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International Workshop on Volume Graphics

30-31 July, 2006

Boston Park Plaza, Boston, Massachusetts, USA


Where does Volume and Point Data come from?

Professor Marc Levoy

Stanford University


From borehole tomography in geophysics to confocal microscopy in the biological sciences, the use of computers during image formation has revolutionized our ability to observe the natural and manmade worlds. Many of these imaging methods produce volume or point data. While the volume graphics community has done an admirable job displaying medical data, and the point graphics community has done similarly well with dense polygon meshes, many other scientific disciplines are going hungry for lack of good visualization tools. In this talk, I will briefly survey the use of computational imaging in a number of core sciences, including physics, chemistry, biology, astronomy, and geology. I will argue that as visualization researchers we must learn each domain and work closely with its discipline scientists. I will also argue that we must understand the domain's acquisition technologies, including its limitations and special opportunities. Finally, I will argue that we can best help these scientists not by displaying their polished volume and point datasets, but by aiding them to visualize and analyze the data acquisition process itself.

Short Biography

Marc Levoy is a Professor of Computer Science and (jointly) Electrical Engineering at Stanford University. He received a Bachelor's and Master's in Architecture from Cornell University in 1976 and 1978, and a PhD in Computer Science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1989. His current interests include light field sensing and display, computational imaging, digital photography, and applications of computer graphics in art history, preservation, restoration, and archaeology. Awards: Charles Goodwin Sands Medal for best undergraduate thesis (1976), National Science Foundation Presidential Young Investigator (1991), ACM SIGGRAPH Computer Graphics Achievement Award (1996).


Medical Visualization in the Real World

Professor Ron Kikinis

Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School


The medical field has been a real success story for volume graphics (in the broadest sense of the term). 3D reconstructions of tomographic imagery allow medical professionals, particularly non-radiologists, to explore, inspect, and analyze patient data intuitively. Large studies of multiple patients with diseases such as multiple sclerosis or schizophrenia depend on volume visualization. Interactive surgical planning and image-guided therapy techniques provide today's surgeons with completely new options for patient treatment. Meaningful medical visualization, however, requires more than just fancy pictures: it demands a rigorous acquisition, registration, segmentation, and analysis pipeline in addition to pure rendering. This talk will discuss a variety of real-world examples of how this kind of processing pipeline has improved patient treatment and disease understanding, based on more than fifteen years of work at the Surgical Planning Lab at Brigham and Women's Hospital. These examples will illustrate what's possible when physicians, researchers, and computer scientists work together to solve medical problems. The talk will also discuss as-yet unsolved computational and visualization challenges that will make the operating rooms of tomorrow a reality.

Short Biography

Dr. Kikinis is the Director of the Surgical Planning Laboratory of the Department of Radiology, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, and a Professor of Radiology at Harvard Medical School. His interests include the development of image processing algorithms and software systems, and their application to a variety of medical applications. He is the author and co-author of more than 200 peer-reviewed articles. Before joining Brigham and Women's Hospital in 1988, he worked as a researcher at the ETH in Zurich and as a resident at the University Hospital in Zurich, Switzerland. He received his M.D. from the University of Zurich, Switzerland, in 1982.

Last Updated: 26 June 2006