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article imageAdidas Introduces Virtual Shoe Shopping

By geozone     Mar 29, 2007 in Technology
By just pointing their finger, customers at the Adidas shop on the Avenue des Champs Elysees can now enjoy the pleasure of trying on dozens of pairs of shoes without ever taking off the ones they already have on.
It is all thanks to the development of a sophisticated computer system integrated with 3-D imaging technology. The customer simply stands in front of a virtual mirror, the top half of which is a real mirror reflecting the person's legs and the bottom half a video screen which displays virtual shoes.
A computer screen located at a distance of up to a foot and a half away displays a variety of shoe models and colors. Up on the ceiling a stereo camera captures the spatial location of a customer's finger and determines its position in relation to the screen. In this manner, the computer is able to know what object a person is pointing to on the screen without actual contact with the screen. This touchless screen and finger-tracking system allows a customer to seamlessly navigate through the pages of menu choices.
Once a selection of shoe style and size has been made, the customer stands on a green mat. Another camera captures the customer’s feet and legs and shows them as a video scene on the monitor. The selected shoe model is then inserted into the picture through merging the images. Customers can see how the shoes look on their feet from various angles simply by moving around.
The 3-D image processing techniques in this system are so fast that the customer's movements can be followed in real time. With just a point at the screen, shoe model or color can be changed instantly. Using this system enables a store to considerably reduce its inventory and cost while at the same time providing almost an endless selection to customers.
Jürgen Rurainsky, one of the developers of the virtual mirror system, said, "There are a couple of thousands of combinations of the colors and materials you can chose from."
Once a final choice has been made, an order is taken. It requires about 30 minutes to customize a pair of shoes and then three weeks to get it delivered.
Though Adidas currently offers this virtual shoe shopping experience only at its Paris store, the technology will soon be available in other stores, including one in the U.S. and China.
it is me Leah posted a video about Adidas' Parisian store here. There was not much information at all about the virtual shoe shopping technology so I posted this story. I also grouped my story with it is me Leah's for reference.
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