by David J. Hill May 3rd, 2012

A Silicon Valley startup wants to give you the power to “scan your world” with a handheld scanner that rapidly creates 3D maps of objects and rooms, complete with colors and textures. While it may seem like you’d have to have a steady hand and move slowly through a room to scan it, a demo video of the device from MatterPort implies that the 3D maps can be generated by simply passing it through the space, sort of like virtually painting a room. Just imagine you’re using a squeegee and you get the idea. In one of its promotional videos, the startup even claims, “MatterPort does for 3D modeling what photography did for painting.”According to co-founder Mike Beebe, the device is 20 times faster than other 3D scanners on the market.

And if you think it looks like a hacked Kinect sensor attached to a handle, you’re not too far off — Kinect was used in the prototype. Technical details of the latest version of the scanner have not been released, but it may very well be that the team has designed their own Kinect-like device, which means they need two 3D depth sensors and a RGB camera.

Read the rest of the article here. See a video demonstration below.

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