If you are a University of Calgary-based researcher with data visualization or virtual reality simulation needs that go beyond what is available on your own desktop, please ask for more information about the facilities listed below by writing to firstname.lastname@example.org .
WestGrid has provided a visualization hardware and software setup called an IQ Station for use by University of Calgary researchers. The IQ stands for “Inexpensive Interactive Immersive Interface" (although inexpensive is a relative term, as the IQ Station represents an investment of about $25,000). It is a virtual reality tool that combines a computer-driven large 3D plasma display with six tracking cameras to produce a simulated 3D environment in which researchers can explore and interpret complex data sets. The IQ Station user wears a pair of 3D glasses to view the screen and uses a Nintendo Wii controller as a virtual wand to control interactions with objects on the screen. The system tracks both head and hand positions, which facilitates changes of view as the user navigates through the data representation on the screen.
The reseachers' data sets can be imported through a thumb drive or other external hard drive device. It is likely that some data conversion will be necessary to adapt the format to the visualization software on the system.
The IQ Station, including the main display, an auxiliary monitor, and two computers, is on a wheeled frame. As such, it is portable, but, the expectation is that it will be loaned out for extended periods of time.
If you would like a demonstration or would like to discuss the possibility of borrowing the IQ Station, we would be happy to explore the possibilities with you and assist with any data conversion that might be necessary.