XR Work > buildMRide
buildMRide is a Mixed Reality(MR) application for prototyping toy car designs.
The purpose of the experience is to allow toy car designers to make and test new iterations of their creation in an MR environment, to evaluate its performance without the need to assemble a physical prototype.
This project was developed during a course called 'Design for Complex and Dynamic Contexts', where the focus was on Digital Twins and MR technology.
Traditional methods of physical prototyping often require materials, tools, labor costs, and the time to create physical prototypes that can be very expensive (Leng et al. 2021). The process of design usually requires “physical prototypes to be assembled to check and verify whether the virtual space model is accurately matched, including structure, ergonomics, and performance indexes” (Leng et al. 2021). The manufacturing of physical models can be very expensive (Leng et al. 2021). In this case modeling digital prototypes could be a good solution (Leng et al. 2021). One of the solutions can be a digital twin as “a digital prototype is a kind of rehearsal in which the information model replaces physics” (Leng et al. 2021). Some previous research showed that DT’s of the toys such as modeling ships could “create simulations that can be easily accessed and executed” (Fonseca et al. 2020).
Our team's objective was - How can MR based digital twins be useful for toy car designers?
Due to resource limitations, our team proceeded with certain assumptions of altering basic aspects of a toy car with respect to its digital twin, such that this initial prototype can be used as a proof of concept for toy car designers, for testing the car's behavior.
We came across various types of challenges, and a few of the important ones are given below:
Interactions and Interface
buildMRide was developed using the Unity game engine and the Oculus Integration SDK. Figma was used for prototyping interfaces.
The interactions were mainly controller based. Due to the complexity of interactions available, using hand-tracking was dropped.
The left controller was used for the customization of the vehicle. The right controller was used for driving controls and respawning of the vehicle.
Using controllers, also provided haptic feedback when the car collided with the obstacles.
The project was researched, conceptualised and prototyped between 28 March 2023 to 31 May 2023.
We were a team of 5 members; Elias L, Karan D (self), Kiran S, Maria D and Siyue L.
My contributions to the team were in the research, concept development, design of the MR interface and interactions, the user experience, project's branding and communication.
The project was mentored by Prof. Jordi Solsona Belenguer, Prof. Asreen Rostami, Patricia Ciobanu, Jonas Collin and Paul Victor Vinegren.
The project received an overall positive feedback, with scope for improvement in the features and functionalities. Given below are some of the comments received:
My take-aways were:
Full report of this project is available on this link.