Toyota vehicles possess several sensors each providing real-time data. Data can be used to optimize performance, visualize use, and stimulate the mind. With the Oculus Rift, our team created a visual experience of Toyota's telemetry data to immerse a user in the data produced by their vehicle. Aside from all of us being computer scientists, we also wanted to leverage our individual talents in a joint effort to accomplish something awesome.
What it does
Our visual experience immerses a user within a simulation of the telemetry data. We use data visualizations to provide important information without the headache of "information overload". Attractive visualizations put the users in the right state of mind to explore the information of the vehicle. A 3D model simulates the sensor data so the user can see how the vehicles components are collaborating during the trip.
How we built it
Over the past 36 hours, we each tackled challenge after challenge to build our system. On the first night of this event, we verified the feasibility of our project by rapid prototyping the several key elements of our system. John Ramirez was responsible for creating an interface that could get the data out of an excel file and into tangible objects. Orlando Gordillo used the telemetry data to reconstruct a 3D scene that shows how the individual components work together. Edgar Valles wrote the interface between our system and the Oculus + Xbox controller. Christian Murga used the telemetry data to create attractive visualizations to give new meaning to the data. This modular system came down to the wire when we entered the integration face during the last 12 hours of the Hackathon.
Challenges we ran into
Integrating the 3D models and data visualizations with the telemetry data and Oculus rift on a unity platform is easier said than done but we knew it was possible so we didn't let up.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
We met all our goals for this project. We said we wanted to visualize this data in a meaningful way and I think that's exactly what we did.
What we learned
Sensors produce a lot of information and it's important to find ways to make that information more than just numbers. Data can have an impact on society if it's presented correctly.
What's next for Toyota Rift Visual Experience
After this phase 1 prototype, we discovered several avenues for opportunity. The Oculus Rift offers people a way to explore an endless virtual world and this complements our endless amounts of data. In the future, we'd like to upgrade our computer hardware and attempt to recreate this project on the Unreal Engine (for better graphics). We think there is still much telemetry data that can be leveraged to create more insight towards trip planning and optimization. We ran out of time in this phase, but in the second phase we would likely focus more on user controls to add custom values, constraints, or other variables for optimizations. We see a future where we can create hybrid realities for learning, exploring and improving our everyday lives one byte at a time.