Homo heidelbergensis sensu lato) and further predict an African origin for this ancestral population. PMID:26852813

  4. Fractal multi-level organisation of human groups in a virtual world

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fuchs, Benedikt; Sornette, Didier; Thurner, Stefan

    2014-10-01

    Humans are fundamentally social. They form societies which consist of hierarchically layered nested groups of various quality, size, and structure. The anthropologic literature has classified these groups as support cliques, sympathy groups, bands, cognitive groups, tribes, linguistic groups, and so on. Anthropologic data show that, on average, each group consists of approximately three subgroups. However, a general understanding of the structural dependence of groups at different layers is largely missing. We extend these early findings to a very large high-precision large-scale internet-based social network data. We analyse the organisational structure of a complete, multi-relational, large social multiplex network of a human society consisting of about 400,000 odd players of an open-ended massive multiplayer online game for which we know all about their various group memberships at different layers. Remarkably, the online players' society exhibits the same type of structured hierarchical layers as found in hunter-gatherer societies. Our findings suggest that the hierarchical organisation of human society is deeply nested in human psychology.

  5. Fractal multi-level organisation of human groups in a virtual world

    PubMed Central

    Fuchs, Benedikt; Sornette, Didier; Thurner, Stefan

    2014-01-01

    Humans are fundamentally social. They form societies which consist of hierarchically layered nested groups of various quality, size, and structure. The anthropologic literature has classified these groups as support cliques, sympathy groups, bands, cognitive groups, tribes, linguistic groups, and so on. Anthropologic data show that, on average, each group consists of approximately three subgroups. However, a general understanding of the structural dependence of groups at different layers is largely missing. We extend these early findings to a very large high-precision large-scale internet-based social network data. We analyse the organisational structure of a complete, multi-relational, large social multiplex network of a human society consisting of about 400,000 odd players of an open-ended massive multiplayer online game for which we know all about their various group memberships at different layers. Remarkably, the online players' society exhibits the same type of structured hierarchical layers as found in hunter-gatherer societies. Our findings suggest that the hierarchical organisation of human society is deeply nested in human psychology. PMID:25283998

  6. Fractal multi-level organisation of human groups in a virtual world.

    PubMed

    Fuchs, Benedikt; Sornette, Didier; Thurner, Stefan

    2014-10-06

    Humans are fundamentally social. They form societies which consist of hierarchically layered nested groups of various quality, size, and structure. The anthropologic literature has classified these groups as support cliques, sympathy groups, bands, cognitive groups, tribes, linguistic groups, and so on. Anthropologic data show that, on average, each group consists of approximately three subgroups. However, a general understanding of the structural dependence of groups at different layers is largely missing. We extend these early findings to a very large high-precision large-scale internet-based social network data. We analyse the organisational structure of a complete, multi-relational, large social multiplex network of a human society consisting of about 400,000 odd players of an open-ended massive multiplayer online game for which we know all about their various group memberships at different layers. Remarkably, the online players' society exhibits the same type of structured hierarchical layers as found in hunter-gatherer societies. Our findings suggest that the hierarchical organisation of human society is deeply nested in human psychology.

  7. Fractal multi-level organisation of human groups in a virtual world.

    PubMed

    Fuchs, Benedikt; Sornette, Didier; Thurner, Stefan

    2014-01-01

    Humans are fundamentally social. They form societies which consist of hierarchically layered nested groups of various quality, size, and structure. The anthropologic literature has classified these groups as support cliques, sympathy groups, bands, cognitive groups, tribes, linguistic groups, and so on. Anthropologic data show that, on average, each group consists of approximately three subgroups. However, a general understanding of the structural dependence of groups at different layers is largely missing. We extend these early findings to a very large high-precision large-scale internet-based social network data. We analyse the organisational structure of a complete, multi-relational, large social multiplex network of a human society consisting of about 400,000 odd players of an open-ended massive multiplayer online game for which we know all about their various group memberships at different layers. Remarkably, the online players' society exhibits the same type of structured hierarchical layers as found in hunter-gatherer societies. Our findings suggest that the hierarchical organisation of human society is deeply nested in human psychology. PMID:25283998

  8. Virtual Learning Worlds as a Bridge between Arts and Humanities and Science and Technology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dunning, Jeremy; Bhattacharya, Sunand; Daniels, David; Dunning, Katherine

    2007-01-01

    Science and technology, when applied to educational excellence, have become part of the arts and humanities of tomorrow. The interactive multimedia technology tools available to educators today provide an opportunity to build into the distance or traditional course through learning objects, highly interactive experiential exercises that allow the…

  9. Virtual HR: The Impact of Information Technology on the Human Resource Professional.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gardner, Sharyn D.; Lepak, David P.; Bartol, Kathyrn M.

    2003-01-01

    Responses from 357 complete pairs of human resources executives and professionals from the same company showed that information technology has increased autonomy, the responsiveness of their information dissemination, and networking with other professionals; they spend more time in technology support activities. Organizational climate moderated…

  10. Learning Experience with Virtual Worlds

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wagner, Christian

    2008-01-01

    Virtual worlds create a new opportunity to enrich the educational experience through media-rich immersive learning. Virtual worlds have gained notoriety in games such as World of Warcraft (WoW), which has become the most successful online game ever, and in "general purpose" worlds, such as Second Life (SL), whose participation levels (more than 10…

  11. Computer Based Virtual Field Trips.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Clark, Kenneth F.; Hosticka, Alice; Schriver, Martha; Bedell, Jackie

    This paper discusses computer based virtual field trips that use technologies commonly found in public schools in the United States. The discussion focuses on the advantages of both using and creating these field trips for an instructional situation. A virtual field trip to Cumberland Island National Seashore, St. Marys, Georgia is used as a point…

  12. Model-based 3D human shape estimation from silhouettes for virtual fitting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saito, Shunta; Kouchi, Makiko; Mochimaru, Masaaki; Aoki, Yoshimitsu

    2014-03-01

    We propose a model-based 3D human shape reconstruction system from two silhouettes. Firstly, we synthesize a deformable body model from 3D human shape database consists of a hundred whole body mesh models. Each mesh model is homologous, so that it has the same topology and same number of vertices among all models. We perform principal component analysis (PCA) on the database and synthesize an Active Shape Model (ASM). ASM allows changing the body type of the model with a few parameters. The pose changing of our model can be achieved by reconstructing the skeleton structures from implanted joints of the model. By applying pose changing after body type deformation, our model can represents various body types and any pose. We apply the model to the problem of 3D human shape reconstruction from front and side silhouette. Our approach is simply comparing the contours between the model's and input silhouettes', we then use only torso part contour of the model to reconstruct whole shape. We optimize the model parameters by minimizing the difference between corresponding silhouettes by using a stochastic, derivative-free non-linear optimization method, CMA-ES.

  13. Managing and Developing People in the Virtual Organization. Professional Practices in Adult Education and Human Resource Development Series.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Colky, Deborah Lavin; Colky, Michael T.; Young, William H., III

    Designed for managers and workers in virtual organizations as well as adult and continuing educators in higher education, associations, and private sector, this book outlines a customer-driven performance management system and explains its use as a development tool. The characteristics of virtual organizations are described, and the rationale for…

  14. Creating a charter of collaboration for international university partnerships: the Elmina Declaration for Human Resources for Health.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Frank; Donkor, Peter; de Vries, Raymond; Appiah-Denkyira, Ebenezer; Dakpallah, George Fidelis; Rominski, Sarah; Hassinger, Jane; Lou, Airong; Kwansah, Janet; Moyer, Cheryl; Rana, Gurpreet K; Lawson, Aaron; Ayettey, Seth

    2014-08-01

    The potential of international academic partnerships to build global capacity is critical in efforts to improve health in poorer countries. Academic collaborations, however, are challenged by distance, communication issues, cultural differences, and historical context. The Collaborative Health Alliance for Reshaping Training, Education, and Research project (funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and implemented through academic medicine and public health and governmental institutions in Michigan and Ghana) took a prospective approach to address these issues. The project had four objectives: to create a "charter for collaboration" (CFC), to improve data-driven policy making, to enhance health care provider education, and to increase research capacity. The goal of the CFC was to establish principles to guide the course of the technical work. All participants participated at an initial conference in Elmina, Ghana. Nine months later, the CFC had been revised and adopted. A qualitative investigation of the CFC's effects identified three themes: the CFC's unique value, the influence of the process of creating the CFC on patterns of communication, and the creation of a context for research and collaboration. Creating the CFC established a context in which implementing technical interventions became an opportunity for dialogue and developing a mutually beneficial partnership. To increase the likelihood that research results would be translated into policy reforms, the CFC made explicit the opportunities, potential problems, and institutional barriers to be overcome. The process of creating a CFC and the resulting document define a new standard in academic and governmental partnerships.

  15. Creating Tribes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Robyn, Elisa

    2000-01-01

    Suggests the use of the "tribal" metaphor to foster team building and collaborative learning in college classes. Offers examples of how linking students in the classroom in tribes builds identification and interdependence through such activities as creating a group myth and participating in membership rituals. The tribal metaphor has also led to…

  16. Creating Poetry.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Drury, John

    Encouraging exploration and practice, this book offers hundreds of exercises and numerous tips covering every step involved in creating poetry. Each chapter is a self-contained unit offering an overview of material in the chapter, a definition of terms, and poetry examples from well-known authors designed to supplement the numerous exercises.…

  17. Creating Community.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ruane, Patricia; And Others

    1994-01-01

    Brookline (Massachusetts) Public Schools has created a telecommunications network that encourages creative thinking, risk taking, thoughtful practice. Interested parties are advised to identify leadership team; rethink resources; identify potentially successful conference groups; learn to make deals; provide training and ongoing support; expect…

  18. Increased costs reduce reciprocal helping behaviour of humans in a virtual evacuation experiment.

    PubMed

    Bode, Nikolai W F; Miller, Jordan; O'Gorman, Rick; Codling, Edward A

    2015-11-06

    Altruistic behaviour is widespread and highly developed in humans and can also be found in some animal species. It has been suggested that altruistic tendencies can depend on costs, benefits and context. Here, we investigate the changes in the occurrence of helping behaviour in a computer-based experiment that simulates an evacuation from a building exploring the effect of varying the cost to help. Our findings illuminate a number of key mechanistic aspects of human decision-making about whether to help or not. In a novel situation where it is difficult to assess the risks associated with higher costs, we reproduce the finding that increasing costs reduce helping and find that the reduction in the frequency of helping behaviour is gradual rather than a sudden transition for a threshold cost level. Interestingly, younger and male participants were more likely to help. We provide potential explanations for this result relating to the nature of our experiment. Finally, we find no evidence that participants in our experiment plan ahead over two consecutive, inter-dependent helping opportunities when conducting cost-benefit trade-offs in spontaneous decisions. We discuss potential applications of our findings to research into decision-making during evacuations.

  19. Increased costs reduce reciprocal helping behaviour of humans in a virtual evacuation experiment

    PubMed Central

    Bode, Nikolai W. F.; Miller, Jordan; O’Gorman, Rick; Codling, Edward A.

    2015-01-01

    Altruistic behaviour is widespread and highly developed in humans and can also be found in some animal species. It has been suggested that altruistic tendencies can depend on costs, benefits and context. Here, we investigate the changes in the occurrence of helping behaviour in a computer-based experiment that simulates an evacuation from a building exploring the effect of varying the cost to help. Our findings illuminate a number of key mechanistic aspects of human decision-making about whether to help or not. In a novel situation where it is difficult to assess the risks associated with higher costs, we reproduce the finding that increasing costs reduce helping and find that the reduction in the frequency of helping behaviour is gradual rather than a sudden transition for a threshold cost level. Interestingly, younger and male participants were more likely to help. We provide potential explanations for this result relating to the nature of our experiment. Finally, we find no evidence that participants in our experiment plan ahead over two consecutive, inter-dependent helping opportunities when conducting cost-benefit trade-offs in spontaneous decisions. We discuss potential applications of our findings to research into decision-making during evacuations. PMID:26541505

  20. Increased costs reduce reciprocal helping behaviour of humans in a virtual evacuation experiment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bode, Nikolai W. F.; Miller, Jordan; O'Gorman, Rick; Codling, Edward A.

    2015-11-01

    Altruistic behaviour is widespread and highly developed in humans and can also be found in some animal species. It has been suggested that altruistic tendencies can depend on costs, benefits and context. Here, we investigate the changes in the occurrence of helping behaviour in a computer-based experiment that simulates an evacuation from a building exploring the effect of varying the cost to help. Our findings illuminate a number of key mechanistic aspects of human decision-making about whether to help or not. In a novel situation where it is difficult to assess the risks associated with higher costs, we reproduce the finding that increasing costs reduce helping and find that the reduction in the frequency of helping behaviour is gradual rather than a sudden transition for a threshold cost level. Interestingly, younger and male participants were more likely to help. We provide potential explanations for this result relating to the nature of our experiment. Finally, we find no evidence that participants in our experiment plan ahead over two consecutive, inter-dependent helping opportunities when conducting cost-benefit trade-offs in spontaneous decisions. We discuss potential applications of our findings to research into decision-making during evacuations.

  1. Multifunctional Setup for Studying Human Motor Control Using Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation, Electromyography, Motion Capture, and Virtual Reality.

    PubMed

    Talkington, William J; Pollard, Bradley S; Olesh, Erienne V; Gritsenko, Valeriya

    2015-09-03

    The study of neuromuscular control of movement in humans is accomplished with numerous technologies. Non-invasive methods for investigating neuromuscular function include transcranial magnetic stimulation, electromyography, and three-dimensional motion capture. The advent of readily available and cost-effective virtual reality solutions has expanded the capabilities of researchers in recreating "real-world" environments and movements in a laboratory setting. Naturalistic movement analysis will not only garner a greater understanding of motor control in healthy individuals, but also permit the design of experiments and rehabilitation strategies that target specific motor impairments (e.g. stroke). The combined use of these tools will lead to increasingly deeper understanding of neural mechanisms of motor control. A key requirement when combining these data acquisition systems is fine temporal correspondence between the various data streams. This protocol describes a multifunctional system's overall connectivity, intersystem signaling, and the temporal synchronization of recorded data. Synchronization of the component systems is primarily accomplished through the use of a customizable circuit, readily made with off the shelf components and minimal electronics assembly skills.

  2. Differentiation of human epidermal neural crest stem cells (hEPI-NCSC) into virtually homogenous populations of dopaminergic neurons.

    PubMed

    Narytnyk, Alla; Verdon, Bernard; Loughney, Andrew; Sweeney, Michele; Clewes, Oliver; Taggart, Michael J; Sieber-Blum, Maya

    2014-04-01

    Here we provide a protocol for the directed differentiation of hEPI-NCSC into midbrain dopaminergic neurons, which degenerate in Parkinson's disease. hEPI-NCSC are neural crest-derived multipotent stem cells that persist into adulthood in the bulge of hair follicles. The experimental design is distinctly different from conventional protocols for embryonic stem cells and induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells. It includes pre-differentiation of the multipotent hEPI-NCSC into neural stem cell-like cells, followed by ventralizing, patterning, continued exposure to the TGFβ receptor inhibitor, SB431542, and at later stages of differentiation the presence of the WNT inhibitor, IWP-4. All cells expressed A9 midbrain dopaminergic neuron progenitor markers with gene expression levels comparable to those in normal human substantia nigra. The current study shows for the first time that virtually homogeneous populations of dopaminergic neurons can be derived ex vivo from somatic stem cells without the need for purification, with useful timeliness and high efficacy. This novel development is an important first step towards the establishment of fully functional dopaminergic neurons from an ontologically relevant stem cell type, hEPI-NCSC. PMID:24399192

  3. Ontological implications of being in immersive virtual environments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morie, Jacquelyn F.

    2008-02-01

    The idea of Virtual Reality once conjured up visions of new territories to explore, and expectations of awaiting worlds of wonder. VR has matured to become a practical tool for therapy, medicine and commercial interests, yet artists, in particular, continue to expand the possibilities for the medium. Artistic virtual environments created over the past two decades probe the phenomenological nature of these virtual environments. When we inhabit a fully immersive virtual environment, we have entered into a new form of Being. Not only does our body continue to exist in the real, physical world, we are also embodied within the virtual by means of technology that translates our bodied actions into interactions with the virtual environment. Very few states in human existence allow this bifurcation of our Being, where we can exist simultaneously in two spaces at once, with the possible exception of meta-physical states such as shamanistic trance and out-of-body experiences. This paper discusses the nature of this simultaneous Being, how we enter the virtual space, what forms of persona we can don there, what forms of spaces we can inhabit, and what type of wondrous experiences we can both hope for and expect.

  4. The LINDSAY Virtual Human Project: an immersive approach to anatomy and physiology.

    PubMed

    Tworek, Janet K; Jamniczky, Heather A; Jacob, Christian; Hallgrímsson, Benedikt; Wright, Bruce

    2013-01-01

    The increasing number of digital anatomy teaching software packages challenges anatomy educators on how to best integrate these tools for teaching and learning. Realistically, there exists a complex interplay of design, implementation, politics, and learning needs in the development and integration of software for education, each of which may be further amplified by the somewhat siloed roles of programmers, faculty, and students. LINDSAY Presenter is newly designed software that permits faculty and students to model and manipulate three-dimensional anatomy presentations and images, while including embedded quizzes, links, and text-based content. A validated tool measuring impact across pedagogy, resources, interactivity, freedom, granularity, and factors outside the immediate learning event was used in conjunction with observation, field notes, and focus groups to critically examine the impact of attitudes and perceptions of all stakeholders in the early implementation of LINDSAY Presenter before and after a three-week trial period with the software. Results demonstrate that external, personal media usage, along with students' awareness of the need to apply anatomy to clinical professional situations drove expectations of LINDSAY Presenter. A focus on the software over learning, which can be expected during initial orientation, surprisingly remained after three weeks of use. The time-intensive investment required to create learning content is a detractor from user-generated content and may reflect the consumption nature of other forms of digital learning. Early excitement over new technologies needs to be tempered with clear understanding of what learning is afforded, and how these constructively support future application and integration into professional practice.

  5. War Games Go Virtual

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carlson, Scott

    2006-01-01

    This article describes how researchers work with military to create the next generation of training technology. This article also describes the features of Flatworld, a virtual military training technology. Flatworld is one of many projects under development at the Institute for Creative Technologies, a research group that is supported primarily…

  6. Virtual First Impressions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bergren, Martha Dewey

    2005-01-01

    Frequently, a nurse's first and only contact with a graduate school, legislator, public health official, professional organization, or school nursing colleague is made through e-mail. The format, the content, and the appearance of the e-mail create a virtual first impression. Nurses can manage their image and the image of the profession by…

  7. Novel Virtual Screening Approach for the Discovery of Human Tyrosinase Inhibitors

    PubMed Central

    Ai, Ni; Welsh, William J.; Santhanam, Uma; Hu, Hong; Lyga, John

    2014-01-01

    Tyrosinase is the key enzyme involved in the human pigmentation process, as well as the undesired browning of fruits and vegetables. Compounds inhibiting tyrosinase catalytic activity are an important class of cosmetic and dermatological agents which show high potential as depigmentation agents used for skin lightening. The multi-step protocol employed for the identification of novel tyrosinase inhibitors incorporated the Shape Signatures computational algorithm for rapid screening of chemical libraries. This algorithm converts the size and shape of a molecule, as well its surface charge distribution and other bio-relevant properties, into compact histograms (signatures) that lend themselves to rapid comparison between molecules. Shape Signatures excels at scaffold hopping across different chemical families, which enables identification of new actives whose molecular structure is distinct from other known actives. Using this approach, we identified a novel class of depigmentation agents that demonstrated promise for skin lightening product development. PMID:25426625

  8. Virtual Education: Guidelines for Using Games Technology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schofield, Damian

    2014-01-01

    Advanced three-dimensional virtual environment technology, similar to that used by the film and computer games industry, can allow educational developers to rapidly create realistic online virtual environments. This technology has been used to generate a range of interactive Virtual Reality (VR) learning environments across a spectrum of…

  9. Creating a monomeric endonuclease TALE-I-SceI with high specificity and low genotoxicity in human cells.

    PubMed

    Lin, Jianfei; Chen, He; Luo, Ling; Lai, Yongrong; Xie, Wei; Kee, Kehkooi

    2015-01-01

    To correct a DNA mutation in the human genome for gene therapy, homology-directed repair (HDR) needs to be specific and have the lowest off-target effects to protect the human genome from deleterious mutations. Zinc finger nucleases, transcription activator-like effector nuclease (TALEN) and CRISPR-CAS9 systems have been engineered and used extensively to recognize and modify specific DNA sequences. Although TALEN and CRISPR/CAS9 could induce high levels of HDR in human cells, their genotoxicity was significantly higher. Here, we report the creation of a monomeric endonuclease that can recognize at least 33 bp by fusing the DNA-recognizing domain of TALEN (TALE) to a re-engineered homing endonuclease I-SceI. After sequentially re-engineering I-SceI to recognize 18 bp of the human β-globin sequence, the re-engineered I-SceI induced HDR in human cells. When the re-engineered I-SceI was fused to TALE (TALE-ISVB2), the chimeric endonuclease induced the same HDR rate at the human β-globin gene locus as that induced by TALEN, but significantly reduced genotoxicity. We further demonstrated that TALE-ISVB2 specifically targeted at the β-globin sequence in human hematopoietic stem cells. Therefore, this monomeric endonuclease has the potential to be used in therapeutic gene targeting in human cells.

  10. Japan 1945-1989: Re-Creating a Modern Nation. A Humanities Approach to Japanese History, Part IV.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Parisi, Lynn; Masalski, Kathleen Woods

    This curriculum unit is the final volume of a four-part series. Noting that the humanities reveal the values and beliefs that underlie social, political, and economic institutions, the unit contends that the study of other countries and their histories may be greatly enriched by a humanities approach that draws on the fields of literature,…

  11. Employers' Perspectives on the Roles of Human Capital Development and Management in Creating Value. OECD Education Working Papers, No. 18

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bassi, Laurie J.; McMurrer, Daniel P.

    2006-01-01

    Human capital--the productive capacity that is embedded in people--is one of the most important contributors to the growth in nations' output and standard of living. Globalisation and technological change have increased the importance of human capital in recent years, to the point that there are now only two options to sustain high profits and…

  12. Virtual reality and anthropology.

    PubMed

    Recheis, W; Weber, G W; Schäfer, K; Knapp, R; Seidler, H; zur Nedden, D

    1999-08-01

    Since the discovery of the Tyrolean Iceman in 1991 advanced imaging and post processing techniques were successfully applied in anthropology. Specific techniques include spiral computed tomography and 3-dimensional reconstructions including stereolithographic and fused deposition modeling of volume data sets. The Iceman's skull was the first to be reproduced using stereolithography, before this method was successfully applied in preoperative planning. With the advent of high-end graphics workstations and biomedical image processing software packages, 3-dimensional reconstructions were established as a routine tool for analyzing volume data sets. These techniques opened totally new insights in the field of physical anthropology. Computed tomography became the ideal research tool to access the internal structures of various precious fossils without damaging or even touching them. Many of the most precious specimens from the species Autralopithecus (1.8-3.5 Myears), Homo heidelbergensis (200-600 kyears) or Homo neanderthalensis (40-100 kyears) were scanned during the last 5 years. Often the fossils are filled with a stone matrix or other materials. During the postprocessing routines highly advanced algorithms were used to remove virtually these incrustations. Thus it was possible to visualize the morphological structures that lie beneath the matrix. Some specimen were partially destroyed, so the missing parts were reconstructed on computer screen in order to get estimations of the brain volume and endocranial morphology, both major fields of interest in physical anthropology. Moreover the computerized form of the data allows new descriptions of morphologic structures by the means of 'geometric morphometrics'. Some of the results may change aspects and interpretations in human evolution. The introduction of new imaging and post processing techniques created a new field of research: Virtual Anthropology.

  13. NASA New Virtual Airport

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1995-01-01

    NASA's Virtual Airport Tower is located at the Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, California. The Virtual Airport Tower's two-story structure is a full-scale, highly sophisticated simulation facility that will emulate Level 5 air traffic control towers and the busiest airports. It provides the platform to conduct in-depth human factors studies with quantifiable results using actual air traffic controllers, airline dispatchers and airport managers.

  14. VIRTUAL FRAME BUFFER INTERFACE

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wolfe, T. L.

    1994-01-01

    Large image processing systems use multiple frame buffers with differing architectures and vendor supplied user interfaces. This variety of architectures and interfaces creates software development, maintenance, and portability problems for application programs. The Virtual Frame Buffer Interface program makes all frame buffers appear as a generic frame buffer with a specified set of characteristics, allowing programmers to write code which will run unmodified on all supported hardware. The Virtual Frame Buffer Interface converts generic commands to actual device commands. The virtual frame buffer consists of a definition of capabilities and FORTRAN subroutines that are called by application programs. The virtual frame buffer routines may be treated as subroutines, logical functions, or integer functions by the application program. Routines are included that allocate and manage hardware resources such as frame buffers, monitors, video switches, trackballs, tablets and joysticks; access image memory planes; and perform alphanumeric font or text generation. The subroutines for the various "real" frame buffers are in separate VAX/VMS shared libraries allowing modification, correction or enhancement of the virtual interface without affecting application programs. The Virtual Frame Buffer Interface program was developed in FORTRAN 77 for a DEC VAX 11/780 or a DEC VAX 11/750 under VMS 4.X. It supports ADAGE IK3000, DEANZA IP8500, Low Resolution RAMTEK 9460, and High Resolution RAMTEK 9460 Frame Buffers. It has a central memory requirement of approximately 150K. This program was developed in 1985.

  15. An Intelligent Crawler for a Virtual World

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Eno, Joshua

    2010-01-01

    Virtual worlds, which allow users to create and interact with content in a 3D, multi-user environment, growing and becoming more integrated with the traditional flat web. However, little is empirically known about the content users create in virtual world and how it can be indexed and searched effectively. In order to gain a better understanding…

  16. Assessment of the Influence of Demographic and Professional Characteristics on Health Care Providers’ Pain Management Decisions Using Virtual Humans

    PubMed Central

    Boissoneault, Jeff; Mundt, Jennifer M.; Bartley, Emily J.; Wandner, Laura D.; Hirsh, Adam T.; Robinson, Michael E.

    2016-01-01

    Disparities in health care associated with patients’ gender, race, and age are well documented. Previous studies using virtual human (VH) technology have demonstrated that provider characteristics may play an important role in pain management decisions. However, these studies have largely emphasized group differences. The aims of this study were to examine dentists’ and physicians’ use of VH characteristics when making clinical judgments (i.e., cue use) and to identify provider characteristics associated with the magnitude of the impact of these cues (β-weights). Providers (N=152; 76 physicians, 76 dentists) viewed video vignettes of VH patients varying in gender (male/female), race (white/black), and age (younger/older). Participants rated VH patients’ pain intensity and unpleasantness and then rated their own likelihood of administering non-opioid and opioid analgesics. Compared to physicians, dentists had significantly lower β-weights associated with VH age cues for all ratings (p<0.001; d>0.69). These effects varied by provider race and gender. For pain intensity, professional differences were present only among non-white providers. White providers had greater β-weights than non-white providers for pain unpleasantness but only among men. Provider differences regarding the use of VH age cues in non-opioid analgesic administration were present among all providers except non-white males. These findings highlight the interaction of patient and provider factors in driving clinical decision making. Although profession was related to use of VH age cues in pain-related clinical judgments, this relationship was modified by providers’ personal characteristics. Additional research is needed to understand what aspects of professional training or practice may account for differences between physicians and dentists and what forms of continuing education may help to mitigate the disparities. PMID:27139209

  17. Context-dependent individualization of nucleotides and virtual genomic hybridization allow the precise location of human SNPs.

    PubMed

    Reyes, José; Gómez-Romero, Laura; Ibarra-Soria, Ximena; Palacios-Flores, Kim; Arriola, Luis R; Wences, Alejandro; García, Delfino; Boege, Margareta; Dávila, Guillermo; Flores, Margarita; Palacios, Rafael

    2011-09-13

    We have entered the era of individual genomic sequencing, and can already see exponential progress in the field. It is of utmost importance to exclude false-positive variants from reported datasets. However, because of the nature of the used algorithms, this task has not been optimized to the required level of precision. This study presents a unique strategy for identifying SNPs, called COIN-VGH, that largely minimizes the presence of false-positives in the generated data. The algorithm was developed using the X-chromosome-specific regions from the previously sequenced genomes of Craig Venter and James Watson. The algorithm is based on the concept that a nucleotide can be individualized if it is analyzed in the context of its surrounding genomic sequence. COIN-VGH consists of defining the most comprehensive set of nucleotide strings of a defined length that map with 100% identity to a unique position within the human reference genome (HRG). Such set is used to retrieve sequence reads from a query genome (QG), allowing the production of a genomic landscape that represents a draft HRG-guided assembly of the QG. This landscape is analyzed for specific signatures that indicate the presence of SNPs. The fidelity of the variation signature was assessed using simulation experiments by virtually altering the HRG at defined positions. Finally, the signature regions identified in the HRG and in the QG reads are aligned and the precise nature and position of the corresponding SNPs are detected. The advantages of COIN-VGH over previous algorithms are discussed.

  18. Assessment of the Influence of Demographic and Professional Characteristics on Health Care Providers' Pain Management Decisions Using Virtual Humans.

    PubMed

    Boissoneault, Jeff; Mundt, Jennifer M; Bartley, Emily J; Wandner, Laura D; Hirsh, Adam T; Robinson, Michael E

    2016-05-01

    Disparities in health care associated with patients' gender, race, and age are well documented. Previous studies using virtual human (VH) technology have demonstrated that provider characteristics may play an important role in pain management decisions. However, these studies have largely emphasized group differences. The aims of this study were to examine dentists' and physicians' use of VH characteristics when making clinical judgments (i.e., cue use) and to identify provider characteristics associated with the magnitude of the impact of these cues (β-weights). Providers (N=152; 76 physicians, 76 dentists) viewed video vignettes of VH patients varying in gender (male/female), race (white/black), and age (younger/older). Participants rated VH patients' pain intensity and unpleasantness and then rated their own likelihood of administering non-opioid and opioid analgesics. Compared to physicians, dentists had significantly lower β-weights associated with VH age cues for all ratings (p<0.001; d>0.69). These effects varied by provider race and gender. For pain intensity, professional differences were present only among non-white providers. White providers had greater β-weights than non-white providers for pain unpleasantness but only among men. Provider differences regarding the use of VH age cues in non-opioid analgesic administration were present among all providers except non-white males. These findings highlight the interaction of patient and provider factors in driving clinical decision making. Although profession was related to use of VH age cues in pain-related clinical judgments, this relationship was modified by providers' personal characteristics. Additional research is needed to understand what aspects of professional training or practice may account for differences between physicians and dentists and what forms of continuing education may help to mitigate the disparities.

  19. Human factors issues and approaches in the spatial layout of a space station control room, including the use of virtual reality as a design analysis tool

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hale, Joseph P., II

    1994-01-01

    Human Factors Engineering support was provided for the 30% design review of the late Space Station Freedom Payload Control Area (PCA). The PCA was to be the payload operations control room, analogous to the Spacelab Payload Operations Control Center (POCC). This effort began with a systematic collection and refinement of the relevant requirements driving the spatial layout of the consoles and PCA. This information was used as input for specialized human factors analytical tools and techniques in the design and design analysis activities. Design concepts and configuration options were developed and reviewed using sketches, 2-D Computer-Aided Design (CAD) drawings, and immersive Virtual Reality (VR) mockups.

  20. Applying Virtual Reality to commercial Edutainment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Grissom, F.; Goza, Sharon P.; Goza, S. Michael

    1994-01-01

    Virtual reality (VR) when defined as a computer generated, immersive, three dimensional graphics environment which provides varying degrees of interactivity, remains an expensive, highly specialized application, yet to find its way into the school, home, or business. As a novel approach to a theme park-type attraction, though, its use can be justified. This paper describes how a virtual reality 'tour of the human digestive system' was created for the Omniplex Science Museum of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The customers main objectives were: (1) to educate; (2) to entertain; (3) to draw visitors; and (4) to generate revenue. The 'Edutainment' system ultimately delivered met these goals. As more such systems come into existence the resulting library of licensable programs will greatly reduce development costs to individual institutions.

  1. Introducing the "Human Element" in Chemistry by Synthesizing Blue Pigments and Creating Cyanotypes in a First-Year Chemistry Course

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Morizot, Olivier; Audureau, Eric; Briend, Jean-Yves; Hagel, Gaetan; Boulc'h, Florence

    2015-01-01

    In this article, we present two concrete applications of the concept of the human element to chemistry education; starting with a course and experimental project on blue pigment synthesis and concluding with cross-disciplinary lessons and experiments on blue photography. In addition to the description of the content of these courses, we explore…

  2. Virtual Brain Bank a public collection of classified head MRI

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barrios, Fernando A.

    2000-10-01

    In this work I present the effort at the Neurobiology Center for creating a digital Brain Bank, a collection of well classified human brains that are used for teaching and research, this bank will be based in a collection of high resolution three dimensional head MRI. For this reason this bank is being named "virtual" and eventually will be of public access though a WEB page in the INTERNET.

  3. Broad scope method for creating humanized animal models for animal health and disease research through antibiotic treatment and human fecal transfer.

    PubMed

    Hintze, Korry J; Cox, James E; Rompato, Giovanni; Benninghoff, Abby D; Ward, Robert E; Broadbent, Jeff; Lefevre, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Traditionally, mouse humanization studies have used human fecal transfer to germ-free animals. This practice requires gnotobiotic facilities and is restricted to gnotobiotic mouse lines, which limits humanized mouse research. We have developed a generalizable method to humanize non germ-free mice using antibiotic treatment and human fecal transfer. The method involves depleting resident intestinal microbiota with broad-spectrum antibiotics, introducing human microbiota from frozen fecal samples by weekly gavage, and maintaining mice in HEPA-filtered microisolator cages. Pyrosequencing cecal microbiota 16S rRNA genes showed that recipient mice adopt a humanized microbiota profile analogous to their human donors, and distinct from mice treated with only antibiotics (no fecal transfer) or untreated control mice. In the humanized mice, 75% of the sequence mass was observed in their respective human donor and conversely, 68% of the donor sequence mass was recovered in the recipient mice. Principal component analyses of GC- and HPLC-separated cecal metabolites were performed to determine effects of transplanted microbiota on the metabolome. Cecal metabolite profiles of mice treated with only antibiotics (no fecal transfer) and control mice were dissimilar from each other and from humanized mice. Metabolite profiles for mice humanized from different donor samples clustered near each other, yet were sufficiently distinct that separate clusters were apparent for each donor. Also, cecal concentrations of 57 metabolites were significantly different between humanization treatments. These data demonstrate that our protocol can be used to humanize non germ-free mice and is sufficiently robust to generate metabolomic differences between mice humanized from different human donors. PMID:24637796

  4. The Effects of Actual Human Size Display and Stereoscopic Presentation on Users' Sense of Being Together with and of Psychological Immersion in a Virtual Character

    PubMed Central

    Ahn, Dohyun; Seo, Youngnam; Kim, Minkyung; Kwon, Joung Huem; Jung, Younbo; Ahn, Jungsun

    2014-01-01

    Abstract This study examined the role of display size and mode in increasing users' sense of being together with and of their psychological immersion in a virtual character. Using a high-resolution three-dimensional virtual character, this study employed a 2×2 (stereoscopic mode vs. monoscopic mode×actual human size vs. small size display) factorial design in an experiment with 144 participants randomly assigned to each condition. Findings showed that stereoscopic mode had a significant effect on both users' sense of being together and psychological immersion. However, display size affected only the sense of being together. Furthermore, display size was not found to moderate the effect of stereoscopic mode. PMID:24606057

  5. NASA Virtual Institutes: International Bridges for Space Exploration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schmidt, Gregory K.

    2016-01-01

    NASA created the first virtual institute, the NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI), in 2009 with an aim toward bringing together geographically disparate and multidisciplinary teams toward the goal of answering broad questions in the then-new discipline of astrobiology. With the success of the virtual institute model, NASA then created the NASA Lunar Science Institute (NLSI) in 2008 to address questions of science and human exploration of the Moon, and then the NASA Aeronautics Research Institute (NARI) in 2012 which addresses key questions in the development of aeronautics technologies. With the broadening of NASA's human exploration targets to include Near Earth Asteroids and the moons of Mars as well as the Moon, the NLSI morphed into the Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI) in 2012. SSERVI funds domestic research teams to address broad questions at the intersection of science and human exploration, with the underlying principle that science enables human exploration, and human exploration enables science. Nine domestic teams were funded in 2014 for a five-year period to address a variety of different topics, and nine international partners (with more to come) also work with the U.S. teams on a variety of topics of mutual interest. The result is a robust and productive research infrastructure that is not only scientifically productive but can respond to strategic topics of domestic and international interest, and which develops a new generation of researchers. This is all accomplished with the aid of virtual collaboration technologies which enable scientific research at a distance. The virtual institute model is widely applicable to a range of space science and exploration problems.

  6. Virtual Laboratories and Virtual Worlds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hut, Piet

    2008-05-01

    Since we cannot put stars in a laboratory, astrophysicists had to wait till the invention of computers before becoming laboratory scientists. For half a century now, we have been conducting experiments in our virtual laboratories. However, we ourselves have remained behind the keyboard, with the screen of the monitor separating us from the world we are simulating. Recently, 3D on-line technology, developed first for games but now deployed in virtual worlds like Second Life, is beginning to make it possible for astrophysicists to enter their virtual labs themselves, in virtual form as avatars. This has several advantages, from new possibilities to explore the results of the simulations to a shared presence in a virtual lab with remote collaborators on different continents. I will report my experiences with the use of Qwaq Forums, a virtual world developed by a new company (see http://www.qwaq.com).

  7. When the Virtual Becomes Real: Student Learning in the Virtual Enterprises Program

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hughes, Katherine L.; Golann, Joanne Wang

    2007-01-01

    Virtual Enterprises International (VE) is a high school program that teaches students about business through task-oriented and hands-on coursework. With the assistance of a coordinator and business mentors, VE students create and oversee a virtual firm, conducting business with other virtual firms nationally and internationally. The program…

  8. Virtual Labs and Virtual Worlds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boehler, Ted

    2006-12-01

    Virtual Labs and Virtual Worlds Coastline Community College has under development several virtual lab simulations and activities that range from biology, to language labs, to virtual discussion environments. Imagine a virtual world that students enter online, by logging onto their computer from home or anywhere they have web access. Upon entering this world they select a personalized identity represented by a digitized character (avatar) that can freely move about, interact with the environment, and communicate with other characters. In these virtual worlds, buildings, gathering places, conference rooms, labs, science rooms, and a variety of other “real world” elements are evident. When characters move about and encounter other people (players) they may freely communicate. They can examine things, manipulate objects, read signs, watch video clips, hear sounds, and jump to other locations. Goals of critical thinking, social interaction, peer collaboration, group support, and enhanced learning can be achieved in surprising new ways with this innovative approach to peer-to-peer communication in a virtual discussion world. In this presentation, short demos will be given of several online learning environments including a virtual biology lab, a marine science module, a Spanish lab, and a virtual discussion world. Coastline College has been a leader in the development of distance learning and media-based education for nearly 30 years and currently offers courses through PDA, Internet, DVD, CD-ROM, TV, and Videoconferencing technologies. Its distance learning program serves over 20,000 students every year. sponsor Jerry Meisner

  9. Functional Impact and Evolution of a Novel Human Polymorphic Inversion That Disrupts a Gene and Creates a Fusion Transcript.

    PubMed

    Puig, Marta; Castellano, David; Pantano, Lorena; Giner-Delgado, Carla; Izquierdo, David; Gayà-Vidal, Magdalena; Lucas-Lledó, José Ignacio; Esko, Tõnu; Terao, Chikashi; Matsuda, Fumihiko; Cáceres, Mario

    2015-10-01

    Despite many years of study into inversions, very little is known about their functional consequences, especially in humans. A common hypothesis is that the selective value of inversions stems in part from their effects on nearby genes, although evidence of this in natural populations is almost nonexistent. Here we present a global analysis of a new 415-kb polymorphic inversion that is among the longest ones found in humans and is the first with clear position effects. This inversion is located in chromosome 19 and has been generated by non-homologous end joining between blocks of transposable elements with low identity. PCR genotyping in 541 individuals from eight different human populations allowed the detection of tag SNPs and inversion genotyping in multiple populations worldwide, showing that the inverted allele is mainly found in East Asia with an average frequency of 4.7%. Interestingly, one of the breakpoints disrupts the transcription factor gene ZNF257, causing a significant reduction in the total expression level of this gene in lymphoblastoid cell lines. RNA-Seq analysis of the effects of this expression change in standard homozygotes and inversion heterozygotes revealed distinct expression patterns that were validated by quantitative RT-PCR. Moreover, we have found a new fusion transcript that is generated exclusively from inverted chromosomes around one of the breakpoints. Finally, by the analysis of the associated nucleotide variation, we have estimated that the inversion was generated ~40,000-50,000 years ago and, while a neutral evolution cannot be ruled out, its current frequencies are more consistent with those expected for a deleterious variant, although no significant association with phenotypic traits has been found so far.

  10. Virtually Possible

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mellon, Ericka

    2011-01-01

    Diane Lewis began building her popular virtual education program in a storage closet. The drab room, just big enough to squeeze in a tiny table, was her office at the headquarters of Seminole County (Florida) Public Schools. She had a computer and a small staff of temporary workers. Lewis, who managed to open two successful virtual schools for…

  11. Generating carbon finance through avoided deforestation and its potential to create climatic, conservation and human development benefits.

    PubMed

    Ebeling, Johannes; Yasué, Maï

    2008-05-27

    Recent proposals to compensate developing countries for reducing emissions from deforestation (RED) under forthcoming climate change mitigation regimes are receiving increasing attention. Here we demonstrate that if RED credits were traded on international carbon markets, even moderate decreases in deforestation rates could generate billions of Euros annually for tropical forest conservation. We also discuss the main challenges for a RED mechanism that delivers real climatic benefits. These include providing sufficient incentives while only rewarding deforestation reductions beyond business-as-usual scenarios, addressing risks arising from forest degradation and international leakage, and ensuring permanence of emission reductions. Governance may become a formidable challenge for RED because some countries with the highest RED potentials score poorly on governance indices. In addition to climate mitigation, RED funds could help achieve substantial co-benefits for biodiversity conservation and human development. However, this will probably require targeted additional support because the highest biodiversity threats and human development needs may exist in countries that have limited income potentials from RED. In conclusion, how successfully a market-based RED mechanism can contribute to climate change mitigation, conservation and development will strongly depend on accompanying measures and carefully designed incentive structures involving governments, business, as well as the conservation and development communities.

  12. Creating dedicated bioenergy crops

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Bioenergy is one of the current mechanisms of producing renewable energy to reduce our use of nonrenewable fossil fuels and to reduce carbon emissions into the atmosphere. Humans have been using bioenergy since we first learned to create and control fire - burning manure, peat, and wood to cook food...

  13. Modeling Photo-Bleaching Kinetics to Create High Resolution Maps of Rod Rhodopsin in the Human Retina.

    PubMed

    Ehler, Martin; Dobrosotskaya, Julia; Cunningham, Denise; Wong, Wai T; Chew, Emily Y; Czaja, Wojtek; Bonner, Robert F

    2015-01-01

    We introduce and describe a novel non-invasive in-vivo method for mapping local rod rhodopsin distribution in the human retina over a 30-degree field. Our approach is based on analyzing the brightening of detected lipofuscin autofluorescence within small pixel clusters in registered imaging sequences taken with a commercial 488nm confocal scanning laser ophthalmoscope (cSLO) over a 1 minute period. We modeled the kinetics of rhodopsin bleaching by applying variational optimization techniques from applied mathematics. The physical model and the numerical analysis with its implementation are outlined in detail. This new technique enables the creation of spatial maps of the retinal rhodopsin and retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) bisretinoid distribution with an ≈ 50μm resolution. PMID:26196397

  14. Modeling Photo-Bleaching Kinetics to Create High Resolution Maps of Rod Rhodopsin in the Human Retina

    PubMed Central

    Ehler, Martin; Dobrosotskaya, Julia; Cunningham, Denise; Wong, Wai T.; Chew, Emily Y.; Czaja, Wojtek; Bonner, Robert F.

    2015-01-01

    We introduce and describe a novel non-invasive in-vivo method for mapping local rod rhodopsin distribution in the human retina over a 30-degree field. Our approach is based on analyzing the brightening of detected lipofuscin autofluorescence within small pixel clusters in registered imaging sequences taken with a commercial 488nm confocal scanning laser ophthalmoscope (cSLO) over a 1 minute period. We modeled the kinetics of rhodopsin bleaching by applying variational optimization techniques from applied mathematics. The physical model and the numerical analysis with its implementation are outlined in detail. This new technique enables the creation of spatial maps of the retinal rhodopsin and retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) bisretinoid distribution with an ≈ 50μm resolution. PMID:26196397

  15. Medical applications of virtual reality.

    PubMed

    Satava, R M

    1995-06-01

    Medical applications for virtual reality (VR) are just beginning to emerge. These include VR surgical simulators, telepresence surgery, complex medical database visualization, and rehabilitation. These applications are mediated through the computer interface and as such are the embodiment of VR as an integral part of the paradigm shift in the field of medicine. The Green Telepresence Surgery System consists of two components, the surgical workstation and remote worksite. At the remote site there is a 3-D camera system and responsive manipulators with sensory input. At the workstation there is a 3-D monitor and dexterous handles with force feedback. The VR surgical simulator is a stylized recreation of the human abdomen with several essential organs. Using a helmet mounted display and DataGlove, a person can learn anatomy from a new perspective by 'flying' inside and around the organs, or can practice surgical procedures with a scalpel and clamps. Database visualization creates 3-D images of complex medical data for new perspectives in analysis. Rehabilitation medicine permits impaired individuals to explore worlds not otherwise available to them, allows accurate assessment and therapy for their disabilities, and helps architects understand their critical needs in public or personal space. And to support these advanced technologies, the operating room and hospital of the future will be first designed and tested in virtual reality, bringing together the full power of the digital physician.

  16. Developing Trust in Virtual Teams

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Germain, Marie-Line

    2011-01-01

    Rapid globalization, advances in technology, flatter organizational structures, synergistic cooperation among firms, and a shift to knowledge work environments have led to the increasing use of virtual teams in organizations. Selecting, training, and socializing employees in virtual teamwork has therefore become an important human resource…

  17. Improved Learning Efficiency and Increased Student Collaboration through Use of Virtual Microscopy in the Teaching of Human Pathology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Braun, Mark W.; Kearns, Katherine D.

    2008-01-01

    The implementation of virtual microscopy in the teaching of pathology at the Bloomington, Indiana extension of the Indiana University School of Medicine permitted the assessment of student attitudes, use and academic performance with respect to this new technology. A gradual and integrated approach allowed the parallel assessment with respect to…

  18. “An Environment Built to Include Rather than Exclude Me”: Creating Inclusive Environments for Human Well-Being

    PubMed Central

    Layton, Natasha A.; Steel, Emily J.

    2015-01-01

    Contemporary discourses which challenge the notion of health as the “absence of disease” are prompting changes in health policy and practice. People with disability have been influential in progressing our understanding of the impact of contextual factors in individual and population health, highlighting the impact of environmental factors on functioning and inclusion. The World Health Organization’s (WHO) more holistic definition of health as “wellbeing” is now applied in frameworks and legislation, and has long been understood in occupational therapy theory. In practice, however, occupational therapists and other professionals often address only local and individual environmental factors to promote wellbeing, within systems and societies that limit equity in population health and restrict inclusion in communities. This paper presents an in-depth analysis of the supports and accommodations identified by a cohort of individuals (n-100) living with disability. A range of environmental facilitators and barriers were identified in peoples’ experience of “inclusive community environs” and found to influence inclusion and wellbeing. The roles and responsibilities of individuals, professionals, and society to enact change in environments are discussed in light of these findings. Recommendations include a focus on the subjective experience of environments, and application of theory from human rights and inclusive economics to address the multiple dimensions and levels of environments in working towards inclusion and wellbeing. PMID:26371024

  19. Alkmaion's discovery that brain creates mind: a revolution in human knowledge comparable to that of Copernicus and of Darwin.

    PubMed

    Doty, Robert W

    2007-07-13

    Without special examination the brain offers no clue that it is the organ of the mind. From the dawn of time man thus either ignored the problem as to the source of thought, or attributed it to a variety of anatomical structures, usually the heart. The brain held no place in such intuitions, and in most languages it is analogized to bone marrow. Furthermore, nothing in early medical systems claimed any intellectual capacity for the brain; and the Egyptians, so fastidious in care for their afterlife, heedlessly discarded the brain in funerary practice. It was thus a unique event in world history when Alkmaion of Kroton (Alcmaeon, ca. 500 bc), based on anatomical evidence, proposed that the brain was essential for perception. Although no writings of Alkmaion survived, it was probably via a fortuitous linkage that his idea of the mental primacy of the brain was transmitted to, and preserved within, the teachings of the Hippocratic school. Nothing, of course, was secure as to mechanism, two millennia unfolding until the search for mind passed from the ventricles to the cerebral cortex. Nonetheless, Alkmaion was the beginning, and the ensuing understanding that he initiated is still transforming humanity's perception of the natural world, and their place within it.

  20. "An Environment Built to Include Rather than Exclude Me": Creating Inclusive Environments for Human Well-Being.

    PubMed

    Layton, Natasha A; Steel, Emily J

    2015-09-01

    Contemporary discourses which challenge the notion of health as the "absence of disease" are prompting changes in health policy and practice. People with disability have been influential in progressing our understanding of the impact of contextual factors in individual and population health, highlighting the impact of environmental factors on functioning and inclusion. The World Health Organization's (WHO) more holistic definition of health as "wellbeing" is now applied in frameworks and legislation, and has long been understood in occupational therapy theory. In practice, however, occupational therapists and other professionals often address only local and individual environmental factors to promote wellbeing, within systems and societies that limit equity in population health and restrict inclusion in communities. This paper presents an in-depth analysis of the supports and accommodations identified by a cohort of individuals (n-100) living with disability. A range of environmental facilitators and barriers were identified in peoples' experience of "inclusive community environs" and found to influence inclusion and wellbeing. The roles and responsibilities of individuals, professionals, and society to enact change in environments are discussed in light of these findings. Recommendations include a focus on the subjective experience of environments, and application of theory from human rights and inclusive economics to address the multiple dimensions and levels of environments in working towards inclusion and wellbeing. PMID:26371024

  1. Use of Genome Engineering to Create Patient Specific MLL Translocations in Primary Human Hematopoietic Stem and Progenitor Cells.

    PubMed

    Breese, Erin H; Buechele, Corina; Dawson, Catherine; Cleary, Michael L; Porteus, Matthew H

    2015-01-01

    One of the challenging questions in cancer biology is how a normal cell transforms into a cancer cell. There is strong evidence that specific chromosomal translocations are a key element in this transformation process. Our studies focus on understanding the developmental mechanism by which a normal stem or progenitor cell transforms into leukemia. Here we used engineered nucleases to induce simultaneous specific double strand breaks in the MLL gene and two different known translocation partners (AF4 and AF9), which resulted in specific chromosomal translocations in K562 cells as well as primary hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (HSPCs). The initiation of a specific MLL translocation in a small number of HSPCs likely mimics the leukemia-initiating event that occurs in patients. In our studies, the creation of specific MLL translocations in CD34+ cells was not sufficient to transform cells in vitro. Rather, a variety of fates was observed for translocation positive cells including cell loss over time, a transient proliferative advantage followed by loss of the clone, or a persistent proliferative advantage. These studies highlight the application of genome engineering tools in primary human HSPCs to induce and prospectively study the consequences of initiating translocation events in leukemia pathogenesis.

  2. "An Environment Built to Include Rather than Exclude Me": Creating Inclusive Environments for Human Well-Being.

    PubMed

    Layton, Natasha A; Steel, Emily J

    2015-09-08

    Contemporary discourses which challenge the notion of health as the "absence of disease" are prompting changes in health policy and practice. People with disability have been influential in progressing our understanding of the impact of contextual factors in individual and population health, highlighting the impact of environmental factors on functioning and inclusion. The World Health Organization's (WHO) more holistic definition of health as "wellbeing" is now applied in frameworks and legislation, and has long been understood in occupational therapy theory. In practice, however, occupational therapists and other professionals often address only local and individual environmental factors to promote wellbeing, within systems and societies that limit equity in population health and restrict inclusion in communities. This paper presents an in-depth analysis of the supports and accommodations identified by a cohort of individuals (n-100) living with disability. A range of environmental facilitators and barriers were identified in peoples' experience of "inclusive community environs" and found to influence inclusion and wellbeing. The roles and responsibilities of individuals, professionals, and society to enact change in environments are discussed in light of these findings. Recommendations include a focus on the subjective experience of environments, and application of theory from human rights and inclusive economics to address the multiple dimensions and levels of environments in working towards inclusion and wellbeing.

  3. Investigation and visualization of scleral channels created with femtosecond laser in enucleated human eyes using 3D optical coherence tomography images

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chaudhary, Gautam; Rao, Bin; Chai, Dongyul; Chen, Zhongping; Juhasz, Tibor

    2007-02-01

    We used optical coherence tomography (OCT) for non-invasive imaging of the anterior segment of the eye for investigating partial-thickness scleral channels created with a femtosecond laser. Glaucoma is associated with elevated intraocular pressure (IOP) due to reduced outflow facility in the eye. A partial-thickness aqueous humor (AH) drainage channel in the sclera was created with 1.7-μm wavelength femtosecond laser pulses to reduce IOP by increasing the outflow facility, as a solution to retard the progression of glaucoma. It is hypothesized that the precise dimensions and predetermined location of the channel would provide a controlled increase of the outflow rate resulting in IOP reduction. Therefore, it is significant to create the channel at the exact location with predefined dimensions. The aim of this research has two aspects. First, as the drainage channel is subsurface, it is a challenging task to determine its precise location, shape and dimensions, and it becomes very important to investigate the channel attributes after the laser treatment without disturbing the internal anterior structures. Second, to provide a non-invasive, image-based verification that extremely accurate and non-scarring AH drainage channel can be created with femtosecond laser. Partial-thickness scleral channels created in five human cadaver eyes were investigated non-invasively with a 1310-nm time-domain OCT imaging system. Three-dimensional (3D) OCT image stacks of the triangular cornea-sclera junction, also known as anterior chamber angle, were acquired for image-based analysis and visualization. The volumetric cutting-plane approach allowed reconstruction of images at any cross-sectional position in the entire 3D volume of tissue, making it a valuable tool for exploring and evaluating the location, shape and dimension of the channel from all directions. As a two-dimensional image-based methodology, an image-processing pipeline was implemented to enhance the channel features to

  4. Expression of Human Carbonic Anhydrase in the Cyanobacterium Synechococcus PCC7942 Creates a High CO2-Requiring Phenotype 1

    PubMed Central

    Price, G. D.; Badger, M. R.

    1989-01-01

    Active human carbonic anhydrase II (HCAII) protein was expressed in the cyanobacterium Synechococcus PCC7942 by means of transformation with the bidirectional expression vector, pCA. This expression was driven by the bacterial Tac promoter and was regulated by the IacIQ repressor protein, which was expressed from the same plasmid. Expression levels reached values of around 0.3% of total cell protein and this protein appeared to be entirely soluble in nature and located within the cytosol of the cell. The expression of this protein has dramatic effects on the photosynthetic physiology of the cell. Induction of expression of carbonic anhydrase (CA) activity in both high dissolved inorganic carbon (Ci) and low Ci grown cells leads the creation of a high Ci requiring phenotype causing: (a) a dramatic increase in the K0.5 (Ci) for photosynthesis, (b) a loss of the ability to accumulate internal Ci, and (c) a decrease in the lag between the initial Ci accumulation following illumination and the efflux of CO2 from the cells. In addition, the effects of the expressed CA can largely be reversed by the carbonic anhydrase inhibitor ethoxyzolamide. As a result of the above findings, it is concluded that the CO2 concentrating mechanism in Synechococcus PCC7942 is largely dependent on (a) the absence of CA activity from the cytosol, and (b) the specific localization of CA activity in the carboxysome. A theoretical model of photosynthesis and Ci accumulation is developed in which the carboxysome plays a central role as both the site of CO2 generation from HCO3− and a resistance barrier to CO2 efflux from the cell. There is good qualitative agreement between this model and the measured physiological effects of expressed cytosolic CA in Synechococcus cells. Images Figure 7 PMID:16667062

  5. Design of virtual three-dimensional instruments for sound control

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mulder, Axel Gezienus Elith

    An environment for designing virtual instruments with 3D geometry has been prototyped and applied to real-time sound control and design. It enables a sound artist, musical performer or composer to design an instrument according to preferred or required gestural and musical constraints instead of constraints based only on physical laws as they apply to an instrument with a particular geometry. Sounds can be created, edited or performed in real-time by changing parameters like position, orientation and shape of a virtual 3D input device. The virtual instrument can only be perceived through a visualization and acoustic representation, or sonification, of the control surface. No haptic representation is available. This environment was implemented using CyberGloves, Polhemus sensors, an SGI Onyx and by extending a real- time, visual programming language called Max/FTS, which was originally designed for sound synthesis. The extension involves software objects that interface the sensors and software objects that compute human movement and virtual object features. Two pilot studies have been performed, involving virtual input devices with the behaviours of a rubber balloon and a rubber sheet for the control of sound spatialization and timbre parameters. Both manipulation and sonification methods affect the naturalness of the interaction. Informal evaluation showed that a sonification inspired by the physical world appears natural and effective. More research is required for a natural sonification of virtual input device features such as shape, taking into account possible co- articulation of these features. While both hands can be used for manipulation, left-hand-only interaction with a virtual instrument may be a useful replacement for and extension of the standard keyboard modulation wheel. More research is needed to identify and apply manipulation pragmatics and movement features, and to investigate how they are co-articulated, in the mapping of virtual object

  6. Virtual memory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Denning, P. J.

    1986-01-01

    Virtual memory was conceived as a way to automate overlaying of program segments. Modern computers have very large main memories, but need automatic solutions to the relocation and protection problems. Virtual memory serves this need as well and is thus useful in computers of all sizes. The history of the idea is traced, showing how it has become a widespread, little noticed feature of computers today.

  7. Creating a physician web site: Part One.

    PubMed

    Elliott, B

    2000-05-01

    The reasons why physicians should have professional web sites for their practices are presented. The options available to practitioners who want to create a site are reviewed. Advantages and disadvantages of virtual and non-virtual hosting are discussed. How to find and register one's own domain name, obtain a hosting service, and avenues available to build the web site are also described. Future articles will address finding specific hosting services and details regarding site construction.

  8. Virtual reality and virtual bodies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richards, Catherine; Korba, Larry W.; Shaw, Christopher D.; Green, Mark

    1994-04-01

    There are many ways to produce the sense of `presence' or telepresence in the user of virtual reality. For example attempting to increase the realism of the visual environment is a commonly accepted strategy. In contrast, this paper explores a way for the user to feel present in an unrealistic virtual body. It investigates an unusual approach, proprioceptive illusions. Proprioceptive or body illusions are used to generate and explore the experience of virtuality and presence outside of the normal body limits. These projects are realized in art installations.

  9. Social communication with virtual agents: The effects of body and gaze direction on attention and emotional responding in human observers.

    PubMed

    Marschner, Linda; Pannasch, Sebastian; Schulz, Johannes; Graupner, Sven-Thomas

    2015-08-01

    In social communication, the gaze direction of other persons provides important information to perceive and interpret their emotional response. Previous research investigated the influence of gaze by manipulating mutual eye contact. Therefore, gaze and body direction have been changed as a whole, resulting in only congruent gaze and body directions (averted or directed) of another person. Here, we aimed to disentangle these effects by using short animated sequences of virtual agents posing with either direct or averted body or gaze. Attention allocation by means of eye movements, facial muscle response, and emotional experience to agents of different gender and facial expressions were investigated. Eye movement data revealed longer fixation durations, i.e., a stronger allocation of attention, when gaze and body direction were not congruent with each other or when both were directed towards the observer. This suggests that direct interaction as well as incongruous signals increase the demands of attentional resources in the observer. For the facial muscle response, only the reaction of muscle zygomaticus major revealed an effect of body direction, expressed by stronger activity in response to happy expressions for direct compared to averted gaze when the virtual character's body was directed towards the observer. Finally, body direction also influenced the emotional experience ratings towards happy expressions. While earlier findings suggested that mutual eye contact is the main source for increased emotional responding and attentional allocation, the present results indicate that direction of the virtual agent's body and head also plays a minor but significant role. PMID:26004021

  10. Combination of virtual and experimental 2DE together with ESI LC-MS/MS gives a clearer view about proteomes of human cells and plasma.

    PubMed

    Naryzhny, Stanislav N; Zgoda, Victor G; Maynskova, Maria A; Novikova, Svetlana E; Ronzhina, Natalia L; Vakhrushev, Igor V; Khryapova, Elena V; Lisitsa, Andrey V; Tikhonova, Olga V; Ponomarenko, Elena A; Archakov, Alexander I

    2016-01-01

    Virtual and experimental 2DE coupled with ESI LC-MS/MS was introduced to obtain better representation of the information about human proteome. The proteins from HEPG2 cells and human blood plasma were run by 2DE. After staining and protein spot identification by MALDI-TOF MS, the protein maps were generated. The experimental physicochemical parameters (pI/Mw) of the proteoforms further detected by ESI LC-MS/MS in these spots were obtained. Next, the theoretical pI and Mw of identified proteins were calculated using program Compute pI/Mw (http://web.expasy.org/compute_pi/pi_tool-doc.html). Accordingly, the relationship between theoretical and experimental parameters was analyzed, and the correlation plots were built. Additionally, virtual/experimental information about different protein species/proteoforms from the same genes was extracted. As it was revealed from the plots, the major proteoforms detected in HepG2 cell line have pI/Mw parameters similar to theoretical values. In opposite, the minor protein species have mainly very different from theoretical pI and Mw parameters. A similar situation was observed in plasma in much higher degree. It means that minor protein species are heavily modified in cell and even more in plasma proteome.

  11. Virtual cancer image data warehouse.

    PubMed

    Oyama, H; Wakao, F; Mishina, T; Lu, Y; Honjo, A

    1997-01-01

    We previously developed a system with which we have created more than 100 virtual cancer images from CT or MR data of individual patients with cancer (Cancer Edutainment Virtual Reality Theater: CEVRT). These images can be used to help explain procedures, findings, etc. to the patient, to obtain informed consent, to simulate surgery, and to estimate cancer invasion to surrounding organs. We recently developed a web-based object-oriented database both to access these cancer images and to register medical images at international research sites via the Internet. In this report, we introduce an international medical VR data warehouse created using an object-oriented database.

  12. Virtual agents in a simulated virtual training environment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Achorn, Brett; Badler, Norman L.

    1993-01-01

    A drawback to live-action training simulations is the need to gather a large group of participants in order to train a few individuals. One solution to this difficulty is the use of computer-controlled agents in a virtual training environment. This allows a human participant to be replaced by a virtual, or simulated, agent when only limited responses are needed. Each agent possesses a specified set of behaviors and is capable of limited autonomous action in response to its environment or the direction of a human trainee. The paper describes these agents in the context of a simulated hostage rescue training session, involving two human rescuers assisted by three virtual (computer-controlled) agents and opposed by three other virtual agents.

  13. Applied virtual reality at the Research Triangle Institute

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Montoya, R. Jorge

    1994-01-01

    Virtual Reality (VR) is a way for humans to use computers in visualizing, manipulating and interacting with large geometric data bases. This paper describes a VR infrastructure and its application to marketing, modeling, architectural walk through, and training problems. VR integration techniques used in these applications are based on a uniform approach which promotes portability and reusability of developed modules. For each problem, a 3D object data base is created using data captured by hand or electronically. The object's realism is enhanced through either procedural or photo textures. The virtual environment is created and populated with the data base using software tools which also support interactions with and immersivity in the environment. These capabilities are augmented by other sensory channels such as voice recognition, 3D sound, and tracking. Four applications are presented: a virtual furniture showroom, virtual reality models of the North Carolina Global TransPark, a walk through the Dresden Fraunenkirche, and the maintenance training simulator for the National Guard.

  14. Virtual reality systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, David W.

    1992-01-01

    Virtual realities are a type of human-computer interface (HCI) and as such may be understood from a historical perspective. In the earliest era, the computer was a very simple, straightforward machine. Interaction was human manipulation of an inanimate object, little more than the provision of an explicit instruction set to be carried out without deviation. In short, control resided with the user. In the second era of HCI, some level of intelligence and control was imparted to the system to enable a dialogue with the user. Simple context sensitive help systems are early examples, while more sophisticated expert system designs typify this era. Control was shared more equally. In this, the third era of the HCI, the constructed system emulates a particular environment, constructed with rules and knowledge about 'reality'. Control is, in part, outside the realm of the human-computer dialogue. Virtual reality systems are discussed.

  15. Alleviating travel anxiety through virtual reality and narrated video technology.

    PubMed

    Ahn, J C; Lee, O

    2013-01-01

    This study presents an empirical evidence of benefit of narrative video clips in embedded virtual reality websites of hotels for relieving travel anxiety. Even though it was proven that virtual reality functions do provide some relief in travel anxiety, a stronger virtual reality website can be built when narrative video clips that show video clips with narration about important aspects of the hotel. We posit that these important aspects are 1. Escape route and 2. Surrounding neighborhood information, which are derived from the existing research on anxiety disorder as well as travel anxiety. Thus we created a video clip that showed and narrated about the escape route from the hotel room, another video clip that showed and narrated about surrounding neighborhood. We then conducted experiments with this enhanced virtual reality website of a hotel by having human subjects play with the website and fill out a questionnaire. The result confirms our hypothesis that there is a statistically significant relationship between the degree of travel anxiety and psychological relief caused by the use of embedded virtual reality functions with narrative video clips of a hotel website (Tab. 2, Fig. 3, Ref. 26).

  16. Virtual Jupiter - Real Learning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ruzhitskaya, Lanika; Speck, A.; Laffey, J.

    2010-01-01

    How many earthlings went to visit Jupiter? None. How many students visited virtual Jupiter to fulfill their introductory astronomy courses’ requirements? Within next six months over 100 students from University of Missouri will get a chance to explore the planet and its Galilean Moons using a 3D virtual environment created especially for them to learn Kepler's and Newton's laws, eclipses, parallax, and other concepts in astronomy. The virtual world of Jupiter system is a unique 3D environment that allows students to learn course material - physical laws and concepts in astronomy - while engaging them into exploration of the Jupiter's system, encouraging their imagination, curiosity, and motivation. The virtual learning environment let students to work individually or collaborate with their teammates. The 3D world is also a great opportunity for research in astronomy education to investigate impact of social interaction, gaming features, and use of manipulatives offered by a learning tool on students’ motivation and learning outcomes. Use of 3D environment is also a valuable source for exploration of how the learners’ spatial awareness can be enhanced by working in 3-dimensional environment.

  17. Ergonomic aspects of a virtual environment.

    PubMed

    Ahasan, M R; Väyrynen, S

    1999-01-01

    A virtual environment is an interactive graphic system mediated through computer technology that allows a certain level of reality or a sense of presence to access virtual information. To create reality in a virtual environment, ergonomics issues are explored in this paper, aiming to develop the design of presentation formats with related information, that is possible to attain and to maintain user-friendly application. PMID:10602643

  18. The virtual clinical campus.

    PubMed

    Friedman, C P

    1996-06-01

    The increased use of community sites for the clinical training of medical students creates many challenges for educators. Among them is the need to provide students in community settings with access to the same range of educational resources-the medical literature, student colleagues, feedback, and faculty-that are customarily available at academic medical centers. One way to make this access possible is to use information technology to create a "virtual clinical campus," which would allow students to enjoy the best of both worlds: the immersion in primary care offered by the community-based setting and the knowledge-rich resources of the academic medical center, including the all-important library. With a virtual campus in place, students would be able to access most library resources, interact with their peers, ensure that they were meeting the goals of their community rotations, and participate with their colleagues in didactic sessions without having to travel. The virtual campus is technologically feasible and economically within reach. It is possible that the movement of clinical training into the community will make it imperative for all medical students to own their own computers and for medical centers to provide the infrastructure that would enable community sites to have access to a range of educational resources.

  19. Intelligent virtual interfaces for telerobotics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grinstein, Georges G.; Maybury, Mark T.; Mitchell, Richard B.

    1992-11-01

    One promise of telerobotics is the ability to interact in environments that are distant (e.g., deep sea or deep space), dangerous (e.g., nuclear, chemical, or biological environments), or inaccessible by humans for political or legal reasons. A key component to such interactions are sophisticated human-computer interfaces that can replicate sufficient information about a local environment to permit remote navigation and manipulation. This environment replication can, in part, be provided by technologies such as virtual reality. In addition, however, telerobotic interfaces may need to enhance human-machine interaction to assist users in task performance, for example, governing motion or manipulation controls to avoid obstacles or to restrict interaction with certain objects (e.g., avoiding contact with a live mine or a deep sea treasure). Thus, effective interactions within remote environments require intelligent virtual interfaces to telerobotic devices. In part to address this problem, MITRE is investigating virtual reality architectures that will enable enhanced interaction within virtual environments. Key components to intelligent virtual interfaces include spoken language processing, gesture recognition algorithms, and more generally, task recognition. In addition, these interfaces will eventually have to take into account properties of the user, the task, and discourse context to be more adaptive to the current situation at hand. While our work has not yet investigated the connection of virtual interfaces to external robotic devices, we have begun developing the key components for intelligent virtual interfaces for information and training systems.

  20. Teaching and Learning with Virtual Teams

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ferris, Sharmila, Ed.; Godar, Susan, Ed.

    2006-01-01

    The growth of e-learning and distance education today creates an increasingly pressing need for research and writing on the pedagogy of e-learning. Teams are, or should be, an integral component of e-learning. "Teaching and Learning with Virtual Teams" develops this concept by investigating many issues around teams in the virtual and hybrid…

  1. Visualizing Compound Rotations with Virtual Reality

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Flanders, Megan; Kavanagh, Richard C.

    2013-01-01

    Mental rotations are among the most difficult of all spatial tasks to perform, and even those with high levels of spatial ability can struggle to visualize the result of compound rotations. This pilot study investigates the use of the virtual reality-based Rotation Tool, created using the Virtual Reality Modeling Language (VRML) together with…

  2. A Virtual World with Real Results

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hughes, Katherine L.; Golann, Joanne Wang

    2008-01-01

    This article describes how students learn invaluable job-readiness and academic skills by setting up and running their own businesses in a virtual world. Virtual Enterprises (VE) International is a high school career and technical education (CTE) program that teaches students about business by having a class create and operate its own virtual…

  3. Assessing the synergy between cholinomimetics and memantine as augmentation therapy in cognitive impairment in schizophrenia. A virtual human patient trial using quantitative systems pharmacology

    PubMed Central

    Geerts, Hugo; Roberts, Patrick; Spiros, Athan

    2015-01-01

    While many drug discovery research programs aim to develop highly selective clinical candidates, their clinical success is limited because of the complex non-linear interactions of human brain neuronal circuits. Therefore, a rational approach for identifying appropriate synergistic multipharmacology and validating optimal target combinations is desperately needed. A mechanism-based Quantitative Systems Pharmacology (QSP) computer-based modeling platform that combines biophysically realistic preclinical neurophysiology and neuropharmacology with clinical information is a possible solution. This paper reports the application of such a model for Cognitive Impairment In Schizophrenia (CIAS), where the cholinomimetics galantamine and donepezil are combined with memantine and with different antipsychotics and smoking in a virtual human patient experiment. The results suggest that cholinomimetics added to antipsychotics have a modest effect on cognition in CIAS in non-smoking patients with haloperidol and risperidone and to a lesser extent with olanzapine and aripiprazole. Smoking reduces the effect of cholinomimetics with aripiprazole and olanzapine, but enhances the effect in haloperidol and risperidone. Adding memantine to antipsychotics improves cognition except with quetiapine, an effect enhanced with smoking. Combining cholinomimetics, antipsychotics and memantine in general shows an additive effect, except for a negative interaction with aripiprazole and quetiapine and a synergistic effect with olanzapine and haloperidol in non-smokers and haloperidol in smokers. The complex interaction of cholinomimetics with memantine, antipsychotics and smoking can be quantitatively studied using mechanism-based advanced computer modeling. QSP modeling of virtual human patients can possibly generate useful insights on the non-linear interactions of multipharmacology drugs and support complex CNS R&D projects in cognition in search of synergistic polypharmacy. PMID:26441655

  4. Assessing the synergy between cholinomimetics and memantine as augmentation therapy in cognitive impairment in schizophrenia. A virtual human patient trial using quantitative systems pharmacology.

    PubMed

    Geerts, Hugo; Roberts, Patrick; Spiros, Athan

    2015-01-01

    While many drug discovery research programs aim to develop highly selective clinical candidates, their clinical success is limited because of the complex non-linear interactions of human brain neuronal circuits. Therefore, a rational approach for identifying appropriate synergistic multipharmacology and validating optimal target combinations is desperately needed. A mechanism-based Quantitative Systems Pharmacology (QSP) computer-based modeling platform that combines biophysically realistic preclinical neurophysiology and neuropharmacology with clinical information is a possible solution. This paper reports the application of such a model for Cognitive Impairment In Schizophrenia (CIAS), where the cholinomimetics galantamine and donepezil are combined with memantine and with different antipsychotics and smoking in a virtual human patient experiment. The results suggest that cholinomimetics added to antipsychotics have a modest effect on cognition in CIAS in non-smoking patients with haloperidol and risperidone and to a lesser extent with olanzapine and aripiprazole. Smoking reduces the effect of cholinomimetics with aripiprazole and olanzapine, but enhances the effect in haloperidol and risperidone. Adding memantine to antipsychotics improves cognition except with quetiapine, an effect enhanced with smoking. Combining cholinomimetics, antipsychotics and memantine in general shows an additive effect, except for a negative interaction with aripiprazole and quetiapine and a synergistic effect with olanzapine and haloperidol in non-smokers and haloperidol in smokers. The complex interaction of cholinomimetics with memantine, antipsychotics and smoking can be quantitatively studied using mechanism-based advanced computer modeling. QSP modeling of virtual human patients can possibly generate useful insights on the non-linear interactions of multipharmacology drugs and support complex CNS R&D projects in cognition in search of synergistic polypharmacy.

  5. Assessing the synergy between cholinomimetics and memantine as augmentation therapy in cognitive impairment in schizophrenia. A virtual human patient trial using quantitative systems pharmacology.

    PubMed

    Geerts, Hugo; Roberts, Patrick; Spiros, Athan

    2015-01-01

    While many drug discovery research programs aim to develop highly selective clinical candidates, their clinical success is limited because of the complex non-linear interactions of human brain neuronal circuits. Therefore, a rational approach for identifying appropriate synergistic multipharmacology and validating optimal target combinations is desperately needed. A mechanism-based Quantitative Systems Pharmacology (QSP) computer-based modeling platform that combines biophysically realistic preclinical neurophysiology and neuropharmacology with clinical information is a possible solution. This paper reports the application of such a model for Cognitive Impairment In Schizophrenia (CIAS), where the cholinomimetics galantamine and donepezil are combined with memantine and with different antipsychotics and smoking in a virtual human patient experiment. The results suggest that cholinomimetics added to antipsychotics have a modest effect on cognition in CIAS in non-smoking patients with haloperidol and risperidone and to a lesser extent with olanzapine and aripiprazole. Smoking reduces the effect of cholinomimetics with aripiprazole and olanzapine, but enhances the effect in haloperidol and risperidone. Adding memantine to antipsychotics improves cognition except with quetiapine, an effect enhanced with smoking. Combining cholinomimetics, antipsychotics and memantine in general shows an additive effect, except for a negative interaction with aripiprazole and quetiapine and a synergistic effect with olanzapine and haloperidol in non-smokers and haloperidol in smokers. The complex interaction of cholinomimetics with memantine, antipsychotics and smoking can be quantitatively studied using mechanism-based advanced computer modeling. QSP modeling of virtual human patients can possibly generate useful insights on the non-linear interactions of multipharmacology drugs and support complex CNS R&D projects in cognition in search of synergistic polypharmacy. PMID:26441655

  6. The effect of the configuration and the interior design of a virtual weightless space station on human spatial orientation.

    PubMed

    Aoki, Hirofumi; Ohno, Ryuzo; Yamaguchi, Takao

    2005-01-01

    In a virtual weightless environment, subjects' orientation skills were studied to examine what kind of cognitive errors people make when they moved through the interior space of virtual space stations and what kind of visual information effectively decreases those errors. Subjects wearing a head-mounted display moved from one end to the other end in space station-like routes constructed of rectangular and cubical modules, and did Pointing and Modeling tasks. In Experiment 1, configurations of the routes were changed with such variables as the number of bends, the number of embedding planes, and the number of planes with respect to the body posture. The results indicated that spatial orientation ability was relevant to the variables and that orientational errors were explained by two causes. One of these was that the place, the direction, and the sequence of turns were incorrect. The other was that subjects did not recognize the rotation of the frame of reference, especially when they turned in pitch direction rather than in yaw. In Experiment 2, the effect of the interior design was examined by testing three design settings. Wall colors that showed the allocentric frame of reference and the different interior design of vertical and horizontal modules were effective; however, there was a limit to the effectiveness in complicated configurations.

  7. A Virtual Aluminum Reduction Cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Hongliang; Zhou, Chenn Q.; Wu, Bing; Li, Jie

    2013-11-01

    The most important component in the aluminum industry is the aluminum reduction cell; it has received considerable interests and resources to conduct research to improve its productivity and energy efficiency. The current study focused on the integration of numerical simulation data and virtual reality technology to create a scientifically and practically realistic virtual aluminum reduction cell by presenting complex cell structures and physical-chemical phenomena. The multiphysical field simulation models were first built and solved in ANSYS software (ANSYS Inc., Canonsburg, PA, USA). Then, the methodology of combining the simulation results with virtual reality was introduced, and a virtual aluminum reduction cell was created. The demonstration showed that a computer-based world could be created in which people who are not analysis experts can see the detailed cell structure in a context that they can understand easily. With the application of the virtual aluminum reduction cell, even people who are familiar with aluminum reduction cell operations can gain insights that make it possible to understand the root causes of observed problems and plan design changes in much less time.

  8. Marshall Engineers Use Virtual Reality

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1993-01-01

    Virtual Reality (VR) can provide cost effective methods to design and evaluate components and systems for maintenance and refurbishment operations. Marshall Spce Flight Center (MSFC) is begirning to utilize VR for design analysis in the X-34 experimental reusable space vehicle. Analysts at MSFC's Computer Applications and Virtual Environments (CAVE) used Head Mounted Displays (HMD) (pictured), spatial trackers and gesture inputs as a means to animate or inhabit a properly sized virtual human model. These models are used in a VR scenario as a way to determine functionality of space and maintenance requirements for the virtual X-34. The primary functions of the virtual X-34 mockup is to support operations development and design analysis for engine removal, the engine compartment and the aft fuselage. This capability provides general visualization support to engineers and designers at MSFC and to the System Design Freeze Review at Orbital Sciences Corporation (OSC).

  9. Virtual Environments in Scientific Visualization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bryson, Steve; Cooper, D. M.

    1994-01-01

    Virtual environment technology is a new way of approaching the interface between computers and humans. Emphasizing display and user control that conforms to the user's natural ways of perceiving and thinking about space, virtual environment technologies enhance the ability to perceive and interact with computer generated graphic information. This enhancement potentially has a major effect on the field of scientific visualization. Current examples of this technology include the Virtual Windtunnel being developed at NASA Ames Research Center. Other major institutions such as the National Center for Supercomputing Applications and SRI International are also exploring this technology. This talk will be describe several implementations of virtual environments for use in scientific visualization. Examples include the visualization of unsteady fluid flows (the virtual windtunnel), the visualization of geodesics in curved spacetime, surface manipulation, and examples developed at various laboratories.

  10. Giovanni Battista Morgagni: facial reconstruction by virtual anthropology.

    PubMed

    Gualdi-Russo, Emanuela; Zaccagni, Luciana; Russo, Valentina

    2015-06-01

    Multidisciplinary research was carried out on human skeletal remains to identify if they belonged to the famous pathologist Giovanni Battista Morgagni, who died at a very old age and was buried in a church in Padua. The purpose of this study was to analyze the skull, creating a virtual model necessary for facial reconstruction, so as to contribute to the identification of the skull. The skeletal remains were found buried in the Morgagni family grave. Based on preliminary anthropological evidence, that the skull might be ascribable to Giovanni Battista Morgagni, a digitized model of the skull was created and restored. From this, a virtual facial reconstruction was developed using an assumed relationship between the soft-tissues and the underlying skeletal structure. Finally, the anthropological profile and the face reconstruction were compared with historical documentation and the portrait of Morgagni by Pietro Danieletti, showing clear similarities. Virtual anthropological techniques create new perspectives for anthropological and medical studies and can be used successfully in the forensic sciences to make a positive identification, such as in this case, which has been examined by different experts with similar results.

  11. Virtually Out of This World!

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    Ames Research Center granted Reality Capture Technologies (RCT), Inc., a license to further develop NASA's Mars Map software platform. The company incorporated NASA#s innovation into software that uses the Virtual Plant Model (VPM)(TM) to structure, modify, and implement the construction sites of industrial facilities, as well as develop, validate, and train operators on procedures. The VPM orchestrates the exchange of information between engineering, production, and business transaction systems. This enables users to simulate, control, and optimize work processes while increasing the reliability of critical business decisions. Engineers can complete the construction process and test various aspects of it in virtual reality before building the actual structure. With virtual access to and simulation of the construction site, project personnel can manage, access control, and respond to changes on complex constructions more effectively. Engineers can also create operating procedures, training, and documentation. Virtual Plant Model(TM) is a trademark of Reality Capture Technologies, Inc.

  12. Virtualize Me!

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Waters, John K.

    2009-01-01

    John Abdelmalak, director of technology for the School District of the Chathams, was pretty sure it was time to jump on the virtualization bandwagon last year when he invited Dell to conduct a readiness assessment of his district's servers. When he saw just how little of their capacity was being used, he lost all doubt. Abdelmalak is one of many…

  13. Virtual Labs.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Russo, Ruth

    1997-01-01

    Discusses the potential of computers in teaching laboratories to spare the lives of animals; however, it is felt that in areas of physiology education, virtual labs are not as desirable a learning experience for advanced students as live animal labs. (Author/AIM)

  14. Virtual Reality.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Newby, Gregory B.

    1993-01-01

    Discusses the current state of the art in virtual reality (VR), its historical background, and future possibilities. Highlights include applications in medicine, art and entertainment, science, business, and telerobotics; and VR for information science, including graphical display of bibliographic data, libraries and books, and cyberspace.…

  15. Virtual Sensor Test Instrumentation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wang, Roy

    2011-01-01

    Virtual Sensor Test Instrumentation is based on the concept of smart sensor technology for testing with intelligence needed to perform sell-diagnosis of health, and to participate in a hierarchy of health determination at sensor, process, and system levels. A virtual sensor test instrumentation consists of five elements: (1) a common sensor interface, (2) microprocessor, (3) wireless interface, (4) signal conditioning and ADC/DAC (analog-to-digital conversion/ digital-to-analog conversion), and (5) onboard EEPROM (electrically erasable programmable read-only memory) for metadata storage and executable software to create powerful, scalable, reconfigurable, and reliable embedded and distributed test instruments. In order to maximize the efficient data conversion through the smart sensor node, plug-and-play functionality is required to interface with traditional sensors to enhance their identity and capabilities for data processing and communications. Virtual sensor test instrumentation can be accessible wirelessly via a Network Capable Application Processor (NCAP) or a Smart Transducer Interlace Module (STIM) that may be managed under real-time rule engines for mission-critical applications. The transducer senses the physical quantity being measured and converts it into an electrical signal. The signal is fed to an A/D converter, and is ready for use by the processor to execute functional transformation based on the sensor characteristics stored in a Transducer Electronic Data Sheet (TEDS). Virtual sensor test instrumentation is built upon an open-system architecture with standardized protocol modules/stacks to interface with industry standards and commonly used software. One major benefit for deploying the virtual sensor test instrumentation is the ability, through a plug-and-play common interface, to convert raw sensor data in either analog or digital form, to an IEEE 1451 standard-based smart sensor, which has instructions to program sensors for a wide variety of

  16. Virtual System Environments

    SciTech Connect

    Vallee, Geoffroy R; Naughton, III, Thomas J; Ong, Hong Hoe; Tikotekar, Anand A; Engelmann, Christian; Bland, Wesley B; Aderholdt, Ferrol; Scott, Stephen L

    2008-01-01

    Distributed and parallel systems are typically managed with "static" settings: the operating system (OS) and the runtime environment (RTE) are specified at a given time and cannot be changed to fit an application's needs. This means that every time application developers want to use their application on a new execution platform, the application has to be ported to this new environment, which may be expensive in terms of application modifications and developer time. However, the science resides in the applications and not in the OS or the RTE. Therefore, it should be beneficial to adapt the OS and the RTE to the application instead of adapting the applications to the OS and the RTE. This document presents the concept of Virtual System Environments (VSE), which enables application developers to specify and create a virtual environment that properly fits their application's needs. For that four challenges have to be addressed: (i) definition of the VSE itself by the application developers, (ii) deployment of the VSE, (iii) system administration for the platform, and (iv) protection of the platform from the running VSE. We therefore present an integrated tool for the definition and deployment of VSEs on top of traditional and virtual (i.e., using system-level virtualization) execution platforms. This tool provides the capability to choose the degree of delegation for system administration tasks and the degree of protection from the application (e.g., using virtual machines). To summarize, the VSE concept enables the customization of the OS/RTE used for the execution of application by users without compromising local system administration rules and execution platform protection constraints.

  17. Identification of Novel Human Dipeptidyl Peptidase-IV Inhibitors of Natural Origin (Part I): Virtual Screening and Activity Assays

    PubMed Central

    Guasch, Laura; Ojeda, Maria José; González-Abuín, Noemí; Sala, Esther; Cereto-Massagué, Adrià; Mulero, Miquel; Valls, Cristina; Pinent, Montserrat; Ardévol, Anna; Garcia-Vallvé, Santiago; Pujadas, Gerard

    2012-01-01

    Background There has been great interest in determining whether natural products show biological activity toward protein targets of pharmacological relevance. One target of particular interest is DPP-IV whose most important substrates are incretins that, among other beneficial effects, stimulates insulin biosynthesis and secretion. Incretins have very short half-lives because of their rapid degradation by DPP-IV and, therefore, inhibiting this enzyme improves glucose homeostasis. As a result, DPP-IV inhibitors are of considerable interest to the pharmaceutical industry. The main goals of this study were (a) to develop a virtual screening process to identify potential DPP-IV inhibitors of natural origin; (b) to evaluate the reliability of our virtual-screening protocol by experimentally testing the in vitro activity of selected natural-product hits; and (c) to use the most active hit for predicting derivatives with higher binding affinities for the DPP-IV binding site. Methodology/Principal Findings We predicted that 446 out of the 89,165 molecules present in the natural products subset of the ZINC database would inhibit DPP-IV with good ADMET properties. Notably, when these 446 molecules were merged with 2,342 known DPP-IV inhibitors and the resulting set was classified into 50 clusters according to chemical similarity, there were 12 clusters that contained only natural products for which no DPP-IV inhibitory activity has been previously reported. Nine molecules from 7 of these 12 clusters were then selected for in vitro activity testing and 7 out of the 9 molecules were shown to inhibit DPP-IV (where the remaining two molecules could not be solubilized, preventing the evaluation of their DPP-IV inhibitory activity). Then, the hit with the highest activity was used as a lead compound in the prediction of more potent derivatives. Conclusions/Significance We have demonstrated that our virtual-screening protocol was successful in identifying novel lead compounds for

  18. Virtual Doppelgangers: Psychological Effects of Avatars Who Ignore Their Owners

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bailenson, Jeremy N.; Segovia, Kathryn Y.

    For a decade, the Virtual Human Interaction Lab has been creating doppelgangers, virtual versions of the self, for research purposes. This chapter considers how humans may be affected by confrontation with virtual versions of themselves, on the basis of well-established psychological theories, including social cognitive theory (social learning theory), media richness theory (information richness theory), and self-perception theory. Experiments carried out in the Lab, and informed by these theories, have explored such notable topics as health communication, marketing, and false memories. The findings of one series of studies suggest that doppelgangerscan show the rewards of exercise and proper eating habits, changing people's health-related behavior as a result. Other studies showed that doppelgangers are powerful marketing agents and can be used in advertisements to create favorable brand impressions among consumers. Other research documented that children have difficulty in distinguishing between an actual memory elicited by a physical world event and a false memory elicited by mental image or doppelganger.

  19. Real-time Human Pose and Shape Estimation for Virtual Try-On Using a Single Commodity Depth Camera.

    PubMed

    Ye, Mao; Wang, Huamin; Deng, Nianchen; Yang, Xubo; Yang, Ruigang

    2014-04-01

    We present a system that allows the user to virtually try on new clothes. It uses a single commodity depth camera to capture the user in 3D. Both the pose and the shape of the user are estimated with a novel real-time template-based approach that performs tracking and shape adaptation jointly. The result is then used to drive realistic cloth simulation, in which the synthesized clothes are overlayed on the input image. The main challenge is to handle missing data and pose ambiguities due to the monocular setup, which captures less than 50 percent of the full body. Our solution is to incorporate automatic shape adaptation and novel constraints in pose tracking. The effectiveness of our system is demonstrated with a number of examples. PMID:24650982

  20. Dynamic concision for three-dimensional reconstruction of human organ built with virtual reality modelling language (VRML).

    PubMed

    Yu, Zheng-yang; Zheng, Shu-sen; Chen, Lei-ting; He, Xiao-qian; Wang, Jian-jun

    2005-07-01

    This research studies the process of 3D reconstruction and dynamic concision based on 2D medical digital images using virtual reality modelling language (VRML) and JavaScript language, with a focus on how to realize the dynamic concision of 3D medical model with script node and sensor node in VRML. The 3D reconstruction and concision of body internal organs can be built with such high quality that they are better than those obtained from the traditional methods. With the function of dynamic concision, the VRML browser can offer better windows for man-computer interaction in real-time environment than ever before. 3D reconstruction and dynamic concision with VRML can be used to meet the requirement for the medical observation of 3D reconstruction and have a promising prospect in the fields of medical imaging.

  1. A New Dynamic 3D Virtual Methodology for Teaching the Mechanics of Atrial Septation as Seen in the Human Heart

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schleich, Jean-Marc; Dillenseger, Jean-Louis; Houyel, Lucile; Almange, Claude; Anderson, Robert H.

    2009-01-01

    Learning embryology remains difficult, since it requires understanding of many complex phenomena. The temporal evolution of developmental events has classically been illustrated using cartoons, which create difficulty in linking spatial and temporal aspects, such correlation being the keystone of descriptive embryology. We synthesized the…

  2. Knowledge-Driven Design of Virtual Patient Simulations

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vergara, Victor; Caudell, Thomas; Goldsmith, Timothy; Panaiotis; Alverson, Dale

    2009-01-01

    Virtual worlds provide unique opportunities for instructors to promote, study, and evaluate student learning and comprehension. In this article, Victor Vergara, Thomas Caudell, Timothy Goldsmith, Panaiotis, and Dale Alverson explore the advantages of using virtual reality environments to create simulations for medical students. Virtual simulations…

  3. A Virtual Education: Guidelines for Using Games Technology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schofield, Damian

    2014-01-01

    Advanced three-dimensional virtual environment technology, similar to that used by the film and computer games industry, can allow educational developers to rapidly create realistic online vir-tual environments. This technology has been used to generate a range of interactive Virtual Real-ity (VR) learning environments across a spectrum of…

  4. Virtual anthropology.

    PubMed

    Weber, Gerhard W

    2015-02-01

    Comparative morphology, dealing with the diversity of form and shape, and functional morphology, the study of the relationship between the structure and the function of an organism's parts, are both important subdisciplines in biological research. Virtual anthropology (VA) contributes to comparative morphology by taking advantage of technological innovations, and it also offers new opportunities for functional analyses. It exploits digital technologies and pools experts from different domains such as anthropology, primatology, medicine, paleontology, mathematics, statistics, computer science, and engineering. VA as a technical term was coined in the late 1990s from the perspective of anthropologists with the intent of being mostly applied to biological questions concerning recent and fossil hominoids. More generally, however, there are advanced methods to study shape and size or to manipulate data digitally suitable for application to all kinds of primates, mammals, other vertebrates, and invertebrates or to issues regarding plants, tools, or other objects. In this sense, we could also call the field "virtual morphology." The approach yields permanently available virtual copies of specimens and data that comprehensively quantify geometry, including previously neglected anatomical regions. It applies advanced statistical methods, supports the reconstruction of specimens based on reproducible manipulations, and promotes the acquisition of larger samples by data sharing via electronic archives. Finally, it can help identify new, hidden traits, which is particularly important in paleoanthropology, where the scarcity of material demands extracting information from fragmentary remains. This contribution presents a current view of the six main work steps of VA: digitize, expose, compare, reconstruct, materialize, and share. The VA machinery has also been successfully used in biomechanical studies which simulate the stress and strains appearing in structures. Although

  5. Virtual impactor

    DOEpatents

    Yeh, Hsu-Chi; Chen, Bean T.; Cheng, Yung-Sung; Newton, George J.

    1988-08-30

    A virtual impactor having improved efficiency and low wall losses in which a core of clean air is inserted into the aerosol flow while aerosol flow is maintained adjacent inner wall surfaces of the focusing portion of the impactor. The flow rate of the core and the length of the throat of the impactor's collection probe, as well as the dimensional relationships of other components of the impactor adjacent the separation region of the impactor, are selected to optimize separation efficiency.

  6. Virtual anthropology.

    PubMed

    Weber, Gerhard W

    2015-02-01

    Comparative morphology, dealing with the diversity of form and shape, and functional morphology, the study of the relationship between the structure and the function of an organism's parts, are both important subdisciplines in biological research. Virtual anthropology (VA) contributes to comparative morphology by taking advantage of technological innovations, and it also offers new opportunities for functional analyses. It exploits digital technologies and pools experts from different domains such as anthropology, primatology, medicine, paleontology, mathematics, statistics, computer science, and engineering. VA as a technical term was coined in the late 1990s from the perspective of anthropologists with the intent of being mostly applied to biological questions concerning recent and fossil hominoids. More generally, however, there are advanced methods to study shape and size or to manipulate data digitally suitable for application to all kinds of primates, mammals, other vertebrates, and invertebrates or to issues regarding plants, tools, or other objects. In this sense, we could also call the field "virtual morphology." The approach yields permanently available virtual copies of specimens and data that comprehensively quantify geometry, including previously neglected anatomical regions. It applies advanced statistical methods, supports the reconstruction of specimens based on reproducible manipulations, and promotes the acquisition of larger samples by data sharing via electronic archives. Finally, it can help identify new, hidden traits, which is particularly important in paleoanthropology, where the scarcity of material demands extracting information from fragmentary remains. This contribution presents a current view of the six main work steps of VA: digitize, expose, compare, reconstruct, materialize, and share. The VA machinery has also been successfully used in biomechanical studies which simulate the stress and strains appearing in structures. Although

  7. Does constraining field of view prevent extraction of geometric cues for humans during virtual-environment reorientation?

    PubMed

    Sturz, Bradley R; Kilday, Zachary A; Bodily, Kent D

    2013-10-01

    Environment size has been shown to influence the reliance on local and global geometric cues during reorientation. Unless changes in environment size are produced by manipulating length and width proportionally, changes in environment size are confounded by the amount of the environment that is visible from a single vantage point. Yet, the influence of the amount of the environment that is visible from any single vantage point on the use of local and global geometric cues remains unknown. We manipulated the amount of an environment that was visually available to participants by manipulating field of view (FOV) in a virtual environment orientation task. Two groups of participants were trained in a trapezoid-shaped enclosure to find a location that was uniquely specified by both local and global geometric cues. One group (FOV 50°) had visually less of the environment available to them from any one perspective compared to another group (FOV 100°). Following training, we presented both groups with a control test along with three novel-shaped environments. Testing assessed the use of global geometry in isolation, in alignment with local geometry, or in conflict with local geometry. Results (confirmed by a follow-up experiment) indicated that constraining FOV prevented extraction of geometric properties and relationships of space and resulted in an inability to use either global or local geometric cues for reorientation.

  8. Applying tattoo dye as a third-harmonic generation contrast agent for in vivo optical virtual biopsy of human skin.

    PubMed

    Tsai, Ming-Rung; Lin, Chen-Yu; Liao, Yi-Hua; Sun, Chi-Kuang

    2013-02-01

    Third-harmonic generation (THG) microscopy has been reported to provide intrinsic contrast in elastic fibers, cytoplasmic membrane, nucleus, actin filaments, lipid bodies, hemoglobin, and melanin in human skin. For advanced molecular imaging, exogenous contrast agents are developed for a higher structural or molecular specificity. We demonstrate the potential of the commonly adopted tattoo dye as a THG contrast agent for in vivo optical biopsy of human skin. Spectroscopy and microscopy experiments were performed on cultured cells with tattoo dyes, in tattooed mouse skin, and in tattooed human skin to demonstrate the THG enhancement effect. Compared with other absorbing dyes or nanoparticles used as exogenous THG contrast agents, tattoo dyes are widely adopted in human skin so that future clinical biocompatibility evaluation is relatively achievable. Combined with the demonstrated THG enhancement effect, tattoo dyes show their promise for future clinical imaging applications. PMID:23389681

  9. Applying tattoo dye as a third-harmonic generation contrast agent for in vivo optical virtual biopsy of human skin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsai, Ming-Rung; Lin, Chen-Yu; Liao, Yi-Hua; Sun, Chi-Kuang

    2013-02-01

    Third-harmonic generation (THG) microscopy has been reported to provide intrinsic contrast in elastic fibers, cytoplasmic membrane, nucleus, actin filaments, lipid bodies, hemoglobin, and melanin in human skin. For advanced molecular imaging, exogenous contrast agents are developed for a higher structural or molecular specificity. We demonstrate the potential of the commonly adopted tattoo dye as a THG contrast agent for in vivo optical biopsy of human skin. Spectroscopy and microscopy experiments were performed on cultured cells with tattoo dyes, in tattooed mouse skin, and in tattooed human skin to demonstrate the THG enhancement effect. Compared with other absorbing dyes or nanoparticles used as exogenous THG contrast agents, tattoo dyes are widely adopted in human skin so that future clinical biocompatibility evaluation is relatively achievable. Combined with the demonstrated THG enhancement effect, tattoo dyes show their promise for future clinical imaging applications.

  10. What makes virtual agents believable?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bogdanovych, Anton; Trescak, Tomas; Simoff, Simeon

    2016-01-01

    In this paper we investigate the concept of believability and make an attempt to isolate individual characteristics (features) that contribute to making virtual characters believable. As the result of this investigation we have produced a formalisation of believability and based on this formalisation built a computational framework focused on simulation of believable virtual agents that possess the identified features. In order to test whether the identified features are, in fact, responsible for agents being perceived as more believable, we have conducted a user study. In this study we tested user reactions towards the virtual characters that were created for a simulation of aboriginal inhabitants of a particular area of Sydney, Australia in 1770 A.D. The participants of our user study were exposed to short simulated scenes, in which virtual agents performed some behaviour in two different ways (while possessing a certain aspect of believability vs. not possessing it). The results of the study indicate that virtual agents that appear resource bounded, are aware of their environment, own interaction capabilities and their state in the world, agents that can adapt to changes in the environment and exist in correct social context are those that are being perceived as more believable. Further in the paper we discuss these and other believability features and provide a quantitative analysis of the level of contribution for each such feature to the overall perceived believability of a virtual agent.

  11. Virtual Reality Simulation of the International Space Welding Experiment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Phillips, James A.

    1996-01-01

    Virtual Reality (VR) is a set of breakthrough technologies that allow a human being to enter and fully experience a 3-dimensional, computer simulated environment. A true virtual reality experience meets three criteria: (1) It involves 3-dimensional computer graphics; (2) It includes real-time feedback and response to user actions; and (3) It must provide a sense of immersion. Good examples of a virtual reality simulator are the flight simulators used by all branches of the military to train pilots for combat in high performance jet fighters. The fidelity of such simulators is extremely high -- but so is the price tag, typically millions of dollars. Virtual reality teaching and training methods are manifestly effective, and we have therefore implemented a VR trainer for the International Space Welding Experiment. My role in the development of the ISWE trainer consisted of the following: (1) created texture-mapped models of the ISWE's rotating sample drum, technology block, tool stowage assembly, sliding foot restraint, and control panel; (2) developed C code for control panel button selection and rotation of the sample drum; (3) In collaboration with Tim Clark (Antares Virtual Reality Systems), developed a serial interface box for the PC and the SGI Indigo so that external control devices, similar to ones actually used on the ISWE, could be used to control virtual objects in the ISWE simulation; (4) In collaboration with Peter Wang (SFFP) and Mark Blasingame (Boeing), established the interference characteristics of the VIM 1000 head-mounted-display and tested software filters to correct the problem; (5) In collaboration with Peter Wang and Mark Blasingame, established software and procedures for interfacing the VPL DataGlove and the Polhemus 6DOF position sensors to the SGI Indigo serial ports. The majority of the ISWE modeling effort was conducted on a PC-based VR Workstation, described below.

  12. Virtual Reality of Sound Generated from Vibrating Structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    KIM, S. J.; SONG, J. Y.

    2002-11-01

    The advancement of virtual reality (VR) technology in cyberspace is amazing, but its development is mainly concentrated on the visual part. In this paper, the development of VR technology to produce sound based on the exact physics is studied. Our main concern is on the sound generated from vibrating structures. This may be useful, for example, in apprehending sound field characteristics of an aircraft cabin in design stage. To calculate sound pressure from curved surface of a structure, a new integration scheme is developed in boundary element method. Several example problems are solved to confirm our integration scheme. The pressure distributions on a uniformly driven sphere and cylinders are computed and compared with analytic solutions, and radiation efficiency of a vibrating plate under one-dimensional flow is also calculated. Also, to realize sound through computer simulation, two concepts, "structure-oriented analysis" and "human-oriented analysis", are proposed. Using these concepts, virtual sound field of an aircraft cabin is created.

  13. A strategic map for high-impact virtual experience design

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Faste, Haakon; Bergamasco, Massimo

    2009-02-01

    We have employed methodologies of human centered design to inspire and guide the engineering of a definitive low-cost aesthetic multimodal experience intended to stimulate cultural growth. Using a combination of design research, trend analysis and the programming of immersive virtual 3D worlds, over 250 innovative concepts have been brainstormed, prototyped, evaluated and refined. These concepts have been used to create a strategic map for the development of highimpact virtual art experiences, the most promising of which have been incorporated into a multimodal environment programmed in the online interactive 3D platform XVR. A group of test users have evaluated the experience as it has evolved, using a multimodal interface with stereo vision, 3D audio and haptic feedback. This paper discusses the process, content, results, and impact on our engineering laboratory that this research has produced.

  14. Virtual screening using MTiOpenScreen and PyRx 0,8 revealed ZINC95486216 as a human acetylcholinesterase inhibitor candidate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sulistyo Dwi K., P.; Arindra Trisna, W.; Vindri Catur P., W.; Wijayanti, Erna; Ichsan, Mochammad

    2016-03-01

    One of the efforts to prevent Alzheimer's disease becomes more severe is by inhibiting the activity of Human acetylcholinesterase enzyme (PDB ID: 4BDT). In this study, virtual screening againts 885 natural compounds from AfroDB has been done using MTIOpenScreen and this step has been successful in identifying ZINC15121024 (-12,9) and ZINC95486216 (-12,7) as the top rank compounds. This data then strengthened by the results of second docking step using Autodock software that has been integrated in PyRx 0.8 software. From this stage, ZINC95486216 (-11,3 kcal/mol) is a compound with the most negative binding affinity compared with four Alzheimer's drugs that have been officially used to date including Rivastigmine (-6,3 Kcal/mol), Donepenzil (-7.9 kcal/mol), Galantamine (-8.4 kcal/mol), and Huprine W (-7.3 kcal/mol). In addition, based on the results of the 2D and 3D visualization using LigPlus and PyMol softwares, respectively, known that the five compounds above are equally capable of binding to several amino acids (Trp 286, Phe295, and Tyr341) located in the active site of Human Acetylcholinesterase enzyme.

  15. Ambient Intelligence in Multimeda and Virtual Reality Environments for the rehabilitation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Benko, Attila; Cecilia, Sik Lanyi

    This chapter presents a general overview about the use of multimedia and virtual reality in rehabilitation and assistive and preventive healthcare. This chapter deals with multimedia, virtual reality applications based AI intended for use by medical doctors, nurses, special teachers and further interested persons. It describes methods how multimedia and virtual reality is able to assist their work. These include the areas how multimedia and virtual reality can help the patients everyday life and their rehabilitation. In the second part of the chapter we present the Virtual Therapy Room (VTR) a realized application for aphasic patients that was created for practicing communication and expressing emotions in a group therapy setting. The VTR shows a room that contains a virtual therapist and four virtual patients (avatars). The avatars are utilizing their knowledge base in order to answer the questions of the user providing an AI environment for the rehabilitation. The user of the VTR is the aphasic patient who has to solve the exercises. The picture that is relevant for the actual task appears on the virtual blackboard. Patient answers questions of the virtual therapist. Questions are about pictures describing an activity or an object in different levels. Patient can ask an avatar for answer. If the avatar knows the answer the avatars emotion changes to happy instead of sad. The avatar expresses its emotions in different dimensions. Its behavior, face-mimic, voice-tone and response also changes. The emotion system can be described as a deterministic finite automaton where places are emotion-states and the transition function of the automaton is derived from the input-response reaction of an avatar. Natural language processing techniques were also implemented in order to establish highquality human-computer interface windows for each of the avatars. Aphasic patients are able to interact with avatars via these interfaces. At the end of the chapter we visualize the

  16. Virtual water flows and Water Balance Impacts of the U.S. Great Lakes Basin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ruddell, B. L.; Mayer, A. S.; Mubako, S. T.

    2014-12-01

    To assess the impacts of human water use and trade on water balances, we estimate virtual water flows for counties in the U.S. portion of the Great Lakes basin. This is a water-rich region, but one where ecohydrological 'hotspots' are created by water scarcity in certain locations (Mubako et al., 2012). Trade shifts water uses from one location to another, causing water scarcity in some locations but mitigating water scarcity in other locations. A database of water withdrawals was assembled to give point-wise withdrawals by location, source, and use category (commercial, thermoelectric power, industrial, agricultural, mining). Point-wise consumptive use is aggregated to the county level, giving direct, virtual water exports by county. A county-level trade database provides import and export data for the various use categories. We link the annual virtual water exported from a county for a given use category to corresponding annual trade exports. Virtual water balances for each county by use category are calculated, and then compared with the renewable annual freshwater supply. Preliminary findings are that overall virtual water balances (imports - exports) are positive for almost all counties, because urban areas import goods and services that are more water intensive than the exported goods and services. However, for some agriculturally-intensive counties, the overall impact of virtual water trade on the water balance is close to zero, and the balance for agricultural sector virtual water trade is negative, reflecting a net impact of economic trade on the water balance in these locations. We also compare the virtual water balance to available water resources, using annual precipitation less evapotranspiration as a crude estimate of net renewable water availability. In some counties virtual water exports approach 30% of the available water resources, indicating the potential for water scarcity, especially from an aquatic ecosystem standpoint.

  17. Virtual Colonoscopy

    MedlinePlus

    ... Computerized Tomographic Colonography (CTC)) uses x rays and computers to produce two- and three-dimensional images of ... sections along the length of the colon. A computer program puts these images together to create a ...

  18. Virtual Vesta

    NASA Video Gallery

    This video shows the scientists' best guess to date of what the surface of the protoplanet Vesta might look like. It was created as part of an exercise for NASA's Dawn mission involving mission pla...

  19. Virtual impactor

    DOEpatents

    Yeh, H.C.; Chen, B.T.; Cheng, Y.S.; Newton, G.J.

    1988-08-30

    A virtual impactor is described having improved efficiency and low wall losses in which a core of clean air is inserted into the aerosol flow while aerosol flow is maintained adjacent to the inner wall surfaces of the focusing portion of the impactor. The flow rate of the core and the length of the throat of the impactor's collection probe, as well as the dimensional relationships of other components of the impactor adjacent the separation region of the impactor, are selected to optimize separation efficiency. 4 figs.

  20. Second Life, a 3-D Animated Virtual World: An Alternative Platform for (Art) Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Han, Hsiao-Cheng

    2011-01-01

    3-D animated virtual worlds are no longer only for gaming. With the advance of technology, animated virtual worlds not only are found on every computer, but also connect users with the internet. Today, virtual worlds are created not only by companies, but also through the collaboration of users. Online 3-D animated virtual worlds provide a new…

  1. Use of the Remote Access Virtual Environment Network (RAVEN) for coordinated IVA-EVA astronaut training and evaluation.

    PubMed

    Cater, J P; Huffman, S D

    1995-01-01

    This paper presents a unique virtual reality training and assessment tool developed under a NASA grant, "Research in Human Factors Aspects of Enhanced Virtual Environments for Extravehicular Activity (EVA) Training and Simulation." The Remote Access Virtual Environment Network (RAVEN) was created to train and evaluate the verbal, mental and physical coordination required between the intravehicular (IVA) astronaut operating the Remote Manipulator System (RMS) arm and the EVA astronaut standing in foot restraints on the end of the RMS. The RAVEN system currently allows the EVA astronaut to approach the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) under control of the IVA astronaut and grasp, remove, and replace the Wide Field Planetary Camera drawer from its location in the HST. Two viewpoints, one stereoscopic and one monoscopic, were created all linked by Ethernet, that provided the two trainees with the appropriate training environments.

  2. Managing virtual machines with Vac and Vcycle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McNab, A.; Love, P.; MacMahon, E.

    2015-12-01

    We compare the Vac and Vcycle virtual machine lifecycle managers and our experiences in providing production job execution services for ATLAS, CMS, LHCb, and the GridPP VO at sites in the UK, France and at CERN. In both the Vac and Vcycle systems, the virtual machines are created outside of the experiment's job submission and pilot framework. In the case of Vac, a daemon runs on each physical host which manages a pool of virtual machines on that host, and a peer-to-peer UDP protocol is used to achieve the desired target shares between experiments across the site. In the case of Vcycle, a daemon manages a pool of virtual machines on an Infrastructure-as-a-Service cloud system such as OpenStack, and has within itself enough information to create the types of virtual machines to achieve the desired target shares. Both systems allow unused shares for one experiment to temporarily taken up by other experiements with work to be done. The virtual machine lifecycle is managed with a minimum of information, gathered from the virtual machine creation mechanism (such as libvirt or OpenStack) and using the proposed Machine/Job Features API from WLCG. We demonstrate that the same virtual machine designs can be used to run production jobs on Vac and Vcycle/OpenStack sites for ATLAS, CMS, LHCb, and GridPP, and that these technologies allow sites to be operated in a reliable and robust way.

  3. A Spatial Cognitive Map and a Human-Like Memory Model Dedicated to Pedestrian Navigation in Virtual Urban Environments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, Romain; Donikian, Stéphane

    Many articles dealing with agent navigation in an urban environment involve the use of various heuristics. Among them, one is prevalent: the search of the shortest path between two points. This strategy impairs the realism of the resulting behaviour. Indeed, psychological studies state that such a navigation behaviour is conditioned by the knowledge the subject has of its environment. Furthermore, the path a city dweller can follow may be influenced by many factors like his daily habits, or the path simplicity in term of minimum of direction changes. It appeared interesting to us to investigate how to mimic human navigation behavior with an autonomous agent. The solution we propose relies on an architecture based on a generic model of informed environment, a spatial cognitive map model merged with a human-like memory model, representing the agent's temporal knowledge of the environment, it gained along its experiences of navigation.

  4. Virtual surgical telesimulations in otolaryngology.

    PubMed

    Navarro Newball, Andrés A; Hernández, Carlos J; Velez, Jorge A; Munera, Luis E; García, Gregorio B; Gamboa, Carlos A; Reyes, Antonio J

    2005-01-01

    Distance learning can be enhanced with the use of virtual reality; this paper describes the design and initial validation of a Web Environment for Surgery Skills Training on Otolaryngology (WESST-OT). WESST-OT was created aimed to help trainees to gain the skills required in order to perform the Functional Endoscopic Sinus Surgery procedure (FESS), since training centers and specialist in this knowledge are scarce in Colombia; also, it is part of a web based educational cycle which simulates the stages of a real procedure. WESST-OT is one from the WESST family of telesimulators which started to be developed from an architecture proposed at the Medicine Meets Virtual Reality conference 2002; also, it is a step towards the use of virtual reality technologies in Latin America. PMID:15718758

  5. Virtual Reality: You Are There

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1993-01-01

    Telepresence or "virtual reality," allows a person, with assistance from advanced technology devices, to figuratively project himself into another environment. This technology is marketed by several companies, among them Fakespace, Inc., a former Ames Research Center contractor. Fakespace developed a teleoperational motion platform for transmitting sounds and images from remote locations. The "Molly" matches the user's head motion and, when coupled with a stereo viewing device and appropriate software, creates the telepresence experience. Its companion piece is the BOOM-the user's viewing device that provides the sense of involvement in the virtual environment. Either system may be used alone. Because suits, gloves, headphones, etc. are not needed, a whole range of commercial applications is possible, including computer-aided design techniques and virtual reality visualizations. Customers include Sandia National Laboratories, Stanford Research Institute and Mattel Toys.

  6. Virtual screening of virtual libraries.

    PubMed

    Green, Darren V S

    2003-01-01

    Virtual screening of virtual libraries (VSVL) is a rapidly changing area of research. Great efforts are being made to produce better algorithms, selection methods and infrastructure. Yet, the number of successful examples in the literature is not impressive, although the quality of work certainly is high. Why is this? One reason is that these methods tend to be applied at the lead generation stage and therefore there is a large lead-time before successful examples appear in the literature. However, any computational chemist would confirm that these methods are successful and there exists a glut of start-up companies specialising in virtual screening. Moreover, the scientific community would not be focussing so much attention on this area if it were not yielding results. Even so, the paucity of literature data is certainly a hindrance to the development of better methods. The VSVL process is unique within the discovery process, in that it is the only method that can screen the > 10(30) genuinely novel molecules out there. Already, some VSVL methods are evaluating 10(13) compounds, a capacity that high throughput screening can only dream of. There is a huge potential advantage for the company that develops efficient and effective methods, for lead generation, lead hopping and optimization of both potency and ADME properties. To do this, it requires more than the software, it requires confidence to exploit the methodology, to commit synthesis on the basis of it, and to build this approach into the medicinal chemistry strategy. It is a fact that these tools remain quite daunting for the majority of scientists working at the bench. The routine use of these methods is not simply a matter of education and training. Integration of these methods into accessible and robust end user software, without dilution of the science, must be a priority. We have reached a coincidence, where several technologies have the required level of maturity predictive computational chemistry

  7. Creating With Carbon

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

    A subsidiary of SI Diamond Technology, Inc., Applied Nanotech, of Austin, Texas, is creating a buzz among various technology firms and venture capital groups interested in the company s progressive research on carbon-related field emission devices, including carbon nanotubes, filaments of pure carbon less than one ten-thousandth the width of human hair. Since their discovery in 1991, carbon nanotubes have gained considerable attention due to their unique physical properties. For example, a single perfect carbon nanotube can range from 10 to 100 times stronger than steel, per unit weight. Recent studies also indicate that the nanotubes may be the best heat-conducting material in existence. These properties, combined with the ease of growing thin films or nanotubes by a variety of deposition techniques, make the carbon-based material one of the most desirable for cold field emission cathodes.

  8. Next Generation Virtual Observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fox, P.; McGuinness, D. L.

    2008-12-01

    Virtual Observatories (VO) are now being established in a variety of geoscience disciplines beyond their origins in Astronomy and Solar Physics. Implementations range from hydrology and environmental sciences to solid earth sciences. Among the goals of VOs are to provide search/ query, access and use of distributed, heterogeneous data resources. With many of these goals being met and usage increasing, new demands and requirements are arising. In particular there are two of immediate and pressing interest. The first is use of VOs by non-specialists, especially for information products that go beyond the usual data, or data products that are sought for scientific research. The second area is citation and attribution of artifacts that are being generated by VOs. In some sense VOs are re-publishing (re-packaging, or generating new synthetic) data and information products. At present only a few VOs address this need and it is clear that a comprehensive solution that includes publishers is required. Our work in VOs and related semantic data framework and integration areas has lead to a view of the next generation of virtual observatories which the two above-mentioned needs as well as others that are emerging. Both of the needs highlight a semantic gap, i.e. that the meaning and use for a user or users beyond the original design intention is very often difficult or impossible to bridge. For example, VOs created for experts with complex, arcane or jargon vocabularies are not accessible to the non-specialist and further, information products the non-specialist may use are not created or considered for creation. In the second case, use of a (possibly virtual) data or information product (e.g. an image or map) as an intellectual artifact that can be accessed as part of the scientific publication and review procedure also introduces terminology gaps, as well as services that VOs may need to provide. Our supposition is that formalized methods in semantics and semantic web

  9. Using virtual reality to support multi-participant human-centered design processes for control room design

    SciTech Connect

    Louka, M. N.; Gustavsen, M. A.; Edvardsen, S. T.

    2006-07-01

    We present an overview of a method of applying interactive 3D visualization techniques to support control room design activities, and summarize studies that supports it. In particular, we describe the software tools that we have developed and how these support a human-centered design (HCD) work-flow. We present some lessons learnt from using our tools in control room design projects, and outline our plans for extending the scope of our approach to support concurrent design and later phases of a plant's life-cycle. (authors)

  10. Investigating combinatorial approaches in virtual screening on human inducible 6-phosphofructo-2-kinase/fructose-2,6-bisphosphatase (PFKFB3): a case study for small molecule kinases.

    PubMed

    Crochet, Robert B; Cavalier, Michael C; Seo, Minsuh; Kim, Jeong Do; Yim, Young-Sun; Park, Seung-Jong; Lee, Yong-Hwan

    2011-11-01

    Efforts toward improving the predictiveness in tier-based approaches to virtual screening (VS) have mainly focused on protein kinases. Despite their significance as drug targets, small molecule kinases have been rarely tested with these approaches. In this paper, we investigate the efficacy of a pharmacophore screening-combined structure-based docking approach on the human inducible 6-phosphofructo-2-kinase/fructose-2,6-bisphosphatase, an emerging target for cancer chemotherapy. Six out of a total 1364 compounds from NCI's Diversity Set II were selected as true actives via throughput screening. Using a database constructed from these compounds, five programs were tested for structure-based docking (SBD) performance, the MOE of which showed the highest enrichments and second highest screening rates. Separately, using the same database, pharmacophore screening was performed, reducing 1364 compounds to 287 with no loss in true actives, yielding an enrichment of 4.75. When SBD was retested with the pharmacophore filtered database, 4 of the 5 SBD programs showed significant improvements to enrichment rates at only 2.5% of the database, with a 7-fold decrease in an average VS time. Our results altogether suggest that combinatorial approaches of VS technologies are easily applicable to small molecule kinases and, moreover, that such methods can decrease the variability associated with single-method SBD approaches.

  11. Combining Immersive Virtual Worlds and Virtual Learning Environments into an Integrated System for Hosting and Supporting Virtual Conferences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Polychronis, Nikolaos; Patrikakis, Charalampos; Voulodimos, Athanasios

    In this paper, a proposal for hosting and supporting virtual conferences based on the use of state of the art web technologies and computer mediated education software is presented. The proposed system consists of a virtual conference venue hosted in Second Life platform, targeted at hosting synchronous conference sessions, and of a web space created with the use of the e-learning platform Moodle, targeted at serving the needs of asynchronous communication, as well as user and content management. The use of Sloodle (the next generation of Moodle software incorporating virtual world supporting capabilities), which up to now has been used only in traditional education, enables the combination of the virtual conference venue and the conference supporting site into an integrated system that allows for the conduction of successful and cost-effective virtual conferences.

  12. Preserving and sharing examples of anatomical variation and developmental anomalies via photorealistic virtual reality.

    PubMed

    Nieder, Gary L; Nagy, Frank; Wagner, Lynn A

    2004-01-01

    Computer graphics technology has made it possible to create photographic-quality virtual specimens from real anatomical material. One technique for doing this, QuickTime Virtual Reality (QTVR), results in virtual specimens that are easily shared on the Internet and displayed as standalone entities or incorporated into complex programs or Web sites. A compelling use of this technology is the sharing of rare specimens such as unusual variations, developmental anomalies or gross pathology. These types of specimens have traditionally been confined to anatomical museums, but could serve a much more useful existence as freely shared virtual specimens. An example presented here is a relatively rare developmental defect in the embryonic aortic arches that results in a right-sided aortic arch coursing posterior to the trachea and esophagus. In a time of ever increasing restraints on the practical side of anatomy education, an Internet-based library of human variation and other rare specimens would be a useful supplement to students' limited exposure to the human body. Since the discovery and preparation of specimens would be the rate-limiting step in producing such a collection, we propose the establishment of a center for virtual specimen creation and preservation through a cooperative effort by gross anatomists and pathologists in contributing the source material. This collection, a work in progress, is available at www.anatomy.wright.edu/qtvr.

  13. Virtual Reality and the Virtual Library.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Oppenheim, Charles

    1993-01-01

    Explains virtual reality, including proper and improper uses of the term, and suggests ways that libraries might be affected by it. Highlights include elements of virtual reality systems; possible virtual reality applications, including architecture, the chemical industry, transport planning, armed forces, and entertainment; and the virtual…

  14. Computer Assisted Virtual Environment - CAVE

    SciTech Connect

    Erickson, Phillip; Podgorney, Robert; Weingartner, Shawn; Whiting, Eric

    2014-01-14

    Research at the Center for Advanced Energy Studies is taking on another dimension with a 3-D device known as a Computer Assisted Virtual Environment. The CAVE uses projection to display high-end computer graphics on three walls and the floor. By wearing 3-D glasses to create depth perception and holding a wand to move and rotate images, users can delve into data.

  15. Computer Assisted Virtual Environment - CAVE

    ScienceCinema

    Erickson, Phillip; Podgorney, Robert; Weingartner, Shawn; Whiting, Eric

    2016-07-12

    Research at the Center for Advanced Energy Studies is taking on another dimension with a 3-D device known as a Computer Assisted Virtual Environment. The CAVE uses projection to display high-end computer graphics on three walls and the floor. By wearing 3-D glasses to create depth perception and holding a wand to move and rotate images, users can delve into data.

  16. Weaving a Virtual Story--Creating Book Trailers 101

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bates, Naomi

    2012-01-01

    Book trailers are fast becoming today's marketing technique for newly published books. They have changed the way students select books, and trailers meet the expectations of today's teens who have been brought up on graphic visuals. Book trailers are also quite new, starting as a trend only about four years ago. Since then, they have proliferated,…

  17. White Paper for Virtual Control Room

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Little, William; Tully-Hanson, Benjamin

    2015-01-01

    The Virtual Control Room (VCR) Proof of Concept (PoC) project is the result of an award given by the Fourth Annual NASA T&I Labs Challenge Project Call. This paper will outline the work done over the award period to build and enhance the capabilities of the Augmented/Virtual Reality (AVR) Lab at NASA's Kennedy Space Center (KSC) to create the VCR.

  18. Double layer structure-based virtual screening reveals 3'-Hydroxy-A-Naphthoflavone as novel inhibitor candidate of human acetylcholinesterase

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ichsan, Mochammad; Pangastuti, Ardini; Habibi, Mohammad Wildan; Juliana, Kartika

    2016-03-01

    One of the most effective target for Alzheimer's disease's (AD) treatment is the inhibition of human acetylcholinesterase (hAChE) eventhough it has many side effects. So that, this study was aimed to discover a new candidate of hAChE's inhibitor that has more negative binding affinity than existing drugs. hAChE's 3D model used in this study has a good quality according to its number of residues in most favoured regions (92%), three bad contacts, >50 ERRAT's score (85,870) and successfully passed the VERIFY 3D threshold (>80%). Based on the first layer of SBVS againts more than 12.180.630 ligands, we discovered 11.806 hits and then we found 359 hits from the second layer of SBVS. Based on our previous steps, we found that 3'-Hydroxy-a-Naphthoflavone was the only one candidate, that directly interacted with Trp286 via hydrogen bond and hydrophobic interactions and also has the most negative binding affinity (-10,6 kcal/mol) and also has more negative than existing hAChE's inhibitors, such as tacrine, donepezil, etc. 3'-Hydroxy-a-Naphthoflavone is the best candidate of hAChE's inhibitor based on its binding affinity (-10,6 kcal/mol) that is more negative than existing hAChE's inhibitors, such as tacrine, donepezil, etc.

  19. Virtual reality and psychotherapy.

    PubMed

    Botella, Cristina; Quero, Soledad; Baños, Rosa M; Perpiñá, Conxa; García Palacios, Azucena; Riva, Giuseppe

    2004-01-01

    Virtual Reality (VR) is a new technology consisting on a graphic environment in which the user, not only has the feeling of being physically present in a virtual world, but he/she can interact with it. The first VR workstations were designed for big companies in order to create environments that simulate certain situations to train professionals. However, at this moment a great expansion of this technology is taking place in several fields, including the area of health. Especially interesting for us is the use of VR as a therapeutic tool in the treatment of psychological disorders. Compared to the traditional treatments, VR has many advantages (e.g., it is a protected environment for the patient, he/she can re-experience many times the feared situation, etc.). There are already data on the effectiveness of this technology in the treatment of different psychological disorders; here anxiety disorders, eating disorders and sexual disorders are reviewed. Finally, this chapter ends with some words about the limitations of VR and future perspectives.

  20. Co-creating Understanding in Water Use & Agricultural Resilience in a Multi-scale Natural-human System: Sacramento River Valley--California's Water Heartland in Transition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fairbanks, D. H.; Brimlowe, J.; Chaudry, A.; Gray, K.; Greene, T.; Guzley, R.; Hatfield, C.; Houk, E.; Le Page, C.

    2012-12-01

    linked. Data gathered in a survey of agency stakeholder perspectives on how producers operate with respect to crop types, fallowing and water transfers, production components and land changes were compared with monitoring data (1990-2011) covering two drought emergency time periods in the state. Results show that a synthesis is required between top-down and bottom-up approaches to understand land-use dynamics, as decision makers had a limited understanding on water and land-use decisions by land owners at the farm level. A major goal is to create a high level of transparency and stakeholder buy-in by co-developing a model of the system. The approach captures context-based parcel level changes that include the range of variability in natural-human systems such as decisions stakeholders make during drought vs. non-drought years. These decisions are crucial to understanding the tensions that current and future land-use change dynamics will place on the vulnerable hydrological system of the SRV. Knowledge gained through this effort will provide a rigorous conceptual understanding of how the primary land and water stakeholders in the SRV obtain and use water to accommodate competing interests of local agricultural production and resilience, environmental management, and regional and state water needs.

  1. Virtual Reality: A Dream Come True or a Nightmare.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cornell, Richard; Bailey, Dan

    Virtual Reality (VR) is a new medium which allows total stimulation of one's senses through human/computer interfaces. VR has applications in training simulators, nano-science, medicine, entertainment, electronic technology, and manufacturing. This paper focuses on some current and potential problems of virtual reality and virtual environments…

  2. Virtual Worlds, Real Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Meyers, Eric M.

    2009-01-01

    Many children between the ages of four and twelve log in to Web-based virtual play spaces each day, and these virtual worlds are quickly becoming an important aspect of their out-of-school lives. Consequently, educators' challenge is to see how they can leverage virtual spaces, such as the virtual play spaces, for learning and literacy. Over the…

  3. Rethinking Virtual School

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schomburg, Gary; Rippeth, Michelle

    2009-01-01

    Virtual schooling has been touted as one of the best ways to meet the needs of at-risk students, but what happens when a district's virtual education program is unsuccessful? That was the problem in Eastern Local School District, a small rural district in Beaver, Ohio. The district contracted virtual school services and used the virtual school for…

  4. Virtual courseware for geoscience education: Virtual Earthquake and Virtual Dating

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Novak, Gary A.

    1999-05-01

    Virtual courseware developed for introductory-level, on-line geology labs is an interactive teaching/learning model that has an enormous pedagogical potential for making Web sites places where students learn by doing. Virtual Earthquake and Virtual Dating are modest examples of the `virtual courseware' paradigm. Virtual Earthquake helps students explore the techniques of how an earthquake's epicenter is located and how its Richter magnitude is determined. Virtual Dating models the theory and techniques of the radiometric age determination of rocks and minerals. Virtual courseware applications offer several advantages over traditional floppy disk or CD ROM-based courseware, the most significant being the ease of dissemination. The author's experience with bringing these two virtual applications on-line suggests that there is a need for interactive geology labs on-line and that the approach will be received with enthusiasm by the educational community. The widespread implementation and adoption of virtual courseware can bring meaningful educational content and interactivity for the geosciences that goes beyond multimedia on the World-Wide-Web.

  5. The transience of virtual fractals.

    PubMed

    Taylor, R P

    2012-01-01

    Artists have a long and fruitful tradition of exploiting electronic media to convert static images into dynamic images that evolve with time. Fractal patterns serve as an example: computers allow the observer to zoom in on virtual images and so experience the endless repetition of patterns in a matter that cannot be matched using static images. This year's featured cover artist, Susan Lowedermilk, instead plans to employ persistence of human vision to bring virtual fractals to life. This will be done by incorporating her prints of fractal patterns into zoetropes and phenakistoscopes.

  6. Virtual button interface

    DOEpatents

    Jones, Jake S.

    1999-01-01

    An apparatus and method of issuing commands to a computer by a user interfacing with a virtual reality environment. To issue a command, the user directs gaze at a virtual button within the virtual reality environment, causing a perceptible change in the virtual button, which then sends a command corresponding to the virtual button to the computer, optionally after a confirming action is performed by the user, such as depressing a thumb switch.

  7. Virtual button interface

    DOEpatents

    Jones, J.S.

    1999-01-12

    An apparatus and method of issuing commands to a computer by a user interfacing with a virtual reality environment are disclosed. To issue a command, the user directs gaze at a virtual button within the virtual reality environment, causing a perceptible change in the virtual button, which then sends a command corresponding to the virtual button to the computer, optionally after a confirming action is performed by the user, such as depressing a thumb switch. 4 figs.

  8. Collaborative virtual experience based on reconfigurable simulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shahab, Qonita M.; Kwon, Yong-Moo; Ko, Heedong

    2006-10-01

    Virtual Reality simulation enables immersive 3D experience of a Virtual Environment. A simulation-based Virtual Environment can be used to map real world phenomena onto virtual experience. With a reconfigurable simulation, users can reconfigure the parameters of the involved objects, so that they can see different effects from the different configurations. This concept is suitable for a classroom learning of physics law. This research studies the Virtual Reality simulation of Newton's physics law on rigid body type of objects. With network support, collaborative interaction is enabled so that people from different places can interact with the same set of objects in immersive Collaborative Virtual Environment. The taxonomy of the interaction in different levels of collaboration is described as: distinct objects and same object, in which there are same object - sequentially, same object - concurrently - same attribute, and same object - concurrently - distinct attributes. The case studies are the interaction of users in two cases: destroying and creating a set of arranged rigid bodies. In Virtual Domino, users can observe physics law while applying force to the domino blocks in order to destroy the arrangements. In Virtual Dollhouse, users can observe physics law while constructing a dollhouse using existing building blocks, under gravity effects.

  9. Virtual PCR

    SciTech Connect

    Gardner, S N; Clague, D S; Vandersall, J A; Hon, G; Williams, P L

    2006-02-23

    The polymerase chain reaction (PCR) stands among the keystone technologies for analysis of biological sequence data. PCR is used to amplify DNA, to generate many copies from as little as a single template. This is essential, for example, in processing forensic DNA samples, pathogen detection in clinical or biothreat surveillance applications, and medical genotyping for diagnosis and treatment of disease. It is used in virtually every laboratory doing molecular, cellular, genetic, ecologic, forensic, or medical research. Despite its ubiquity, we lack the precise predictive capability that would enable detailed optimization of PCR reaction dynamics. In this LDRD, we proposed to develop Virtual PCR (VPCR) software, a computational method to model the kinetic, thermodynamic, and biological processes of PCR reactions. Given a successful completion, these tools will allow us to predict both the sequences and concentrations of all species that are amplified during PCR. The ability to answer the following questions will allow us both to optimize the PCR process and interpret the PCR results: What products are amplified when sequence mixtures are present, containing multiple, closely related targets and multiplexed primers, which may hybridize with sequence mismatches? What are the effects of time, temperature, and DNA concentrations on the concentrations of products? A better understanding of these issues will improve the design and interpretation of PCR reactions. The status of the VPCR project after 1.5 years of funding is consistent with the goals of the overall project which was scoped for 3 years of funding. At half way through the projected timeline of the project we have an early beta version of the VPCR code. We have begun investigating means to improve the robustness of the code, performed preliminary experiments to test the code and begun drafting manuscripts for publication. Although an experimental protocol for testing the code was developed, the preliminary

  10. Simulated maintenance a virtual reality

    SciTech Connect

    Lirvall, P.

    1995-10-01

    The article describes potential applications of personal computer-based virtual reality software. The applications are being investigated by Atomic Energy of Canada Limited`s (AECL) Chalk River Laboratories for the Canadian deuterium-uranium (Candu) reactor. Objectives include: (1) reduction of outage duration and improved safety, (2) cost-effective and safe maintenance of equipment, (3) reduction of exposure times and identification of overexposure situations, (4) cost-effective training in a virtual control room simulator, (5) human factors evaluation of design interface, and (6) visualization of conceptual and detailed designs of critical nuclear field environments. A demonstration model of a typical reactor control room, the use of virtual reality in outage planning, and safety issues are outlined.

  11. Virtual peacemakers: mimicry increases empathy in simulated contact with virtual outgroup members.

    PubMed

    Hasler, Béatrice S; Hirschberger, Gilad; Shani-Sherman, Tal; Friedman, Doron A

    2014-12-01

    This research examined virtual-human interactions as a new form of simulated contact between members of groups in conflict. A virtual human representing an outgroup member (a Palestinian) interacted with 60 Jewish Israeli participants in an experimental study. We manipulated postural mimicry by the virtual interaction partner during a conversation about a sensitive conflict issue. Mimicry increased empathy toward the Palestinians, irrespective of participants' feelings toward the Palestinians prior to the experiment. Further, mimicked participants who reported a priori negative feelings toward Palestinians expressed more sympathy toward their Palestinian virtual interaction partner, rated themselves as closer to him, and perceived the interaction as more harmonious compared to participants in a counter-mimicry condition. The results underscore the impact of mimicry on intergroup interactions, especially on individuals who harbor negative feelings toward the outgroup. The use of virtual-human interactions in obtaining this effect reveals the still widely unexplored potential of technology-enhanced conflict resolution.

  12. Virtual Urbanism.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sirc, Geoffrey

    2001-01-01

    Considers how visual literacy implies a poetics of technology, one rooted in basic human passion. Notes that most academic forms sanctioned for students to inhabit are as monumentally dull as the urban forms in which they pass an extra-academic portion of their lives. Concludes that technology is most useful when it allows the poetic spirit to…

  13. Virtual scarce water in China.

    PubMed

    Feng, Kuishuang; Hubacek, Klaus; Pfister, Stephan; Yu, Yang; Sun, Laixiang

    2014-07-15

    Water footprints and virtual water flows have been promoted as important indicators to characterize human-induced water consumption. However, environmental impacts associated with water consumption are largely neglected in these analyses. Incorporating water scarcity into water consumption allows better understanding of what is causing water scarcity and which regions are suffering from it. In this study, we incorporate water scarcity and ecosystem impacts into multiregional input-output analysis to assess virtual water flows and associated impacts among 30 provinces in China. China, in particular its water-scarce regions, are facing a serious water crisis driven by rapid economic growth. Our findings show that inter-regional flows of virtual water reveal additional insights when water scarcity is taken into account. Consumption in highly developed coastal provinces is largely relying on water resources in the water-scarce northern provinces, such as Xinjiang, Hebei, and Inner Mongolia, thus significantly contributing to the water scarcity in these regions. In addition, many highly developed but water scarce regions, such as Shanghai, Beijing, and Tianjin, are already large importers of net virtual water at the expense of water resource depletion in other water scarce provinces. Thus, increasingly importing water-intensive goods from other water-scarce regions may just shift the pressure to other regions, but the overall water problems may still remain. Using the water footprint as a policy tool to alleviate water shortage may only work when water scarcity is taken into account and virtual water flows from water-poor regions are identified.

  14. Virtual reality and stereoscopic telepresence

    SciTech Connect

    Mertens, E.P.

    1994-12-01

    Virtual reality technology is commonly thought to have few, if any, applications beyond the national research laboratories, the aerospace industry, and the entertainment world. A team at Westinghouse Hanford Company (WHC) is developing applications for virtual reality technology that make it a practical, viable, portable, and cost-effective business and training tool. The technology transfer is particularly applicable to the waste management industry and has become a tool that can serve the entire work force spectrum, from industrial sites to business offices. For three and a half years, a small team of WHC personnel has been developing an effective and practical method of bringing virtual reality technology to the job site. The applications are practical, the results are repeatable, and the equipment costs are within the range of present-day office machines. That combination can evolve into a competitive advantage for commercial business interests. The WHC team has contained system costs by using commercially available equipment and personal computers to create effective virtual reality work stations for less than $20,000.

  15. Virtual acoustic prototyping

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, Marty

    2003-10-01

    In this paper the re-creation of 3-D sound fields so the full psycho-acoustic impact of sound sources can be assessed before the manufacture of a product or environment is examined. Using head related transfer functions (HRTFs) coupled with a head tracked set of headphones the sound field at the left and right ears of a listener can be re-created for a set of sound sources. However, the HRTFs require that sources have a defined location and this is not the typical output from numerical codes which describe the sound field as a set of distributed modes. In this paper a method of creating a set of equivalent sources is described such that the standard set of HRTFs can be applied in real time. A structural-acoustic model of a cylinder driving an enclosed acoustic field will be used as an example. It will be shown that equivalent sources can be used to recreate all of the reverberation of the enclosed space. An efficient singular value decomposition technique allows the large number of sources required to be simulated in real time. An introduction to the requirements necessary for 3-D virtual prototyping using high frequency Statistical Energy Analysis models will be presented. [Work supported by AuSim and NASA.

  16. Learning new perception-action solutions in virtual ball bouncing.

    PubMed

    Morice, Antoine H P; Siegler, Isabelle A; Bardy, Benoît G; Warren, William H

    2007-08-01

    How do humans discover stable solutions to perceptual-motor tasks as they interact with the physical environment? We investigate this question using the task of rhythmically bouncing a ball on a racket, for which a passively stable solution is defined. Previously, it was shown that participants exploit this passive stability but can also actively stabilize bouncing under perceptual control. Using a virtual ball-bouncing display, we created new behavioral solutions for rhythmic bouncing by introducing a temporal delay (45 degrees -180 degrees ) between the motion of the physical racket and that of the virtual racket. We then studied how participants searched for and realized a new solution. In all delay conditions, participants learned to maintain bouncing just outside the passively stable region, indicating a role for active stabilization. They recovered the approximate initial phase of ball impact in the virtual racket cycle (half-way through the upswing) by adjusting the impact phase with the physical racket. With short delays (45 degrees , 90 degrees ), the impact phase quickly shifted later in the physical racket upswing. With long delays (135 degrees , 180 degrees ), bouncing was destabilized and phase was widely visited before a new preferred phase gradually emerged, during the physical downswing. Destabilization was likely due to the loss of spatial symmetry between the ball and physical racket motion at impact. The results suggest that new behavioral solutions may be discovered and stabilized through broad irregular sampling of variable space rather than through a systematic search.

  17. Virtual Reality at the PC Level

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dean, John

    1998-01-01

    The main objective of my research has been to incorporate virtual reality at the desktop level; i.e., create virtual reality software that can be run fairly inexpensively on standard PC's. The standard language used for virtual reality on PC's is VRML (Virtual Reality Modeling Language). It is a new language so it is still undergoing a lot of changes. VRML 1.0 came out only a couple years ago and VRML 2.0 came out around last September. VRML is an interpreted language that is run by a web browser plug-in. It is fairly flexible in terms of allowing you to create different shapes and animations. Before this summer, I knew very little about virtual reality and I did not know VRML at all. I learned the VRML language by reading two books and experimenting on a PC. The following topics are presented: CAD to VRML, VRML 1.0 to VRML 2.0, VRML authoring tools, VRML browsers, finding virtual reality applications, the AXAF project, the VRML generator program, web communities and future plans.

  18. Developing a Virtual Rock Deformation Laboratory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, W.; Ougier-simonin, A.; Lisabeth, H. P.; Banker, J. S.

    2012-12-01

    Experimental rock physics plays an important role in advancing earthquake research. Despite its importance in geophysics, reservoir engineering, waste deposits and energy resources, most geology departments in U.S. universities don't have rock deformation facilities. A virtual deformation laboratory can serve as an efficient tool to help geology students naturally and internationally learn about rock deformation. Working with computer science engineers, we built a virtual deformation laboratory that aims at fostering user interaction to facilitate classroom and outreach teaching and learning. The virtual lab is built to center around a triaxial deformation apparatus in which laboratory measurements of mechanical and transport properties such as stress, axial and radial strains, acoustic emission activities, wave velocities, and permeability are demonstrated. A student user can create her avatar to enter the virtual lab. In the virtual lab, the avatar can browse and choose among various rock samples, determine the testing conditions (pressure, temperature, strain rate, loading paths), then operate the virtual deformation machine to observe how deformation changes physical properties of rocks. Actual experimental results on the mechanical, frictional, sonic, acoustic and transport properties of different rocks at different conditions are compiled. The data acquisition system in the virtual lab is linked to the complied experimental data. Structural and microstructural images of deformed rocks are up-loaded and linked to different deformation tests. The integration of the microstructural image and the deformation data allows the student to visualize how forces reshape the structure of the rock and change the physical properties. The virtual lab is built using the Game Engine. The geological background, outstanding questions related to the geological environment, and physical and mechanical concepts associated with the problem will be illustrated on the web portal. In

  19. Virtual reality and planetary exploration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mcgreevy, Michael W.

    1992-01-01

    Exploring planetary environments is central to NASA's missions and goals. A new computing technology called Virtual Reality has much to offer in support of planetary exploration. This technology augments and extends human presence within computer-generated and remote spatial environments. Historically, NASA has been a leader in many of the fundamental concepts and technologies that comprise Virtual Reality. Indeed, Ames Research Center has a central role in the development of this rapidly emerging approach to using computers. This ground breaking work has inspired researchers in academia, industry, and the military. Further, NASA's leadership in this technology has spun off new businesses, has caught the attention of the international business community, and has generated several years of positive international media coverage. In the future, Virtual Reality technology will enable greatly improved human-machine interactions for more productive planetary surface exploration. Perhaps more importantly, Virtual Reality technology will democratize the experience of planetary exploration and thereby broaden understanding of, and support for, this historic enterprise.

  20. Virtual reality and planetary exploration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McGreevy, Michael W.

    Exploring planetary environments is central to NASA's missions and goals. A new computing technology called Virtual Reality has much to offer in support of planetary exploration. This technology augments and extends human presence within computer-generated and remote spatial environments. Historically, NASA has been a leader in many of the fundamental concepts and technologies that comprise Virtual Reality. Indeed, Ames Research Center has a central role in the development of this rapidly emerging approach to using computers. This ground breaking work has inspired researchers in academia, industry, and the military. Further, NASA's leadership in this technology has spun off new businesses, has caught the attention of the international business community, and has generated several years of positive international media coverage. In the future, Virtual Reality technology will enable greatly improved human-machine interactions for more productive planetary surface exploration. Perhaps more importantly, Virtual Reality technology will democratize the experience of planetary exploration and thereby broaden understanding of, and support for, this historic enterprise.

  1. Virtual reality via photogrammetry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zahrt, John D.; Papcun, George; Childers, Randy A.; Rubin, Naama

    1996-03-01

    We wish to walk into a photograph just as Alice walked into the looking glass. From a mathematical perspective, this problem is exceedingly ill-posed (e.g. Is that a large, distant object or a small, nearby object?). A human expert can supply a large amount of a priori information that can function as mathematical constraints. The constrained problem can then be attacked with photogrammetry to obtain a great deal of quantitative information which is otherwise only qualitatively apparent. The user determines whether the object to be analyzed contains two or three vanishing points, then selects an appropriate number of points from the photon to enable the code to compute the locations of the vanishing points. Using this information and the standard photogrammetric geometric algorithms, the location of the camera, relative to the structure, is determined. The user must also enter information regarding an absolute sense of scale. As the vectors from the camera to the various points chosen from the photograph are determined, the vector components (coordinates) are handed to a virtual reality software package. Once the objects are entered, the appropriate surfaces of the 3D object are `wallpapered' with the surface from the photograph. The user is then able to move through the virtual scene. A video will demonstrate our work.

  2. Spatial integration of boundaries in a 3D virtual environment.

    PubMed

    Bouchekioua, Youcef; Miller, Holly C; Craddock, Paul; Blaisdell, Aaron P; Molet, Mikael

    2013-10-01

    Prior research, using two- and three-dimensional environments, has found that when both human and nonhuman animals independently acquire two associations between landmarks with a common landmark (e.g., LM1-LM2 and LM2-LM3), each with its own spatial relationship, they behave as if the two unique LMs have a known spatial relationship despite their never having been paired. Seemingly, they have integrated the two associations to create a third association with its own spatial relationship (LM1-LM3). Using sensory preconditioning (Experiment 1) and second-order conditioning (Experiment 2) procedures, we found that human participants integrated information about the boundaries of pathways to locate a goal within a three-dimensional virtual environment in the absence of any relevant landmarks. Spatial integration depended on the participant experiencing a common boundary feature with which to link the pathways. These results suggest that the principles of associative learning also apply to the boundaries of an environment.

  3. Managing resilience by creating purpose.

    PubMed

    Spake, Michael; Thompson, Elaine C

    2013-01-01

    Rapid, disruptive change is today's normal. It comes in all forms and frequencies. To cope and survive, healthcare executives need to build a culture of agility and resilience at all levels and across all domains of the hospital or health system. Lakeland Regional Health Systems Inc. has been transforming its culture in order to manage resilience by creating purpose. To adapt and sustain itself, Lakeland Regional has launched a transformation from a culture characterized by a collection of single values to one whose core is caring relationships through human interaction; human experience; and community values, beliefs, and attitudes. With a clear purpose of caring for ourselves, caring for our patients and families, caring for each other, and caring for our community, Lakeland Regional is creating resilience by building a purpose that sets the stage for a resilient culture defined by purpose; passion; and a healthy work, spiritual, and life balance.

  4. The Potential for Scientific Collaboration in Virtual Ecosystems

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Magerko, Brian

    2010-01-01

    This article explores the potential benefits of creating "virtual ecosystems" from real-world data. These ecosystems are intended to be realistic virtual representations of environments that may be costly or difficult to access in person. They can be constructed as 3D worlds rendered from stereo video data, augmented with scientific data, and then…

  5. What Children Should Know about Technology and the Virtual World

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zhao, Yong

    2010-01-01

    The dominant view of technology so far has been that it is a tool to help improve the teaching of traditional subjects--knowledge mostly about the local and physical world. But technology has created a new realm: the virtual world. It may not be physical or tangible, but the virtual world is indisputable and has a significant economy. If one…

  6. Virtual Steel Connection Sculpture--Student Learning Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chou, Karen C.; Moaveni, Saeed; Drane, Denise

    2016-01-01

    A Virtual Steel Connection Sculpture was developed through a grant from the National Science Foundation. The Virtual Sculpture is an interactive tool that shows students and anyone interested in connections how steel members are connected. This tool is created to complement students' steel design courses. The features of this educational tool,…

  7. Virtual Worlds: A New Opportunity for People with Lifelong Disability?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stendal, Karen; Balandin, Susan; Molka-Danielsen, Judith

    2011-01-01

    Virtual worlds, such as Second Life[R], are the latest star in the online communication sky. Created by Linden Lab, Second Life is a three-dimensional environment that provides a context for avatars to communicate and socialise with other avatars in a variety of settings (Bell, 2009). Virtual worlds have been used to train people with intellectual…

  8. The Virtual Classroom: A Catalyst for Institutional Transformation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Subramaniam, Nantha Kumar; Kandasamy, Maheswari

    2011-01-01

    This study explores the use of the virtual classroom which has been created in "myVLE", a learning management system used by the Open University Malaysia (OUM). The virtual classroom in "myVLE" is an asynchronous-based online learning environment that delivers course materials to learners and provides collaboration and interaction using an…

  9. 3D Virtual Reality Check: Learner Engagement and Constructivist Theory

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bair, Richard A.

    2013-01-01

    The inclusion of three-dimensional (3D) virtual tools has created a need to communicate the engagement of 3D tools and specify learning gains that educators and the institutions, which are funding 3D tools, can expect. A review of literature demonstrates that specific models and theories for 3D Virtual Reality (VR) learning do not exist "per…

  10. Learning to Drive a Wheelchair in Virtual Reality

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Inman, Dean P.; Loge, Ken; Cram, Aaron; Peterson, Missy

    2011-01-01

    This research project studied the effect that a technology-based training program, WheelchairNet, could contribute to the education of children with physical disabilities by providing a chance to practice driving virtual motorized wheelchairs safely within a computer-generated world. Programmers created three virtual worlds for training. Scenarios…

  11. Conferencing @ Your Computer: The Ins and Outs of Virtual Conferences

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bell, Steven; Shank, John D.

    2006-01-01

    Virtual conferencing allows one to save time and money. It provides expanding opportunities for professional development from any computer connected to the Internet, and allows one to access archived content. It eliminates worries about creating backloads of work while one takes time to travel for learning. As a virtual presenter it is important…

  12. Scenario-Based Spoken Interaction with Virtual Agents

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Morton, Hazel; Jack, Mervyn A.

    2005-01-01

    This paper describes a CALL approach which integrates software for speaker independent continuous speech recognition with embodied virtual agents and virtual worlds to create an immersive environment in which learners can converse in the target language in contextualised scenarios. The result is a self-access learning package: SPELL (Spoken…

  13. ComputerApplications and Virtual Environments (CAVE)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1993-01-01

    Virtual Reality (VR) can provide cost effective methods to design and evaluate components and systems for maintenance and refurbishment operations. The Marshall Space Flight Centerr (MSFC) in Huntsville, Alabama began to utilize VR for design analysis in the X-34 experimental reusable space vehicle. Analysts at MSFC's Computer Applications and Virtual Environments (CAVE) used Head Mounted Displays (HMD) (pictured), spatial trackers and gesture inputs as a means to animate or inhabit a properly sized virtual human model. These models were used in a VR scenario as a way to determine functionality of space and maintenance requirements for the virtual X-34. The primary functions of the virtual X-34 mockup was to support operations development and design analysis for engine removal, the engine compartment and the aft fuselage. This capability provided general visualization support to engineers and designers at MSFC and to the System Design Freeze Review at Orbital Sciences Corporation (OSC). The X-34 program was cancelled in 2001.

  14. Computer Applications and Virtual Environments (CAVE)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1993-01-01

    Virtual Reality (VR) can provide cost effective methods to design and evaluate components and systems for maintenance and refurbishment operations. Marshall SPace Flight Center (MSFC) is begirning to utilize VR for design analysis in the X-34 experimental reusable space vehicle. Analysts at MSFC's Computer Applications and Virtual Environments (CAVE) used Head Mounted Displays (HMD) (pictured), spatial trackers and gesture inputs as a means to animate or inhabit a properly sized virtual human model. These models are used in a VR scenario as a way to determine functionality of space and maintenance requirements for the virtual X-34. The primary functions of the virtual X-34 mockup is to support operations development and design analysis for engine removal, the engine compartment and the aft fuselage. This capability provides general visualization support to engineers and designers at MSFC and to the System Design Freeze Review at Orbital Sciences Corporation (OSC).

  15. ComputerApplications and Virtual Environments (CAVE)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1993-01-01

    Virtual Reality (VR) can provide cost effective methods to design and evaluate components and systems for maintenance and refurbishment operations. The Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) in Huntsville, Alabama began to utilize VR for design analysis in the X-34 experimental reusable space vehicle. Analysts at MSFC's Computer Applications and Virtual Environments (CAVE) used Head Mounted Displays (HMD) (pictured), spatial trackers and gesture inputs as a means to animate or inhabit a properly sized virtual human model. These models were used in a VR scenario as a way to determine functionality of space and maintenance requirements for the virtual X-34. The primary functions of the virtual X-34 mockup was to support operations development and design analysis for engine removal, the engine compartment and the aft fuselage. This capability providedgeneral visualization support to engineers and designers at MSFC and to the System Design Freeze Review at Orbital Sciences Corporation (OSC). The X-34 program was cancelled in 2001.

  16. Strategies for Opportunity: Creating a High Performance Workforce for Ohio. A Comprehensive Workforce Development Strategy Developed by the Governor's Human Resources Advisory Council.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ohio State Bureau of Employment Services, Columbus.

    The growing gap between the skill requirements of jobs and workers' capabilities, the slow growth of the U.S. work force, and the demands of a global economy will reshape the work force in Ohio. To meet these challenges, the Governor's Human Resources Advisory Council proposes as its mission the achievement and maintenance of a high performance…

  17. Using Empowering Processes to Create Empowered Outcomes through the Family Development Credential Program: An Empirical Study of Change in Human Service Workers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hewitt, Nicole M.

    2010-01-01

    This study employed a quasi-experimental non-equivalent control group design with pretest and posttest. Two waves of data were collected from a non-random sample of 180 human service professionals in Western and Central Pennsylvania using two research instruments: the Social Work Empowerment Scale and the Conditions of Work Effectiveness-II Scale.…

  18. Virtual Environments for Data Preservation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beckmann, Volker

    Data preservation in a wider sense includes also the ability to analyse data of past experiments. Because operation systems, such as Linux and Windows, are evolving rapidly, software packages can be outdated and not usable anymore already a few years after they have been written. Creating an image of the operation system is a way to be able to launch the analysis software on a computing infrastructure independent on the local operation system used. At the same time, virtualization also allows to launch the same software in collaborations across several institutes with very different computing infrastructure. At the François Arago Centre of the APC in Paris we provide user support for virtualization and computing environment access to the scientific community

  19. The Virtual Curriculum: Outcome-Based/Customized Course Development.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Leitzel, Thomas C.; Vogler, Daniel E.

    1995-01-01

    Virtual Curriculum is a method of aggregating and packaging courses, matching faculty-created course content with industry training needs to customize courses. Application software enables aggregation and development of syllabi, lessons, modules, and test items. (SK)

  20. Metapopulation viability of an endangered shorebird depends on dispersal and human-created habitats: Piping plovers (Charadrius melodus) and prairie rivers

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Catlin, Daniel H.; Zeigler, Sara; Bomberger Brown, M.; Dinan, Lauren R.; Frasera, James D.; Hunt, Kelsi L.; Jorgensen, Joel G.

    2016-01-01

    We found that functional connectivity, as measured by the rate of dispersal among subpopulations, increased as a result of the high flow event in our study metapopulation. Plovers also increased reproductive output following this event. Although the study metapopulation had a low overall probability of extinction, metapopulation persistence depended on anthropogenically created habitats that provided a small but stable source of nesting habitat and dispersers through time. However, all subpopulations remained small, even if persistent, making them individually vulnerable to extinction through stochastic events. Given the highly dynamic nature of habitat availability in this system, maintaining several subpopulations within the metapopulation and stable sources of habitat will be critical, and this species will likely remain conservation-reliant.