Science.gov

Sample records for creating virtual humans

  1. Creating Interactive Virtual Humans: Some Assembly Required

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2002-08-01

    the synthetic environment. For example, Mr. Bubb of Zoesis Studios (see Figure 5) is tightly responsive to unpredictable and con- tinuous changes in...other alterna- tives is an important open problem in vir- tual human research. The future of androids remains to be seen, but realistic interactive...computer.org/intelligent 61 Figure 5. Mr. Bubb is an interactive character developed by Zoesis Studios that reacts continously to the user’s social interactions

  2. 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.

  3. Creating virtual ARDS patients.

    PubMed

    Das, Anup; Haque, Mainul; Chikhani, Marc; Wenfei Wang; Hardman, Jonathan G; Bates, Declan G

    2016-08-01

    This paper presents the methodology used in patient-specific calibration of a novel highly integrated model of the cardiovascular and pulmonary pathophysiology associated with Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS). We focus on data from previously published clinical trials on the static and dynamic cardio-pulmonary responses of three ARDS patients to changes in ventilator settings. From this data, the parameters of the integrated model were identified using an optimization-based methodology in multiple stages. Computational simulations confirm that the resulting model outputs accurately reproduce the available clinical data. Our results open up the possibility of creating in silico a biobank of virtual ARDS patients that could be used to evaluate current, and investigate novel, therapeutic strategies.

  4. Creating a Virtual Gymnasium

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fiorentino, Leah H.; Castelli, Darla

    2005-01-01

    Physical educators struggle with the challenges of assessing student performance, providing feedback about motor skills, and creating opportunities for all students to engage in game-play on a daily basis. The integration of technology in the gymnasium can address some of these challenges by improving teacher efficiency and increasing student…

  5. 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…

  6. How to Create a Low-Cost Virtual Reality Network.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moore, Noel

    1993-01-01

    Describes a project which developed a shared electronic environment of virtual reality using satellite telecommunications technologies to create desktop multimedia networking. The origins of the concept of shared electronic space are explained, and the importance for human communication of sharing both audio and visual space simultaneously is…

  7. 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…

  8. The Virtual Physiological Human

    PubMed Central

    Coveney, Peter V.; Diaz, Vanessa; Hunter, Peter; Kohl, Peter; Viceconti, Marco

    2011-01-01

    The Virtual Physiological Human is synonymous with a programme in computational biomedicine that aims to develop a framework of methods and technologies to investigate the human body as a whole. It is predicated on the transformational character of information technology, brought to bear on that most crucial of human concerns, our own health and well-being.

  9. Creating virtual environments over the Internet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Tom; Ricardo, Sendra; Young, Peter; Anderson, David; Yu, Jiang; Nagata, Shojiro

    1998-04-01

    Using Java as the implementation language and the Netscape Communicator package, a client/server environment is established to allow requests from client stations to download the selected virtual environment to be run on the client. Various security measures, such as certification, are included in the environment to ensure proper transfer of files and data packets. Once the operations in the downloaded virtual environment are completed, the environment automatically cleans up the experiment site of the client. This paper discusses the results on our experiments using this client/server environment and the experiences we had in implementing this environment.

  10. How To Create a Virtual Learning Community.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Smith, Maureen; Newman, Ann

    1999-01-01

    Discusses situations that are ready for the formation of a learning community and suggests that virtual learning might be the answer. Offers a case study of a software-development company and explains how to set up elements on an intranet. Includes marketing tips for promoting the new learning community. (JOW)

  11. Creating a Virtual Tour of the American Indian.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Roy, Loriene; Christal, Mark

    This paper describes how Potawatomi and Santa Clara Pueblo children came to create a virtual tour of cultural exhibits from the National Museum of the American Indian (NMAI). The first part of this paper explores the nature of museums, how people interact with them, the concept of a virtual museum, and a brief history of NMAI. In addition to three…

  12. Creating Virtual Community: Mentoring Kids with Disabilities on the Internet

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cory, Rebecca C.; Burgstahler, Sheryl

    2007-01-01

    Students with disabilities face many barriers that cause them to be less successful than they could be. Virtual mentoring provides opportunities for employers in the community to act as mentors to the students, thereby enhancing community ties and creating positive public relations. This article explores the ways that a group electronic mentoring…

  13. Creating Virtual-hand and Virtual-face Illusions to Investigate Self-representation.

    PubMed

    Ma, Ke; Lippelt, Dominique P; Hommel, Bernhard

    2017-03-01

    Studies investigating how people represent themselves and their own body often use variants of "ownership illusions", such as the traditional rubber-hand illusion or the more recently discovered enfacement illusion. However, these examples require rather artificial experimental setups, in which the artificial effector needs to be stroked in synchrony with the participants' real hand or face-a situation in which participants have no control over the stroking or the movements of their real or artificial effector. Here, we describe a technique to establish ownership illusions in a setup that is more realistic, more intuitive, and of presumably higher ecological validity. It allows creating the virtual-hand illusion by having participants control the movements of a virtual hand presented on a screen or in virtual space in front of them. If the virtual hand moves in synchrony with the participants' own real hand, they tend to perceive the virtual hand as part of their own body. The technique also creates the virtual-face illusion by having participants control the movements of a virtual face in front of them, again with the effect that they tend to perceive the face as their own if it moves in synchrony with their real face. Studying the circumstances that illusions of this sort can be created, increased, or reduced provides important information about how people create and maintain representations of themselves.

  14. 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.

  15. An integrated pipeline to create and experience compelling scenarios in virtual reality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Springer, Jan P.; Neumann, Carsten; Reiners, Dirk; Cruz-Neira, Carolina

    2011-03-01

    One of the main barriers to create and use compelling scenarios in virtual reality is the complexity and time-consuming efforts for modeling, element integration, and the software development to properly display and interact with the content in the available systems. Still today, most virtual reality applications are tedious to create and they are hard-wired to the specific display and interaction system available to the developers when creating the application. Furthermore, it is not possible to alter the content or the dynamics of the content once the application has been created. We present our research on designing a software pipeline that enables the creation of compelling scenarios with a fair degree of visual and interaction complexity in a semi-automated way. Specifically, we are targeting drivable urban scenarios, ranging from large cities to sparsely populated rural areas that incorporate both static components (e. g., houses, trees) and dynamic components (e. g., people, vehicles) as well as events, such as explosions or ambient noise. Our pipeline has four basic components. First, an environment designer, where users sketch the overall layout of the scenario, and an automated method constructs the 3D environment from the information in the sketch. Second, a scenario editor used for authoring the complete scenario, incorporate the dynamic elements and events, fine tune the automatically generated environment, define the execution conditions of the scenario, and set up any data gathering that may be necessary during the execution of the scenario. Third, a run-time environment for different virtual-reality systems provides users with the interactive experience as designed with the designer and the editor. And fourth, a bi-directional monitoring system that allows for capturing and modification of information from the virtual environment. One of the interesting capabilities of our pipeline is that scenarios can be built and modified on-the-fly as they are

  16. Virtual patient: a photo-real virtual human for VR-based therapy.

    PubMed

    Kiss, Bernadette; Benedek, Balázs; Szijártó, Gábor; Csukly, Gábor; Simon, Lajos; Takács, Barnabás

    2004-01-01

    A high fidelity Virtual Human Interface (VHI) system was developed using low-cost and portable computers. The system features real-time photo-realistic digital replicas of multiple individuals capable of talking, acting and showing emotions and over 60 different facial expressions. These virtual patients appear in a high-performance virtual reality environment featuring full panoramic backgrounds, animated 3D objects, behavior and AI models, a complete vision system for supporting interaction and advanced animation interfaces. The VHI takes advantage of the latest advances in computer graphics. As such, it allows medical researchers and practitioners to create real-time responsive virtual humans for their experiments using computer systems priced under $2000.

  17. Creating Virtual Classrooms for Rural and Remote Communities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rao, Kavita; Eady, Michelle; Edelen-Smith, Patricia

    2011-01-01

    Students in remote communities face many challenges to get an education. This is especially true for indigenous and native people. To train teachers for these populations, the authors used web-based conferencing, which avoids some of the technological challenges of communicating with students in these communities. The virtual classes also were…

  18. Creating a Web-based Virtual Tour at Purdue University.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mohler, James L.

    2000-01-01

    Describes planning, development, implementation, and features of a Web-based "virtual tour" information and marketing resource developed at Purdue University (West Lafayette, Indiana). The result is an interactive campus map that provides information about the various campus buildings using text, photographs, and movie clips. (DB)

  19. 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…

  20. Electronic Communication Training: Reconciling Gaps Created by the Virtual Office.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hartman, Jackie L. Jankovich; Ogden, Brenda K.; Geroy, Gary D.

    2001-01-01

    Discusses gaps between traditional and virtual organizational environments and suggests that electronic communication training is necessary to lessen the chance for unclear messages, to enhance faceless interactions, and avoid communication overload. Topics include interpersonal skills; verbal and nonverbal communication competencies; written…

  1. Rurality to Virtuality: Creating a Community of Practice

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hill, Tracy A.

    2013-01-01

    In recent years, enrollment and overall student performance in rural schools have declined. Research shows that principals are critical to the success of a school system and that implementing a virtual community of practice (CoP) at the principal level has solved some of the issues associated with rurality in some organizations. Such…

  2. 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

    2013-04-06

    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.

  3. 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.

  4. Creating a semantic-web interface with virtual reality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cleary, David C.; O'Donoghue, Diarmuid

    2001-07-01

    Novel initiatives amongst the Internet community such as Internet2 and Qbone are based on the use of high bandwidth and powerful computers. However the experience amongst the majority of Internet users is light-years from these emerging technologies. We describe the construction of a distributed high performance search engine, utilising advanced threading techniques on a diskless Linux cluster. The resulting Virtual Reality scene is pass to the client machine for viewing. This search engine bridges the gap between the Internet of today, and the Internet of the future.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. Virtual Reality Educational Tool for Human Anatomy.

    PubMed

    Izard, Santiago González; Juanes Méndez, Juan A; Palomera, Pablo Ruisoto

    2017-05-01

    Virtual Reality is becoming widespread in our society within very different areas, from industry to entertainment. It has many advantages in education as well, since it allows visualizing almost any object or going anywhere in a unique way. We will be focusing on medical education, and more specifically anatomy, where its use is especially interesting because it allows studying any structure of the human body by placing the user inside each one. By allowing virtual immersion in a body structure such as the interior of the cranium, stereoscopic vision goggles make these innovative teaching technologies a powerful tool for training in all areas of health sciences. The aim of this study is to illustrate the teaching potential of applying Virtual Reality in the field of human anatomy, where it can be used as a tool for education in medicine. A Virtual Reality Software was developed as an educational tool. This technological procedure is based entirely on software which will run in stereoscopic goggles to give users the sensation of being in a virtual environment, clearly showing the different bones and foramina which make up the cranium, and accompanied by audio explanations. Throughout the results the structure of the cranium is described in detailed from both inside and out. Importance of an exhaustive morphological knowledge of cranial fossae is further discussed. Application for the design of microsurgery is also commented.

  10. Physical environment virtualization for human activities recognition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Poshtkar, Azin; Elangovan, Vinayak; Shirkhodaie, Amir; Chan, Alex; Hu, Shuowen

    2015-05-01

    Human activity recognition research relies heavily on extensive datasets to verify and validate performance of activity recognition algorithms. However, obtaining real datasets are expensive and highly time consuming. A physics-based virtual simulation can accelerate the development of context based human activity recognition algorithms and techniques by generating relevant training and testing videos simulating diverse operational scenarios. In this paper, we discuss in detail the requisite capabilities of a virtual environment to aid as a test bed for evaluating and enhancing activity recognition algorithms. To demonstrate the numerous advantages of virtual environment development, a newly developed virtual environment simulation modeling (VESM) environment is presented here to generate calibrated multisource imagery datasets suitable for development and testing of recognition algorithms for context-based human activities. The VESM environment serves as a versatile test bed to generate a vast amount of realistic data for training and testing of sensor processing algorithms. To demonstrate the effectiveness of VESM environment, we present various simulated scenarios and processed results to infer proper semantic annotations from the high fidelity imagery data for human-vehicle activity recognition under different operational contexts.

  11. 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…

  12. Scientists Create Part-Human, Part-Pig Embryo

    MedlinePlus

    ... 163262.html Scientists Create Part-Human, Part-Pig Embryo One goal of this stem cell research is ... have successfully used human stem cells to create embryos that are part-human, part-pig. Scientists said ...

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  15. 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.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-07-11

    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.

  17. 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…

  18. Creating a Virtual Community of Learning Predicated on Medical Student Learning Styles

    PubMed Central

    McGowan, Julie; Abrams, Matthew; Frank, Mark; Bangert, Michael

    2003-01-01

    To create a virtual community of learning within the Indiana University School of Medicine, learning tools were developed within ANGEL to meet the learning needs and habits of the medical students. Methods Determined by student feedback, the integration of digital audio recordings of class lectures into the course management content with several possible outputs was paramount. The other components included electronic enhancement of old exams and providing case-based tutorials within the ANGEL framework. Results Students are using the curriculum management system more. Faculty feel more secure about their intellectual property because of the authentication and security offered through the ANGEL system. The technology applications were comparatively easy to create and manage. The return on investment, particularly for the digital audio recording component, has been substantial. Conclusion By considering student learning styles, extant curriculum management systems can be enhanced to facilitate student learning within an electronic environment. PMID:14728210

  19. 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

  20. Creating the New Profession: The Human Services

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sunderland, Stephen C.

    1975-01-01

    A demand is issued for the establishment of a new profession of human services, outlining its assumptions based on a client/consumer/citizen model of service delivery. The reworking of cherished myths concerning concepts of unique professional knowledge, practictioner autonomy, and ideal models of service are illustrated with examples drawn from…

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. Project ATHENA Creates Surrogate Human Organ Systems

    ScienceCinema

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

    2016-07-12

    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.

  4. SantosTM: A New Generation of Virtual Humans

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2005-04-01

    Generation of Virtual Humans Jingzhou Yang, Tim Marler , HyungJoo Kim, Kimberly Farrell, Anith Mathai, Steven Beck, Karim Abdel-Malek and Jasbir Arora...2005-01-1407 SantosTM: A New Generation of Virtual Humans Jingzhou Yang, Tim Marler , HyungJoo Kim, Kimberly Farrell

  5. 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…

  6. 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

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. Age, Health and Attractiveness Perception of Virtual (Rendered) Human Hair

    PubMed Central

    Fink, Bernhard; Hufschmidt, Carla; Hirn, Thomas; Will, Susanne; McKelvey, Graham; Lankhof, John

    2016-01-01

    The social significance of physical appearance and beauty has been documented in many studies. It is known that even subtle manipulations of facial morphology and skin condition can alter people’s perception of a person’s age, health and attractiveness. While the variation in facial morphology and skin condition cues has been studied quite extensively, comparably little is known on the effect of hair on social perception. This has been partly caused by the technical difficulty of creating appropriate stimuli for investigations of people’s response to systematic variation of certain hair characteristics, such as color and style, while keeping other features constant. Here, we present a modeling approach to the investigation of human hair perception using computer-generated, virtual (rendered) human hair. In three experiments, we manipulated hair diameter (Experiment 1), hair density (Experiment 2), and hair style (Experiment 3) of human (female) head hair and studied perceptions of age, health and attractiveness. Our results show that even subtle changes in these features have an impact on hair perception. We discuss our findings with reference to previous studies on condition-dependent quality cues in women that influence human social perception, thereby suggesting that hair is a salient feature of human physical appearance, which contributes to the perception of beauty. PMID:28066276

  10. Age, Health and Attractiveness Perception of Virtual (Rendered) Human Hair.

    PubMed

    Fink, Bernhard; Hufschmidt, Carla; Hirn, Thomas; Will, Susanne; McKelvey, Graham; Lankhof, John

    2016-01-01

    The social significance of physical appearance and beauty has been documented in many studies. It is known that even subtle manipulations of facial morphology and skin condition can alter people's perception of a person's age, health and attractiveness. While the variation in facial morphology and skin condition cues has been studied quite extensively, comparably little is known on the effect of hair on social perception. This has been partly caused by the technical difficulty of creating appropriate stimuli for investigations of people's response to systematic variation of certain hair characteristics, such as color and style, while keeping other features constant. Here, we present a modeling approach to the investigation of human hair perception using computer-generated, virtual (rendered) human hair. In three experiments, we manipulated hair diameter (Experiment 1), hair density (Experiment 2), and hair style (Experiment 3) of human (female) head hair and studied perceptions of age, health and attractiveness. Our results show that even subtle changes in these features have an impact on hair perception. We discuss our findings with reference to previous studies on condition-dependent quality cues in women that influence human social perception, thereby suggesting that hair is a salient feature of human physical appearance, which contributes to the perception of beauty.

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. Future Cyborgs: Human-Machine Interface for Virtual Reality Applications

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2007-04-01

    to enhance the immersive quality of an environment. Walt Disney World uses the sense of smell during their virtual reality ride “Soaring” to...application. It is the interface that allows the man to become immersed in an artificially created world . It is the interface that allows him to interact... natural and realistic interactions. These revolutionary interfaces should be able to overcome the limitations of the current generation of virtual

  14. A Practical Guide, with Theoretical Underpinnings, for Creating Effective Virtual Reality Learning Environments

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    O'Connor, Eileen A.; Domingo, Jelia

    2017-01-01

    With the advent of open source virtual environments, the associated cost reductions, and the more flexible options, avatar-based virtual reality environments are within reach of educators. By using and repurposing readily available virtual environments, instructors can bring engaging, community-building, and immersive learning opportunities to…

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. Virtual Fiber Networking and Impact of Optical Path Grooming on Creating Efficient Layer One Services

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Naruse, Fumisato; Yamada, Yoshiyuki; Hasegawa, Hiroshi; Sato, Ken-Ichi

    This paper presents a novel “virtual fiber” network service that exploits wavebands. This service provides virtual direct tunnels that directly convey wavelength paths to connect customer facilities. To improve the resource utilization efficiency of the service, a network design algorithm is developed that can allow intermediate path grooming at limited nodes and can determine the best node location. Numerical experiments demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed service architecture.

  1. [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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. Creating and virtually screening databases of fluorescently-labelled compounds for the discovery of target-specific molecular probes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kamstra, Rhiannon L.; Dadgar, Saedeh; Wigg, John; Chowdhury, Morshed A.; Phenix, Christopher P.; Floriano, Wely B.

    2014-11-01

    Our group has recently demonstrated that virtual screening is a useful technique for the identification of target-specific molecular probes. In this paper, we discuss some of our proof-of-concept results involving two biologically relevant target proteins, and report the development of a computational script to generate large databases of fluorescence-labelled compounds for computer-assisted molecular design. The virtual screening of a small library of 1,153 fluorescently-labelled compounds against two targets, and the experimental testing of selected hits reveal that this approach is efficient at identifying molecular probes, and that the screening of a labelled library is preferred over the screening of base compounds followed by conjugation of confirmed hits. The automated script for library generation explores the known reactivity of commercially available dyes, such as NHS-esters, to create large virtual databases of fluorescence-tagged small molecules that can be easily synthesized in a laboratory. A database of 14,862 compounds, each tagged with the ATTO680 fluorophore was generated with the automated script reported here. This library is available for downloading and it is suitable for virtual ligand screening aiming at the identification of target-specific fluorescent molecular probes.

  6. Empowering Students to Create Better Virtual Reality Applications: A Longitudinal Study of a VR Capstone Course

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Takala, Tuukka M.; Malmi, Lauri; Pugliese, Roberto; Takala, Tapio

    2016-01-01

    In this paper we present our experiences of teaching an annually organized virtual reality (VR) capstone course. We review three iterations of the course, during which a total of 45 students completed the course and 16 VR applications were implemented. Our comparative analysis describes the students' evaluation of the course, the applications…

  7. The economic model for health care delivery. A business plan to create the virtual clinic.

    PubMed

    Butz, J T; Dilday, D

    2000-01-01

    This paper reviews briefly the history of managed care, and then analyzes the economic rationale underlying the present dynamics of the marketplace. With this background, the paper postulates what the ultimate delivery system should be: the virtual clinic. It includes a proposed micro-model that could evolve into a macro-institution driven by the two essential elements of the market: equity and efficiency.

  8. [The virtual library in equity, health, and human development].

    PubMed

    Valdés, América

    2002-01-01

    This article attempts to describe the rationale that has led to the development of information sources dealing with equity, health, and human development in countries of Latin America and the Caribbean within the context of the Virtual Health Library (Biblioteca Virtual en Salud, BVS). Such information sources include the scientific literature, databases in printed and electronic format, institutional directories and lists of specialists, lists of events and courses, distance education programs, specialty journals and bulletins, as well as other means of disseminating health information. The pages that follow deal with the development of a Virtual Library in Equity, Health, and Human Development, an effort rooted in the conviction that decision-making and policy geared toward achieving greater equity in health must, of necessity, be based on coherent, well-organized, and readily accessible first-rate scientific information. Information is useless unless it is converted into knowledge that benefits society. The Virtual Library in Equity, Health, and Human Development is a coordinated effort to develop a decentralized regional network of scientific information sources, with strict quality control, from which public officials can draw data and practical examples that can help them set health and development policies geared toward achieving greater equity for all.

  9. 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.

  10. The Martian: Examining Human Physical Judgments across Virtual Gravity Fields.

    PubMed

    Ye, Tian; Qi, Siyuan; Kubricht, James; Zhu, Yixin; Lu, Hongjing; Zhu, Song-Chun

    2017-04-01

    This paper examines how humans adapt to novel physical situations with unknown gravitational acceleration in immersive virtual environments. We designed four virtual reality experiments with different tasks for participants to complete: strike a ball to hit a target, trigger a ball to hit a target, predict the landing location of a projectile, and estimate the flight duration of a projectile. The first two experiments compared human behavior in the virtual environment with real-world performance reported in the literature. The last two experiments aimed to test the human ability to adapt to novel gravity fields by measuring their performance in trajectory prediction and time estimation tasks. The experiment results show that: 1) based on brief observation of a projectile's initial trajectory, humans are accurate at predicting the landing location even under novel gravity fields, and 2) humans' time estimation in a familiar earth environment fluctuates around the ground truth flight duration, although the time estimation in unknown gravity fields indicates a bias toward earth's gravity.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. Creating a virtual materials and resources index for health education using the World Wide Web.

    PubMed

    Weiler, R M

    1996-08-01

    The Internet represents the principal system for distributing information worldwide, offering health educators a powerful communications medium. This article describes an assignment that teaches students how to use the World Wide Web (WWW). The first part provides an overview of the Internet, its principal services. browser software, and Netscape Navigator. The second part describes the assignment, complete with instructional objectives, computer facilities used to implement the strategy, and a summary of classroom and laboratory activities. The third part describes procedures for teaching students how to use the WWW. Students learn how to explore the WWW and to develop a customized virtual directory of health materials and resources using Netscape Navigator Bookmark tools. Recommendations on how the approach can be modified are offered.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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…

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. 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!

  4. Human Factors Issues in the Use of Virtual and Augmented Reality for Military Purposes - USA

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2005-12-01

    Human Factors Issues in the Use of Virtual and Augmented Reality for Military Purposes – USA Stephen Golberg US Army Research institute...Human Factors Issues in the Use of Virtual and Augmented Reality for Military Purposes USA 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER 5b. GRANT NUMBER 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT...Rev. 8-98) Prescribed by ANSI Std Z39-18 HUMAN FACTORS ISSUES IN THE USE OF VIRTUAL AND AUGMENTED REALITY FOR MILITARY PURPOSES – USA 7 - 2 RTO

  5. Knowledge environments representing molecular entities for the virtual physiological human.

    PubMed

    Hofmann-Apitius, Martin; Fluck, Juliane; Furlong, Laura; Fornes, Oriol; Kolárik, Corinna; Hanser, Susanne; Boeker, Martin; Schulz, Stefan; Sanz, Ferran; Klinger, Roman; Mevissen, Theo; Gattermayer, Tobias; Oliva, Baldo; Friedrich, Christoph M

    2008-09-13

    In essence, the virtual physiological human (VPH) is a multiscale representation of human physiology spanning from the molecular level via cellular processes and multicellular organization of tissues to complex organ function. The different scales of the VPH deal with different entities, relationships and processes, and in consequence the models used to describe and simulate biological functions vary significantly. Here, we describe methods and strategies to generate knowledge environments representing molecular entities that can be used for modelling the molecular scale of the VPH. Our strategy to generate knowledge environments representing molecular entities is based on the combination of information extraction from scientific text and the integration of information from biomolecular databases. We introduce @neuLink, a first prototype of an automatically generated, disease-specific knowledge environment combining biomolecular, chemical, genetic and medical information. Finally, we provide a perspective for the future implementation and use of knowledge environments representing molecular entities for the VPH.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. An intelligent virtual human system for providing healthcare information and support.

    PubMed

    Rizzo, Albert A; Lange, Belinda; Buckwalter, John G; Forbell, Eric; Kim, Julia; Sagae, Kenji; Williams, Josh; Rothbaum, Barbara O; Difede, JoAnn; Reger, Greg; Parsons, Thomas; Kenny, Patrick

    2011-01-01

    Over the last 15 years, a virtual revolution has taken place in the use of Virtual Reality simulation technology for clinical purposes. Shifts in the social and scientific landscape have now set the stage for the next major movement in Clinical Virtual Reality with the "birth" of intelligent virtual humans. Seminal research and development has appeared in the creation of highly interactive, artificially intelligent and natural language capable virtual human agents that can engage real human users in a credible fashion. No longer at the level of a prop to add context or minimal faux interaction in a virtual world, virtual humans can be designed to perceive and act in a 3D virtual world, engage in spoken dialogues with real users and can be capable of exhibiting human-like emotional reactions. This paper will present an overview of the SimCoach project that aims to develop virtual human support agents to serve as online guides for promoting access to psychological healthcare information and for assisting military personnel and family members in breaking down barriers to initiating care. The SimCoach experience is being designed to attract and engage military Service Members, Veterans and their significant others who might not otherwise seek help with a live healthcare provider. It is expected that this experience will motivate users to take the first step--to empower themselves to seek advice and information regarding their healthcare and general personal welfare and encourage them to take the next step towards seeking more formal resources if needed.

  9. Designing a socio-economic assessment method for integrative biomedical research: the Osteoporotic Virtual Physiological Human project.

    PubMed

    Thiel, Rainer; Stroetmann, Karl A; Stroetmann, Veli N; Viceconti, Marco

    2009-01-01

    In integrative biomedical research, methods assessing the clinical or even socio-economic impact of more complex technologies such as Information and Communication Technology (ICT)-based tools for modelling and simulation of human physiology have rarely been applied. The EU funded Osteoporotic Virtual Physiological Human (VPHOP) research project, part of the Virtual Physiological Human (VPH) European initiative, will create a patient-specific hypermodel to predict the absolute risk of bone fracture much more accurately than predictions based on current clinical practice. The project has developed an innovative, multilevel generic methodological framework to assess the clinical and socio-economic impact of biocomputational models. The assessment framework consists of three components: a socio-economic cost benefit analysis, health economic analysis of care pathways, and disease cost simulation models. Through its holistic perspective, the method provides a tool to appraise the overall value of biocomputational models for society.

  10. 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…

  11. 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."

  12. Creating a Tiny Human Body on a Chip

    SciTech Connect

    Hunsberger, Maren; Soscia, Dave; Moya, Monica

    2016-01-27

    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."

  13. 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…

  14. 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.

  15. 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…

  16. 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…

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. SimCoach: An Intelligent Virtual Human System for Proving Healthcare Information and Support

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2010-08-01

    serve the role of virtual therapists is still fraught with both technical and ethical concerns, the SimCoach project does not aim to become a “doc in...initiating care. While we believe that the use of virtual humans to serve the role of virtual therapists is still fraught with both technical and ethical...Joe Weizenbaum. In 1966, he wrote a language analysis program called ELIZA that was designed to imitate a Rogerian therapist . The system allowed a

  20. Volume rendering of visible human data for an anatomical virtual environment.

    PubMed

    Kerr, J; Ratiu, P; Sellberg, M

    1996-01-01

    of specific anatomical structures. We have the capability to generate images that are both accurate and lifelike, much like photographic anatomical atlases. We can also generate images, models, and textures that have the clarity of medical artwork/illustrations, by highlighting the coloring of the ray traced structures with conventional colors instead of the natural color of the specimen. We are currently in the process of generating a comprehensive reference atlas of volume rendered images of the human body, soon to be published by Mosby-Year Book. The segmentation techniques needed to create this atlas also offer the accuracy and realism needed to create surface models and texture maps for a virtual environment for surgery simulation.

  1. Modelling human burn injuries in a three-dimensional virtual environment.

    PubMed

    Dirnberger, J; Giretzlehner, M; Ruhmer, M; Haller, H; Rodemund, C

    2003-01-01

    This paper gives a work-in-progress report on our research project BurnCase, a virtual environment for modelling human burn injuries. The goal of the project is to simplify and improve the diagnosis and medical treatment of burns. Due to the lack of electronic and computational support for current diagnosis methods, enormous variations regarding the approximated size of burned skin regions exist. And although Simplifications like the Rule-Of-Nines-Method ([Weidringer, 2002]), Lund and Browder ([LundBrowder, 1944]) and others try to compensate for these errors, the fact remains that different physicians overestimate the BSA (Body Surface Area) by 20% up to 50%, depending on the different experience and subjectivity of the approximation process. Nevertheless, different supporting mechanisms have been developed to assist the process of burn region transfer so that after transferring all burned regions on the virtual human body, calculations can be applied in order to evaluate standard indices like the ABSI (Abbreviated Burn Severity Index), and Baux ([Baux, 1989]) as well as ICD10 (International Classification of Diseases) diagnosis encoding. The virtual body simulation is based on state-of-the-art 3D computer graphics (OpenGL). Thus a simulation system, providing a graphical user interface, allows surgeons to transfer a patient's burn injury regions onto an appropriate 3-dimensional model. As such, the BurnCase system improves surface determination by calculating region surfaces up to a precision of one cm2. This improves the average variation to less than 5%, limited by the precision of the surface transfer onto the virtual model. The system already allows the transfer of burned regions by using standard input devices. For this purpose different reference models of human bodies have been created in order to receive appropriate results based on measured physical data of different patients. Moreover, an underlying database stores all entered case studies so that it is

  2. 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.

  3. 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…

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  6. 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

  7. Pain assessment and treatment disparities: a virtual human technology investigation.

    PubMed

    Hirsh, Adam T; George, Steven Z; Robinson, Michael E

    2009-05-01

    Pain assessment and treatment is influenced by patient demographic characteristics and nonverbal expressions. Methodological challenges have limited the empirical investigation of these issues. The current analogue study employed an innovative research design and novel virtual human (VH) technology to investigate disparities in pain-related clinical decision-making. Fifty-four nurses viewed vignettes consisting of a video clip of the VH patient and clinical summary information describing a post-surgical context. Participants made assessment (pain intensity and unpleasantness) and treatment (non-opioid and opioid medications) decisions on computerized visual analogue scales. VH demographic cues of sex, race, and age, as well as facial expression of pain, were systematically manipulated and hypothesized to influence decision ratings. Idiographic and nomothetic statistical analyses were conducted to test these hypotheses. Idiographic results indicated that sex, race, age, and pain expression cues accounted for significant, unique variance in decision policies among many nurses. Pain expression was the most salient cue in this context. Nomothetic results indicated differences within VH cues of interest; the size and consistency of these differences varied across policy domains. This study demonstrates the application of VH technology and lens model methodology to the study of disparities in pain-related decision-making. Assessment and treatment of acute post-surgical pain often varies based on VH demographic and facial expression cues. These data contribute to the existing literature on disparities in pain practice and highlight the potential of a novel approach that may serve as a model for future investigation of these critical issues.

  8. 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…

  9. 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.

  10. Low-frequency theta oscillations in the human hippocampus during real-world and virtual navigation.

    PubMed

    Bohbot, Véronique D; Copara, Milagros S; Gotman, Jean; Ekstrom, Arne D

    2017-02-14

    Low-Frequency Oscillations (LFO) in the range of 7-9 Hz, or theta rhythm, has been recorded in rodents ambulating in the real world. However, intra-hippocampus EEG recordings during virtual navigation in humans have consistently reported LFO that appear to predominate around 3-4 Hz. Here we report clear evidence of 7-9 Hz rhythmicity in raw intra-hippocampus EEG traces during real as well as virtual movement. Oscillations typically occur at a lower frequency in virtual than real world navigation. This study highlights the possibility that human and rodent hippocampal EEG activity are not as different as previously reported and this difference may arise, in part, due to the lack of actual movement in previous human navigation studies, which were virtual.

  11. Low-frequency theta oscillations in the human hippocampus during real-world and virtual navigation

    PubMed Central

    Bohbot, Véronique D.; Copara, Milagros S.; Gotman, Jean; Ekstrom, Arne D.

    2017-01-01

    Low-Frequency Oscillations (LFO) in the range of 7–9 Hz, or theta rhythm, has been recorded in rodents ambulating in the real world. However, intra-hippocampus EEG recordings during virtual navigation in humans have consistently reported LFO that appear to predominate around 3–4 Hz. Here we report clear evidence of 7–9 Hz rhythmicity in raw intra-hippocampus EEG traces during real as well as virtual movement. Oscillations typically occur at a lower frequency in virtual than real world navigation. This study highlights the possibility that human and rodent hippocampal EEG activity are not as different as previously reported and this difference may arise, in part, due to the lack of actual movement in previous human navigation studies, which were virtual. PMID:28195129

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.…

  18. 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…

  19. 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…

  20. 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…

  1. 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.

  2. 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

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

    PubMed

    Banavar, Spoorthi Ravi; Chippagiri, Prashanthi; 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.

  4. CREATING A VIRTUAL SLIDE MAP FROM SPUTUM SMEAR IMAGES FOR REGION-OF-INTEREST LOCALISATION IN AUTOMATED MICROSCOPY

    PubMed Central

    Patel, Bhavin; Douglas, Tania S.

    2012-01-01

    We address the location of regions-of-interest in previously scanned sputum smear slides requiring reexamination in automated microscopy for tuberculosis (TB) detection. We focus on the core component of microscope auto-positioning, which is to find a point of reference, position and orientation, on the slide so that it can be used to automatically bring desired fields to the field-of-view of the microscope. We use virtual slide maps together with geometric hashing to localise a query image, which then acts as the point of reference. The true positive rate achieved by the algorithm was above 88% even for noisy query images captured at slide orientations up to 26°. The image registration error, computed as the average mean square error, was less than 14 pixel2 (corresponding to 1.02 μm2). The algorithm is inherently robust to changes in slide orientation and placement and showed high tolerance to illumination changes and robustness to noise. PMID:22257649

  5. 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.

  6. Modeling and simulation of virtual human's coordination based on multi-agent systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Mei; Wen, Jing-Hua; Zhang, Zu-Xuan; Zhang, Jian-Qing

    2006-10-01

    The difficulties and hotspots researched in current virtual geographic environment (VGE) are sharing space and multiusers operation, distributed coordination and group decision-making. The theories and technologies of MAS provide a brand-new environment for analysis, design and realization of distributed opening system. This paper takes cooperation among virtual human in VGE which multi-user participate in as main researched object. First we describe theory foundation truss of VGE, and present the formalization description of Multi-Agent System (MAS). Then we detailed analyze and research arithmetic of collectivity operating behavior learning of virtual human based on best held Genetic Algorithm(GA), and establish dynamics action model which Multi-Agents and object interact dynamically and colony movement strategy. Finally we design a example which shows how 3 evolutional Agents cooperate to complete the task of colony pushing column box, and design a virtual world prototype of virtual human pushing box collectively based on V-Realm Builder 2.0, moreover we make modeling and dynamic simulation with Simulink 6.

  7. 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.

  8. The Virtual Physiological Human - a European initiative for in silico human modelling -.

    PubMed

    Viceconti, Marco; Clapworthy, Gordon; Van Sint Jan, Serge

    2008-12-01

    The Virtual Physiological Human (VPH) is an initiative, strongly supported by the European Commission (EC), that seeks to develop an integrated model of human physiology at multiple scales from the whole body through the organ, tissue, cell and molecular levels to the genomic level. VPH had its beginnings in 2005 with informal discussions amongst like-minded scientists which led to the STEP project, a Coordination Action funded by the EC that began in early 2006. The STEP project greatly accelerated the progress of the VPH and proved to be a catalyst for wide-ranging discussions within Europe and for outreach activities designed to develop a broad international approach to the huge scientific and technological challenges involved in this area. This paper provides an overview of the VPH and the developments it has engendered in the rapidly expanding worldwide activities associated with the physiome. It then uses one particular project, the Living Human Project, to illustrate the type of advances that are taking place to further the aims of the VPH and similar initiatives worldwide.

  9. Virtual tomography: a new approach to efficient human-computer interaction for medical imaging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Teistler, Michael; Bott, Oliver J.; Dormeier, Jochen; Pretschner, Dietrich P.

    2003-05-01

    By utilizing virtual reality (VR) technologies the computer system virtusMED implements the concept of virtual tomography for exploring medical volumetric image data. Photographic data from a virtual patient as well as CT or MRI data from real patients are visualized within a virtual scene. The view of this scene is determined either by a conventional computer mouse, a head-mounted display or a freely movable flat panel. A virtual examination probe is used to generate oblique tomographic images which are computed from the given volume data. In addition, virtual models can be integrated into the scene such as anatomical models of bones and inner organs. virtusMED has shown to be a valuable tool to learn human anaotomy and to udnerstand the principles of medical imaging such as sonography. Furthermore its utilization to improve CT and MRI based diagnosis is very promising. Compared to VR systems of the past, the standard PC-based system virtusMED is a cost-efficient and easily maintained solution providing a highly intuitive time-saving user interface for medical imaging.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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…

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. A Statistical Approach for Text Processing in Virtual Humans

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2008-12-01

    Latent Semantic Indexing (PLSI) (Hofmann, 1999) and Latent Dirichlet Allocation (LDA) (Blei et al., 2003), where the authors model text collections by a...human architecture. In Proceed- ings of Language Resources and Evaluation Con- ference (LREC). Hofmann, T. 1999. Probabilistic latent semantic in

  16. 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.

  17. Scalable Solutions for Interactive Virtual Humans that can Manipulate Objects

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2005-01-01

    A scalable approach is therefore sought for addressing such different requirements in an unified framework. Related Work Only few animation frameworks... animation of human grasping using forward and in- verse kinematics. Computer & Graphics 23:145–154. Baerlocher, P., and Boulic, R. 1998. Task-priority...formu- lations for the kinematic control of highly redundant artic - ulated structures. In Proceedings of IEEE IROS’98, 323– 329. Baerlocher, P. 2001

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. Mussel-inspired human gelatin nanocoating for creating biologically adhesive surfaces

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Xi; Zhu, Liping; Tada, Seiichi; Zhou, Di; Kitajima, Takashi; Isoshima, Takashi; Yoshida, Yasuhiro; Nakamura, Mariko; Yan, Weiqun; Ito, Yoshihiro

    2014-01-01

    Recombinant human gelatin was conjugated with dopamine using carbodiimide as a surface modifier. This dopamine-coupled human gelatin (D-rhG) was characterized by 1H-nuclear magnetic resonance, mass spectroscopy, and circular dichroism. D-rhG-coated surface properties were analyzed by physicochemical methods. Additionally, cell attachment and growth on the modified surfaces was assessed using human umbilical endothelial cells. Binding of gelatin onto titanium was significantly enhanced by dopamine conjugation. The thickness of the D-rhG coating depended on the treatment pH; thicker layers were formed at higher pH values, with a maximum thickness of 30 nm. D-rhG enhanced the binding of collagen-binding vascular endothelial growth factor and cell adhesion as compared with gelatin alone, even at the same surface concentration. The D-rhG surface modifier enhanced substrate binding by creating an adhesive nanointerface that increased specific protein binding and cell attachment. PMID:24920909

  1. Mussel-inspired human gelatin nanocoating for creating biologically adhesive surfaces.

    PubMed

    Yang, Xi; Zhu, Liping; Tada, Seiichi; Zhou, Di; Kitajima, Takashi; Isoshima, Takashi; Yoshida, Yasuhiro; Nakamura, Mariko; Yan, Weiqun; Ito, Yoshihiro

    2014-01-01

    Recombinant human gelatin was conjugated with dopamine using carbodiimide as a surface modifier. This dopamine-coupled human gelatin (D-rhG) was characterized by (1)H-nuclear magnetic resonance, mass spectroscopy, and circular dichroism. D-rhG-coated surface properties were analyzed by physicochemical methods. Additionally, cell attachment and growth on the modified surfaces was assessed using human umbilical endothelial cells. Binding of gelatin onto titanium was significantly enhanced by dopamine conjugation. The thickness of the D-rhG coating depended on the treatment pH; thicker layers were formed at higher pH values, with a maximum thickness of 30 nm. D-rhG enhanced the binding of collagen-binding vascular endothelial growth factor and cell adhesion as compared with gelatin alone, even at the same surface concentration. The D-rhG surface modifier enhanced substrate binding by creating an adhesive nanointerface that increased specific protein binding and cell attachment.

  2. 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

  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. Virtual Institute on Human Behavior Representation (Institut virtuel de representation du comportement humain)

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2010-06-01

    providing research cost savings and improved international research collaboration. The third finding is that the virtual institute concept is an...advisable means for conducting international , multi-cultural research in human behavior modeling. As a first step, meetings were held to discuss technical...également très prometteur quant à la réalisation d’économies et l’amélioration de la collaboration internationale dans le domaine de la recherche. La

  6. 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

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. [Creating a 'Germanic' public health: national-socialism, human genetics, and eugenics in the Netherlands].

    PubMed

    Snelders, Stephen

    2007-01-01

    The consequences of the uses of concepts of heredity in society and health care are not simply determined. This is demonstrated by a study of Dutch National Socialist doctors and biologists in the Second World War. During the German occupation of the Netherlands SS-biologist W.F.H. Stroër (1907-1979) and SS-doctor J.A. van der Hoeven (1912-1998) attempted to create a eugenic research and health care institute in the Netherlands. Heredity was accorded a key role in National Socialist plans for reorganization of Dutch health care. The ideas of the SS-eugenicists were closely related to those of leading geneticists and eugenicists in the Netherlands. Eugenic ideas were spread among all political ideologies. As late as November 1942 cooperation between the SS and non-Nazi geneticists was still discussed. The hardening of the political climate during the war created more explicit dividing lines between them. The SS-researchers did not believe in the existence of well-defined and separated races. They rejected a purely genetic determinism and advocated measures of social hygiene next to a positive and negative eugenics in the creation of a more healthy Germanic people and a purer race. Racial and genetic concepts were not exclusively translated into eugenic policies directed at human reproduction.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Pharmacophore identification, in silico screening, and virtual library design for inhibitors of the human factor Xa.

    PubMed

    Krovat, Eva M; Frühwirth, Karin H; Langer, Thierry

    2005-01-01

    Factor Xa inhibitors are innovative anticoagulant agents that provide a better safety/efficacy profile compared to other anticoagulative drugs. A chemical feature-based modeling approach was applied to identify crucial pharmacophore patterns from 3D crystal structures of inhibitors bound to human factor Xa (Pdb entries 1fjs, 1kns, 1eqz) using the software LIGANDSCOUT and CATALYST. The complex structures were selected regarding the criteria of high inhibitory potency (i.e. all ligands show K(i) values against factor Xa in the subnanomolar range) and good resolution (i.e. at least 2.2 A) in order to generate selective and high quality pharmacophore models. The resulting chemical-feature based hypotheses were used for virtual screening of commercial molecular databases such as the WDI database. Furthermore, a ligand-based molecular modeling approach was performed to obtain common-feature hypotheses that represent the relevant chemical interactions between 10 bioactive factor Xa inhibitors and the protein, respectively. In a next step a virtual combinatorial library was designed in order to generate new compounds with similar chemical and spatial properties as known inhibitors. The software tool ILIB DIVERSE was used for this procedure in order to provide new scaffolds of this group of anticoagulants. Finally we present the combination of these two techniques, hence virtual screening was performed with selective pharmacophore models in a focused virtual combinatorial database. De novo derived molecular scaffolds that were able to adequately satisfy the pharmacophore criteria are revealed and are promising templates for candidates for further development.

  17. 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.

  18. Encoding of relative enclosure size in a dynamic three-dimensional virtual environment by humans.

    PubMed

    Sturz, Bradley R; Kelly, Debbie M

    2009-10-01

    Human participants searched in a dynamic three-dimensional virtual-environment rectangular enclosure for a distinctly colored bin located in one of the four corners. During test trials, all bins were rendered identical in color, and the shape of the rectangular search space either remained the same or was modified to a relatively sized contracted rectangle, an expanded rectangle, or a square. Participants made one choice response during test trials. In the rectangular enclosures, more of participants' choice responses were allocated to the geometrically correct corners than to the geometrically incorrect corners. In the square enclosure, participants' choice responses were allocated equivalently to each of the four corners. Results replicate previous enclosure size studies demonstrating encoding of enclosure geometry with human and non-human animal subjects conducted in real environments and extend these results to include encoding of relative enclosure geometry. Results are discussed with respect to theoretical accounts of geometry learning.

  19. Using virtual reality to investigate comparative spatial cognitive abilities in chimpanzees and humans.

    PubMed

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

    2014-05-01

    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 16 humans (12 children and 4 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.

  20. 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.…

  1. 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

  2. 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…

  3. Initial Assessment of Human Performance Using the Gaiter Interaction Technique to Control Locomotion in Fully Immersive Virtual Environments

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2007-11-02

    and control the posture of the body should support the user’s inter- action with the virtual world. Skills and actions, such as aiming a rifle and...3 Our general approach to interaction technique design is based on principles derived from an under- standing of human perception and motor control...the stride length and cadence of virtual steps. Since Gaiter uses only the legs and pelvis , it does not interfere with actions performed by other

  4. Attention to human speakers in a virtual auditory environment: brain potential evidence.

    PubMed

    Nager, Wido; Dethlefsen, Christina; Münte, Thomas F

    2008-07-18

    Listening to a speech message requires the accurate selection of the relevant auditory input especially when distracting background noise or other speech messages are present. To investigate such auditory selection processes we presented three different speech messages simultaneously spoken by different actors at separate spatial locations (-70, 0, 70/ azimuth). Stimuli were recorded using an artificial head with microphones embedded in the "auditory canals" to capture the interaural time and level differences as well as some of the filter properties of the outer ear structures as auditory spatial cues, thus creating a realistic virtual auditory space. In a given experimental run young healthy participants listened via headphones and either attended to the rightmost or the leftmost message in order to comprehend the story. Superimposed on the speech messages task irrelevant probe stimuli (syllables sharing spatial and spectral characteristics, 4 probes/s) were presented that were used for the generation of event-related brain potentials computed from 29 channels of EEG. ERPs to probe stimuli were characterized by a negativity starting at 250 ms with a contralateral frontal maximum for the probes sharing spatial/spectral features of the attended story relative to those for the unattended message. The relatively late onset of this attention effect was interpreted to reflect the task demands in this complex auditory environment. This study demonstrates the feasibility to use virtual auditory environments in conjunction with the probe technique to study auditory selection under realistic conditions.

  5. 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

  6. 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

  7. Simulated Lidar Images of Human Pose using a 3DS Max Virtual Laboratory

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-12-01

    developed in Autodesk 3DS Max, with an animated, biofidelic 3D human mesh biped character ( avatar ) as the subject. The biped animation modifies the digital...character ( avatar ) as the subject. The biped animation modifies the digital human model through a time sequence of motion capture data representing an...AFB. Mr. Isiah Davenport from Infoscitex Corp developed the method for creating the biofidelic avatars from laboratory data and 3DS Max code for

  8. 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…

  9. 3D virtual human atria: A computational platform for studying clinical atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Aslanidi, Oleg V; Colman, Michael A; Stott, Jonathan; Dobrzynski, Halina; Boyett, Mark R; Holden, Arun V; Zhang, Henggui

    2011-10-01

    Despite a vast amount of experimental and clinical data on the underlying ionic, cellular and tissue substrates, the mechanisms of common atrial arrhythmias (such as atrial fibrillation, AF) arising from the functional interactions at the whole atria level remain unclear. Computational modelling provides a quantitative framework for integrating such multi-scale data and understanding the arrhythmogenic behaviour that emerges from the collective spatio-temporal dynamics in all parts of the heart. In this study, we have developed a multi-scale hierarchy of biophysically detailed computational models for the human atria--the 3D virtual human atria. Primarily, diffusion tensor MRI reconstruction of the tissue geometry and fibre orientation in the human sinoatrial node (SAN) and surrounding atrial muscle was integrated into the 3D model of the whole atria dissected from the Visible Human dataset. The anatomical models were combined with the heterogeneous atrial action potential (AP) models, and used to simulate the AP conduction in the human atria under various conditions: SAN pacemaking and atrial activation in the normal rhythm, break-down of regular AP wave-fronts during rapid atrial pacing, and the genesis of multiple re-entrant wavelets characteristic of AF. Contributions of different properties of the tissue to mechanisms of the normal rhythm and arrhythmogenesis were investigated. Primarily, the simulations showed that tissue heterogeneity caused the break-down of the normal AP wave-fronts at rapid pacing rates, which initiated a pair of re-entrant spiral waves; and tissue anisotropy resulted in a further break-down of the spiral waves into multiple meandering wavelets characteristic of AF. The 3D virtual atria model itself was incorporated into the torso model to simulate the body surface ECG patterns in the normal and arrhythmic conditions. Therefore, a state-of-the-art computational platform has been developed, which can be used for studying multi

  10. Harnessing the power of conversations with virtual humans to change health behaviors.

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

    Skillful, collaborative conversations are powerful tools to improve physical and mental health. Whether you are a parent talking with your child about the dangers of substance abuse, an educator concerned about a student's signs of psychological distress, a veteran worried about a buddy who is contemplating suicide, or a healthcare professional wanting to better engage patients to increase treatment compliance, having the skill, confidence and motivation to engage in conversations can truly transform the health and well-being of those you interact with. Kognito develops role-play simulations that prepare individuals to effectively lead real-life conversations that measurably improve social, emotional, and physical health. The behavior change model that drives the simulations draws upon components of game mechanics, virtual human simulation technology and integrates evidence-based instructional design components as well as principles of social-cognitive theory and neuroscience such as motivational interviewing, emotional regulation, empathy and mindfulness. In the simulations, users or enter a risk-free practice environment and engage in a conversation with intelligent, fully animated, and emotionally responsive virtual characters that model human behavior. It is in practicing these conversations, and receiving feedback from a virtual coach, that users learn to better lead conversations in real life. Numerous longitudinal studies have shown that users who complete Kognito simulations demonstrate statistically significant and sustained increases in attitudinal variables that predict behavior change including preparedness, likelihood, and self-efficacy to better manage conversations. Pending the target population, each online or mobile simulation resulted in desired behavior changes ranging from increased referrals of students, patients or veterans in psychological distress to mental health support services, or increasing physician patient-centered communication or

  11. Harnessing the power of conversations with virtual humans to change health behaviors

    PubMed Central

    Adam, Cyrille; Serri, Deborah; Bleeker, Seth; Goldman, Ron

    2016-01-01

    Skillful, collaborative conversations are powerful tools to improve physical and mental health. Whether you are a parent talking with your child about the dangers of substance abuse, an educator concerned about a student’s signs of psychological distress, a veteran worried about a buddy who is contemplating suicide, or a healthcare professional wanting to better engage patients to increase treatment compliance, having the skill, confidence and motivation to engage in conversations can truly transform the health and well-being of those you interact with. Kognito develops role-play simulations that prepare individuals to effectively lead real-life conversations that measurably improve social, emotional, and physical health. The behavior change model that drives the simulations draws upon components of game mechanics, virtual human simulation technology and integrates evidence-based instructional design components as well as principles of social-cognitive theory and neuroscience such as motivational interviewing, emotional regulation, empathy and mindfulness. In the simulations, users or enter a risk-free practice environment and engage in a conversation with intelligent, fully animated, and emotionally responsive virtual characters that model human behavior. It is in practicing these conversations, and receiving feedback from a virtual coach, that users learn to better lead conversations in real life. Numerous longitudinal studies have shown that users who complete Kognito simulations demonstrate statistically significant and sustained increases in attitudinal variables that predict behavior change including preparedness, likelihood, and self-efficacy to better manage conversations. Pending the target population, each online or mobile simulation resulted in desired behavior changes ranging from increased referrals of students, patients or veterans in psychological distress to mental health support services, or increasing physician patient-centered communication or

  12. Development and application of human virtual excitable tissues and organs: from premature birth to sudden cardiac death.

    PubMed

    Holden, Arun V

    2010-12-01

    The electrical activity of cardiac and uterine tissues has been reconstructed by detailed computer models in the form of virtual tissues. Virtual tissues are biophysically and anatomically detailed, and represent quantitatively predictive models of the physiological and pathophysiological behaviours of tissue within an isolated organ. The cell excitation properties are quantitatively reproduced by equations that describe the kinetics of a few dozen proteins. These equations are derived from experimental measurements of membrane potentials, ionic currents, fluxes, and concentrations. Some of the measurements were taken from human cells and human ion channel proteins expressed in non-human cells, but they were mostly taken from cells of other animal species. Data on tissue geometry and architecture are obtained from the diffusion tensor magnetic resonance imaging of ex vivo or post mortem tissue, and are used to compute the spread of current in the tissue. Cardiac virtual tissues are well established and reproduce normal and pathological patterns of cardiac excitation within the atria or ventricles of the human heart. They have been applied to increase the understanding of normal cardiac electrophysiology, to evaluate the candidate mechanisms for re-entrant arrhythmias that lead to sudden cardiac death, and to predict the tissue level effects of mutant or pharmacologically-modified ion channels. The human full-term virtual uterus is still in development. This virtual tissue reproduces the in vitro behaviour of uterine tissue biopsies, and provides possible mechanisms for premature labour.

  13. Virtual human technology: capturing sex, race, and age influences in individual pain decision policies.

    PubMed

    Hirsh, Adam T; Alqudah, Ashraf F; Stutts, Lauren A; Robinson, Michael E

    2008-11-15

    Pain assessment is subject to bias due to characteristics of the individual in pain and of the observing person. Few research studies have examined pain assessment biases in an experimental setting. This study employs innovative virtual human technology to achieve greater experimental control. A lens model design was used to capture decision-making policies at the idiographic and nomothetic level. Seventy-five undergraduates viewed virtual humans (VH) that varied in sex, race, age, and pain expression. Participants provided computerized ratings with Visual Analogue Scales on the VH's pain intensity, pain unpleasantness, negative mood, coping, and need for medical treatment. Idiographic analyses revealed that individuals used pain expression most frequently as a significant cue. Nomothetic analyses showed that higher pain expression VH and female VH were viewed as having higher pain intensity, higher pain unpleasantness, greater negative mood, worse coping, and a greater need to seek medical treatment than lower pain expression VH and male VH, respectively. Older VH were viewed as having worse coping and a greater need to seek medical treatment than younger VH. This innovative paradigm involving VH technology and a lens model design was shown to be highly effective and could serve as a model for future studies investigating pain-related decision making in healthcare providers.

  14. 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.

  15. 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

  16. eGY Education and Outreach: Creating a Virtual Educational Space that Pushes the Envelope for Connecting Teachers and Students to Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cobabe-Ammann, E.; Hardin, J.; Fox, P.

    2005-12-01

    The eGY Education and Outreach Program is developing an education portal that connects teachers around the world, in a well-defined way, to the virtual observatories and their data. Using Sakai as the course management platform and drawing on the OCW model, as well as content development models adapted from TERC's Earth Exploration Toolkit, the programming at the eGY portal would allow teachers to use the virtual observatories and its data in an educational context, with supporting materials and activities. Topics included in the eGY portal range from climate change to ocean sciences to the Sun-Earth connection to global seismology, with an emphasis on the intellectual themes that are the focus of other I*Y efforts. In addition, and perhaps as important, the portal will support virtual educational communities, both synchronously and asynchronously. The site will also support virtual seminars (on both science content and educational practices), multimedia assets for teachers, scientific talks, computer-based animations and interactives. Lastly, the eGY program also works with a variety of virtual observatories and other distributed data systems to develop a deeper understanding of the needs of the non-specialist users. The hallmark of the eGY educational program is the implementation of virtual teachers workshops for training high-school and junior college teachers around the world in the use of the portal and its assets. During 2007, as a lead into the eGY, a series of teacher workshops would be run in a virtual environment to an estimated 3000* teachers in over 20 countries. we anticipate that 50 pairs of master teachers in North America will be connected, point-to-point, to 150 to 200 international classrooms of teachers for the workshop. *Currently, in countries that have expressed interest in the program, requests for allotted teacher spots exceed expectation by an order of magnitude and this number is likely to increase.

  17. 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.

  18. Creating High-Resolution Multiscale Maps of Human Tissue Using Multi-beam SEM

    PubMed Central

    Hageman, Daniel J.; Garbowski, Tomasz; Riedesel, Christof; Knothe, Ulf; Zeidler, Dirk; Knothe Tate, Melissa L.

    2016-01-01

    Multi-beam scanning electron microscopy (mSEM) enables high-throughput, nano-resolution imaging of macroscopic tissue samples, providing an unprecedented means for structure-function characterization of biological tissues and their cellular inhabitants, seamlessly across multiple length scales. Here we describe computational methods to reconstruct and navigate a multitude of high-resolution mSEM images of the human hip. We calculated cross-correlation shift vectors between overlapping images and used a mass-spring-damper model for optimal global registration. We utilized the Google Maps API to create an interactive map and provide open access to our reconstructed mSEM datasets to both the public and scientific communities via our website www.mechbio.org. The nano- to macro-scale map reveals the tissue’s biological and material constituents. Living inhabitants of the hip bone (e.g. osteocytes) are visible in their local extracellular matrix milieu (comprising collagen and mineral) and embedded in bone’s structural tissue architecture, i.e. the osteonal structures in which layers of mineralized tissue are organized in lamellae around a central blood vessel. Multi-beam SEM and our presented methodology enable an unprecedented, comprehensive understanding of health and disease from the molecular to organ length scale. PMID:27870847

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. Virtual Reference Services.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brewer, Sally

    2003-01-01

    As the need to access information increases, school librarians must create virtual libraries. Linked to reliable reference resources, the virtual library extends the physical collection and library hours and lets students learn to use Web-based resources in a protected learning environment. The growing number of virtual schools increases the need…

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. Creating state of the art, next-generation Virtual Reality exposure therapies for anxiety disorders using consumer hardware platforms: design considerations and future directions.

    PubMed

    Lindner, Philip; Miloff, Alexander; Hamilton, William; Reuterskiöld, Lena; Andersson, Gerhard; Powers, Mark B; Carlbring, Per

    2017-03-08

    Decades of research and more than 20 randomized controlled trials show that Virtual Reality exposure therapy (VRET) is effective in reducing fear and anxiety. Unfortunately, few providers or patients have had access to the costly and technical equipment previously required. Recent technological advances in the form of consumer Virtual Reality (VR) systems (e.g. Oculus Rift and Samsung Gear), however, now make widespread use of VRET in clinical settings and as self-help applications possible. In this literature review, we detail the current state of VR technology and discuss important therapeutic considerations in designing self-help and clinician-led VRETs, such as platform choice, exposure progression design, inhibitory learning strategies, stimuli tailoring, gamification, virtual social learning and more. We illustrate how these therapeutic components can be incorporated and utilized in VRET applications, taking full advantage of the unique capabilities of virtual environments, and showcase some of these features by describing the development of a consumer-ready, gamified self-help VRET application for low-cost commercially available VR hardware. We also raise and discuss challenges in the planning, development, evaluation, and dissemination of VRET applications, including the need for more high-quality research. We conclude by discussing how new technology (e.g. eye-tracking) can be incorporated into future VRETs and how widespread use of VRET self-help applications will enable collection of naturalistic "Big Data" that promises to inform learning theory and behavioral therapy in general.

  6. [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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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

    2011-06-06

    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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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

  13. 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…

  14. Design of an efficient framework for fast prototyping of customized human-computer interfaces and virtual environments for rehabilitation.

    PubMed

    Avola, Danilo; Spezialetti, Matteo; Placidi, Giuseppe

    2013-06-01

    Rehabilitation is often required after stroke, surgery, or degenerative diseases. It has to be specific for each patient and can be easily calibrated if assisted by human-computer interfaces and virtual reality. Recognition and tracking of different human body landmarks represent the basic features for the design of the next generation of human-computer interfaces. The most advanced systems for capturing human gestures are focused on vision-based techniques which, on the one hand, may require compromises from real-time and spatial precision and, on the other hand, ensure natural interaction experience. The integration of vision-based interfaces with thematic virtual environments encourages the development of novel applications and services regarding rehabilitation activities. The algorithmic processes involved during gesture recognition activity, as well as the characteristics of the virtual environments, can be developed with different levels of accuracy. This paper describes the architectural aspects of a framework supporting real-time vision-based gesture recognition and virtual environments for fast prototyping of customized exercises for rehabilitation purposes. The goal is to provide the therapist with a tool for fast implementation and modification of specific rehabilitation exercises for specific patients, during functional recovery. Pilot examples of designed applications and preliminary system evaluation are reported and discussed.

  15. 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…

  16. 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…

  17. 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

  18. Ambient clumsiness in virtual environments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ruzanka, Silvia; Behar, Katherine

    2010-01-01

    A fundamental pursuit of Virtual Reality is the experience of a seamless connection between the user's body and actions within the simulation. Virtual worlds often mediate the relationship between the physical and virtual body through creating an idealized representation of the self in an idealized space. This paper argues that the very ubiquity of the medium of virtual environments, such as the massively popular Second Life, has now made them mundane, and that idealized representations are no longer appropriate. In our artwork we introduce the attribute of clumsiness to Second Life by creating and distributing scripts that cause users' avatars to exhibit unpredictable stumbling, tripping, and momentary poor coordination, thus subtly and unexpectedly intervening with, rather than amplifying, a user's intent. These behaviors are publicly distributed, and manifest only occasionally - rather than intentional, conscious actions, they are involuntary and ambient. We suggest that the physical human body is itself an imperfect interface, and that the continued blurring of distinctions between the physical body and virtual representations calls for the introduction of these mundane, clumsy elements.

  19. 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.

  20. Discovery of highly selective inhibitors of human fatty acid binding protein 4 (FABP4) by virtual screening.

    PubMed

    Cai, Haiyan; Yan, Guirui; Zhang, Xiaodong; Gorbenko, Olena; Wang, Heyao; Zhu, Weiliang

    2010-06-15

    In this study, a series of small molecule inhibitors of human FABP4 were identified through virtual screening. Compound 1 is the most potent hit against FABP4 with a selectivity of more than 144-fold preferences over human FABP3. In addition, MD simulation and mutation studies revealed key residues for inhibitory potency and selectivity, which provides a guideline for further drug design against obesity, diabetes and atherosclerosis.

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. Hippocampal Volume Reduction in Humans Predicts Impaired Allocentric Spatial Memory in Virtual-Reality Navigation

    PubMed Central

    Dzieciol, Anna M.; Gadian, David G.; Jentschke, Sebastian; Doeller, Christian F.; Burgess, Neil; Mishkin, Mortimer

    2015-01-01

    The extent to which navigational spatial memory depends on hippocampal integrity in humans is not well documented. We investigated allocentric spatial recall using a virtual environment in a group of patients with severe hippocampal damage (SHD), a group of patients with “moderate” hippocampal damage (MHD), and a normal control group. Through four learning blocks with feedback, participants learned the target locations of four different objects in a circular arena. Distal cues were present throughout the experiment to provide orientation. A circular boundary as well as an intra-arena landmark provided spatial reference frames. During a subsequent test phase, recall of all four objects was tested with only the boundary or the landmark being present. Patients with SHD were impaired in both phases of this task. Across groups, performance on both types of spatial recall was highly correlated with memory quotient (MQ), but not with intelligence quotient (IQ), age, or sex. However, both measures of spatial recall separated experimental groups beyond what would be expected based on MQ, a widely used measure of general memory function. Boundary-based and landmark-based spatial recall were both strongly related to bilateral hippocampal volumes, but not to volumes of the thalamus, putamen, pallidum, nucleus accumbens, or caudate nucleus. The results show that boundary-based and landmark-based allocentric spatial recall are similarly impaired in patients with SHD, that both types of recall are impaired beyond that predicted by MQ, and that recall deficits are best explained by a reduction in bilateral hippocampal volumes. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT In humans, bilateral hippocampal atrophy can lead to profound impairments in episodic memory. Across species, perhaps the most well-established contribution of the hippocampus to memory is not to episodic memory generally but to allocentric spatial memory. However, the extent to which navigational spatial memory depends on

  4. 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.

  5. Smart sensors and virtual physiology human approach as a basis of personalized therapies in diabetes mellitus.

    PubMed

    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.

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. 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"…

  10. Harnessing gene conversion in chicken B cells to create a human antibody sequence repertoire.

    PubMed

    Schusser, Benjamin; Yi, Henry; Collarini, Ellen J; Izquierdo, Shelley Mettler; Harriman, William D; Etches, Robert J; Leighton, Philip A

    2013-01-01

    Transgenic chickens expressing human sequence antibodies would be a powerful tool to access human targets and epitopes that have been intractable in mammalian hosts because of tolerance to conserved proteins. To foster the development of the chicken platform, it is beneficial to validate transgene constructs using a rapid, cell culture-based method prior to generating fully transgenic birds. We describe a method for the expression of human immunoglobulin variable regions in the chicken DT40 B cell line and the further diversification of these genes by gene conversion. Chicken VL and VH loci were knocked out in DT40 cells and replaced with human VK and VH genes. To achieve gene conversion of human genes in chicken B cells, synthetic human pseudogene arrays were inserted upstream of the functional human VK and VH regions. Proper expression of chimeric IgM comprised of human variable regions and chicken constant regions is shown. Most importantly, sequencing of DT40 genetic variants confirmed that the human pseudogene arrays contributed to the generation of diversity through gene conversion at both the Igl and Igh loci. These data show that engineered pseudogene arrays produce a diverse pool of human antibody sequences in chicken B cells, and suggest that these constructs will express a functional repertoire of chimeric antibodies in transgenic chickens.

  11. 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

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. Automating addiction treatment: enhancing the human experience and creating a fix for the future.

    PubMed

    Gustafson, David H; Palesh, Tara E; Picard, Rosalind W; Plsek, Paul E; Maher, Lynne; Capoccia, Victor A

    2005-01-01

    The country's system of providing treatment for people struggling with addiction requires a fundamental overhaul. To address these daunting problems, a group of experts from outside the addiction field met in an intensive retreat and envisioned a new future for addiction treatment that would use the latest available technology. Retreat leaders employed creative techniques to help free up thinking beyond incremental improvement ideas. Current and former addicts or alcoholics and family members also attended the retreat to provide the panelists with a real-world understanding of their lives. Through this process, the panelists generated eight idea categories that visualized future treatments for addiction using technology. They were: (1) Integrated System and Record; (2) Monitoring/Treatment; (3) Virtual Experiences; (4) Treatment Access and "One Stop Shop"; (5) Networks; (6) Tailored Media Campaigns; (7) Diagnostic Tools; and (8) Help for Family. Two stories illustrate how these ideas could help a heroin addict and an alcoholic. The sponsors plan another meeting to bring these visionary concepts closer to real application.

  15. 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.…

  16. Discovery of diverse human dihydroorotate dehydrogenase inhibitors as immunosuppressive agents by structure-based virtual screening.

    PubMed

    Diao, Yanyan; Lu, Weiqiang; Jin, Huangtao; Zhu, Junsheng; Han, Le; Xu, Minghao; Gao, Rui; Shen, Xu; Zhao, Zhenjiang; Liu, Xiaofeng; Xu, Yufang; Huang, Jin; Li, Honglin

    2012-10-11

    This study applied an efficient virtual screening strategy integrating molecular docking with MM-GBSA rescoring to identify diverse human dihydroorotate dehydrogenase (hDHODH) inhibitors. Eighteen compounds with IC(50) values ranging from 0.11 to 18.8 μM were identified as novel hDHODH inhibitors that exhibited overall species-selectivity over Plasmodium falciparum dihydroorotate dehydrogenase (pfDHODH). Compound 8, the most potent one, showed low micromolar inhibitory activity against hDHODH with an IC(50) value of 0.11 μM. Moreover, lipopolysaccharide-induced B-cell assay and mixed lymphocyte reaction assay revealed that most of the hits showed potent antiproliferative activity against B and T cells, which demonstrates their potential application as immunosuppressive agents. In particular, compound 18 exhibited potent B-cell inhibitory activity (IC(50) = 1.78 μM) and presents a B-cell-specific profile with 17- and 26-fold selectivities toward T and Jurkat cells, respectively.

  17. Human responses to multiple sources of directional information in virtual crowd evacuations

    PubMed Central

    Bode, Nikolai W. F.; Kemloh Wagoum, Armel U.; Codling, Edward A.

    2014-01-01

    The evacuation of crowds from buildings or vehicles is one example that highlights the importance of understanding how individual-level interactions and decision-making combine and lead to the overall behaviour of crowds. In particular, to make evacuations safer, we need to understand how individuals make movement decisions in crowds. Here, we present an evacuation experiment with over 500 participants testing individual behaviour in an interactive virtual environment. Participants had to choose between different exit routes under the influence of three different types of directional information: static information (signs), dynamic information (movement of simulated crowd) and memorized information, as well as the combined effect of these different sources of directional information. In contrast to signs, crowd movement and memorized information did not have a significant effect on human exit route choice in isolation. However, when we combined the latter two treatments with additional directly conflicting sources of directional information, for example signs, they showed a clear effect by reducing the number of participants that followed the opposing directional information. This suggests that the signals participants observe more closely in isolation do not simply overrule alternative sources of directional information. Age and gender did not consistently explain differences in behaviour in our experiments. PMID:24258157

  18. Human responses to multiple sources of directional information in virtual crowd evacuations.

    PubMed

    Bode, Nikolai W F; Kemloh Wagoum, Armel U; Codling, Edward A

    2014-02-06

    The evacuation of crowds from buildings or vehicles is one example that highlights the importance of understanding how individual-level interactions and decision-making combine and lead to the overall behaviour of crowds. In particular, to make evacuations safer, we need to understand how individuals make movement decisions in crowds. Here, we present an evacuation experiment with over 500 participants testing individual behaviour in an interactive virtual environment. Participants had to choose between different exit routes under the influence of three different types of directional information: static information (signs), dynamic information (movement of simulated crowd) and memorized information, as well as the combined effect of these different sources of directional information. In contrast to signs, crowd movement and memorized information did not have a significant effect on human exit route choice in isolation. However, when we combined the latter two treatments with additional directly conflicting sources of directional information, for example signs, they showed a clear effect by reducing the number of participants that followed the opposing directional information. This suggests that the signals participants observe more closely in isolation do not simply overrule alternative sources of directional information. Age and gender did not consistently explain differences in behaviour in our experiments.

  19. Place and response learning in human virtual navigation: behavioral measures and gender differences.

    PubMed

    Schmitzer-Torbert, Neil

    2007-04-01

    Two experiments examined the use of place and response strategies by humans navigating virtual multiple T mazes. In Experiment 1, probe trials revealed that participants commonly used place and response strategies, and place strategies were more frequent early in training, whereas response strategies were more frequent late in training. Compared with women, men learned the correct path through the maze more quickly and developed a more stable route through the maze. In Experiment 2, participants were trained to locate 2 targets. One target required participants to use either a place or response strategy, whereas the other target could be found using either strategy. Accuracy improved faster for place training compared with response training, and women outperformed men in both groups. Probe trials testing transfer of the imposed strategy to the other target found faster transfer for place training than for response training and that women demonstrated faster transfer than men. Accuracy on probe trials was correlated with poor route stability in the place-trained group and with good route stability in the response-trained group, indicating that navigation strategy use may be related to measures of improvement in performance on normal trials.

  20. 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.

  1. Heightened potency of human pluripotent stem cell lines created by transient BMP4 exposure.

    PubMed

    Yang, Ying; Adachi, Katsuyuki; Sheridan, Megan A; Alexenko, Andrei P; Schust, Danny J; Schulz, Laura C; Ezashi, Toshihiko; Roberts, R Michael

    2015-05-05

    Human pluripotent stem cells (PSCs) show epiblast-type pluripotency that is maintained with ACTIVIN/FGF2 signaling. Here, we report the acquisition of a unique stem cell phenotype by both human ES cells (hESCs) and induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) in response to transient (24-36 h) exposure to bone morphogenetic protein 4 (BMP4) plus inhibitors of ACTIVIN signaling (A83-01) and FGF2 (PD173074), followed by trypsin dissociation and recovery of colonies capable of growing on a gelatin substratum in standard medium for human PSCs at low but not high FGF2 concentrations. The self-renewing cell lines stain weakly for CDX2 and strongly for NANOG, can be propagated clonally on either Matrigel or gelatin, and are morphologically distinct from human PSC progenitors on either substratum but still meet standard in vitro criteria for pluripotency. They form well-differentiated teratomas in immune-compromised mice that secrete human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) into the host mouse and include small areas of trophoblast-like cells. The cells have a distinct transcriptome profile from the human PSCs from which they were derived (including higher expression of NANOG, LEFTY1, and LEFTY2). In nonconditioned medium lacking FGF2, the colonies spontaneously differentiated along multiple lineages, including trophoblast. They responded to PD173074 in the absence of both FGF2 and BMP4 by conversion to trophoblast, and especially syncytiotrophoblast, whereas an A83-01/PD173074 combination favored increased expression of HLA-G, a marker of extravillous trophoblast. Together, these data suggest that the cell lines exhibit totipotent potential and that BMP4 can prime human PSCs to a self-renewing alternative state permissive for trophoblast development. The results may have implications for regulation of lineage decisions in the early embryo.

  2. 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…

  3. 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…

  4. The Role of Administrative Record Linkage in Creating Trajectories of Early Human Development

    PubMed Central

    Hertzman, Clyde

    2011-01-01

    Early childhood development (ECD) is a significant social determinant of health. Monitoring ECD to reveal trends and patterns of development requires high-quality information on a population from infancy through adulthood. This study linked data from the Early Development Instrument (EDI), administered in senior kindergarten, with data from the Foundation Skills Assessment (FSA), graduation status and SES to show that Vancouver schools with poor FSA results also had high proportions of children with low EDI and SES scores. Linking EDI data to data on pregnancy, birth, medical history, hospital care and success in school would enable the creation of normative EDC trajectories for all children. A person-specific, anonymized, population-based record linkage system is an indispensable prerequisite for creating and monitoring developmental trajectories. PMID:24933373

  5. 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.

  6. Creating cancer translocations in human cells using Cas9 DSBs and nCas9 paired nicks

    PubMed Central

    Renouf, Benjamin; Piganeau, Marion; Ghezraoui, Hind; Jasin, Maria; Brunet, Erika

    2015-01-01

    Recurrent chromosomal translocations are found in numerous of tumor types, often leading to the formation and expression of fusion genes with oncogenic potential. Creating chromosomal translocations at the relevant endogenous loci, rather than just ectopically expressing the fusion genes, opens new possibilities for better characterizing molecular mechanisms driving tumor formation. In this chapter, we describe methods to create cancer translocations in human cells. DSBs or paired nicks generated by either wild-type Cas9 or the Cas9 nickase, respectively, are used to induce translocations at the relevant loci. Using different PCR-based methods, we also explain how to quantify translocation frequency and to analyze breakpoint junctions in the cells of interest. In addition, PCR detection of translocations is used as a very sensitive method to detect off-target effects, which has general utility. PMID:25398344

  7. Creating cancer translocations in human cells using Cas9 DSBs and nCas9 paired nicks.

    PubMed

    Renouf, Benjamin; Piganeau, Marion; Ghezraoui, Hind; Jasin, Maria; Brunet, Erika

    2014-01-01

    Recurrent chromosomal translocations are found in numerous tumor types, often leading to the formation and expression of fusion genes with oncogenic potential. Creating chromosomal translocations at the relevant endogenous loci, rather than ectopically expressing the fusion genes, opens new possibilities for better characterizing molecular mechanisms driving tumor formation. In this chapter, we describe methods to create cancer translocations in human cells. DSBs or paired nicks generated by either wild-type Cas9 or the Cas9 nickase, respectively, are used to induce translocations at the relevant loci. Using different PCR-based methods, we also explain how to quantify translocation frequency and to analyze breakpoint junctions in the cells of interest. In addition, PCR detection of translocations is used as a very sensitive method to detect off-target effects, which has general utility.

  8. Interface design and contemporary: human creating new guidelines for high-tech products.

    PubMed

    Pagnan, Andreia Salvan; Ribeiro, Giovana Freitas Rabelo; Gonçalves, Maria Goretti Souza; Câmara, Jairo José Drummond; Baptista, Sandra Motta

    2012-01-01

    Contemporary electronic industry offers a wide range of products. Usually touch sensitive and with few buttons and a lot of functions these products not always have a friendly interface. The human x design interface based on electronics' ergonomics is the focus of this research. An evolutionary analysis of the electronics industry design within a contemporary context clarifies this relation and proposes new guidelines for a more conscious design.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2017-01-01

    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., 18F-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

  12. 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

    2013-04-06

    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.

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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…

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. Photogrammetric Analysis of Historical Image Repositories for Virtual Reconstruction in the Field of Digital Humanities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maiwald, F.; Vietze, T.; Schneider, D.; Henze, F.; Münster, S.; Niebling, F.

    2017-02-01

    Historical photographs contain high density of information and are of great importance as sources in humanities research. In addition to the semantic indexing of historical images based on metadata, it is also possible to reconstruct geometric information about the depicted objects or the camera position at the time of the recording by employing photogrammetric methods. The approach presented here is intended to investigate (semi-) automated photogrammetric reconstruction methods for heterogeneous collections of historical (city) photographs and photographic documentation for the use in the humanities, urban research and history sciences. From a photogrammetric point of view, these images are mostly digitized photographs. For a photogrammetric evaluation, therefore, the characteristics of scanned analog images with mostly unknown camera geometry, missing or minimal object information and low radiometric and geometric resolution have to be considered. In addition, these photographs have not been created specifically for documentation purposes and so the focus of these images is often not on the object to be evaluated. The image repositories must therefore be subjected to a preprocessing analysis of their photogrammetric usability. Investigations are carried out on the basis of a repository containing historical images of the Kronentor ("crown gate") of the Dresden Zwinger. The initial step was to assess the quality and condition of available images determining their appropriateness for generating three-dimensional point clouds from historical photos using a structure-from-motion evaluation (SfM). Then, the generated point clouds were assessed by comparing them with current measurement data of the same object.

  19. Human Subperitoneal Fibroblast and Cancer Cell Interaction Creates Microenvironment That Enhances Tumor Progression and Metastasis

    PubMed Central

    Yokota, Mitsuru; Ishii, Genichiro; Saito, Norio; Aoyagi, Kazuhiko; Sasaki, Hiroki; Ochiai, Atsushi

    2014-01-01

    Backgrounds Peritoneal invasion in colon cancer is an important prognostic factor. Peritoneal invasion can be objectively identified as periotoneal elastic laminal invasion (ELI) by using elastica stain, and the cancer microenvironment formed by the peritoneal invasion (CMPI) can also be observed. Cases with ELI more frequently show distant metastasis and recurrence. Therefore, CMPI may represent a particular milieu that facilitates tumor progression. Pathological and biological investigations into CMPI may shed light on this possibly distinctive cancer microenvironment. Methods We analyzed area-specific tissue microarrays to determine the pathological features of CMPI, and propagated subperitoneal fibroblasts (SPFs) and submucosal fibroblasts (SMFs) from human colonic tissue. Biological characteristics and results of gene expression profile analyses were compared to better understand the peritoneal invasion of colon cancer and how this may form a special microenvironment through the interaction with SPFs. Mouse xenograft tumors, derived by co-injection of cancer cells with either SPFs or SMFs, were established to evaluate their active role on tumor progression and metastasis. Results We found that fibrosis with alpha smooth muscle actin (α-SMA) expression was a significant pathological feature of CMPI. The differences in proliferation and gene expression profile analyses suggested SPFs and SMFs were distinct populations, and that SPFs were characterized by a higher expressions of extracellular matrix (ECM)-associated genes. Furthermore, compared with SMFs, SPFs showed more variable alteration in gene expressions after cancer-cell-conditioned medium stimulation. Gene ontology analysis revealed that SPFs-specific upregulated genes were enriched by actin-binding or contractile-associated genes including α-SMA encoding ACTA2. Mouse xenograft tumors derived by co-injection of cancer cells with SPFs showed enhancement of tumor growth, metastasis, and capacity for

  20. 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.

  1. Virtual Reality as a Distraction Technique in Chronic Pain Patients

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Kenneth; Sulea, Camelia; Wiederhold, Mark D.

    2014-01-01

    Abstract 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. PMID:24892196

  2. 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.

  3. Contextual-specificity of short-delay extinction in humans: Renewal of fear-potentiated startle in a virtual environment

    PubMed Central

    Alvarez, Ruben P.; Johnson, Linda; Grillon, Christian

    2007-01-01

    A recent fear-potentiated startle study in rodents suggested that extinction was not context dependent when extinction was conducted after a short delay following acquisition, suggesting that extinction can lead to erasure of fear learning in some circumstances. The main objective of this study was to attempt to replicate these findings in humans by examining the context specificity of short-delay extinction in an ABA renewal procedure using virtual reality environments. A second objective was to examine whether renewal, if any, would be influenced by context conditioning. Subjects underwent differential aversive conditioning in virtual context A, which was immediately followed by extinction in virtual context B. Extinction was followed by tests of renewal in context A and B, with the order counterbalanced across subjects. Results showed that extinction was context dependent. Evidence for renewal was established using fear-potentiated startle as well as skin conductance and fear ratings. In addition, although contextual anxiety was greater in the acquisition context than in the extinction context during renewal, as assessed with startle, context conditioning did not influence the renewal effect. These data do not support the view that extinction conducted shortly after acquisition is context independent. Hence, they do not provide evidence that extinction can lead to erasure of a fear memory established via Pavlovian conditioning. PMID:17412963

  4. 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…

  5. 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…

  6. High availability using virtualization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Calzolari, Federico

    2009-10-01

    High availability has always been one of the main problems for a data center. Till now high availability was achieved by host per host redundancy, a highly expensive method in terms of hardware and human costs. A new approach to the problem can be offered by virtualization. Using virtualization, it is possible to achieve a redundancy system for all the services running on a data center. This new approach to high availability allows to share the running virtual machines over the servers up and running, by exploiting the features of the virtualization layer: start, stop and move virtual machines between physical hosts. The system (3RC) is based on a finite state machine with hysteresis, providing the possibility to restart each virtual machine over any physical host, or reinstall it from scratch. A complete infrastructure has been developed to install operating system and middleware in a few minutes. To virtualize the main servers of a data center, a new procedure has been developed to migrate physical to virtual hosts. The whole Grid data center SNS-PISA is running at the moment in virtual environment under the high availability system. As extension of the 3RC architecture, several storage solutions have been tested to store and centralize all the virtual disks, from NAS to SAN, to grant data safety and access from everywhere. Exploiting virtualization and ability to automatically reinstall a host, we provide a sort of host on-demand, where the action on a virtual machine is performed only when a disaster occurs.

  7. 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

  8. Cross-reactivity virtual profiling of the human kinome by X-react(KIN): a chemical systems biology approach.

    PubMed

    Brylinski, Michal; Skolnick, Jeffrey

    2010-12-06

    Many drug candidates fail in clinical development due to their insufficient selectivity that may cause undesired side effects. Therefore, modern drug discovery is routinely supported by computational techniques, which can identify alternate molecular targets with a significant potential for cross-reactivity. In particular, the development of highly selective kinase inhibitors is complicated by the strong conservation of the ATP-binding site across the kinase family. In this paper, we describe X-React(KIN), a new machine learning approach that extends the modeling and virtual screening of individual protein kinases to a system level in order to construct a cross-reactivity virtual profile for the human kinome. To maximize the coverage of the kinome, X-React(KIN) relies solely on the predicted target structures and employs state-of-the-art modeling techniques. Benchmark tests carried out against available selectivity data from high-throughput kinase profiling experiments demonstrate that, for almost 70% of the inhibitors, their alternate molecular targets can be effectively identified in the human kinome with a high (>0.5) sensitivity at the expense of a relatively low false positive rate (<0.5). Furthermore, in a case study, we demonstrate how X-React(KIN) can support the development of selective inhibitors by optimizing the selection of kinase targets for small-scale counter-screen experiments. The constructed cross-reactivity profiles for the human kinome are freely available to the academic community at http://cssb.biology.gatech.edu/kinomelhm/ .

  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. Virtually ostracized: studying ostracism in immersive virtual environments.

    PubMed

    Kassner, Matthew P; Wesselmann, Eric D; Law, Alvin Ty; Williams, Kipling D

    2012-08-01

    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.

  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. Creating Humane Schools.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Glines, Don E.

    This document, a revision and retitled version of "Implementing Different and Better Schools," 1969 (ED 051 110), attempts to provide guidelines for change in schools to help those educators who need to be convinced of the need for change, 2) those who are ready but need to be told what to do, and 3) those with some experience of change who need…

  13. 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…

  14. 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.

  15. 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

  16. A virtual interface for interactions with 3D models of the human body.

    PubMed

    De Paolis, Lucio T; Pulimeno, Marco; Aloisio, Giovanni

    2009-01-01

    The developed system is the first prototype of a virtual interface designed to avoid contact with the computer so that the surgeon is able to visualize 3D models of the patient's organs more effectively during surgical procedure or to use this in the pre-operative planning. The doctor will be able to rotate, to translate and to zoom in on 3D models of the patient's organs simply by moving his finger in free space; in addition, it is possible to choose to visualize all of the organs or only some of them. All of the interactions with the models happen in real-time using the virtual interface which appears as a touch-screen suspended in free space in a position chosen by the user when the application is started up. Finger movements are detected by means of an optical tracking system and are used to simulate touch with the interface and to interact by pressing the buttons present on the virtual screen.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. Digital Division Is Cultural Exclusion, but Is Digital Inclusion Cultural Inclusion?; We Come from Around the World and Share Similar Visions; Oksale: An Indigenous Approach to Creating a Virtual Library of Education Resources; Whose Rules? Intellectual Property, Culture and Indigenous Communities.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Worcman, Karen; Holland, Maurita Peterson; Roy, Loriene; Larsen, Peter; Seadle, Michael

    2002-01-01

    Includes four articles that discuss digital technology and indigenous communities. Highlights include digitization of cultural resources; cultural instantiation in electronic media; partnerships; the needs of indigenous groups; library school students' service-based learning experiences in creating a virtual library for a tribal village; and…

  20. The Virtual University: Creating an Emergent Reality.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Latta, Gail F.

    Higher education has traditionally been defined as a two dimensional affair concerned with content (curriculum) and pedagogy (instructional design). Information technologies are transforming the educational enterprise into a three-dimensional universe through the diversification of instructional delivery systems. The success of higher education in…

  1. 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…

  2. Virtual Colonoscopy

    MedlinePlus

    ... for Symptoms That Are Being Studied Virtual Colonoscopy Virtual Colonoscopy Print Screening CT scan takes images of ... less than a regular colonoscopy Get the facts Virtual colonoscopy, also called CT colonography, is a relatively ...

  3. Virtual colonoscopy

    MedlinePlus

    Colonoscopy - virtual; CT colonography; Computed tomographic colonography; Colography - virtual ... Differences between virtual and conventional colonoscopy include: VC can view the colon from many different angles. This is not as easy ...

  4. Anatomical education and surgical simulation based on the Chinese Visible Human: a three-dimensional virtual model of the larynx region.

    PubMed

    Liu, Kaijun; Fang, Binji; Wu, Yi; Li, Ying; Jin, Jun; Tan, Liwen; Zhang, Shaoxiang

    2013-09-01

    Anatomical knowledge of the larynx region is critical for understanding laryngeal disease and performing required interventions. Virtual reality is a useful method for surgical education and simulation. Here, we assembled segmented cross-section slices of the larynx region from the Chinese Visible Human dataset. The laryngeal structures were precisely segmented manually as 2D images, then reconstructed and displayed as 3D images in the virtual reality Dextrobeam system. Using visualization and interaction with the virtual reality modeling language model, a digital laryngeal anatomy instruction was constructed using HTML and JavaScript languages. The volume larynx models can thus display an arbitrary section of the model and provide a virtual dissection function. This networked teaching system of the digital laryngeal anatomy can be read remotely, displayed locally, and manipulated interactively.

  5. Using virtual humans to alleviate social anxiety: preliminary report from a comparative outcome study.

    PubMed

    Robillard, Genevève; Bouchard, Stéphane; Dumoulin, Stéphane; Guitard, Tanya; Klinger, Evelyne

    2010-01-01

    Empirical studies have consistently shown the effectiveness of a multicomponent CBT treatment of social anxiety disorder (SAD). Previous outcome studies on virtual reality and SAD have focused on people suffering from fear of public speaking and not full blown SAD. In this study, 45 adults receiving a DSM-IV-TR diagnostic of social anxiety were randomly assigned to traditional CBT treatment (with in vivo exposure), CBT-VR combined treatment, or a waiting list. Results show significant reduction of anxiety on all questionnaires as well as statistically significant interactions between both treatment groups and the waiting list.

  6. Virtual Reality

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1991-01-01

    This video presentation discusses how virtual reality enables scientists to 'explore' other worlds without leaving the laboratory. The applicability of virtual reality for scientific visualization is also discussed.

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

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

    PubMed

    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.

  11. Human recombinant beta-secretase immobilized enzyme reactor for fast hits' selection and characterization from a virtual screening library.

    PubMed

    De Simone, Angela; Mancini, Francesca; Cosconati, Sandro; Marinelli, Luciana; La Pietra, Valeria; Novellino, Ettore; Andrisano, Vincenza

    2013-01-25

    In the present work, a human recombinant BACE1 immobilized enzyme reactor (hrBACE1-IMER) has been applied for the sensitive fast screening of 38 compounds selected through a virtual screening approach. HrBACE1-IMER was inserted into a liquid chromatograph coupled with a fluorescent detector. A fluorogenic peptide substrate (M-2420), containing the β-secretase site of the Swedish mutation of APP, was injected and cleaved in the on-line HPLC-hrBACE1-IMER system, giving rise to the fluorescent product. The compounds of the library were tested for their ability to inhibit BACE1 in the immobilized format and to reduce the area related to the chromatographic peak of the fluorescent enzymatic product. The results were validated in solution by using two different FRET methods. Due to the efficient virtual screening methodology, more than fifty percent of the selected compounds showed a measurable inhibitory activity. One of the most active compound (a bis-indanone derivative) was characterized in terms of IC(50) and K(i) determination on the hrBACE1-IMER. Thus, the hrBACE1-IMER has been confirmed as a valid tool for the throughput screening of different chemical entities with potency lower than 30μM for the fast hits' selection and for mode of action determination.

  12. The attentional blink reveals serial working memory encoding: evidence from virtual and human event-related potentials.

    PubMed

    Craston, Patrick; Wyble, Brad; Chennu, Srivas; Bowman, Howard

    2009-03-01

    Observers often miss a second target (T2) if it follows an identified first target item (T1) within half a second in rapid serial visual presentation (RSVP), a finding termed the attentional blink. If two targets are presented in immediate succession, however, accuracy is excellent (Lag 1 sparing). The resource sharing hypothesis proposes a dynamic distribution of resources over a time span of up to 600 msec during the attentional blink. In contrast, the ST(2) model argues that working memory encoding is serial during the attentional blink and that, due to joint consolidation, Lag 1 is the only case where resources are shared. Experiment 1 investigates the P3 ERP component evoked by targets in RSVP. The results suggest that, in this context, P3 amplitude is an indication of bottom-up strength rather than a measure of cognitive resource allocation. Experiment 2, employing a two-target paradigm, suggests that T1 consolidation is not affected by the presentation of T2 during the attentional blink. However, if targets are presented in immediate succession (Lag 1 sparing), they are jointly encoded into working memory. We use the ST(2) model's neural network implementation, which replicates a range of behavioral results related to the attentional blink, to generate "virtual ERPs" by summing across activation traces. We compare virtual to human ERPs and show how the results suggest a serial nature of working memory encoding as implied by the ST(2) model.

  13. 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

  14. 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…

  15. Human hippocampal and parahippocampal theta during goal-directed spatial navigation predicts performance on a virtual Morris water maze.

    PubMed

    Cornwell, Brian R; Johnson, Linda L; Holroyd, Tom; Carver, Frederick W; Grillon, Christian

    2008-06-04

    The hippocampus and parahippocampal cortices exhibit theta oscillations during spatial navigation in animals and humans, and in the former are thought to mediate spatial memory formation. Functional specificity of human hippocampal theta, however, is unclear. Neuromagnetic activity was recorded with a whole-head 275-channel magnetoencephalographic (MEG) system as healthy participants navigated to a hidden platform in a virtual reality Morris water maze. MEG data were analyzed for underlying oscillatory sources in the 4-8 Hz band using a spatial filtering technique (i.e., synthetic aperture magnetometry). Source analyses revealed greater theta activity in the left anterior hippocampus and parahippocampal cortices during goal-directed navigation relative to aimless movements in a sensorimotor control condition. Additional analyses showed that left anterior hippocampal activity was predominantly observed during the first one-half of training, pointing to a role for this region in early learning. Moreover, posterior hippocampal theta was highly correlated with navigation performance, with the former accounting for 76% of the variance of the latter. Our findings suggest human spatial learning is dependent on hippocampal and parahippocampal theta oscillations, extending to humans a significant body of research demonstrating such a pivotal role for hippocampal theta in animal navigation.

  16. 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.

  17. Virtual Economies: Threats and Risks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thorpe, Christopher; Hammer, Jessica; Camp, Jean; Callas, Jon; Bond, Mike

    In virtual economies, human and computer players produce goods and services, hold assets, and trade them with other in-game entities, in the same way that people and corporations participate in "real-world" economies. As the border between virtual worlds and the real world grows more and more permeable, privacy and security in virtual worlds matter more and more.

  18. 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.

  19. Ligand- and structure-based virtual screening for clathrodin-derived human voltage-gated sodium channel modulators.

    PubMed

    Tomašić, Tihomir; Hartzoulakis, Basil; Zidar, Nace; Chan, Fiona; Kirby, Robert W; Madge, David J; Peigneur, Steve; Tytgat, Jan; Kikelj, Danijel

    2013-12-23

    Voltage-gated sodium channels (VGSC) are attractive targets for drug discovery because of the broad therapeutic potential of their modulators. On the basis of the structure of marine alkaloid clathrodin, we have recently discovered novel subtype-selective VGSC modulators I and II that were used as starting points for two different ligand-based virtual screening approaches for discovery of novel VGSC modulators. Similarity searching in the ZINC database of drug-like compounds based on compound I resulted in five state-dependent Na(v)1.3 and Na(v)1.7 modulators with improved activity compared to I (IC₅₀ < 20 μM). Compounds 2 and 16 that blocked sodium permeation in Na(v)1.7 with IC₅₀ values of 7 and 9 μM, respectively, are among the most potent clathrodin analogs discovered so far. In the case of compound II, 3D similarity searching in the same database was followed by docking of an enriched compound library into our human Na(v)1.4 open-pore homology model. Although some of the selected compounds, e.g., 31 and 32 displayed 21% and 22% inactivated state I(peak) block of Na(v)1.4 at 10 μM, respectively, none showed better Na(v)1.4 modulatory activity than compound II. Taken together, virtual screening yielded compounds 2 and 16, which represent novel scaffolds for the discovery of human Na(v)1.7 modulators.

  20. 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

  1. High availability using virtualization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Calzolari, Federico; Arezzini, Silvia; Ciampa, Alberto; Mazzoni, Enrico; Domenici, Andrea; Vaglini, Gigliola

    2010-04-01

    High availability has always been one of the main problems for a data center. Till now high availability was achieved by host per host redundancy, a highly expensive method in terms of hardware and human costs. A new approach to the problem can be offered by virtualization. Using virtualization, it is possible to achieve a redundancy system for all the services running on a data center. This new approach to high availability allows the running virtual machines to be distributed over a small number of servers, by exploiting the features of the virtualization layer: start, stop and move virtual machines between physical hosts. The 3RC system is based on a finite state machine, providing the possibility to restart each virtual machine over any physical host, or reinstall it from scratch. A complete infrastructure has been developed to install operating system and middleware in a few minutes. To virtualize the main servers of a data center, a new procedure has been developed to migrate physical to virtual hosts. The whole Grid data center SNS-PISA is running at the moment in virtual environment under the high availability system.

  2. Metric Sex Determination of the Human Coxal Bone on a Virtual Sample using Decision Trees.

    PubMed

    Savall, Frédéric; Faruch-Bilfeld, Marie; Dedouit, Fabrice; Sans, Nicolas; Rousseau, Hervé; Rougé, Daniel; Telmon, Norbert

    2015-11-01

    Decision trees provide an alternative to multivariate discriminant analysis, which is still the most commonly used in anthropometric studies. Our study analyzed the metric characterization of a recent virtual sample of 113 coxal bones using decision trees for sex determination. From 17 osteometric type I landmarks, a dataset was built with five classic distances traditionally reported in the literature and six new distances selected using the two-step ratio method. A ten-fold cross-validation was performed, and a decision tree was established on two subsamples (training and test sets). The decision tree established on the training set included three nodes and its application to the test set correctly classified 92% of individuals. This percentage was similar to the data of the literature. The usefulness of decision trees has been demonstrated in numerous fields. They have been already used in sex determination, body mass prediction, and ancestry estimation. This study shows another use of decision trees enabling simple and accurate sex determination.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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…

  7. 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…

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

    PubMed

    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.

  9. The functional role of human right hippocampal/parahippocampal theta rhythm in environmental encoding during virtual spatial navigation.

    PubMed

    Pu, Yi; Cornwell, Brian R; Cheyne, Douglas; Johnson, Blake W

    2017-03-01

    Low frequency theta band oscillations (4-8 Hz) are thought to provide a timing mechanism for hippocampal place cell firing and to mediate the formation of spatial memory. In rodents, hippocampal theta has been shown to play an important role in encoding a new environment during spatial navigation, but a similar functional role of hippocampal theta in humans has not been firmly established. To investigate this question, we recorded healthy participants' brain responses with a 160-channel whole-head MEG system as they performed two training sets of a virtual Morris water maze task. Environment layouts (except for platform locations) of the two sets were kept constant to measure theta activity during spatial learning in new and familiar environments. In line with previous findings, left hippocampal/parahippocampal theta showed more activation navigating to a hidden platform relative to random swimming. Consistent with our hypothesis, right hippocampal/parahippocampal theta was stronger during the first training set compared to the second one. Notably, theta in this region during the first training set correlated with spatial navigation performance across individuals in both training sets. These results strongly argue for the functional importance of right hippocampal theta in initial encoding of configural properties of an environment during spatial navigation. Our findings provide important evidence that right hippocampal/parahippocampal theta activity is associated with environmental encoding in the human brain. Hum Brain Mapp 38:1347-1361, 2017. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  10. 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…

  11. 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.

  12. Design of a Virtual Player for Joint Improvisation with Humans in the Mirror Game.

    PubMed

    Zhai, Chao; Alderisio, Francesco; Słowiński, Piotr; Tsaneva-Atanasova, Krasimira; di Bernardo, Mario

    2016-01-01

    Joint improvisation is often observed among humans performing joint action tasks. Exploring the underlying cognitive and neural mechanisms behind the emergence of joint improvisation is an open research challenge. This paper investigates jointly improvised movements between two participants in the mirror game, a paradigmatic joint task example. First, experiments involving movement coordination of different dyads of human players are performed in order to build a human benchmark. No designation of leader and follower is given beforehand. We find that joint improvisation is characterized by the lack of a leader and high levels of movement synchronization. Then, a theoretical model is proposed to capture some features of their interaction, and a set of experiments is carried out to test and validate the model ability to reproduce the experimental observations. Furthermore, the model is used to drive a computer avatar able to successfully improvise joint motion with a human participant in real time. Finally, a convergence analysis of the proposed model is carried out to confirm its ability to reproduce joint movements between the participants.

  13. Tailor-Made or Off-the-Peg? Virtual Courses in the Humanities.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Channon, Geoffrey

    2000-01-01

    Describes how the British government views the electronic campus as a quick fix for delivering the ideas of a learning society and mass higher (and further) education. Argues that in the humanities interventions are needed to secure a meld between face-to-face teaching methods and the new technology. (CMK)

  14. Design of a Virtual Player for Joint Improvisation with Humans in the Mirror Game

    PubMed Central

    Zhai, Chao; Alderisio, Francesco; Tsaneva-Atanasova, Krasimira; di Bernardo, Mario

    2016-01-01

    Joint improvisation is often observed among humans performing joint action tasks. Exploring the underlying cognitive and neural mechanisms behind the emergence of joint improvisation is an open research challenge. This paper investigates jointly improvised movements between two participants in the mirror game, a paradigmatic joint task example. First, experiments involving movement coordination of different dyads of human players are performed in order to build a human benchmark. No designation of leader and follower is given beforehand. We find that joint improvisation is characterized by the lack of a leader and high levels of movement synchronization. Then, a theoretical model is proposed to capture some features of their interaction, and a set of experiments is carried out to test and validate the model ability to reproduce the experimental observations. Furthermore, the model is used to drive a computer avatar able to successfully improvise joint motion with a human participant in real time. Finally, a convergence analysis of the proposed model is carried out to confirm its ability to reproduce joint movements between the participants. PMID:27123927

  15. 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…

  16. Human embryonic growth and development of the cerebellum using 3-dimensional ultrasound and virtual reality.

    PubMed

    Rousian, M; Groenenberg, I A L; Hop, W C; Koning, A H J; van der Spek, P J; Exalto, N; Steegers, E A P

    2013-08-01

    The aim of our study was to evaluate the first trimester cerebellar growth and development using 2 different measuring techniques: 3-dimensional (3D) and virtual reality (VR) ultrasound visualization. The cerebellum measurements were related to gestational age (GA) and crown-rump length (CRL). Finally, the reproducibility of both the methods was tested. In a prospective cohort study, we collected 630 first trimester, serially obtained, 3D ultrasound scans of 112 uncomplicated pregnancies between 7 + 0 and 12 + 6 weeks of GA. Only scans with high-quality images of the fossa posterior were selected for the analysis. Measurements were performed offline in the coronal plane using 3D (4D view) and VR (V-Scope) software. The VR enables the observer to use all available dimensions in a data set by visualizing the volume as a "hologram." Total cerebellar diameter, left, and right hemispheric diameter, and thickness were measured using both the techniques. All measurements were performed 3 times and means were used in repeated measurements analysis. After exclusion criteria were applied 177 (28%) 3D data sets were available for further analysis. The median GA was 10 + 0 weeks and the median CRL was 31.4 mm (range: 5.2-79.0 mm). The cerebellar parameters could be measured from 7 gestational weeks onward. The total cerebellar diameter increased from 2.2 mm at 7 weeks of GA to 13.9 mm at 12 weeks of GA using VR and from 2.2 to 13.8 mm using 3D ultrasound. The reproducibility, established in a subset of 35 data sets, resulted in intraclass correlation coefficient values ≥0.98. It can be concluded that cerebellar measurements performed by the 2 methods proved to be reproducible and comparable with each other. However, VR-using all three dimensions-provides a superior method for the visualization of the cerebellum. The constructed reference values can be used to study normal and abnormal cerebellar growth and development.

  17. 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.

  18. 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…

  19. 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…

  20. Changes in Intracellular Na+ following Enhancement of Late Na+ Current in Virtual Human Ventricular Myocytes.

    PubMed

    Cardona, Karen; Trenor, Beatriz; Giles, Wayne R

    2016-01-01

    The slowly inactivating or late Na+ current, INa-L, can contribute to the initiation of both atrial and ventricular rhythm disturbances in the human heart. However, the cellular and molecular mechanisms that underlie these pro-arrhythmic influences are not fully understood. At present, the major working hypothesis is that the Na+ influx corresponding to INa-L significantly increases intracellular Na+, [Na+]i; and the resulting reduction in the electrochemical driving force for Na+ reduces and (may reverse) Na+/Ca2+ exchange. These changes increase intracellular Ca2+, [Ca2+]i; which may further enhance INa-L due to calmodulin-dependent phosphorylation of the Na+ channels. This paper is based on mathematical simulations using the O'Hara et al (2011) model of baseline or healthy human ventricular action potential waveforms(s) and its [Ca2+]i homeostasis mechanisms. Somewhat surprisingly, our results reveal only very small changes (≤ 1.5 mM) in [Na+]i even when INa-L is increased 5-fold and steady-state stimulation rate is approximately 2 times the normal human heart rate (i.e. 2 Hz). Previous work done using well-established models of the rabbit and human ventricular action potential in heart failure settings also reported little or no change in [Na+]i when INa-L was increased. Based on our simulations, the major short-term effect of markedly augmenting INa-L is a significant prolongation of the action potential and an associated increase in the likelihood of reactivation of the L-type Ca2+ current, ICa-L. Furthermore, this action potential prolongation does not contribute to [Na+]i increase.

  1. Changes in Intracellular Na+ following Enhancement of Late Na+ Current in Virtual Human Ventricular Myocytes

    PubMed Central

    Giles, Wayne R.

    2016-01-01

    The slowly inactivating or late Na+ current, INa-L, can contribute to the initiation of both atrial and ventricular rhythm disturbances in the human heart. However, the cellular and molecular mechanisms that underlie these pro-arrhythmic influences are not fully understood. At present, the major working hypothesis is that the Na+ influx corresponding to INa-L significantly increases intracellular Na+, [Na+]i; and the resulting reduction in the electrochemical driving force for Na+ reduces and (may reverse) Na+/Ca2+ exchange. These changes increase intracellular Ca2+, [Ca2+]i; which may further enhance INa-L due to calmodulin-dependent phosphorylation of the Na+ channels. This paper is based on mathematical simulations using the O’Hara et al (2011) model of baseline or healthy human ventricular action potential waveforms(s) and its [Ca2+]i homeostasis mechanisms. Somewhat surprisingly, our results reveal only very small changes (≤ 1.5 mM) in [Na+]i even when INa-L is increased 5-fold and steady-state stimulation rate is approximately 2 times the normal human heart rate (i.e. 2 Hz). Previous work done using well-established models of the rabbit and human ventricular action potential in heart failure settings also reported little or no change in [Na+]i when INa-L was increased. Based on our simulations, the major short-term effect of markedly augmenting INa-L is a significant prolongation of the action potential and an associated increase in the likelihood of reactivation of the L-type Ca2+ current, ICa-L. Furthermore, this action potential prolongation does not contribute to [Na+]i increase. PMID:27875582

  2. 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.

  3. Library Virtual Tours: A Case Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ashmore, Beth; Grogg, Jill E.

    2004-01-01

    Virtual tours delivered via the Web have become a common tool for both instruction and outreach. This article is a case study of the creation of a virtual tour for a university library and is intended to provide others interested in creating a virtual tour of their library the opportunity to learn from the mistakes and successes of fellow…

  4. Virtual Reference Services: Directions and Agendas.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gray, Suzanne M.

    2000-01-01

    Analyzes Web sites of ten large research libraries in order to establish a basic understanding of how some major libraries are currently providing virtual reference services. Discusses centralization; email reference guidelines; creating a service economy; expanding hours of service; virtual users' needs; and real-time virtual reference.…

  5. 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…

  6. 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…

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. Novel virtual screening approach for the discovery of human tyrosinase inhibitors.

    PubMed

    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.

  12. Virtual Laboratories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hut, P.

    At the frontier of most areas in science, computer simulations playa central role. The traditional division of natural science into experimental and theoretical investigations is now completely outdated. Instead, theory, simulation, and experimentation form three equally essential aspects, each with its own unique flavor and challenges. Yet, education in computational science is still lagging far behind, and the number of text books in this area is minuscule compared to the many text books on theoretical and experimental science. As a result, many researchers still carry out simulations in a haphazard way, without properly setting up the computational equivalent of a well equipped laboratory. The art of creating such a virtual laboratory, while providing proper extensibility and documentation, is still in its infancy. A new approach is described here, Open Knowledge, as an extension of the notion of Open Source software. Besides open source code, manuals, and primers, an open knowledge project provides simulated dialogues between code developers, thus sharing not only the code, but also the motivations behind the code.

  13. 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…

  14. Creating a monomeric endonuclease TALE-I-SceI with high specificity and low genotoxicity in human cells

    PubMed Central

    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. PMID:25541197

  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. 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.

  17. Human chorionic gonadotropin is expressed virtually in all intracranial germ cell tumors.

    PubMed

    Takami, Hirokazu; Fukushima, Shintaro; Fukuoka, Kohei; Suzuki, Tomonari; Yanagisawa, Takaaki; Matsushita, Yuko; Nakamura, Taishi; Arita, Hideyuki; Mukasa, Akitake; Saito, Nobuhito; Kanamori, Masayuki; Kumabe, Toshihiro; Tominaga, Teiji; Kobayashi, Keiichi; Nagane, Motoo; Iuchi, Toshihiko; Tamura, Kaoru; Maehara, Taketoshi; Sugiyama, Kazuhiko; Nakada, Mitsutoshi; Kanemura, Yonehiro; Nonaka, Masahiro; Yokogami, Kiyotaka; Takeshima, Hideo; Narita, Yoshitaka; Shibui, Soichiro; Nakazato, Yoichi; Nishikawa, Ryo; Ichimura, Koichi; Matsutani, Masao

    2015-08-01

    Human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) production has been utilized as a diagnostic marker for germinoma with syncytiotrophoblastic giant cells (STGC) and choriocarcinoma. Elevated hCG in germinoma is considered to predict less favorable prognosis, and an intensive treatment strategy may accordingly be applied. However, there is some evidence that any germinoma may produce hCG to varying extent. We investigated mRNA expression of the hCG β subunit (hCGβ) using real time quantitative polymerase chain reaction in 94 germ cell tumors (GCTs). Most (93.3 %) GCTs showed higher expression levels compared with that of normal brain tissue (1.09 × 10(0)-1.40 × 10(5) fold). The expression was the highest in GCTs which harbor choriocarcinoma or STGC components. The expression level of hCGβ in germinoma was highly variable (1.09 × 10(0)-5.88 × 10(4) fold) in linear but not bimodal distribution. hCG concentrations in serum and CSF correlated with gene expression, especially when GCTs with single histological component were analyzed separately. The expression was not significantly associated with recurrence in pure germinoma. These results suggest that the serum/CSF hCG levels may need to be interpreted with caution as most GCTs appear to have the capacity of producing hCG irrespective of their histology. The clinical significance of ubiquitous hCG expression in GCTs needs further investigation.

  18. 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.

  19. Virtual volatility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Silva, A. Christian; Prange, Richard E.

    2007-03-01

    We introduce the concept of virtual volatility. This simple but new measure shows how to quantify the uncertainty in the forecast of the drift component of a random walk. The virtual volatility also is a useful tool in understanding the stochastic process for a given portfolio. In particular, and as an example, we were able to identify mean reversion effect in our portfolio. Finally, we briefly discuss the potential practical effect of the virtual volatility on an investor asset allocation strategy.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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…

  5. The virtual wind tunnel

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bryson, Steve; Levit, Creon

    1992-01-01

    Consideration is given to the design and implementaion of a virtual environment linked to a graphics workstation for the visualization of complex fluid flows. The user wears a stereo head-tracked display which displays 3D information and an instrumented glove to intuitively position flow-visualization tools. The idea is to create for the user an illusion that he or she is actually in the flow manipulating visualization tools. The user's presence does not disturb the flow so that sensitive flow areas can be easily investigated. The flow is precomputed and can be investigated at any length scale and with control over time. Particular attention is given to the visualization structures and their interfaces in the virtual environment, hardware and software, and the performance of the virtual wind tunnel using flow past a tapered cylinder as an example.

  6. 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

  7. 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…

  8. Broad scope method for creating humanized animal models for animal health and disease research through antibiotic treatment and human fecal transfer

    PubMed Central

    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

  9. 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.

  10. 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...

  11. 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…

  12. 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.

  13. Functional Impact and Evolution of a Novel Human Polymorphic Inversion That Disrupts a Gene and Creates a Fusion Transcript

    PubMed Central

    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

    2015-01-01

    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. PMID:26427027

  14. Virtual Prototyping at CERN

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gennaro, Silvano De

    The VENUS (Virtual Environment Navigation in the Underground Sites) project is probably the largest Virtual Reality application to Engineering design in the world. VENUS is just over one year old and offers a fully immersive and stereoscopic "flythru" of the LHC pits for the proposed experiments, including the experimental area equipment and the surface models that are being prepared for a territorial impact study. VENUS' Virtual Prototypes are an ideal replacement for the wooden models traditionally build for the past CERN machines, as they are generated directly from the EUCLID CAD files, therefore they are totally reliable, they can be updated in a matter of minutes, and they allow designers to explore them from inside, in a one-to-one scale. Navigation can be performed on the computer screen, on a stereoscopic large projection screen, or in immersive conditions, with an helmet and 3D mouse. By using specialised collision detection software, the computer can find optimal paths to lower each detector part into the pits and position it to destination, letting us visualize the whole assembly probess. During construction, these paths can be fed to a robot controller, which can operate the bridge cranes and build LHC almost without human intervention. VENUS is currently developing a multiplatform VR browser that will let the whole HEP community access LHC's Virtual Protoypes over the web. Many interesting things took place during the conference on Virtual Reality. For more information please refer to the Virtual Reality section.

  15. The Russian Virtual Observatory Project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dluzhnevskaya, O. B.; Malkov, O. Yu.

    2005-12-01

    We describe the Russian Virtual Observatory (RVO), a prestigious international project sponsored by the Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS). In 2001, the RAS Scientific Council on Astronomy included this project in a list of the most important international projects of the RAS. Its main goal to create and develop the RVO, intended to provide Russian astronomers with direct and effective access to worldwide astronomical data resources. The RVO is one component of the International Virtual Observatory (IVO), a system in which vast astronomical archives and databases around the world, together with analysis tools and computational services, are linked together into an integrated facility. The IVO unites all important national and international projects to create virtual observatories, coordinated by the International Virtual Observatory Alliance. The RVO is one of the organizers and an important participant of the IVO Alliance.

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. Armenian Virtual Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mickaelian, A. M.

    2015-07-01

    Vast amount of information continuously accumulated in astronomy requires finding new solutions for its efficient storage, use and dissemination, as well as accomplishing new research projects. Virtual Observatories (VOs) have been created in a number of countries to set up a new environment for these tasks. Based on them, the International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA) was created in 2002, which unifies 19 VO projects, including Armenian Virtual Observatory (ArVO) founded in 2005. ArVO is a project of Byurakan Astrophysical Observatory (BAO) aimed at construction of a modern system for data archiving, extraction, acquisition, reduction, use and publication. ArVO technical and research projects are presented, including the Global Spectroscopic Database, which is being built based on Digitized First Byurakan Survey (DFBS). Quick optical identification of radio, IR or X-ray sources will be possible by plotting their positions in the DFBS or other spectroscopic plate and matching all available data. Accomplishment of new projects by combining data is so important that the International Council of Scientific Unions (ICSU) recently created World Data System (WDS) for unifying data coming from all science areas, and BAO has also joined it.

  19. Virtual-screening targeting Human Immunodeficiency Virus type 1 integrase-lens epithelium-derived growth factor/p75 interaction for drug development.

    PubMed

    Gu, Wan-Gang; Liu, Bai-Nan; Yuan, Jun-Fa

    2015-02-01

    Three integrase (IN) inhibitors have been approved by FDA for clinical treatment of Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) infection. This stimulates more researchers to focus their studies on this target for anti-HIV drug development. Three steps regarding of IN activity have been validated for inhibitor discovery: strand transfer, 3'-terminal processing, and IN-lens epithelium-derived growth factor (LEDGF)/p75 interaction. Among them, IN-LEDGF/p75 interaction is a new target validated in recent years. Emergence of drug-resistant virus strains makes this target appealing to pharmacologists. Compared with the traditional screening methods such as AlphaScreen and cell-based screening developed for IN inhibitor discovery, virtual screening is a powerful technique in modern drug discovery. Here we summarized the recent advances of virtual-screening targeting IN-LEDFG/p75 interaction. The combined application of virtual screening and experiments in drug discovery against IN-LEDFG/p75 interaction sheds light on anti-HIV research and drug discovery.

  20. 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…

  1. Virtual Teams.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Geber, Beverly

    1995-01-01

    Virtual work teams scattered around the globe are becoming a feature of corporate workplaces. Although most people prefer face-to-face meetings and interactions, reality often requires telecommuting. (JOW)

  2. Modelling of experimentally created partial-thickness human skin burns and subsequent therapeutic cooling: a new measure for cooling effectiveness.

    PubMed

    Van de Sompel, Dominique; Kong, Tze Yean; Ventikos, Yiannis

    2009-07-01

    Rapid post-injury cooling of a skin burn has been shown to have both symptomatic and therapeutic benefits. However, the latter cannot be explained by temperature reduction alone, and must thus be secondary to an altered biological response. In this study, we construct a computational model to calculate the heat transfer and damage accumulation in human skin during and after a burn. This enables us to assess the effectiveness of various cooling protocols (involving both free and forced convection to air and water respectively) in terms of their reduction in Arrhenius tissue damage. In this process, we propose an extension of the Arrhenius damage model in the form of a new measure xi, which estimates the relevance of post-burn accrued damage. It was found that the reduction in Arrhenius damage integrals near the skin surface was too small to be physiologically relevant. Hence our results confirm that while the reduction in tissue temperatures is indeed quicker, the therapeutic benefit of cooling cannot be explained by thermal arguments (i.e. based on Arrhenius damage models) alone. We plan to validate this hypothesis by conducting future microarray analyses of differential gene expression in cooled and non-cooled burn lesions. Our computational model will support such experiments by calculating the necessary conditions to produce a burn of specified severity for a given experimental setup.

  3. “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

  4. "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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. CDR-restricted engineering of native human scFvs creates highly stable and soluble bifunctional antibodies for subcutaneous delivery

    PubMed Central

    Fennell, Brian J; McDonnell, Barry; Tam, Amy Sze Pui; Chang, Lijun; Steven, John; Broadbent, Ian D; Gao, Huilan; Kieras, Elizabeth; Alley, Jennifer; Luxenberg, Deborah; Edmonds, Jason; Fitz, Lori J; Miao, Wenyan; Whitters, Matthew J; Medley, Quintus G; Guo, Yongjing J; Darmanin-Sheehan, Alfredo; Autin, Bénédicte; Shúilleabháin, Deirdre Ní; Cummins, Emma; King, Amy; Krebs, Mark RH; Grace, Christopher; Hickling, Timothy P; Boisvert, Angela; Zhong, Xiaotian; McKenna, Matthew; Francis, Christopher; Olland, Stephane; Bloom, Laird; Paulsen, Janet; Somers, Will; Jensen, Allan; Lin, Laura; Finlay, William JJ; Cunningham, Orla

    2013-01-01

    While myriad molecular formats for bispecific antibodies have been examined to date, the simplest structures are often based on the scFv. Issues with stability and manufacturability in scFv-based bispecific molecules, however, have been a significant hindrance to their development, particularly for high-concentration, stable formulations that allow subcutaneous delivery. Our aim was to generate a tetravalent bispecific molecule targeting two inflammatory mediators for synergistic immune modulation. We focused on an scFv-Fc-scFv format, with a flexible (A4T)3 linker coupling an additional scFv to the C-terminus of an scFv-Fc. While one of the lead scFvs isolated directly from a naïve library was well-behaved and sufficiently potent, the parental anti-CXCL13 scFv 3B4 required optimization for affinity, stability, and cynomolgus ortholog cross-reactivity. To achieve this, we eschewed framework-based stabilizing mutations in favor of complementarity-determining region (CDR) mutagenesis and re-selection for simultaneous improvements in both affinity and thermal stability. Phage-displayed 3B4 CDR-mutant libraries were used in an aggressive “hammer-hug” selection strategy that incorporated thermal challenge, functional, and biophysical screening. This approach identified leads with improved stability and >18-fold, and 4,100-fold higher affinity for both human and cynomolgus CXCL13, respectively. Improvements were exclusively mediated through only 4 mutations in VL-CDR3. Lead scFvs were reformatted into scFv-Fc-scFvs and their biophysical properties ranked. Our final candidate could be formulated in a standard biopharmaceutical platform buffer at 100 mg/ml with <2% high molecular weight species present after 7 weeks at 4 °C and viscosity <15 cP. This workflow has facilitated the identification of a truly manufacturable scFv-based bispecific therapeutic suitable for subcutaneous administration. PMID:23995618

  8. Laser-assisted bioprinting for creating on-demand patterns of human osteoprogenitor cells and nano-hydroxyapatite.

    PubMed

    Catros, Sylvain; Fricain, Jean-Christophe; Guillotin, Bertrand; Pippenger, Benjamin; Bareille, Reine; Remy, Murielle; Lebraud, Eric; Desbat, Bernard; Amédée, Joëlle; Guillemot, Fabien

    2011-06-01

    Developing tools to reproduce and manipulate the cell micro-environment, including the location and shape of cell patterns, is essential for tissue engineering. Parallel to inkjet printing and pressure-operated mechanical extruders, laser-assisted bioprinting (LAB) has emerged as an alternative technology to fabricate two- and three-dimensional tissue engineering products. The objective of this work was to determine laser printing parameters for patterning and assembling nano-hydroxyapatite (nHA) and human osteoprogenitors (HOPs) in two and three dimensions with LAB. The LAB workstation used in this study comprised an infrared laser focused on a quartz ribbon that was coated with a thin absorbing layer of titanium and a layer of bioink. The scanning system, quartz ribbon and substrate were piloted by dedicated software, allowing the sequential printing of different biological materials into two and/or three dimensions. nHA printing material (bioink) was synthesized by chemical precipitation and was characterized prior and following printing using transmission electron microscopy, Fourier transformed infrared spectroscopy and x-ray diffraction. HOP bioink was prepared using a 30 million cells ml(-1) suspension in culture medium and cells were characterized after printing using a Live/Dead assay and osteoblastic phenotype markers (alcaline phosphatase and osteocalcin). The results revealed that LAB allows printing and organizing nHA and HOPs in two and three dimensions. LAB did not alter the physico-chemical properties of nHA, nor the viability, proliferation and phenotype of HOPs over time (up to 15 days). This study has demonstrated that LAB is a relevant method for patterning nHA and osteoblastic cells in 2D, and is also adapted to the bio-fabrication of 3D composite materials.

  9. 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

  10. Virtual interface environment workstations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fisher, S. S.; Wenzel, E. M.; Coler, C.; Mcgreevy, M. W.

    1988-01-01

    A head-mounted, wide-angle, stereoscopic display system controlled by operator position, voice and gesture has been developed at NASA's Ames Research Center for use as a multipurpose interface environment. This Virtual Interface Environment Workstation (VIEW) system provides a multisensory, interactive display environment in which a user can virtually explore a 360-degree synthesized or remotely sensed environment and can viscerally interact with its components. Primary applications of the system are in telerobotics, management of large-scale integrated information systems, and human factors research. System configuration, research scenarios, and research directions are described.

  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. Community and Virtual Community.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ellis, David; Oldridge, Rachel; Vasconcelos, Ana

    2004-01-01

    Presents a literature review that covers the following topics related to virtual communities: (1) information and virtual community; (2) virtual communities and communities of practice; (3) virtual communities and virtual arenas, including virtual community networks; and (4) networked virtual communities. (Contains 175 references.) (MES)

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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).

  17. 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.

  18. Tele Hyper Virtuality

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Terashima, Nobuyoshi

    1994-01-01

    In the future, remote images sent over communication lines will be reproduced in virtual reality (VR). This form of virtual telecommunications, which will allow observers to engage in an activity as though it were real, is the focus of considerable attention. Taken a step further, real and unreal objects will be placed in a single space to create an extremely realistic environment. Here, imaginary and other life forms as well as people and animals in remote locations will gather via telecommunication lines that create a common environment where life forms can work and interact together. Words, gestures, diagrams and other forms of communication will be used freely in performing work. Actual construction of a system based on this new concept will not only provide people with experiences that would have been impossible in the past, but will also inspire new applications in which people will function in environments where it would have been difficult if not impossible for them to function until now. This paper describes Tele Hyper Virtuality concept, its definition, applications, the key technologies to accomplish it and future prospects.

  19. 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.

  20. Venturing into the uncanny valley of mind-The influence of mind attribution on the acceptance of human-like characters in a virtual reality setting.

    PubMed

    Stein, Jan-Philipp; Ohler, Peter

    2017-03-01

    For more than 40years, the uncanny valley model has captivated researchers from various fields of expertise. Still, explanations as to why slightly imperfect human-like characters can evoke feelings of eeriness remain the subject of controversy. Many experiments exploring the phenomenon have emphasized specific visual factors in connection to evolutionary psychological theories or an underlying categorization conflict. More recently, studies have also shifted away focus from the appearance of human-like entities, instead exploring their mental capabilities as basis for observers' discomfort. In order to advance this perspective, we introduced 92 participants to a virtual reality (VR) chat program and presented them with two digital characters engaged in an emotional and empathic dialogue. Using the same pre-recorded 3D scene, we manipulated the perceived control type of the depicted characters (human-controlled avatars vs. computer-controlled agents), as well as their alleged level of autonomy (scripted vs. self-directed actions). Statistical analyses revealed that participants experienced significantly stronger eeriness if they perceived the empathic characters to be autonomous artificial intelligences. As human likeness and attractiveness ratings did not result in significant group differences, we present our results as evidence for an "uncanny valley of mind" that relies on the attribution of emotions and social cognition to non-human entities. A possible relationship to the philosophy of anthropocentrism and its "threat to human distinctiveness" concept is discussed.

  1. Creating new library services through collaboration with resident groups : Aimimg at human resource development and information literacy education in ways only libraries can do : Study on activities of an NPO called Ueda Library Club

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morita, Utako

    Creating new library services through collaboration with resident groups : Aimimg at human resource development and information literacy education in ways only libraries can do : Study on activities of an NPO called Ueda Library Club

  2. Virtual Tower

    SciTech Connect

    Wayne, R.A.

    1997-08-01

    The primary responsibility of an intrusion detection system (IDS) operator is to monitor the system, assess alarms, and summon and coordinate the response team when a threat is acknowledged. The tools currently provided to the operator are somewhat limited: monitors must be switched, keystrokes must be entered to call up intrusion sensor data, and communication with the response force must be maintained. The Virtual tower is an operator interface assembled from low-cost commercial-off-the-shelf hardware and software; it enables large amounts of data to be displayed in a virtual manner that provides instant recognition for the operator and increases assessment accuracy in alarm annunciator and control systems. This is accomplished by correlating and fusing the data into a 360-degree visual representation that employs color, auxiliary attributes, video, and directional audio to prompt the operator. The Virtual Tower would be a valuable low-cost enhancement to existing systems.

  3. Virtual Violence.

    PubMed

    2016-08-01

    In the United States, exposure to media violence is becoming an inescapable component of children's lives. With the rise in new technologies, such as tablets and new gaming platforms, children and adolescents increasingly are exposed to what is known as "virtual violence." This form of violence is not experienced physically; rather, it is experienced in realistic ways via new technology and ever more intense and realistic games. The American Academy of Pediatrics continues to be concerned about children's exposure to virtual violence and the effect it has on their overall health and well-being. This policy statement aims to summarize the current state of scientific knowledge regarding the effects of virtual violence on children's attitudes and behaviors and to make specific recommendations for pediatricians, parents, industry, and policy makers.

  4. 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…

  5. 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…

  6. A virtual universe utilizing haptic display

    SciTech Connect

    Anderson, T.

    1996-12-31

    This paper summarizes a virtual reality universe application in which a user can travel between four virtual worlds through the use of haptic buttons. Each of the worlds demonstrates different aspects of haptic rendering which together create a wide base for force feedback effects. Specifics of the rendering algorithms will be discussed along with possible uses and modifications for other real-life applications.

  7. 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…

  8. 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.

  9. 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).

  10. Virtual Environments in Scientific Visualization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bryson, Steve; Lisinski, T. A. (Technical Monitor)

    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.

  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. Cytogenetic anchoring of radiation hybrid and virtual maps of sheep chromosome X and comparison of X chromosomes in sheep, cattle, and human.

    PubMed

    Goldammer, Tom; Brunner, Ronald M; Rebl, Alexander; Wu, Chun Hua; Nomura, Ko; Hadfield, Tracy; Maddox, Jill F; Cockett, Noelle E

    2009-01-01

    A comprehensive physical map was generated for Ovis aries chromosome X (OARX) based on a cytogenomics approach. DNA probes were prepared from bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) clones from the CHORI-243 sheep library and were assigned to G-banded metaphase spreads via fluorescence in-situ hybridization (FISH). A total of 22 BACs gave a single hybridization signal to the X chromosome and were assigned out of 32 tested. The positioned BACs contained 16 genes and a microsatellite marker which represent new cytogenetically mapped loci in the sheep genome. The gene and microsatellite loci serve to anchor between the existing radiation hybrid (RH) and virtual sheep genome (VSG) maps to the cytogenetic OARX map, whilst the BACs themselves also serve as anchors between the VSG and the cytogenetic maps. An additional 17 links between the RH and cytogenetic maps are provided by BAC end sequence (BES) derived markers that have also been positioned on the RH map. Comparison of the map orders for the cytogenetic, RH, and virtual maps reveals that the orders for the cytogenetic and RH maps are most similar, with only one locus, represented by BAC CH243-330E18, mapping to relatively different positions. Several discrepancies, including an inverted segment are found when comparing both the cytogenetic and RH maps with the virtual map. These discrepancies highlight the value of using physical mapping methods to inform the process of future in silico map construction. A detailed comparative analysis of sheep, human, and cattle mapping data allowed the construction of a comparative map that confirms and expands the knowledge about evolutionary conservation and break points between the X chromosomes of the three mammalian species.

  13. An Interdisciplinary Method for the Visualization of Novel High-Resolution Precision Photography and Micro-XCT Data Sets of NASA's Apollo Lunar Samples and Antarctic Meteorite Samples to Create Combined Research-Grade 3D Virtual Samples for the Benefit of Astromaterials Collections Conservation, Curation, Scientific Research and Education

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Blumenfeld, E. H.; Evans, C. A.; Oshel, E. R.; Liddle, D. A.; Beaulieu, K.; Zeigler, R. A.; Hanna, R. D.; Ketcham, R. A.

    2016-01-01

    New technologies make possible the advancement of documentation and visualization practices that can enhance conservation and curation protocols for NASA's Astromaterials Collections. With increasing demands for accessibility to updated comprehensive data, and with new sample return missions on the horizon, it is of primary importance to develop new standards for contemporary documentation and visualization methodologies. Our interdisciplinary team has expertise in the fields of heritage conservation practices, professional photography, photogrammetry, imaging science, application engineering, data curation, geoscience, and astromaterials curation. Our objective is to create virtual 3D reconstructions of Apollo Lunar and Antarctic Meteorite samples that are a fusion of two state-of-the-art data sets: the interior view of the sample by collecting Micro-XCT data and the exterior view of the sample by collecting high-resolution precision photography data. These new data provide researchers an information-rich visualization of both compositional and textural information prior to any physical sub-sampling. Since January 2013 we have developed a process that resulted in the successful creation of the first image-based 3D reconstruction of an Apollo Lunar Sample correlated to a 3D reconstruction of the same sample's Micro- XCT data, illustrating that this technique is both operationally possible and functionally beneficial. In May of 2016 we began a 3-year research period during which we aim to produce Virtual Astromaterials Samples for 60 high-priority Apollo Lunar and Antarctic Meteorite samples and serve them on NASA's Astromaterials Acquisition and Curation website. Our research demonstrates that research-grade Virtual Astromaterials Samples are beneficial in preserving for posterity a precise 3D reconstruction of the sample prior to sub-sampling, which greatly improves documentation practices, provides unique and novel visualization of the sample's interior and

  14. 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…

  15. Virtual Surgical Planning in Craniofacial Surgery

    PubMed Central

    Chim, Harvey; Wetjen, Nicholas; Mardini, Samir

    2014-01-01

    The complex three-dimensional anatomy of the craniofacial skeleton creates a formidable challenge for surgical reconstruction. Advances in computer-aided design and computer-aided manufacturing technology have created increasing applications for virtual surgical planning in craniofacial surgery, such as preoperative planning, fabrication of cutting guides, and stereolithographic models and fabrication of custom implants. In this review, the authors describe current and evolving uses of virtual surgical planning in craniofacial surgery. PMID:25210509

  16. 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

  17. 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.

  18. Use of a virtual human performance laboratory to improve integration of mathematics and biology in sports science curricula in Sweden and the United States.

    PubMed

    Garza, D; Besier, T; Johnston, T; Rolston, B; Schorsch, A; Matheson, G; Annerstedt, C; Lindh, J; Rydmark, M

    2007-01-01

    New fields such as bioengineering are exploring the role of the physical sciences in traditional biological approaches to problems, with exciting results in device innovation, medicine, and research biology. The integration of mathematics, biomechanics, and material sciences into the undergraduate biology curriculum will better prepare students for these opportunities and enhance cooperation among faculty and students at the university level. We propose the study of sports science as the basis for introduction of this interdisciplinary program. This novel integrated approach will require a virtual human performance laboratory dual-hosted in Sweden and the United States. We have designed a course model that involves cooperative learning between students at Göteborg University and Stanford University, utilizes new technologies, encourages development of original research and will rely on frequent self-assessment and reflective learning. We will compare outcomes between this course and a more traditional didactic format as well as assess the effectiveness of multiple web-hosted virtual environments. We anticipate the grant will result in a network of original faculty and student research in exercise science and pedagogy as well as provide the opportunity for implementation of the model in more advance training levels and K-12 programs.

  19. Personal Virtual Libraries

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pappas, Marjorie L.

    2004-01-01

    Virtual libraries are becoming more and more common. Most states have a virtual library. A growing number of public libraries have a virtual presence on the Web. Virtual libraries are a growing addition to school library media collections. The next logical step would be personal virtual libraries. A personal virtual library (PVL) is a collection…

  20. 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…

  1. 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…

  2. Virtual reality: an intuitive approach to robotics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Natonek, Emerico; Flueckiger, Lorenzo; Zimmerman, Thierry; Baur, Charles

    1995-12-01

    Tasks definition for manipulators or robotic systems (conventional or mobile) usually lack on performance and are sometimes impossible to design. The `On-line' programming methods are often time expensive or risky for the human operator or the robot itself. On the other hand, `Off-line' techniques are tedious and complex. In a virtual reality robotics environment (VRRE), users are not asked to write down complicated functions to specify robotic tasks. However a VRRE is only effective if all the environment changes and object movements are fed-back to the virtual manipulating system. Thus some kind of visual or multi-sensor feedback is needed. This paper describes a semi autonomous robot system composed of an industrial 5-axis robot and its virtual equivalent. The user is immersed in a 3-D space built out of the robot's environment models. He directly interacts with the virtual `components' in an intuitive way creating trajectories, tasks, and dynamically optimizing them. A vision system is used to recognize the position and orientation of the objects in the real robot workspace, and updates the VRRE through a bi-directional communication link. Once the tasks have been optimized on the VRRE, they are sent to the real robot and a semi autonomous process ensures their correct execution thanks to a camera directly mounted on the robot's end effector. Therefore, errors and drifts due to transmission delays can be locally processed and successfully avoided. The system can execute the tasks autonomously, independently of small environmental changes due to transmission delays. If the environmental changes are too important the robot stops re-actualizes the VRRE with the new environmental configuration and waits for task redesign.

  3. Dissociation of past and present experience in problem solving using a virtual environment.

    PubMed

    Sturz, Bradley R; Bodily, Kent D; Katz, Jeffrey S

    2009-02-01

    An interactive 3D desktop virtual environment task was created to investigate learning mechanisms in human problem solving. Participants were assessed for previous video game experience, divided into two groups (Training and Control), and matched for gender and experience. The Training group learned specific skills within the virtual environment before being presented a problem. The Control group was presented the problem only. Completion time was faster for the Training group and was affected by level of previous video game experience. Results indicated problem solving was a function of specific and general experience and demonstrated a method for dissociating these two facets of experience.

  4. 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.

  5. 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…

  6. Virtual Mirrors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Greenslade, Thomas B.

    2010-01-01

    The multiple-reflection photograph in Fig. 1 was taken in an elevator on board the cruise ship Norwegian Jade in March 2008. Three of the four walls of the elevator were mirrored, allowing me to see the combination of two standard arrangements of plane mirrors: two mirrors set at 90° to each other and two parallel mirrors. Optical phenomena of this complexity are most easily approached by the Method of Virtual Mirrors.

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. Scopolamine disrupts hippocampal activity during allocentric spatial memory in humans: an fMRI study using a virtual reality analogue of the Morris Water Maze.

    PubMed

    Antonova, Elena; Parslow, David; Brammer, Michael; Simmons, Andrew; Williams, Steven; Dawson, Gerard R; Morris, Robin

    2011-09-01

    The role of the septohippocampal cholinergic system in memory disorders is well established. The effects of cholinergic challenge in animals have been extensively studied using the Morris Water Maze (MWM) which engages allocentric spatial memory. The present study investigated the effect of the centrally active muscarinic antagonist scopolamine on allocentric spatial memory in humans using a virtual reality analogue of the MWM task, the Arena task. Twenty right-handed healthy male adults with a mean age of 28 years (range 23-35 years) were studied using functional MRI in a randomized double-blind cross-over design with scopolamine bromide (0.4 mg i.m.) or placebo (saline) administered 70-90 min before the beginning of the functional scan. Scopolamine induced a significant reduction in the activation of the hippocampus/parahippocampal gyrus compared with placebo. Furthermore, there was dissociation between hippocampus-based and striatal-based memory systems, which were significantly more activated in the placebo and scopolamine conditions, respectively. The activation of the striatal system under scopolamine challenge was accompanied by the activation of the amygdala. In conclusion, the study extends the well-documented finding in animals of the attenuating effect of scopolamine on hippocampal activity during allocentric spatial memory to humans. Furthermore, the results call for further investigation of the dissociation between the hippocampal and neostriatal memory systems during allocentric spatial processing under cholinergic blockade in humans.

  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. Virtualizing the Word: Expanding Walter Ong's Theory of Orality and Literacy through a Culture of Virtuality

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dempsey, Jennifer Camille

    2014-01-01

    This dissertation seeks to create a vision for virtuality culture through a theoretical expansion of Walter Ong's literacy and orality culture model. It investigates the ubiquitous and multimodal nature of the virtuality cultural phenomenon that is mediated by contemporary technology and not explained by pre-existing cultural conventions. Through…

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  15. 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.

  16. 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...

  17. Virtual Colonoscopy

    MedlinePlus

    ... which a radiologist uses x-rays and a computer to create images of your rectum and colon ... Research Resources Research at NIDDK Meetings & Events Technology Advancement & Transfer Health Information Diabetes Digestive Diseases Kidney Disease ...

  18. The value of virtual conferencing for ecology and conservation.

    PubMed

    Fraser, Hannah; Soanes, Kylie; Jones, Stuart A; Jones, Chris S; Malishev, Matthew

    2016-09-14

    The objectives of conservation science and dissemination of its research create a paradox: Conservation is about preserving the environment, yet scientists spread this message at conferences with heavy carbon footprints. Ecology and conservation science depend on global knowledge exchange-getting the best science to the places it is most needed. However, conference attendance from developed countries typically outweighs that from developing countries that are biodiversity and conservation hotspots. If any branch of science should be trying to maximize participation while minimizing carbon emissions, it is conservation. Virtual conferencing is common in other disciplines, such as education and humanities, but it is surprisingly underused in ecology and conservation. Adopting virtual conferencing entails a number of challenges, including logistics and unified acceptance, which we argue can be overcome through planning and technology. We examined 4 conference models: a pure-virtual model and 3 hybrid hub-and-node models, where hubs stream content to local nodes. These models collectively aim to mitigate the logistical and administrative challenges of global knowledge transfer. Embracing virtual conferencing addresses 2 essential prerequisites of modern conferences: lowering carbon emissions and increasing accessibility for remote, time- and resource-poor researchers, particularly those from developing countries.

  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. Virtual window telepresence system for telerobotic inspection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tharp, Gregory K.; Hayati, Samad; Phan, Linh

    1995-12-01

    Telerobotic inspection can be used in environments that are too hazardous, removed, or expensive for direct human inspection. Telerobotic inspection is a complex task requiring an operator to control and coordinate a robot and sensors, while monitoring and interpreting sensor data to detect flaws. A virtual window telepresence system has been developed to aid the operator in performing these inspections. While the operator is looking at a monitor displaying stereo video from cameras mounted on the robot, the system tracks operator head position and moves the robot to create the illusion that the operator is looking out a window. This interface allows the operator to naturally specify desired viewpoint and enables him to concentrate on the visual examination of the area that may contain a flaw.

  1. 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…

  2. 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.

  3. Development and Validation of a Virtual Human Vignette to Compare Nurses’ Assessment and Intervention Choices for Pain in Critically Ill Children

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

    Introduction As virtual experiences are increasingly used in healthcare training and research, it is important that adequate processes are applied for developing valid scenarios. We describe the development and validation of virtual human (VH) vignettes, computer-generated scenarios with animated patients and clinical information, for a mixed-methods study regarding nurses’ assessment and intervention choices for critically-ill children’s pain. Methods We followed the Case Development and Review Process for High-Fidelity Simulation Case Scenarios, including use of validated written vignettes and content experts. Forty nurses described their pain assessment and intervention choices for the newly derived VH vignettes and completed a pain questionnaire. Nurses’ reports of VH vignette consistency with their professional experience and recognition of VH facial expressions were evaluated to establish face validity. Their pain ratings for the VH and written (questionnaire) vignettes were evaluated for convergent validity. Qualitative content analysis, descriptive statistics, correlations, and paired t-tests were employed. Results Most nurses (68.4%) supported vignette consistency with their professional experience. Facial expression recognition was 98.4%. Smiling children’s pain was rated significantly lower than grimacing children in both VH and written vignettes. Pain was rated significantly lower for grimacing children in the VH vignettes than the written vignettes. VH vignette pain ratings were strongly correlated with their written counterparts. Conclusions This process was effective for developing VH vignettes that demonstrated good face validity with participants and convergent validity with written vignettes. VH vignettes may be useful in studying the influence of facial actions on nurses’ choices for children’s pain assessment and treatment. PMID:25514587

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. Creating a Health Journal

    MedlinePlus

    ... Health Resources Healthcare Management Working With Your Doctor Creating a Personal Health Journal (Health Diary) Creating a Personal Health Journal (Health Diary) Healthcare ManagementWorking ...

  7. 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.

  8. The virtual clinical evaluation tool.

    PubMed

    Sander, Rebecca; Trible, Karen A

    2008-01-01

    Two years ago, faculty and students at this rural university setting collaborated to implement a virtual clinical evaluation tool. In recognition of the frustrations involved in coordinating instructor and student input to a hard copy tool, a virtual clinical evaluation tool was created in the form of an Excel spreadsheet. Excel documents have the advantage of immediate retrieval and use by instructors or students, ease of narration by word processing, automatic mathematical computation of formative and summative scores, and data storage through computer archives. Using the online Blackboard course, students and instructors are able to collaboratively input a Likert score for each posted evaluation outcome and word process-related comments about students' clinical performance. An overview of the 2-year implementation of this virtual clinical evaluation tool, as well as the evaluation process, is discussed.

  9. 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.

  10. Using virtual menus in a virtual environment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jacoby, Richard H.; Ellis, Stephen R.

    1992-01-01

    Virtual environment interfaces to computer programs in several diverse application areas are currently being developed. The users of virtual environments will require many different methods to interact with the environments and the objects in them. This paper reports on our use of virtual menus as a method of interacting with virtual environments. Several aspects of virtual environments make menu interactions different from interactions with conventional menus. We review the relevant aspects of conventional menus and virtual environments, in order to provide a frame of reference for the design of virtual menus. We discuss the features and interaction methodologies of two different versions of virtual menus which have been developed and used in our lab. We also examine the problems associated with our original version, and the enhancements incorporated into our current version.

  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. Evidence for a virtual human analog of a rodent relational memory task: a study of aging and fMRI in young adults.

    PubMed

    Etchamendy, Nicole; Konishi, Kyoko; Pike, G Bruce; Marighetto, Aline; Bohbot, Véronique D

    2012-04-01

    A radial maze concurrent spatial discrimination learning paradigm consisting of two stages was previously designed to assess the flexibility property of relational memory in mice, as a model of human declarative memory. Aged mice and young adult mice with damage to the hippocampus, learned accurately Stage 1 of the task which required them to learn a constant reward location in a specific set of arms (i.e., learning phase). In contrast, they were impaired relative to healthy young adult mice in a second stage when faced with rearrangements of the same arms (i.e., flexibility probes). This mnemonic inflexibility in Stage 2 is thought to derive from insufficient relational processing by the hippocampus during initial learning (Stage 1) which favors stimulus-response learning, a form of procedural learning. This was proposed as a model of the selective declarative and relational memory decline classically described in elderly people. As a first step to examine the validity of this model, we adapted this protocol to humans using a virtual radial-maze. (1) We showed that performance in the flexibility probes in young and older adults positively correlated with performance in a wayfinding task, suggesting that our paradigm assesses relational memory. (2) We demonstrated that older healthy participants displayed a deficit in the performance of the flexibility probes (Stage 2), similar to the one previously seen in aged mice. This was associated with a decline in the wayfinding task. (3) Our fMRI data in young adults confirmed that hippocampal activation during early discrimination learning in Stage 1 correlated with memory flexibility in Stage 2, whereas caudate nucleus activation in Stage 1 negatively correlated with subsequent flexibility. By enabling relational memory assessment in mice and humans, our radial-maze paradigm provides a valuable tool for translational research.

  13. Motor rehabilitation using virtual reality

    PubMed Central

    Sveistrup, Heidi

    2004-01-01

    Virtual Reality (VR) provides a unique medium suited to the achievement of several requirements for effective rehabilitation intervention. Specifically, therapy can be provided within a functional, purposeful and motivating context. Many VR applications present opportunities for individuals to participate in experiences, which are engaging and rewarding. In addition to the value of the rehabilitation experience for the user, both therapists and users benefit from the ability to readily grade and document the therapeutic intervention using various systems. In VR, advanced technologies are used to produce simulated, interactive and multi-dimensional environments. Visual interfaces including desktop monitors and head-mounted displays (HMDs), haptic interfaces, and real-time motion tracking devices are used to create environments allowing users to interact with images and virtual objects in real-time through multiple sensory modalities. Opportunities for object manipulation and body movement through virtual space provide frameworks that, in varying degrees, are perceived as comparable to similar opportunities in the real world. This paper reviews current work on motor rehabilitation using virtual environments and virtual reality and where possible, compares outcomes with those achieved in real-world applications. PMID:15679945

  14. Virtual interface environment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fisher, Scott S.

    1986-01-01

    A head-mounted, wide-angle, stereoscopic display system controlled by operator position, voice and gesture has been developed for use as a multipurpose interface environment. The system provides a multisensory, interactive display environment in which a user can virtually explore a 360-degree synthesized or remotely sensed environment and can viscerally interact with its components. Primary applications of the system are in telerobotics, management of large-scale integrated information systems, and human factors research. System configuration, application scenarios, and research directions are described.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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,…

  18. Creating the Virtual Work: Readers' Processes in Understanding Literary Texts.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Earthman, Elise Ann

    A study examined the ways in which college readers interact with literary texts. The method of interviews and think-along protocols, in which a text was read aloud by the subject while he simultaneously verbalized his thoughts, was used to compare the reading processes of eight college freshman to those of eight masters students in literature who…

  19. Using PDM to create a virtually integrated manufacturing enterprise

    SciTech Connect

    Lapetina, N.; Neugebauer, G.

    1997-10-01

    In late 1993, the authors` mission expanded from engineering design to also encompass production of neutron generator devices. They completed a gap analysis of the tools needed to support this emerging production assignment and, as a result, introduced a Product Data Management (PDM) system. This implementation includes basic PDM features, Web access, interfaces to the production floor and suppliers, and other utilities. They carefully strategized, piloted and assessed the integration of the PDM system into their business. Their efforts have prepared them to enter the next tier to further integrate their key operational resources to include their external suppliers.

  20. 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.

  1. Deploying Embodied AI into Virtual Worlds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burden, David J. H.

    The last two years have seen the start of commercial activity within virtual worlds. Unlike computer games where Non-Player-Character avatars are common, in most virtual worlds they are the exception — and until recently in Second Life they were non-existent. However there is real commercial scope for Als in these worlds — in roles from virtual sales staff and tutors to personal assistants. Deploying an embodied AI into a virtual world offers a unique opportunity to evaluate embodied Als, and to develop them within an environment where human and computer are on almost equal terms. This paper presents an architecture being used for the deployment of chatbot driven avatars within the Second Life virtual world, looks at the challenges of deploying an AI within such a virtual world, the possible implications for the Turing Test, and identifies research directions for the future.

  2. 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)

  3. Structure-based virtual screening toward the discovery of novel inhibitors of the DNA repair activity of the human apurinic/apyrimidinic endonuclease 1.

    PubMed

    Guerreiro, Patrícia S; Estácio, Sílvia G; Antunes, Fernando; Fernandes, Ana S; Pinheiro, Pedro F; Costa, João G; Castro, Matilde; Miranda, Joana P; Guedes, Rita C; Oliveira, Nuno G

    2016-12-01

    The DNA repair activity of human apurinic/apyrimidinic endonuclease 1 (APE1) has been recognized as a promising target for the development of small-molecule inhibitors to be used in combination with anticancer agents. In an attempt to identify novel inhibitors of APE1, we present a structure-based virtual screening (SBVS) study based on molecular docking analysis of the compounds of NCI database using the GOLD 5.1.0 (Genetic Optimization for Ligand Docking) suite of programs. Compounds selected in this screening were tested with a fluorescence-based APE1 endonuclease activity assay. Two compounds (37 and 41) were able to inhibit the multifunctional enzyme APE1 in the micromolar range, while compound 22 showed inhibitory effects at nanomolar concentrations. These results were confirmed by a plasmid DNA nicking assay. In addition, the potential APE1 inhibitors did not affect the cell viability of non-tumor MCF10A cells. Overall, compounds 22, 37, and 41 appear to be important scaffolds for the design of novel APE1 inhibitors and this study highlights the relevance of in silico-based approaches as valuable tools in drug discovery.

  4. Connectivity between the superior colliculus and the amygdala in humans and macaque monkeys: virtual dissection with probabilistic DTI tractography

    PubMed Central

    Koller, Kristin; Bultitude, Janet H.; Mullins, Paul; Ward, Robert; Mitchell, Anna S.; Bell, Andrew H.

    2015-01-01

    It has been suggested that some cortically blind patients can process the emotional valence of visual stimuli via a fast, subcortical pathway from the superior colliculus (SC) that reaches the amygdala via the pulvinar. We provide in vivo evidence for connectivity between the SC and the amygdala via the pulvinar in both humans and rhesus macaques. Probabilistic diffusion tensor imaging tractography revealed a streamlined path that passes dorsolaterally through the pulvinar before arcing rostrally to traverse above the temporal horn of the lateral ventricle and connect to the lateral amygdala. To obviate artifactual connectivity with crossing fibers of the stria terminalis, the stria was also dissected. The putative streamline between the SC and amygdala traverses above the temporal horn dorsal to the stria terminalis and is positioned medial to it in humans and lateral to it in monkeys. The topography of the streamline was examined in relation to lesion anatomy in five patients who had previously participated in behavioral experiments studying the processing of emotionally valenced visual stimuli. The pulvinar lesion interrupted the streamline in two patients who had exhibited contralesional processing deficits and spared the streamline in three patients who had no deficit. Although not definitive, this evidence supports the existence of a subcortical pathway linking the SC with the amygdala in primates. It also provides a necessary bridge between behavioral data obtained in future studies of neurological patients, and any forthcoming evidence from more invasive techniques, such as anatomical tracing studies and electrophysiological investigations only possible in nonhuman species. PMID:26224780

  5. Ion channelopathies in human induced pluripotent stem cell derived cardiomyocytes: a dynamic clamp study with virtual IK1

    PubMed Central

    Meijer van Putten, Rosalie M. E.; Mengarelli, Isabella; Guan, Kaomei; Zegers, Jan G.; van Ginneken, Antoni C. G.; Verkerk, Arie O.; Wilders, Ronald

    2015-01-01

    Human induced pluripotent stem cell derived cardiomyocytes (hiPSC-CMs) are widely used in studying basic mechanisms of cardiac arrhythmias that are caused by ion channelopathies. Unfortunately, the action potential profile of hiPSC-CMs—and consequently the profile of individual membrane currents active during that action potential—differs substantially from that of native human cardiomyocytes, largely due to almost negligible expression of the inward rectifier potassium current (IK1). In the present study, we attempted to “normalize” the action potential profile of our hiPSC-CMs by inserting a voltage dependent in silico IK1 into our hiPSC-CMs, using the dynamic clamp configuration of the patch clamp technique. Recordings were made from single hiPSC-CMs, using the perforated patch clamp technique at physiological temperature. We assessed three different models of IK1, with different degrees of inward rectification, and systematically varied the magnitude of the inserted IK1. Also, we modified the inserted IK1 in order to assess the effects of loss- and gain-of-function mutations in the KCNJ2 gene, which encodes the Kir2.1 protein that is primarily responsible for the IK1 channel in human ventricle. For our experiments, we selected spontaneously beating hiPSC-CMs, with negligible IK1 as demonstrated in separate voltage clamp experiments, which were paced at 1 Hz. Upon addition of in silico IK1 with a peak outward density of 4–6 pA/pF, these hiPSC-CMs showed a ventricular-like action potential morphology with a stable resting membrane potential near −80 mV and a maximum upstroke velocity >150 V/s (n = 9). Proarrhythmic action potential changes were observed upon injection of both loss-of-function and gain-of-function IK1, as associated with Andersen–Tawil syndrome type 1 and short QT syndrome type 3, respectively (n = 6). We conclude that injection of in silico IK1 makes the hiPSC-CM a more reliable model for investigating mechanisms underlying cardiac

  6. 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…

  7. 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…

  8. A preliminary experimental study on virtual sound barrier system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zou, Haishan; Qiu, Xiaojun; Lu, Jing; Niu, Feng

    2007-10-01

    Virtual sound barrier (VSB) is an array of loudspeakers and microphones forming an acoustic barrier, which creates a quiet zone without blocking air and light. A 16-channel cylindrical VSB system has been developed and its feasibility is verified by both numerical simulations and experiments. Experimental results in a normal room show that it can create a quiet zone larger than the size of a human head in the low-middle frequency, with a total sound pressure level reduction of more than 10 dB in the quiet zone. The control performance of the system with respect to the frequency, the distribution of the error sensors and the control sources are discussed.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. Adding tactile realism to a virtual reality laparoscopic surgical simulator with a cost-effective human interface device

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mack, Ian W.; Potts, Stephen; McMenemy, Karen R.; Ferguson, R. S.

    2006-02-01

    The laparoscopic technique for performing abdominal surgery requires a very high degree of skill in the medical practitioner. Much interest has been focused on using computer graphics to provide simulators for training surgeons. Unfortunately, these tend to be complex and have a very high cost, which limits availability and restricts the length of time over which individuals can practice their skills. With computer game technology able to provide the graphics required for a surgical simulator, the cost does not have to be high. However, graphics alone cannot serve as a training simulator. Human interface hardware, the equivalent of the force feedback joystick for a flight simulator game, is required to complete the system. This paper presents a design for a very low cost device to address this vital issue. The design encompasses: the mechanical construction, the electronic interfaces and the software protocols to mimic a laparoscopic surgical set-up. Thus the surgeon has the capability of practicing two-handed procedures with the possibility of force feedback. The force feedback and collision detection algorithms allow surgeons to practice realistic operating theatre procedures with a good degree of authenticity.

  14. 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.

  15. Daisaku Ikeda's Curriculum of Soka Education: Creating Value through Dialogue, Global Citizenship, and "Human Education" in the Mentor-Disciple Relationship

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Goulah, Jason; Ito, Takao

    2012-01-01

    This essay review focuses on Daisaku Ikeda (b. 1928) and his curriculum of Soka, or value-creating, education present in two works: "Choose Life: A Dialogue" (Toynbee & Ikeda, 1976) and "Thoughts on Education for Global Citizenship" (Ikeda, 1996b). In reviewing these works, the authors trace the biographical roots of Ikeda's educational philosophy…

  16. 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

  17. Pro-arrhythmogenic effects of atrial fibrillation-induced electrical remodelling: insights from the three-dimensional virtual human atria.

    PubMed

    Colman, Michael A; Aslanidi, Oleg V; Kharche, Sanjay; Boyett, Mark R; Garratt, Clifford; Hancox, Jules C; Zhang, Henggui

    2013-09-01

    Chronic atrial fibrillation (AF) is associated with structural and electrical remodelling in the atria, which are associated with a high recurrence of AF. Through biophysically detailed computer modelling, this study investigated mechanisms by which AF-induced electrical remodelling promotes and perpetuates AF. A family of Courtemanche-Ramirez-Nattel variant models of human atrial cell action potentials (APs), taking into account of intrinsic atrial electrophysiological properties, was modified to incorporate various experimental data sets on AF-induced changes of major ionic channel currents (ICaL, IKur, Ito, IK1, IKs, INaCa) and on intracellular Ca(2+) handling. The single cell models for control and AF-remodelled conditions were incorporated into multicellular three-dimensional (3D) atrial tissue models. Effects of the AF-induced electrical remodelling were quantified as the changes of AP profile, AP duration (APD) and its dispersion across the atria, and the vulnerability of atrial tissue to the initiation of re-entry. The dynamic behaviour of re-entrant excitation waves in the 3D models was characterised. In our simulations, AF-induced electrical remodelling abbreviated atrial APD non-uniformly across the atria; this resulted in relatively short APDs co-existing with marked regional differences in the APD at junctions of the crista terminalis/pectinate muscle, pulmonary veins/left atrium. As a result, the measured tissue vulnerability to re-entry initiation at these tissue junctions was increased. The AF-induced electrical remodelling also stabilized and accelerated re-entrant excitation waves, leading to rapid and sustained re-entry. Under the AF-remodelled condition, re-entrant scroll waves in the 3D model degenerated into persistent and erratic wavelets, leading to fibrillation. In conclusion, realistic 3D atrial tissue models indicate that AF-induced electrical remodelling produces regionally heterogeneous and shortened APD; these respectively facilitate

  18. The Impact of Emotional Arousal on Learning in Virtual Environments

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2002-09-01

    positive impact on human learning. The purpose of this thesis was to investigate the impact of emotional arousal on learning in virtual environments. An...reason that emotional arousal (in moderation) may also have a positive impact on human learning. The purpose of this thesis was to investigate the...1 A. TRAINING IN VIRTUAL ENVIRONMENTS.................. 2 B. HUMAN MEMORY AND EMOTION ......................... 6 C

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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…

  2. Structure-based rational quest for potential novel inhibitors of human HMG-CoA reductase by combining CoMFA 3D QSAR modeling and virtual screening.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Qing Y; Wan, Jian; Xu, Xin; Yang, Guang F; Ren, Yan L; Liu, Jun J; Wang, Hui; Guo, Yu

    2007-01-01

    3-Hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-coenzyme A reductase (HMGR) catalyzes the formation of mevalonate. In many classes of organisms, this is the committed step leading to the synthesis of essential compounds, such as cholesterol. However, a high level of cholesterol is an important risk factor for coronary heart disease, for which an effective clinical treatment is to block HMGR using inhibitors like statins. Recently the structures of catalytic portion of human HMGR complexed with six different statins have been determined by a delicate crystallography study (Istvan and Deisenhofer Science 2001, 292, 1160-1164), which established a solid basis of structure and mechanism for the rational design, optimization, and development of even better HMGR inhibitors. In this study, three-dimensional quantitative structure-activity relationship (3D QSAR) with comparative molecular field analysis (CoMFA) was performed on a training set of up to 35 statins and statin-like compounds. Predictive models were established by using two different ways: (1) Models-fit, obtained by SYBYL conventional fit-atom molecular alignment rule, has cross-validated coefficients (q2) up to 0.652 and regression coefficients (r2) up to 0.977. (2) Models-dock, obtained by FlexE by docking compounds into the HMGR active site, has cross-validated coefficients (q2) up to 0.731 and regression coefficients (r2) up to 0.947. These models were further validated by an external testing set of 12 statins and statin-like compounds. Integrated with CoMFA 3D QSAR predictive models, molecular surface property (electrostatic and steric) mapping and structure-based (both ligand and receptor) virtual screening have been employed to explore potential novel hits for the HMGR inhibitors. A representative set of eight new compounds of non-statin-like structures but with high pIC(50) values were sorted out in the present study.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. The use of strain gauge platform and virtual reality tool for patient stability examination

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Walendziuk, Wojciech; Wysk, Lukasz; Skoczylas, Marcin

    2016-09-01

    Virtual reality is one of the fastest growing information technologies. This paper is only a prelude to a larger study on the use of virtual reality tools in analysing bony labyrinth and sense of balance. Problems with the functioning of these areas of the body are a controversial topic in debate among specialists. The result of still unresolved imbalance treatments is a constant number of people reporting this type of ailment. Considering above, authors created a system and application that contains a model of virtual environment, and a tool for the modification of the obstacles in 3D space. Preliminary studies of patients from a test group aged 22-49 years were also carried out, in which behaviour and sense of balance in relation to the horizontal curvature of the virtual world around patient has been analysed. Experiments carried out on a test group showed that the shape of the curve and the virtual world space and age of patient has a major impact on a sense of balance. The data obtained can be linked with actual disorders of bony labyrinth and human behaviour at the time of their occurrence. Another important achievement that will be the subject of further work is possible use a modified version of the software for rehabilitation purposes.

  6. The virtual gamma camera room.

    PubMed

    Penrose, J M; Trowbridge, E A; Tindale, W B

    1996-05-01

    The installation of a gamma camera is time-consuming and costly and, once installed, the camera position is unlikely to be altered during its working life. Poor choice of camera position therefore has long-term consequences. Additional equipment such as collimators and carts, the operator's workstation and wall-mounted display monitors must also be situated to maximize access and ease of use. The layout of a gamma camera room can be optimized prior to installation by creating a virtual environment. Super-Scape VRT software running on an upgraded 486 PC microprocessor was used to create a 'virtual camera room'. The simulation included an operator's viewpoint and a controlled tour of the room. Equipment could be repositioned as required, allowing potential problems to be identified at the design stage. Access for bed-ridden patients, operator ergonomics, operator and patient visibility were addressed. The display can also be used for patient education. Creation of a virtual environment is a valuable tool which allows different camera systems to be compared interactively in terms of dimensions, extent of movement and use of a defined space. Such a system also has applications in radiopharmacy design and simulation.

  7. 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.

  8. 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…

  9. 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…

  10. 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…

  11. 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,…

  12. 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…

  13. 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…

  14. 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…

  15. 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…

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. Predictive biosimulation and virtual patients in pharmaceutical R and D.

    PubMed

    Bangs, Alex

    2005-01-01

    In the automotive, telecommunication, and aerospace industries, modeling and simulation are used to understand the behavior and outcomes of a new design well before production begins, thereby avoiding costly failures. In the pharmaceutical industry, failures are not typically identified until a compound reaches the clinic. This fact has created a productivity crisis due to the high failure rate of compounds late in the development process. Modeling and simulation are now being adopted by the pharmaceutical industry to understand the complexity of human physiology and predict human response to therapies. Additionally, virtual patients are being used to understand the impact of patient variability on these predictions. Several case studies are provided to illustrate the technology's application to pharmaceutical R and D and healthcare.

  19. 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.

  20. 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).

  1. 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.

  2. Intelligent Virtual Station (IVS)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    The Intelligent Virtual Station (IVS) is enabling the integration of design, training, and operations capabilities into an intelligent virtual station for the International Space Station (ISS). A viewgraph of the IVS Remote Server is presented.

  3. CT Colonography (Virtual Colonoscopy)

    MedlinePlus

    ... Z CT Colonography Computed tomography (CT) colonography or virtual colonoscopy uses special x-ray equipment to examine ... and blood vessels. CT colonography, also known as virtual colonoscopy, uses low dose radiation CT scanning to ...

  4. Generation IV Nuclear Energy Systems Construction Cost Reductions through the Use of Virtual Environments - Task 5 Report: Generation IV Reactor Virtual Mockup Proof-of-Principle Study

    SciTech Connect

    Timothy Shaw; Anthony Baratta; Vaughn Whisker

    2005-02-28

    Task 5 report is part of a 3 year DOE NERI-sponsored effort evaluating immersive virtual reality (CAVE) technology for design review, construction planning, and maintenance planning and training for next generation nuclear power plants. Program covers development of full-scale virtual mockups generated from 3D CAD data presented in a CAVE visualization facility. Created a virtual mockup of PBMR reactor cavity and discussed applications of virtual mockup technology to improve Gen IV design review, construction planning, and maintenance planning.

  5. Shared virtual environments for aerospace training

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Loftin, R. Bowen; Voss, Mark

    1994-01-01

    Virtual environments have the potential to significantly enhance the training of NASA astronauts and ground-based personnel for a variety of activities. A critical requirement is the need to share virtual environments, in real or near real time, between remote sites. It has been hypothesized that the training of international astronaut crews could be done more cheaply and effectively by utilizing such shared virtual environments in the early stages of mission preparation. The Software Technology Branch at NASA's Johnson Space Center has developed the capability for multiple users to simultaneously share the same virtual environment. Each user generates the graphics needed to create the virtual environment. All changes of object position and state are communicated to all users so that each virtual environment maintains its 'currency.' Examples of these shared environments will be discussed and plans for the utilization of the Department of Defense's Distributed Interactive Simulation (DIS) protocols for shared virtual environments will be presented. Finally, the impact of this technology on training and education in general will be explored.

  6. Integration of the virtual 3D model of a control system with the virtual controller

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Herbuś, K.; Ociepka, P.

    2015-11-01

    Nowadays the design process includes simulation analysis of different components of a constructed object. It involves the need for integration of different virtual object to simulate the whole investigated technical system. The paper presents the issues related to the integration of a virtual 3D model of a chosen control system of with a virtual controller. The goal of integration is to verify the operation of an adopted object of in accordance with the established control program. The object of the simulation work is the drive system of a tunneling machine for trenchless work. In the first stage of work was created an interactive visualization of functioning of the 3D virtual model of a tunneling machine. For this purpose, the software of the VR (Virtual Reality) class was applied. In the elaborated interactive application were created adequate procedures allowing controlling the drive system of a translatory motion, a rotary motion and the drive system of a manipulator. Additionally was created the procedure of turning on and off the output crushing head, mounted on the last element of the manipulator. In the elaborated interactive application have been established procedures for receiving input data from external software, on the basis of the dynamic data exchange (DDE), which allow controlling actuators of particular control systems of the considered machine. In the next stage of work, the program on a virtual driver, in the ladder diagram (LD) language, was created. The control program was developed on the basis of the adopted work cycle of the tunneling machine. The element integrating the virtual model of the tunneling machine for trenchless work with the virtual controller is the application written in a high level language (Visual Basic). In the developed application was created procedures responsible for collecting data from the running, in a simulation mode, virtual controller and transferring them to the interactive application, in which is verified the

  7. Controlling social stress in virtual reality environments.

    PubMed

    Hartanto, Dwi; Kampmann, Isabel L; Morina, Nexhmedin; Emmelkamp, Paul G M; Neerincx, Mark A; Brinkman, Willem-Paul

    2014-01-01

    Virtual reality exposure therapy has been proposed as a viable alternative in the treatment of anxiety disorders, including social anxiety disorder. Therapists could benefit from extensive control of anxiety eliciting stimuli during virtual exposure. Two stimuli controls are studied in this study: the social dialogue situation, and the dialogue feedback responses (negative or positive) between a human and a virtual character. In the first study, 16 participants were exposed in three virtual reality scenarios: a neutral virtual world, blind date scenario, and job interview scenario. Results showed a significant difference between the three virtual scenarios in the level of self-reported anxiety and heart rate. In the second study, 24 participants were exposed to a job interview scenario in a virtual environment where the ratio between negative and positive dialogue feedback responses of a virtual character was systematically varied on-the-fly. Results yielded that within a dialogue the more positive dialogue feedback resulted in less self-reported anxiety, lower heart rate, and longer answers, while more negative dialogue feedback of the virtual character resulted in the opposite. The correlations between on the one hand the dialogue stressor ratio and on the other hand the means of SUD score, heart rate and audio length in the eight dialogue conditions showed a strong relationship: r(6) = 0.91, p = 0.002; r(6) = 0.76, p = 0.028 and r(6) = -0.94, p = 0.001 respectively. Furthermore, more anticipatory anxiety reported before exposure was found to coincide with more self-reported anxiety, and shorter answers during the virtual exposure. These results demonstrate that social dialogues in a virtual environment can be effectively manipulated for therapeutic purposes.

  8. Controlling Social Stress in Virtual Reality Environments

    PubMed Central

    Hartanto, Dwi; Kampmann, Isabel L.; Morina, Nexhmedin; Emmelkamp, Paul G. M.; Neerincx, Mark A.; Brinkman, Willem-Paul

    2014-01-01

    Virtual reality exposure therapy has been proposed as a viable alternative in the treatment of anxiety disorders, including social anxiety disorder. Therapists could benefit from extensive control of anxiety eliciting stimuli during virtual exposure. Two stimuli controls are studied in this study: the social dialogue situation, and the dialogue feedback responses (negative or positive) between a human and a virtual character. In the first study, 16 participants were exposed in three virtual reality scenarios: a neutral virtual world, blind date scenario, and job interview scenario. Results showed a significant difference between the three virtual scenarios in the level of self-reported anxiety and heart rate. In the second study, 24 participants were exposed to a job interview scenario in a virtual environment where the ratio between negative and positive dialogue feedback responses of a virtual character was systematically varied on-the-fly. Results yielded that within a dialogue the more positive dialogue feedback resulted in less self-reported anxiety, lower heart rate, and longer answers, while more negative dialogue feedback of the virtual character resulted in the opposite. The correlations between on the one hand the dialogue stressor ratio and on the other hand the means of SUD score, heart rate and audio length in the eight dialogue conditions showed a strong relationship: r(6) = 0.91, p = 0.002; r(6) = 0.76, p = 0.028 and r(6) = −0.94, p = 0.001 respectively. Furthermore, more anticipatory anxiety reported before exposure was found to coincide with more self-reported anxiety, and shorter answers during the virtual exposure. These results demonstrate that social dialogues in a virtual environment can be effectively manipulated for therapeutic purposes. PMID:24671006

  9. Molecular Rift: Virtual Reality for Drug Designers.

    PubMed

    Norrby, Magnus; Grebner, Christoph; Eriksson, Joakim; Boström, Jonas

    2015-11-23

    Recent advances in interaction design have created new ways to use computers. One example is the ability to create enhanced 3D environments that simulate physical presence in the real world--a virtual reality. This is relevant to drug discovery since molecular models are frequently used to obtain deeper understandings of, say, ligand-protein complexes. We have developed a tool (Molecular Rift), which creates a virtual reality environment steered with hand movements. Oculus Rift, a head-mounted display, is used to create the virtual settings. The program is controlled by gesture-recognition, using the gaming sensor MS Kinect v2, eliminating the need for standard input devices. The Open Babel toolkit was integrated to provide access to powerful cheminformatics functions. Molecular Rift was developed with a focus on usability, including iterative test-group evaluations. We conclude with reflections on virtual reality's future capabilities in chemistry and education. Molecular Rift is open source and can be downloaded from GitHub.

  10. Learning in Chemistry with Virtual Laboratories.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Martinez-Jimenez, P.; Pontes-Pedrajas, A.; Polo, J.; Climent-Bellido, M. S.

    2003-01-01

    Describes a project involving the development, application, and evaluation of a virtual chemistry laboratory (VCL) that involves basic step-by-step laboratory procedures and simulates real laboratory activities. Presents the program in terms of tutorial, VCL, and evaluation, and a section that allows instructors to create their own tests. (KHR)

  11. Virtual Classroom for Business Planning Formulation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Osorio, J.; Rubio-Royo, E.; Ocon, A.

    One of the most promising possibilities of the World Wide Web resides in its potential to support distance education. In 1996, the University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria developed the "INNOVA Project" in order to promote Web-based training and learning. As a result, the Virtual Classroom Interface (IVA) was created. Several software…

  12. Preadolescent Girls' and Boys' Virtual MUD Play

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Calvert, Sandra L.; Strouse, Gabrielle A.; Strong, Bonnie L.; Huffaker, David A.; Lai, Sean

    2009-01-01

    Same and opposite-sex pairs of preadolescents interacted twice in a MUD, a virtual domain where they created characters known as avatars and socially interacted with one another. Boys interacted primarily through rapid scene shifts and playful exchanges; girls interacted with one another through written dialogue. Opposite-sex pairs lagged behind…

  13. A Virtual Laboratory for Digital Signal Processing

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dow, Chyi-Ren; Li, Yi-Hsung; Bai, Jin-Yu

    2006-01-01

    This work designs and implements a virtual digital signal processing laboratory, VDSPL. VDSPL consists of four parts: mobile agent execution environments, mobile agents, DSP development software, and DSP experimental platforms. The network capability of VDSPL is created by using mobile agent and wrapper techniques without modifying the source code…

  14. Virtual Communities for Elementary and Secondary Schools.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Riel, Margaret

    1994-01-01

    Describes activities for elementary and secondary students who participate in AT&T's Learning Network. Topics include learning circles as virtual communities; forming learning circles; planning projects with teachers and students; exchanging work on the projects; creating a final publication as a group; and evaluating the process. (LRW)

  15. Virtual Representations in 3D Learning Environments

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shonfeld, Miri; Kritz, Miki

    2013-01-01

    This research explores the extent to which virtual worlds can serve as online collaborative learning environments for students by increasing social presence and engagement. 3D environments enable learning, which simulates face-to-face encounters while retaining the advantages of online learning. Students in Education departments created avatars…

  16. Virtual World Astrosociology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bainbridge, William Sims

    2010-01-01

    This essay introduces the opportunity for theory development and even empirical research on some aspects of astrosociology through today's online virtual worlds. The examples covered present life on other planets or in space itself, in a manner that can be experienced by the user and where the user's reactions may simulate to some degree future human behavior in real extraterrestrial environments: Tabula Rasa, Anarchy Online, Entropia Universe, EVE Online, StarCraft and World of Warcraft. Ethnographic exploration of these computerized environments raises many questions about the social science both of space exploration and of direct contact with extraterrestrials. The views expressed in this essay do not necessarily represent the views of the National Science Foundation or the United States.

  17. Creating an Effective System of Education to Prepare Future Human Resources within the Context Provided by the Global Shift toward a "Green Economy"

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dudin, Mikhail Nikolaevich; Frolova, Evgenia Evgenevna; Kucherenko, Petr Aleksandrovich; Samusenko, Tatyana Mikhailovna; Voikova, Natalya Andreevna

    2016-01-01

    This article explores the major aspects of putting together effective national systems of education oriented toward providing academic instruction to the population and preparing future human resources for work within the economy in specific alignment with the concept of environmental responsibility (or that of "green economy"). The…

  18. 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.…

  19. 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…

  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.

  1. Interactions with Virtual People: Do Avatars Dream of Digital Sheep?. Chapter 6

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Slater, Mel; Sanchez-Vives, Maria V.

    2007-01-01

    This paper explores another form of artificial entity, ones without physical embodiment. We refer to virtual characters as the name for a type of interactive object that have become familiar in computer games and within virtual reality applications. We refer to these as avatars: three-dimensional graphical objects that are in more-or-less human form which can interact with humans. Sometimes such avatars will be representations of real-humans who are interacting together within a shared networked virtual environment, other times the representations will be of entirely computer generated characters. Unlike other authors, who reserve the term agent for entirely computer generated characters and avatars for virtual embodiments of real people; the same term here is used for both. This is because avatars and agents are on a continuum. The question is where does their behaviour originate? At the extremes the behaviour is either completely computer generated or comes only from tracking of a real person. However, not every aspect of a real person can be tracked every eyebrow move, every blink, every breath rather real tracking data would be supplemented by inferred behaviours which are programmed based on the available information as to what the real human is doing and her/his underlying emotional and psychological state. Hence there is always some programmed behaviour it is only a matter of how much. In any case the same underlying problem remains how can the human character be portrayed in such a manner that its actions are believable and have an impact on the real people with whom it interacts? This paper has three main parts. In the first part we will review some evidence that suggests that humans react with appropriate affect in their interactions with virtual human characters, or with other humans who are represented as avatars. This is so in spite of the fact that the representational fidelity is relatively low. Our evidence will be from the realm of psychotherapy

  2. A Systematic Framework of Virtual Laboratories Using Mobile Agent and Design Pattern Technologies

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Li, Yi-Hsung; Dow, Chyi-Ren; Lin, Cheng-Min; Chen, Sheng-Chang; Hsu, Fu-Wei

    2009-01-01

    Innovations in network and information technology have transformed traditional classroom lectures into new approaches that have given universities the opportunity to create a virtual laboratory. However, there is no systematic framework in existing approaches for the development of virtual laboratories. Further, developing a virtual laboratory…

  3. Using Virtual Worlds to Identify Multidimensional Student Engagement in High School Foreign Language Learning Classrooms

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jacob, Laura Beth

    2012-01-01

    Virtual world environments have evolved from object-oriented, text-based online games to complex three-dimensional immersive social spaces where the lines between reality and computer-generated begin to blur. Educators use virtual worlds to create engaging three-dimensional learning spaces for students, but the impact of virtual worlds in…

  4. Evolution-based Virtual Content Insertion with Visually Virtual Interactions in Videos

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chang, Chia-Hu; Wu, Ja-Ling

    With the development of content-based multimedia analysis, virtual content insertion has been widely used and studied for video enrichment and multimedia advertising. However, how to automatically insert a user-selected virtual content into personal videos in a less-intrusive manner, with an attractive representation, is a challenging problem. In this chapter, we present an evolution-based virtual content insertion system which can insert virtual contents into videos with evolved animations according to predefined behaviors emulating the characteristics of evolutionary biology. The videos are considered not only as carriers of message conveyed by the virtual content but also as the environment in which the lifelike virtual contents live. Thus, the inserted virtual content will be affected by the videos to trigger a series of artificial evolutions and evolve its appearances and behaviors while interacting with video contents. By inserting virtual contents into videos through the system, users can easily create entertaining storylines and turn their personal videos into visually appealing ones. In addition, it would bring a new opportunity to increase the advertising revenue for video assets of the media industry and online video-sharing websites.

  5. Creating 3D realistic head: from two orthogonal photos to multiview face contents

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, Yuan; Lin, Qian; Tang, Feng; Tang, Liang; Lim, Sukhwan; Wang, Shengjin

    2011-03-01

    3D Head models have many applications, such as virtual conference, 3D web game, and so on. The existing several web-based face modeling solutions that can create a 3D face model from one or two user uploaded face images, are limited to generating the 3D model of only face region. The accuracy of such reconstruction is very limited for side views, as well as hair regions. The goal of our research is to develop a framework for reconstructing the realistic 3D human head based on two approximate orthogonal views. Our framework takes two images, and goes through segmentation, feature points detection, 3D bald head reconstruction, 3D hair reconstruction and texture mapping to create a 3D head model. The main contribution of the paper is that the processing steps are applies to both the face region as well as the hair region.

  6. Educating Managers to Create Healthy Workplaces

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gilbreath, Brad

    2012-01-01

    This article provides management educators with a comprehensive, research-based set of concepts they can use to enrich students' understanding of how to create healthy workplaces. To assist with that endeavor, learning objectives related to creating healthy workplaces are provided. Work environment stressors are discussed along with human and…

  7. Create a Logo.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Duchen, Gail

    2002-01-01

    Presents an art lesson that introduced students to graphic art as a career path. Explains that the students met a graphic artist and created a logo for a pretend client. Explains that the students researched logos. (CMK)

  8. Creating physics stars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Banks, Michael

    2013-07-01

    Korea has begun an ambitious 5bn plan to create 50 new institutes dedicated to fundamental research. Michael Banks meets physicist Se-Jung Oh, president of the Institute for Basic Science, to find out more.

  9. Virtual reality as a human factors design analysis tool: Macro-ergonomic application validation and assessment of the Space Station Freedom payload control area

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hale, Joseph P.

    1994-01-01

    A virtual reality (VR) Applications Program has been under development at MSFC since 1989. Its objectives are to develop, assess, validate, and utilize VR in hardware development, operations development and support, missions operations training, and science training. A variety of activities are under way within many of these areas. One ongoing macro-ergonomic application of VR relates to the design of the Space Station Freedom Payload Control Area (PCA), the control room from which onboard payload operations are managed. Several preliminary conceptual PCA layouts have been developed and modeled in VR. Various managers and potential end users have virtually 'entered' these rooms and provided valuable feedback. Before VR can be used with confidence in a particular application, it must be validated, or calibrated, for that class of applications. Two associated validation studies for macro-ergonomic applications are under way to help characterize possible distortions of filtering of relevant perceptions in a virtual world. In both studies, existing control rooms and their 'virtual counterparts will be empirically compared using distance and heading estimations to objects and subjective assessments. Approaches and findings of the PCA activities and details of the studies are presented.

  10. Collaborative virtual environments art exhibition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dolinsky, Margaret; Anstey, Josephine; Pape, Dave E.; Aguilera, Julieta C.; Kostis, Helen-Nicole; Tsoupikova, Daria

    2005-03-01

    This panel presentation will exhibit artwork developed in CAVEs and discuss how art methodologies enhance the science of VR through collaboration, interaction and aesthetics. Artists and scientists work alongside one another to expand scientific research and artistic expression and are motivated by exhibiting collaborative virtual environments. Looking towards the arts, such as painting and sculpture, computer graphics captures a visual tradition. Virtual reality expands this tradition to not only what we face, but to what surrounds us and even what responds to our body and its gestures. Art making that once was isolated to the static frame and an optimal point of view is now out and about, in fully immersive mode within CAVEs. Art knowledge is a guide to how the aesthetics of 2D and 3D worlds affect, transform, and influence the social, intellectual and physical condition of the human body through attention to psychology, spiritual thinking, education, and cognition. The psychological interacts with the physical in the virtual in such a way that each facilitates, enhances and extends the other, culminating in a "go together" world. Attention to sharing art experience across high-speed networks introduces a dimension of liveliness and aliveness when we "become virtual" in real time with others.

  11. Virtual Observatories: Are We Virtually There Yet?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gurman, J. B.

    2004-01-01

    Virtual observatories are tools for simplifying access to and use of astronomical data from an increasing number of data sources of rapidly growing volume. Now that a variety of virtual observatory development efforts are under way around the world, a cursory review of the efforts outside solar physics, and an only slightly more detailed consideration of those within, demonstrates a commonality of conceptual model if not of approach or application. The linkages among virtual observatories optimized for different scientific communities present an interesting challenge to the designers: should virtual observatories be designed for the most expert users? For the least? For everyone? It is too early to provide definitive answers, but examination of current efforts does offer some clues.

  12. Building a virtual planet

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Meadows, V. S.

    2002-01-01

    The virtual Planetary Laboratory (VPL) is a recently funded 5-yr project, which seeks toimprove our understanding of the range of plausible environments and the likely signatures for life on extrasolar terrestrial planets. To achieve these goals we are developing a suite of innovative modeling tools to simulate the environments and spectra of extrasolar planets. The core of the VPL IS a coupled radiative transfer/climate/chemistry model, which is augmented by interchangeable modules which characterize geological, exogenic, atmospheric escape, and life processes. The VPL is validated using data derived from terrestrial planets within our own solar system. The VPL will be used to explore the plausible range of atmospheric composittions and globally averaged spectra for extrasolar planets and for early Earth, and will improve our understanding of the effect of life on a planet's atmospheric spectrum and composition. The models will also be used to create a comprehensive spectral catalog to provide recommendations on the optimum wavelength range, spectral resolution, and instrument sensitivity required to characterize extrasolar terrestrial planets. Although developed by our team, the VPL is envisioned to be a comprehensive and flexible tool, which can be collaboratively used by the broader planetary science and astrobiology communities. This presentation will describe the project concept, the tasks involved, and will outline current progress to date. This work is funded by the NASA Astrobiology Institute.

  13. Human Performance Modeling in Military Simulation: Current State of the Art and the Way Ahead (2002 TTCP HUM Group Meeting)

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2007-11-02

    them to concentrate on the planning details needed to provide operational realism in the flight plan. Finally, an advanced user interface was created to...work will concentrate on developing a virtual helicopter deck- landing simulation (HDLS) environment comprising human-in-the-loop and virtual agents...Esquive, D., Raphel, C., (1996) Effets du modafinil sur les performances cognitive au cours d’une privation de sommeil de 60 hours. UNCLASSIFIED 79

  14. Virtual data in CMS analysis

    SciTech Connect

    A. Arbree et al.

    2003-10-01

    The use of virtual data for enhancing the collaboration between large groups of scientists is explored in several ways: by defining ''virtual'' parameter spaces which can be searched and shared in an organized way by a collaboration of scientists in the course of their analysis; by providing a mechanism to log the provenance of results and the ability to trace them back to the various stages in the analysis of real or simulated data; by creating ''check points'' in the course of an analysis to permit collaborators to explore their own analysis branches by refining selections, improving the signal to background ratio, varying the estimation of parameters, etc.; by facilitating the audit of an analysis and the reproduction of its results by a different group, or in a peer review context. We describe a prototype for the analysis of data from the CMS experiment based on the virtual data system Chimera and the object-oriented data analysis framework ROOT. The Chimera system is used to chain together several steps in the analysis process including the Monte Carlo generation of data, the simulation of detector response, the reconstruction of physics objects and their subsequent analysis, histogramming and visualization using the ROOT framework.

  15. Virtual environments for telerobotic shared control

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Christensen, Brian K.

    1994-01-01

    The use of a virtual environment to bring about telerobotic shared control is discussed. A knowledge base, referred to as the World Model, is used to aid the system in its decision making. Information from the World Model is displayed visually in order to aid the human side of human-computer interface.

  16. Using Virtual Worlds in Education: Second Life[R] as an Educational Tool

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baker, Suzanne C.; Wentz, Ryan K.; Woods, Madison M.

    2009-01-01

    The online virtual world Second Life (www.secondlife.com) has multiple potential uses in teaching. In Second Life (SL), users create avatars that represent them in the virtual world. Within SL, avatars can interact with each other and with objects and environments. SL offers tremendous creative potential in that users can create content within the…

  17. Second Life: Creating Worlds of Wonder for Language Learners

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ocasio, Michelle A.

    2016-01-01

    This article describes Second Life, a three-dimensional virtual environment in which a user creates an avatar for the purpose of socializing, learning, developing skills, and exploring a variety of academic and social areas. Since its inception in 2003, Second Life has been used by educators to build and foster innovative learning environments and…

  18. Creating a Collaborative Learning Community in the CIS Sandbox

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Frydenberg, Mark

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to investigate the impact of transforming a traditional university computer lab to create a collaborative learning community known as the CIS Sandbox, by remodeling a physical space and supporting it with a virtual presence through the use of social media tools. The discussion applies Selander's "designs for…

  19. Virtual Campus in the Context of an Educational Virtual City

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fominykh, Mikhail; Prasolova-Forland, Ekaterina; Morozov, Mikhail; Gerasimov, Alexey

    2011-01-01

    This paper is focused on virtual campuses, i.e. virtual worlds representing real educational institutions that are based on the metaphor of a university and provide users with different learning tools. More specifically, the idea of integrating a virtual campus into the context of a virtual city is suggested. Such a virtual city, where students…

  20. Virtual Machine Language

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Grasso, Christopher; Page, Dennis; O'Reilly, Taifun; Fteichert, Ralph; Lock, Patricia; Lin, Imin; Naviaux, Keith; Sisino, John

    2005-01-01

    Virtual Machine Language (VML) is a mission-independent, reusable software system for programming for spacecraft operations. Features of VML include a rich set of data types, named functions, parameters, IF and WHILE control structures, polymorphism, and on-the-fly creation of spacecraft commands from calculated values. Spacecraft functions can be abstracted into named blocks that reside in files aboard the spacecraft. These named blocks accept parameters and execute in a repeatable fashion. The sizes of uplink products are minimized by the ability to call blocks that implement most of the command steps. This block approach also enables some autonomous operations aboard the spacecraft, such as aerobraking, telemetry conditional monitoring, and anomaly response, without developing autonomous flight software. Operators on the ground write blocks and command sequences in a concise, high-level, human-readable programming language (also called VML ). A compiler translates the human-readable blocks and command sequences into binary files (the operations products). The flight portion of VML interprets the uplinked binary files. The ground subsystem of VML also includes an interactive sequence- execution tool hosted on workstations, which runs sequences at several thousand times real-time speed, affords debugging, and generates reports. This tool enables iterative development of blocks and sequences within times of the order of seconds.