The Robotics Institute
RI | Seminar | May 27

Robotics Institute Special Seminar, May 27
Time and Place | Seminar Abstract | Speaker Biography | Speaker Appointments

Continuous Capture of Skin Deformation

Jovan Popovic
Laboratory for Computer Science

Time and Place

1305 Newell-Simon Hall
Talk 3:30 pm
Refreshments at 3:15 pm


A digital replica of a moving human body has applications in video games, teleconferencing, automated news shows, and filmmaking. I will describe a technique for acquiring the deformable geometry of human skin, which is one essential feature of this digital representation. Our technique uses a commercial tracking system to compute the motion of the skeleton, which it then combines with the image silhouettes from one or more cameras to reconstruct the geometry of the skin around each bone. Although the silhouettes do not provide a complete description of the geometry at any time, as the subject moves, repeated silhouette observations for locally equivalent skeleton poses combine to describe the geometry of the entire human body. In the process, the geometry is parameterized to allow synthesis of skin geometries for motions that were not in the original dataset.

Speaker Biography

Jovan Popovic is an assistant professor in the Department of Electical Engineering and Computer Science and a member of the Computer Graphics Group in the Laboratory for Computer Science. His goal is to enrich human communication with intuitive computer design tools that could help teachers to develop compelling examples of hard-to-describe concepts, storytellers to animate their tales, and artists to discover new forms of expression. This research employs computer science, mathematics and physics to explore the applications of geometric modeling (the design of shapes) and computer animation (the design of motion) to the fields of computer graphics, human-computer interaction, biomechanics, robotics, and design.

Before joining MIT in the Fall of 2001, Jovan Popovic received his Ph.D. in Computer Science from Carnegie Mellon University and his B.S. degrees with highest distinction in Mathematics and Computer Science from Oregon State University.

Speaker Appointments

For appointments, please contact Jessica Hodgins (

The Robotics Institute is part of the School of Computer Science, Carnegie Mellon University.