Category Archives: 3D

AR: Super high-res car interiors arrive in Google Search

Imagine loading multi-gigabyte 3D models nearly instantaneously into your mobile device, then placing them into your driveway and stepping inside. That’s what we’ve now enabled via Google Search on Android:

Take it for a spin via the models listed below, and please let us know what you think!

Volvo: Volvo XC40, Volvo XC40 Recharge, Volvo XC60, Volvo XC90

Porsche: Porsche 911, Porsche Cayenne, Porsche Macan, Porsche Panamera, Porsche Taycan

Fiat Chrysler: Jeep Wrangler 4xE

Guido Quaroni joins Adobe

Awesome Dad-flex: Telling your tiny, Cars-loving kids that you know Guido the forklift. 😌

Granted, it was a little confusing to explain that I knew the voice of the cartoon forklift & that he was actually a brainy Italian guy who worked at Pixar—but it worked. In any case, now Guido Quaroni—who spent 20 years at Pixar & who was always a fantastic host during Adobe customer visits—has now joined the Big Red A:

“I’ve been a customer of Adobe’s software for a number of years, and I always admired Adobe’s commitment to provide top of the line tools to creatives,” said Quaroni. “When I heard about Adobe’s renewed interest in entering into the 3D market, given how much more pervasive the consumption of 3D content is becoming, I knew it was something I wanted to be a part of. I’m excited to be joining the Adobe team to help accelerate and grow their 3D offerings for creatives worldwide.”

I remain proud to have delivered, at Guido’s urging, perhaps the most arcane feature request ever: he asked for per-layer timestamps in Photoshop so that Pixar’s rendering pipeline could discern which layers had actually been changed by artists, thereby saving a lot of rendering time. We got this done, and somehow it gives me roughly as much pleasure as having delivered a photo editor that’s used by hundreds of millions of people every month. 😌

Anyway, here’s to great things for Guido, Adobe, and 3D creators everywhere!

AR: Google & Fiat-Chrysler bring super detailed models to your driveway

Psst—wanna see a multi-gig, super detailed 3D model appear in your driveway almost instantaneously?

I’m delighted to say that our work in cloud-rendered streaming 3D is paying off via this year’s virtual CES show. Per the Google Cloud blog:

As part of Fiat Chrysler’s Virtual Showroom CES event, you can experience the new innovative 2021 Jeep Wrangler 4xe by scanning a QR code with your phone. You can then see an Augmented Reality (AR) model of the Wrangler right in front of you—conveniently in your own driveway or in any open space. Check out what the car looks like from any angle, in different colors, and even step inside to see the interior with incredible details.

A bit on how it works:

The Cloud AR tech uses a combination of edge computing and AR technology to offload the computing power needed to display large 3D files, rendered by Unreal Engine, and stream them down to AR-enabled devices using Google’s Scene Viewer. Using powerful rendering servers with gaming-console-grade GPUs, memory, and processors located geographically near the user, we’re able to deliver a powerful but low friction, low latency experience.

This rendering hardware allows us to load models with tens of millions of triangles and textures up to 4k, allowing the content we serve to be orders of magnitude larger than what’s served on mobile devices (i.e., on-device rendered assets).

And to try it out:

Scan the QR code below, or check out the FCA CES website. Depending on your OS, device, and network strength, you will see either a photorealistic, cloud-streamed AR model or an on-device 3D car model, both of which can then be placed in your physical environment.

AR_Wrangler-4xe.jpg

LiDAR is magic

…or at least sufficiently indistinguishable from it.

Apple is adding a feature to help blind users detect the presence & distance of people:

I’m super interested in seeing how it may help regular people generate 3D models, though it remains to be seen what they’ll then do with them:

Here’s the capture flow in 3D Scanner App:

New Adobe tech promises 3D & materials scanning

Probably needless to say, 3D model creation remains hard AF for most people, and as such it’s a huge chokepoint in the adoption of 3D & AR viewing experiences.

Fortunately we may be on the cusp of some breakthroughs. Apple is about to popularize LIDAR on phones, and with it we’ll see interesting photogrammetry apps like Polycam:

Meanwhile Adobe is working to enable 3D scanning using devices without fancy sensors. Check out Project Scantastic:

They’re also working to improve the digitization of materials—something that could facilitate the (presently slow, expensive) digitization of apparel:

Come see the AR feature I’ve been working on all year!

I’m delighted to share that my team’s work to add 3D & AR automotive results to Google Search—streaming in cinematic quality via cloud rendering—has now been announced! Check out the demo starting around 36:30:

Here’s how we put it on via the Google Keyword blog:

Bring the showroom to you with AR

You can easily check out what the car looks like in different colors, zoom in to see intricate details like buttons on the dashboard, view it against beautiful backdrops and even see it in your driveway. We’re experimenting with this feature in the U.S. and working with top auto brands, such as Volvo and Porsche, to bring these experiences to you soon.

Cloud streaming enables us to take file size out of the equation, so we can serve up super detailed visuals from models that are hundreds of megabytes in size:

Right now the feature is in testing in the US, so there’s a chance you can experience it via Android right now (with iOS planned soon). We hope to make it available widely soon, and I can’t wait to hear what you think!

Put semi-horrifying ancient creatures in your room through Google AR

I know it’s not the ‘woke’ thing to say, but I hope the world is enslaved by an ancient soulless sentience.” — my Lovecraft-loving weirdo friend

Heh—they’re not all creepy, to be sure, but come browse fun stuff on Google Arts & Culture, view the models in 3D, and if you’re on your phone, place them in your space via AR.

DesignTaxi writes,

Some of the creatures include the Aegirocassis, a sea creature that existed 480 million years ago; a creepy-looking ancient crustacean; and a digital remodel of the whale skeleton, which is currently in view in the National History Museum’s Hintze Hall.

Exceedingly tangentially: who doesn’t love a good coelacanth reference?

Google AR search gets super buggy!

…In the best possible way, of course.

My mom loves to remind me about how she sweltered, hugely pregnant with me, through a muggy Illinois summer while listening to cicadas drone on & on. Now I want to bring a taste of the 70’s back to her via Google’s latest AR content.

You can now search for all these little (and not-so-little) guys via your Android or iPhone and see them in your room:

Here’s a list of new models:

  • Rhinoceros beetle
  • Hercules beetle
  • Atlas beetle
  • Stag beetle
  • Giant stag
  • Miyama stag beetle
  • Shining ball scarab beetle
  • Jewel beetle
  • Ladybug
  • Firefly
  • Rosalia batesi
  • Swallowtail butterfly
  • Morpho butterfly
  • Atlas moth
  • Mantis
  • Grasshopper
  • Dragonfly
  • Hornet
  • Robust cicada
  • Brown cicada
  • Periodical cicada
  • Walker’s cicada
  • Evening cicada.