Disney's Sand-Sketching Robot Turns Beaches Into an Artist's Canvas

If you thought elaborate sand castles were the only way one could express their artistic vision on the beach, Disney Research and ETH Zürich want to introduce you to their Beachbot. Slightly larger than a Roomba, the cartoonish robot turtle uses innovative soft balloon-like wheels so that it doesn't leave a trail… » 1/12/15 8:20am 1/12/15 8:20am

Disney's Super-Realistic CG Eyeballs Are an Uncanny Valley Airlift

What most often gives away a CG character as fake is their dead, lifeless eyes. It's a common contributing factor to the uncanny valley effect, but now researchers at Disney have developed a system to perfectly capture a performer's eyes that promises to make CG characters finally appear more lifelike and convincing. » 12/05/14 10:52am 12/05/14 10:52am

Disney Developed Software To Revolutionize Macy's Parade Balloons

The reason your favorite cartoon or movie character hasn't appeared in Macy's annual Thanksgiving Day Parade isn't necessarily because they're not popular, it might be that crafting an inflatable likeness has just been too difficult. But to ensure no fad gets left out, the folks at Disney Research have developed… » 8/11/14 10:44am 8/11/14 10:44am

Disney Research 3D-Prints Figurines With the Most Lifelike Hair Ever

3D printing can make an action figure copy of your body and face, but the hair usually ends up looking like a Lego minifig wig. The mad scientists at Disney Research just solved that, with an algorithm so powerful it can trace your hair's shape and color with ultra-realism. » 8/09/14 9:00am 8/09/14 9:00am

Data Hidden Inside of Music Could Soon Stream Right to Your Smartphone

Your religious neighbor may have been wrong about the satanic messages hidden in your new-fangled rock music, but researchers at Disney have figured out a very real way to hide data within songs. In a new study, they explain how the next concert or movie you go to could broadcast content to your phone through sound. » 4/30/14 7:00pm 4/30/14 7:00pm

Disney's Paper Generators Could Power Interactive Books of the Future

Disney has developed a new technology that allows you to generate energy by simply rubbing or touching a piece of paper. This is something the world needs because, you know, everything will require a level of interactivity in the future—even old-fashioned paper books. » 10/07/13 2:20pm 10/07/13 2:20pm

Incredible Disney Microphone Transmit Sounds Through Your Fingertips

When it comes to secrets, whispering just got outdated. Disney Research has come up with a microphone, straight out of Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, that doesn't actually amplify your ramblings, but instead turns them into a secret signal you can transmit by touch. » 9/09/13 10:40am 9/09/13 10:40am

Air-Powered Force Feedback Could Make Kinect Even More Immersive

Microsoft's Kinect provided gamers with a hands-free way to play their favorite titles. But when the controller was removed from the situation, so was the haptic force feedback that can enhance gameplay. Most of us were ok with the tradeoff, but not the Imagineers at Disney Research who've come up with a way to… » 5/23/13 9:45am 5/23/13 9:45am

3D-Printed Optics Could Light Up the Gadgets of the Future

3D-printing is awesome, but it has its limits. For the time being, we mostly get static plastic figures, and while resolution is getting better all the time, we're far from a real replicator future. A new development is bringing us one step closer, however: printable optics. » 10/06/12 4:00pm 10/06/12 4:00pm