Distance Affairs and Greetings
Masaki Fujihata (JP)
With "Nuzzle Afar" Fujihata provides an exemplary model of a three-dimensional communication and experience space that offers different levels of encounter and possibilities of shared experience.
Nuzzle Afar invites the visitors to explore the virtual space, based on a network. The participants can explore the virtual space using a trackball and a special interface.
The temporal movements within the space leave traces which can be followed by the other participants. Spherical objects serve as avatars and visualize the current virtual location of the individual visitors. Fujihata's system does not only permit the simultaneous exchange of position and orientation data, but also of the entire visual and acoustic material. In "Nuzzle Afar" curiosity and a sense of discovery and willingness to communicate are the fundamental elements for orientating oneself in the (virtual) world.
In this respect, "Nuzzle Afar" finally proves to be a conception of 3D environments for shared experiences which can be applied in various contexts—as for example for searching information—and only then it will turn out whether this experiment—derived out of the art context—has been successful.
Nuzzle Afar is a further elaboration of the communication functions developed for the "Global Interior Project" which won the Golden Nica at Prix Ars Electronica 1996.