Leap + Three

Visualizing satellite availability and visibility in an urban environment requires both an understanding of the current configuration and a general mental model for close alternative positioning that minimizes or maximizes exposure. SA2 Explorer provides both a 2D and 3D visualization of an urban environment and its asset availability that is displayed with WebGL and can be navigated using both the mouse and a Leap Motion device.

Here’s a video of it in action:

One of the most challenging aspects of designing a gesture language for air-based gestures is the lack of any mode of 0/1 or on/off input, which has generally been important in determining intent. Mouses, keyboards, and touchscreens all have ways to filter input movement– a button is either down or up. A screen is either touched or it isn’t. Leap Motion does not have that boolean input, which means that oftentimes an application doesn’t know if a gesture is expressing intent or just an ordinary human movement.

SA2 Explorer uses the open/closed state of the user’s hand to determine intent– if an open hand is hovering about, the app does nothing. If a user closes their hand completely, they can drag around the view angle and zoom level (see video above). To move the queried position, the user can either use the sliders or click a position in the scene.