Wenzel, Matthias; Klinger, Adrian; Meinel, Christoph
2016 International Conference on Collaboration Technologies and Systems
Prototypes help people to externalize their ideas and are a basic element for gathering feedback on an early product design. Prototyping is oftentimes a team-based method traditionally involving physical and analog tools. At the same time, collaboration among geographically dispersed team members becomes more and more standard practice for companies and research teams. Therefore, a growing need arises for collaborative prototyping environments. We present a standards compliant, web browser-based real-time remote 3D modeling system. We utilize cross-platform WebGL rendering API for hardware accelerated visualization of 3D models. Synchronization relies on WebSocket-based message interchange over a centralized Node.js real-time collaboration server. In a first co-located user test, participants were able to rebuild physical prototypes without having prior knowledge of the system. This way, the provided system design and its implementation can serve as a basis for visual real-time collaboration systems available across a multitude of hardware devices.