About this project
The world's first 3D sensor for mobile devices.
The Structure Sensor gives mobile devices the ability to capture and understand the world in three dimensions.
With the Structure Sensor attached to your mobile device, you can walk around the world and instantly capture it in a digital form. This means you can capture 3D maps of indoor spaces and have every measurement in your pocket. You can instantly capture 3D models of objects and people for import into CAD and for 3D printing. You can play mind blowing augmented reality games where the real world is your game world.
If you’re a developer, Structure gives you the ability to build mobile applications that interact with the three dimensional geometry of the real world for the very first time. You can even launch your app on the App Store!
"It's like giving some sort of a superpower to average-joe devices."
Daniel Suarez, Author of Daemon & Freedom™
- "New senses are going to make possible new applications."
Tim O'Reilly, Founder & CEO of O'Reilly Media
- "We can't wait to play with one of these around the Makerbot office.”
Bre Pettis, CEO of MakerBot
- “For me the challenge has been in creating 3D objects. This completely obliterates that challenge."
Josh Levine, VP of Engineering at Shapeways.com
“I really like how this device was designed from the beginning to be open and hackable because we don't know which way it's going to go."
Dr. Gary Bradski, President & CEO of OpenCV
- “A very important aspect of this device is that you don’t need a Ph.D. in computer vision to develop an application."
Dr. Gerard Medioni, Professor of Computer Vision at USC
Smart design, exciting features.
The Structure Sensor has been designed from the ground up to be mobile. We put a lot of thought into making the Structure Sensor work perfectly with the iPad and other mobile devices. The goal was to make a device that enabled incredible 3D sensing applications, was easy to use, had great battery life, was compact, and looked like beautiful, precision hardware.
The Structure Sensor has a mobile-optimized range that begins at 40 centimeters and stretches to over 3.5 meters. This means it can easily capture anything from a teddy bear to an entire room.
The Structure Sensor has its own onboard power supply that provides up to 4 hours of active use, and 1000+ hours of standby. That means you don’t have to limit where you go or what you do because of a cord tethering you to one place – and it also won’t drain the battery in your iPad.
Anodized aluminum chassis
The Structure Sensor chassis is machined out of a single piece of high-grade aluminum that serves as both a beautiful exterior and as a thermal core that keeps the precision optics inside at an optimal temperature. It’s also anodized for a high-end finish. At its top, the Structure Sensor has a chemically hardened glass surface that optimizes the depth image quality, while also protecting the infrared emitter and camera inside.
Dual infrared LEDs
Unlike the IR structured light projector, the IR LEDs emit a uniform light that allows you to capture the world in infrared.
What does this mean in plain terms? With Structure Sensor, your iPad has night vision.
And you'll also notice that in infrared, the world looks a little different than you expect.
You'll have full control over the IR LEDs from the SDK. Maybe you want to have two Structure Sensors invisibly signal each other. Or perhaps you want to create an augmented reality haunted house app where infrared ghosts scare the beejezus out of people as they walk around in pitch darkness. It’s up to you!
Is my iPad supported?
The Structure Sensor was designed to work with the Apple Lightning connector.
As a backer, you will get to choose which model of iPad you would like a bracket for when we ship your Structure Sensor. If you get a new iPad, you can update your selection at any time (until a few weeks before shipment). Don’t worry, you can decide later!
The iPad (4th generation) is officially supported, and will have a corresponding bracket for Structure that quickly and securely connects it with a precision aluminum latch.
We have just announced support for the new Apple iPad Air and Apple iPad mini with Retina display that were launched on October 22nd, 2013.
While not officially supported, the Structure Sensor can stream data to any iOS device that uses the Lightning connector – such as iPad mini, iPhone 5, iPhone 5c, iPhone 5s, etc. Any of these devices can be used to develop applications for the Structure Sensor.
Included demo applications.
Note: Demo apps are iOS only.
Our team has been hard at work creating fun, functional demo applications for iOS that will let you experience the Structure Sensor’s capabilities right out of the box.
1. Room Capture: Easily capture a 3D model of a room by simply spinning around with your Structure Sensor and iPad. Then, tap any two points to retrieve distances.
2. Fetch: A virtual pet to play fetch with in the physical world around you.
3. Ball Physics: An augmented reality demo where virtual balls interact with the dense geometry of the world.
4. Object Scanner: Capture models of objects and export them to CAD software or for 3D printing. You can also upload models directly to Shapeways.com for 3D printing.
Here's an interview we did with TechCrunch that shows our Object Scanner, Room Capture, and Fetch demos:
Here we have a demo of an augmented reality pet playing fetch - note how virtual elements are occluded by real world elements!
In this augmented reality + physics demo, notice how the balls bounce off each other AND the geometry of the bench.
All of these demos are built on top of the tracking and mapping features in the SDK. If you're a developer, you'll get access to the source code for these demos so you can start hacking right away.
But these demos are really just the beginning. As backers, you’ll get to play with and give us feedback on a steady stream of improvements to our core algorithms, new SDK features, and new demo applications.
Develop with depth.
We know we aren't the only ones who have thought about developing mobile apps using a 3D sensor. We were inspired by seeing the innovative apps and hacks the community has done using other 3D sensors.
Tap into a 3D sensor on an iOS device for the first time ever. With the Structure SDK, just write your app in Xcode and hit deploy. You can even launch your app on the App Store to quickly reach a wide audience for your app.
Hackers & Hobbyists
We'll also provide open source drivers for multiple platforms including Windows, Android, OS X, and Linux.
How does the Structure Sensor work with Android?
We’re excited that you’re interested in developing on the Android platform! The Structure Sensor will work with many Android devices, but at first, it’s geared toward intrepid developers who want to be among the first to build 3D sensing applications on Android.
There are three important things you need to keep in mind when using Structure with Android:
- We are not making attachment brackets for Android devices (there are too many different models!). However, we are providing an open 3D CAD model of a starter bracket that you can customize to your device and then 3D print (CAD experience required).
- At this time, we don’t plan to offer the demos or other fully featured apps for Android devices. However, we will provide open source drivers for Android to make it easy for Android developers to create their own apps.
- Your Android device must have support for USB Host Mode accessories. For many of our backers, this will be the first USB accessory they’ve used with their devices. So, we’ve created a page at http://structure.io/android where you can find more information on USB Host Mode, and about using the Structure Sensor on Android. Please check it out.
Our goal on Kickstarter is to get sensors into the hands of early adopters and developers like you as soon as possible. We want you to be involved, whether to provide feedback on the experience, or to develop new apps that will blow the platform open to wider audiences.
And we’ll be hard at work too, delivering updates and new functionality on a regular basis to add more performance and capabilities to your Structure Sensor.
What does the T-shirt look like?
The Occipital team.
The Structure Sensor is the result of over 1.5 years of intense dedication by our team. Occipital is a 13-person startup based in Boulder, CO and San Francisco, CA. We were one of the first ever TechStars companies (Boulder, 2008), and previously launched the successful RedLaser and 360 Panorama mobile applications.
In November 2011, we conceived of the idea for the Structure Sensor after playing with a Microsoft Kinect 3D sensor plugged into a high-end desktop CPU. We mapped a small indoor environment using the sensor and some prototype software. After tripping over the Kinect’s cord a few times, we realized that needing a high-end desktop CPU meant that this amazing technology was never going to make its way to everyday life. So we set out to create the Structure Sensor, and with it, a new chapter for mobile computer vision.
We hope you are as excited about the Structure Sensor as we are, and we look forward to having you join us as we introduce the first 3D sensor for mobile devices to the world.
A special thank you.
We'd like to thank everyone who took time out of their busy schedules to help support our Kickstarter effort:
- The Orbotix Team, creators of Sphero.
- The Nekuda team.
- Daniel Suarez, Author of Daemon, Freedom™, and Kill Decision.
- John Underkoffler, Founder of Oblong.
- Aviad Maizels, Founder of PrimeSense.
- Dr. Gary Bradski, Creator of OpenCV, and Occipital board member.
- Gadi Amit and the NewDeal Design team.
- Tim O'Reilly, Founder & CEO, O’Reilly Media.
- Josh Levine, VP of Engineering, Shapeways.com.
- Victor Eruhimov, Co-Founder & CEO, Itseez.
- Dr. Gerard Medioni, Professor of Computer Vision at USC
Our stretch goal.
Risks and challenges
We have worked very hard to de-risk as much as we can before this campaign started. We already signed agreements with key suppliers, contracted with a manufacturer, and have gone through design for manufacturing. As a result, we are near ready to begin manufacturing the first run of Structure Sensors Betas.
However, there is always the risk of unforeseen challenges when manufacturing physical products as we go through the certification process, finish setting up the production line, and line up logistics. If an unexpected issue arises, we are resolved to doing everything we can to get as close to our delivery schedule as possible.
We appreciate your support, and we are excited to have you join us in our mission to give mobile devices the ability to see and understand the world!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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