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TitleVirtualExplorer: A Plugin-Based Virtual Reality Framework (In Proceedings)
inStereoscopic Displays and Virtual Reality Systems VIII
Author(s) Falko Kuester, Bernd Hamann, Ken Joy
Editor(s) A.J. Woods, M.T. Bolas, J.O. Merritt, S.A. Benton
Keyword(s)Virtual Reality, Immersive Environments, Virtual Reality APIs, Scientific Data Visualization and Exploration.
Year 2001
LocationSan Francisco, California
DateJanuary 20--26, 2001
Volume4297
PublisherSPIE
AddressBellingham, Washington
OrganizationSPIE- The International Society for Optical Engineering
Pages436--422
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Abstract This paper introduces VirtualExplorer, a customizable plugin-based virtual reality framework for immersive scientific data visualization, exploration and geometric modeling. The framework is layered on top of a run-time plugin system and reconfigurable virtual user interface and provides a variety of plugin components. The system provides access to scene-graphbased APIs, including Performer and OpenInventor, direct OpenGL support for visualization of time-critical data as well as collision and generic device managers. Plugins can be loaded, disabled, enabled or unloaded at any time, triggered either through pre-defined events or through an external Python-based interface. The virtual user interface uses pre-defined geometric primitives that can be customized to meet application-specific needs. The entire widget set can be reconfigured dynamically on a per-widget basis or as a whole through a style manager. The system is being developed with a variety of application areas in mind, but its main emphasis is on user-guided data exploration and high-precision engineering design.