Founding the roomplan company
After finishing my diploma thesis about recording 3D models of indoor environments, I realized the potential that the technology had. With the support of the german ministery of economics and energy and the european union I had the possibility to start founding the company roomplan.
Together with M.Sc. Jerome Trommnau who studied Technology managment in Stuttgart, I started to work on a software that enables architects and anybody else to record high precission 3D CAD models of indoor environments using the Microsoft Kinect v2 sensor.
Unfortunatelly Jerome Trommnau quit the project after one month and I had to find a team to tackle the task. With Lion Rink I found someone who could support me with knowledge about finance and marketing. I could also recruit the two Master students Dominik Laupheimer and Falk Kappel of the insitute for phorogrammetrics to participate in the software development process.
Switch in technology
Together we developped a system that enabled us to create 3D colored pointclouds of indoor environments using a laptop and a Kinect v2 sensor. The technology we used was based on OpenCV and PCL with a self developped SLAM that runs on the GPU. The software did work very nice in not empty indoor environments. Due to a lack of feature points in empty and white indoor rooms we decided to switch to the cutting edge technology provided by Google with their Project Tango prototype tablet.
At this point of time we could hire Dipl.-Ing. Hannes Geißelmann, who also graduated at the University of Stuttgart, as a software developer. Together we transfered our technology to the Tango Device and had our algorithms run in real time on the device. Currently we reached the status of a prototype app (premium and free version) which is available for Tango Devices in the Google Playstore. A video can be seen here
While developing for Project Tango we realized that the promises about sensor quality that werde made by Google did not happen to be entirely true. Therefor our main goal, the professional market, is not yet accesible to us since we can not deliver the needed accuracy with the existing prototype devices. Since the tablet will not be released before 2016 we are also limited in accessing the end user market until then. Current status is that the roomplan software development is going on in part time at the weekends in order to have a finished app end of 2015.