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In this paper, the authors present t-Room, the next generation video communication system they are developing. Their approach is to build rooms with identical layouts, including walls of display panels on which users and physical or virtual objects are all shown at life-size. In this way, the user space enclosed by t-Room's surrounding displays can be shared as a common space at any other site. In other words, the enclosed spaces overlap each other. This configuration effectively provides symmetric reproduction of the audio-visual information surrounding local and remote users and objects. The feeling provided by t-Room is different from that by conventional videoconferencing systems, since there is no spatial barrier separating users such as the video screen of a conventional videoconferencing system.
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