Televisualization Proposal

What is Televisualization?

We envision a state-of-the-art collaborative software environment combining video teleconferencing and scientific visualization techniques. This would run on our 90 MHz Intel Pentium workstations equipped with Proshare software and video/audio peripherals. These systems allow a researcher and a clinician at remote sites to simultaneously image, analyze and interpret a patient's corneal data. We coin this combination of video and visualization: 'Televisualization'.

Proposed interaction

We foresee the interaction with our system as follows: the clinician wishing collaboration with the researcher would request a Televisualization session regarding a particularly interesting patient. The Proshare videoconferencing software would signal the remote colleague that a conference was requested and permit confirmation of the connection.

The remote colleague(s) would connect, and all would have access to the same data and visualization tools as if they were in the same room. A mock-up prototype application, which we call LensNet, is shown above. The two videoconferencing windows are in the lower right, the four visualization windows fill the majority of the screen, and the control panel is on the right. These systems would allow us to explore remote collaborative research as never before possible.

The clinician would load the patient's data file into the system - this data would be invisibly mirrored to the computer scientist's system so that both would be working with a local copy. The system would bring up the corneal map in the upper left and the Gaussian curvature map in the lower left. The two would then work to create a new contact lens using the program from the upper right and the resulting fluorescein pattern would be visible in the lower right. All the while, they could be discussing (using the Intel's Audio/Video peripherals) how the lens they've designed would rest over the cornea until they were both satisfied with the lens. Then the clinician could choose to save the lens in a file format that would be ready for manufacture.

We believe Televisualization will fundamentally change the way we, as computer scientists and optical clinical researchers will be able to collaborate. We also believe that our research project, with its world-class faculty in both computer science and optometry, is uniquely positioned to make the most productive use of these systems.

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