A Tomography of Space


After studying ways of mapping spaces through the scan of consecutive sections,
like tomography, or ways to map physical spaces in three or two dimensions,
such as submarine sonars, we asked ourselves how could we account with the
multiple elevations of a given space, and how could we visualize them at one
sight — instead of having to animate a series of section “cuts.”

tomography noun. a technique for displaying a representation of a cross section through a human body or other solid object using X-rays or ultrasound.

In someway, we merged the concept underlying both tomography and sonar
detection techniques, in a quest to map successive cylindrical projections of
space, to map both front and back elevations of spatial elements — resulting in
a 2.5D mapping system.

The process performs a polar mapping of the elements existing inside every two concentric cylinders. The projected cylinders are then unwrapped in flat lines, which linearly grow in length, but keep a constant height. The front elevation of a given radius span would appear next to the back elevation of the same radius span, containing both front and back views of the objects contained in that radius span.

We would next make the length of all the strips equal, by scaling them in the x axis, leaving y axis (height) constant. This method keeps the first row at real scale, and gradually compresses succesive rows as the radius of their cylinder increases, keeping the height of each single strip the same throughout the process.

To eliminate that deformation of the y axis, one last step is needed: an equidistant projection, radially, of the succesive strips of front and back elevetions.

The end result, as can be seen in our 2.5D equidistant projection, is a set of front elevations in the left half of the circle, and their set of back elevations in the other half. This way, we can visualize what is happening in the whole space at one sight.

We imagine this technology could be useful, for instance, to surveil an entire
building with multiple video feeds that are “stiched” together to create a live
projection mapped onto a circle.


Gabriel Munoz Moreno  (http://scoopa.org)

Nono Martinez Alonso (http://nono.ma/)

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