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Intellidrive Interactive - Triple Monitor Driving Sim - Now playing in San Francisco!

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    Intellidrive Interactive - Triple Monitor Driving Sim - Now playing in San Francisco!

    UPDATE!!
    The simulator has been installed at the Autodesk Gallery in San Francisco and is free to play to the public (on Wednesdays)!

    We've got some new stuff on it and we'll be adding a lot over the next few years. If you're in the Bay Area, you're gonna see a lot more of the simulator in months to come.

    Presenting IntelliDrive Interactive
    The Goal
    Create a driving simulator to demonstrate IntelliDrive technologies.
    The Client
    Michigan Department of Transportation
    The Crew
    • Scott Shogan – Executive Producer
    • Dave Thorp – Producer
    • Thomas Shannon – Lead Designer/Lead Artist
    • Rachel Cordone – Lead Programmer
    • Tracey White – Lead Modeler
    • Eriks Strals – Hardware Integration
    • Mark Kauffman – Sound
    • Sara Wedul – Narration
    • Ryan Sander – Dashboard Designer
    • Mark Steuben – Writer
    The Hardware
    • 3X HP Z600 workstations
    o Quadro 4800 1.5Gb
    o Intel 5570 CPU
    o 6Gb RAM
    o 2x 160Gb 10K SATA HDD in Raid 1
    • 3X Samsung displays
    o 1080p
    o <.5” bezel
    o Commercial quality
    • 1x Custom Built Chassis
    o 1000w 5.1 surround sound
    o Haptic Feedback system
    o Cup Holder
    The Software
    • Unreal Development Kit
    • Autodesk Max 2010
    • Photoshop CS3
    • CrazyBump
    • FRAPS
    The Beginning
    In December of 2009, PB Project Viz was asked to consult with MDOT to create a demonstration of IntelliDrive technologies. The client had some very specific goals and requirements that shaped the early development of the system. The first and foremost was the desire for those experiencing the demonstration to become personally involved. To this end, the suggestion of a driving simulator was presented. This immediately excited and invigorated the client’s imagination. Through the initial brainstorming session the following requirements were laid out:
    • Real-time driving simulator
    • 180 degrees of view
    • Realistic input control mechanism
    • The system is reasonably portable and reusable
    • Delivery by the start of the Michigan Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) meeting in May of 2010
    UDK
    In December of 2009, Epic games released the first beta version of the Unreal Development Kit (UDK), the low-cost version of the Unreal 3 engine. The visual fidelity and networking capabilities of the engine made it an immediate candidate. While the UDK was brand new, the technologies behind it have been around for years and proven in a multitude of blockbuster video games.
    After researching a multitude of other engines, looking at graphical performance and fidelity, ease of development, networking performance and robustness and developer availability, we decided to try the UDK for this project.
    Due to the incredibly short turnaround, the UDK was immediately attractive because of how well it fit with our modeling pipeline for AEC visualizations. The Lightmass system in the UDK allowed us to achieve very high quality graphics in a very short period of time, allowing us to concentrate on the script and level design.
    When we reached out to the Unreal development community for a programmer the response was admittedly light but fast and very impressive. Individuals with over 10 years of experience working with the Unreal Engine were applying for the job and demonstrating a capability for utilizing it that surprised the team and made us very confident that the UDK could meet our goals.
    Quite simply put: we were unable to find another real-time engine that provided the features we needed at the price point we were willing to pay. Was the UDK perfect for our needs? No. was it workable? Definitely.
    Hardware
    Because of the limitations of planar projections and the existing rendering power of computers, the decision was made to use three identical computers to generate the images on the three monitors. The monitors are Samsung 460UX-2 1080p thin bezel monitors. They are INCREDIBLY bright and sharp and really make the graphics pop.
    The computers are very well equipped to ensure the best performance we could get. Because of our tight timeframe, optimization had to be kept to a minimum as we had so much content to produce. We also chose more expensive workstation class parts to ensure reliability and service and support in the event of a malfunction. We certainly could have achieved a higher performance with consumer video cards and processors at a much lower cost but the risk of failure is far too high.
    The Chassis is an off-the-shelf simulator system built by HSC (http://www.myhomesimulator.com/produ...lator-pro.html). It’s really a beast with a LOT of sound and fury. We’re really having a blast rumbling down the street with this thing.
    All together you get something that looks like this:
    The Result
    As you can see, the system has come together incredibly well. While we are still ironing out some of the rough edges, we’re pleased to find that what we’ve developed is better than we had initially hoped. Of course we’d love a bigger team, more budget and more than 4 months to work on this, but we’re all incredibly proud of what we were able to make.

    Environment flythroughs:



    Map0 - Tutorial



    Map1 - Suburban



    Map2 - Bad Weather



    Map3 - Rock City








    More screenshots:
    http://www.screencast.com/users/kopar/folders/II

    #2
    I want that 6 gig of ram. Oh and yes this looks great and would be fun to play. They should have this at the DMV instead. Then we will have 12 year olds thinking their ready for a driver's license and stealing their parent's cars. This would be bad for scary games because I would know when something is coming around the corner. This would be awesome for adventure games because I could be able to see every aspect of the environment. Can I have those monitor's? lol.

    http://michaeljcollinsdreamart.com

    Comment


      #3
      This is one of the more awesome projects I've worked on, and it's definitely presented a lot of interesting programming challenges. I've learned a lot while working on this, and I'm very proud of what we've accomplished.

      And I am so getting one of those rigs once I'm rich and famous.

      Comment


        #4
        Excellent work guys. I'd love a test drive.

        Comment


          #5
          You haven't built your lighting!


          :P

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by Xendance View Post
            You haven't built your lighting!


            :P
            lol got me with this.

            But yeah, great job guys. If you need a tester then just send that entire kit to my house.

            One of the geekiest things I used to do was to drive on GTA 3 and 4 as an actual NPC would, I would plot my destination and switch the radio on and have a nice relaxing cruise. Having something like this would be amazing though..

            Comment


              #7
              Oy! Don't mention the lighting. Building on massive levels with thousands of speed trees is proving to be... interesting. If only the UDK.exe were 63-bit I could get it to work... but...

              Comment


                #8
                From a programming and design standpoint, I'm totally taken aback.. wouldn't mind hearing ALOT more about how this works under the hood. It looks so impresive and gorgeous..

                Comment


                  #9
                  This is truly amazing! Wonderful job folks! (Hi Angel!)

                  Comment


                    #10
                    This looks awesome!!!

                    If only the UDK.exe were 63-bit I could get it to work... but...
                    I think we can even do one better ;-)

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by Daniel Vogel View Post
                      This looks awesome!!!


                      I think we can even do one better ;-)
                      Oy embarrasing. Honestly we'd only need the 63, you can keep the last one.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Yep incredible work
                        Just by curiosity what's the total budget ? ^^

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Nezus>
                          thanks!
                          I'm not sure I can reveal the budget due to agreements with our clients, but I can tell you the hardware alone was around $40K (With shipping). If you can make yourself a chassis, we'll happily provide the SVN login if you'd like to do some testing
                          As for budgets, our toughest budget was time, with receiveing notice to preocede on Jan 12, 2010, we've only had a few months and a small crew to get it working.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Looks fantastic! Really looking forward to seeing more!

                            Comment


                              #15
                              ok, that looks freakin fantastic. Great job.

                              Now, I live in Michigan -- where can I get a look at one? (and why is the state spending a ridiculous amount of money on such a thing, considering the state is currently nearly bankrupt, and i'm not just talking about their morals .. haha)

                              *drooling at the thought of the kinds of things that could be done if hardware limitations were a secondary concern instead of a primary*

                              oh, yeah, did the steering wheel and pedals just directly interface to the regular joystick stuff? just curious

                              Comment

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