ANAHEIM, CA (SIGGRAPH 2013) July 25 2013 - LMI Technologies is pandering to the crowd. A company best known for 3D measurement in manufacturing applications is not above showing a babe in very short shorts. It's only a model of a babe, so even better for the CG-loving, Wierd Science* crowd at SIGGRAPH. She stands tall as we enter the exhibit hall.
LMI is offering a 3D color scan of anybody who wanders in the booth. Using their low-cost KScan3D system (it's really a Kinect box rigged up to LMI's software, it can give you model of yourself in a few seconds. If you want to set up the operation for yourself, the whole rig can be had for $450 ($150 for the Kinect and $299 for the 3D scanning software).
My scan didn't look quite as good. Never mind that the subject is less photogenic, the scan itself shows little resolution. It soes one quick pass from one vantage point, so I am not surprised that it captures little more than a patchwork image that could, if you squint, look something like me. In all fairness, they do say a good model is made after several scans.
KScand3D will stitch multiple scans together automatically, they say. But who want to be pirouetting for a few minutes in a show booth?
While the KScan3D may be LMI's foray into the consumer space, more important is the HDI Advance scanning system, which uses USB 3.0.
Thomas Tong, sales manager, at LMI, is there to show me the real reason for LMI's existence. An array of manufactured parts, of which several were on display, that can be scanned by a more robust scanner and processed by industrial strength software, to reveal discrepancies between the designed part and the manufactured one. The HDI 3D scanner uses white light -- not lasers like most other systems -- and claims to be able to do a full scan in one second. A rotating table is available so you don't have to keep repositioning the part.
So much easier that spending hours with the calipers. Do people still do that?
*1985 movie in which 2 boys conjure a beautiful woman, played by Kelly LeBrock