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Nicholas Polys showcases VT graphics and interactive techniques

November 28, 2022

Nicholas Polys
Nicholas Polys

Nicholas Polys was invited to present his visual computing activities at the 49th International Conference & Exhibition on Computer Graphics & Interactive Techniques (SIGGRAPH 2022) held August 8-11 in Vancouver, Canada. Polys presented in several Birds of a Feather (BOF) sessions remotely from the Virginia Tech HyperCube including: Immersive Visualization for Research, Science and Art, Cartographic Visualization (Carto), and The Web3D Ecosystem and the Metaverse. Videos are available on the conference website.

More recently,  at the 27th Annual International Conference on 3D Web Technology (Web3D 2022) held Nov 2-4 in Paris, France and virtually, he gave a Keynote talk entitled “What is behind the Metaverse? … and What is Ahead?”, participated in a panel, and presented two student papers (from the HCI Capstone class). Videos are available on the conference website and will be released to the public.

Polys is the Director of Visual Computing for Virginia Tech Advanced Research Computing (ARC), and Affiliate Professor in the Department of Computer Science. His research interests lie at the center of graphics and Human Computer Interaction: the intersection of visualization, virtual environments, and perception. He is the elected President of the Web3D Consortium.

Web3D 2022

Web3D 2022 addressed an extensive range of research, development, and practices related to multiple 3D application domains, including the metaverse. The Web3D conference is sponsored by ACM SIGGRAPH, a special interest group of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), in cooperation with the Web3D Consortium.


The ACM SIGGRAPH conference is the premier conference for computer graphics and interactive techniques worldwide. In 2022, participants gathered virtually and in person to celebrate the diverse, global community and the stories, innovations, and industry advancements that make up SIGGRAPH. 

His work has been featured in other venues as well:

Polys is the Featured Teacher in the Fall 2022 issue of VT Engineer's Forum – VT’s premiere student-run engineering and technology magazine!

Polys’ collaboration with Ali Haghighat, Nuclear Engineering Program (VT Department of Mechanical Engineering) is featured in the 2023 Annual Brochure (p. 17) of the Coalition for Academic Scientific Computation (CASC), their 5th appearance!  The print issue was released at Supercomputing (SC22), the International Conference for High Performance Computing, Networking, Storage and Analysis (November 13-18).

A collaborative project with the VT Department of Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation (FREC) enlisted Polys’ expertise in visual computing to develop immersive training exercises and video study tours using augmented and virtual reality (AR/VR) delivery technologies to enhance virtual learning about forestry during COVID. The AR/VR technologies helped to bring the forestry study modules to remote participants and keep them engaged in an online meeting environment in place due to COVID precautions. The training included full-hemispherical immersive video study tours filmed with expert silviculturists (i.e., experts who establish and manage forest stands) from across the country. Polys and collaborators recently published a paper pertaining to the use of emerging technology (X3D) to create virtual field trips for remote learning (in proceedings of Web3D 2021 Conference). The US Department of Agriculture (USDA online) program is also highlighted in the Newsletter of the VT Department of Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation: Immersive and annotated study tour videos filmed using a full-hemispherical camera.