D. B. Stefan and D. A. Gilbert, "Lost in Translation? Coping with Multiple Scanner Vendors in a Commercial Environment", in Proc. of 6th Int. Conf. on 3D Body Scanning Technologies, Lugano, Switzerland, 2015, pp. 286-292, doi:10.15221/15.286.
Lost in Translation? Coping with Multiple Scanner Vendors in a Commercial Environment
David B. STEFAN 1, David A. GILBERT 2
1 Novaptus Systems Inc., Chesapeake, VA, USA;
2 The Hague Plastic and Cosmetic Surgery Center, Norfolk, VA, USA
Background. Changes in scanning technology and the emergence of additional scanner providers is, on whole, a healthy sign for the industry. It gives users of scanning technology the choice of vendors, and minimizes the possibilities of becoming captive to a particular scanner manufacturer. However, with choice comes challenges in integrating a new scanner vendor into the existing production scanner network. Each vendor has their own measurement software with specific capabilities and it is not reasonable to operate multiple software measurement platforms in a production environment. By using a data modeling program that accepts multiple 3D formats, one can convert the various vendor scanner outputs into a common file format. A data utility program then converts these files to a format to be measured and processed on a commercial basis. In all conversions there are distortions. Quantifying this distortion is not easy. The question is whether this distortion during the conversion process is significant.
Methods. Two scanners from two different manufacturers, TC2 and Sizestream have been utilized in a commercial scanning network, primarily for scanning morbidly obese individuals before and after weight loss surgery. The Sizestream scanner outputs its 3D scan in .obj format. The point density of this scan is often inadequate and needs to be subdivided using a data modeling program, which then converts this to a .wrl file format. This .wrl file is then further translated using a data converter utility into the TC2 binary file format. This binary file format is then loaded into the TC2 measurement software and converted to its proprietary .rbd format for measurement processing purposes. The equivalent measurements found in the measurement extraction profile used in the TC2 measurement program were programmed for the scans created by the Sizestream system using its measurement software. 50 de-identified morbidly obese individuals and their common circumferential measurements provided by the Sizestream scanner measurement software were compared to the same group measured by the TC2 measurement software after the conversion process.
Results. Chest, waist, hips measurements were relatively consistent between the two scanner manufacturers. The average differences were within .30 inches. Each software package had issues with finding the crotch point consistently and many scans needed to be manually adjusted. Once adjusted, thigh measurements had an average difference of .36 inches. Arm measurements from both software packages had issues determining the armpit and olecranon locations and were often times wildly inaccurate and inconsistent. These landmarks required manual adjustment. Even after manual adjustment, bicep and forearm measurements from the two software packages showed significant divergence.
Conclusions. At present, maintaining a high volume multiple vendor scanning network requires the use of a single measurement software package, and conversion from one scanner output format to a common measuring format using data conversion utilities. This eliminates measurement divergences between measurement software packages. There is some distortion due to data translation, but this can be minimized by careful manual landmark location. Regardless of the scanner used, arm landmark locations are often inconsistent. The resulting measurements are therefore estimations and best used for longitudinal measurement comparison rather than an accurate representation for a particular scan.
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