I had this idea back in the late 2009: to build a 3D object viewer that works outside the DCC tools where it would enable 3D game artisans to evaluate other artisan’s game model without fuss.

To realize the idea, I enrolled myself into a research programme and becoming a master candidature for Design and New Media Technology in mid-2010. Although it is on part-time basis, still I felt it is the longest and toughest journey I ever made.  The transformation from being a 3D game artisan to design technologist that delve with codes and academic research writings is a challenging one; it really stretches my mental capacity to be a better design thinker and doer who would critically evaluate his own creative thoughts from time to time.  As a result, my research topic and literature readings had been drastically shifted and deviated; from interactive computer graphics, to the building blocks of user experience (UX) and to emotional design, follow by designing complexity with simplicity, and lastly I stopped at usability evaluation design!

Research Literature Reference

Design Literature that I have read and ditch.

Strange enough, usability was a darn boring topic to me at first when I dabbed into UX.  But, to design a creative application that has great user experience and simple enough to use, you ought to make it usable first!  It was painful but insightful lesson l learnt after ditching many written thousand words and chapters.  All of sudden my initial quest for creating real-time 3D application had become secondary.  Still, I have kept my initial motivation and idea alive even though the world had move on to WebGL & HTML5.  Though webOS and web-app is in vogue and becoming a standard for the future, however it gave me stronger reasoning to design and built an application that is usable in offline mode.  We know how it is like when you are on the road without connection.

RiGS 3D Mesh Viewer - Prototype version 0.1

RiGS 3D Mesh Viewer for Windows 7 Touch – Prototype version 0.1

The first prototype I built was limited within Windows 7 Touch, as it lacked of the true sense of mobility. It was done in late 2011, and I had stopped working on it for quite a long time as my day job is really taking toll on me.  Still, I scrambled whatever down time I could have and delve deep into the literature of usability design.  I have spent much of my time in write-&-rewrite the first three (3) chapters of my thesis. Then, I got back to coding and prototyping again at late September 2013.  I have rewritten all my codes as the SDK that I leveraged on had changed since where I left.  In additions, developing for true mobile device like Android is really difference.  It is my first ever experience developing a mobile app.  It is tough but I like it a lot! I never thought of developing an application needs to be this complex; it is not about how but why built it.  I start to get a flavor of “getting into a right frame of mind” by asking the right question and framing a real-world problem that worthwhile to study and solve.

It was tough at first for getting things to work in Android. I have stuck for nearly two weeks with many sleepless hours, as I can’t get my Mobile Mesh Viewer to access a mobile device’s internal storage at run-time.  But, I manage to get through it with a temporal solution.  This version-0.2-prototype is still quite primitive, as I have yet to include the features of normal mapping, and other functionality.  More to come, but first I need to perform usability evaluation with my proposed research methods before keep developing it.  Hopefully, I get it done by next year and release it to the Google Play Store around March 2014.

3D Mesh Object Viewer Mobile Android