Monday Enhancement: Lit Tree

Lit Tree is an augmented-reality project which lets you use hand gestures to interact with an illuminated tree. Usually, a projector emits a field of pixels, creating a flat image on a flat surface. Lit Tree uses two projectors to emit a field of voxels, or 3-D pixels, onto a bamboo tree. A Kinect scans for hand gestures made above a plinth and translates the movements into 3-D patterns. Custom software written with openFrameworks interprets the gestures and illuminates the tree. The project comes from crossdisciplinary studio Kimchi and Chips, which describes the project as a way to greenify and de-screenify digital media and rethink the billboard, LED display, and projector:

If we can promote the use of trees as outdoor visual media, then we can better plan cities to accommodate both the human requirement for nature and our developing want for digital control over the visual environment.... Since the temperature of light produced by a video projector's bulb is similar to the surface of the sun (5800K), we suggest that, over time, the tree could naturally react to the light that is projected onto it.... Light wasted inside the tree is absorbed in photosynthesis, which converts local carbon dioxide to oxygen.

The installation exhibited last month at FutureEverything in Manchester, England.

Found via Creative Applications.

Monday Enhancements is a weekly series on interaction design and augmented reality.