On 30 November 2022, the winners of the first edition of the RICAIP Young Investigator Award – RYIA 2022 – were officially announced within the opening ceremony of the RICAIP Testbed Brno at CEITEC BUT. The third place goes to Caspar Jacob, young researcher at DFKI – German Research Centre for Artificial Intelligence, Saarbrücken, Germany. Meet Caspar and find out more about him.
Caspar specializes in mixed reality applications for Industrie 4.0 in general and for human-robot collaboration in particular. In both cases, Augmented and Virtual Reality have high potential to create new intuitive userinterfaces with the ability to blend abstract information, e.g. coming from a digital twin, and the real working environment. With his expertise in AR, VR, 3D environment reconstruction and 3D computer graphics in general, Caspar as a PhD student is well prepared and one of the early protagonists for the upcoming field of the Industrial Metaverse.
In 2022, Caspar was the initiator and key-developer for the VR-part of the joint DFKI-ZeMA RICAIP demonstrator, showing cross-site human-human collaboration using a UR-10 robot as embodiment for the remote worker. The demonstrator was shown at Hannover Fair 2022 and is the basis for one of RICAIP’s collaborative use-cases as well as for Wizard-of-Oz style studies within the context of human-robot collaboration in RICAIP. As such, the demonstrator will be extended in cooperation with the testbeds in Prague, Brno and Saarbrücken.
What is your personal motivation for a research career?
What motivates me most about my work as a researcher is that I always have to deal with the latest technologies, always have direct access to scientific findings and can help shape our digital future.
The curiosity is what drives me forward and gives me joy every day anew.
Where are you headed next?
The emerging field of industrial metaverse will deprive me of sleep in the future. As it combines all my interests and requires high research in the areas of applications, benefits and interaction paradigms. A PhD thesis on this topic will probably be the next step.
Who or what influenced you most in your research?
I think what laid the foundation for my career as a researcher from an early age was the natural world out there. From an early age I tried to understand the nature and the mysteries it contains.
This interest forced me to learn logical thinking. Together with my fascination for computer games, it took me into computer science. In which I can now pursue my passion every day.
Would you have any piece of good advice for students?
Something I would like to recommend to every student: Take the time to find out what gives you joy in life. Too many students try to get their degree as quickly as possible and forget to find out what they enjoy and what they are actually good at. Take your time, find and follow your passion, even if it takes a few more semesters than planned.
Photos: Jan Prokopius (CEITEC BUT)