TechConnect 2021 Innovation Award

University of Central Florida Technology #34418 (Intelligent Object Magnification) received a 2021 Innovation Award from TechConnect.

This technology was presented in the AI, Data, and Cyber session. Review panelists included U.S. Marine Corps Warfighting Labs at Quantico (portfolio development in AI) and the U.S. Naval War College.

See more on this project at UCF Technology Transfer.

The co-inventors on the associated pending US patent application are Prof. Gerd Bruder, Zubin Choudhary, Dr. Kangsoo Kim, and Dr. Greg Welch.


Dr. Welch is one of 21 Faculty Members Inducted into UCF Scroll and Quill Society


Excerpts from UCF News:

“The Scroll and Quill Society celebrates faculty members who for at least a decade have made scholarly contributions of impact to advance knowledge in their fields, benefit society and distinguish UCF at national or international levels.”


Gregory Welch, professor, nursing, College of Nursing

Gregory Welch is the AdventHealth Endowed Chair in Healthcare Simulation and a Pegasus Professor who has acquired nearly $9.6 million in active sponsored research. With a background in computer science, his research entails virtual and augmented reality, human-computer interaction, human motion tracking and human surrogates for training and practice, with a focus on applications such as healthcare and defense. Welch’s work has led to groundbreaking patient simulators for training healthcare practitioners.”


Jonathan Jules awarded the National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering (NACME) Scholarship


Congratulations Jonathan! Well deserved and keep up the great work.


NACME is responsible for more than $4 million in scholarships awarded annually to underrepresented minority (URM) students, with more than $1.6 million awarded in NACME’s funded scholarships and $2.4 million more through our partner institutions’ in-kind support. NACME expects to support approximately 1,000 underrepresented minority engineering and computer students annually.

Scholarship Eligibility

To be eligible for any NACME administered scholarship students must be either be a high school senior applying to an engineering or computer science program at a NACME Partner Institution, or be currently matriculating in an engineering or computer science program at a NACME Partner Institution, a US citizen or permanent resident, and have a minimum high school cumulative GPA of 3.0 or undergraduate cumulative GPA of 2.8 (some named scholarships may have higher GPA requirements). NACME’s mission is to increase representation of Black/African American, Latinx/Hispanic-American and Native/American Indian in the fields of engineering and computer science.

WFTV covers research done in UCF SREAL Lab (click to see video)


We thought you might enjoy seeing a glimpse of the research being conducted in UCF’s SREAL Lab. This research is being supported by National Science Foundation grants: 1560302 (UCF) and 1800961 (Collaborative with 1800947 to the University of Florida, and 1800922 to Stanford University) and the Office of Naval Research: N00014-18-1-2927.

XR Advance, now with Episode Guides



Was hosted by Dr. Stephen Gilbert and the Virtual Reality Applications Center at Iowa State University, XR Advance welcomed extended reality experts to present innovative research in a series of videos.

Dr. Welch was invited to be one of the extended reality experts to present. His presentation on “Identifying User Physical States” can be viewed here, it was Episode 8 in the series.

Jason Hochreiter defended his PhD in Computer Science on June 24, 2019



Jason Hochreiter
BS, University of Central Florida, 2011
MS, University of Central Florida, 2014
for the degree of
June 24, 2019, 11:00 AM
Partnership III 233

Dissertation Committee:

Dr. Gregory Welch, Chairman
Dr. Juan Cendan
Dr. Laura Gonzalez
Dr. Joseph LaViola Jr.
Dr. Gerd Bruder


The flat screens of today’s smartphones allow for integrated electronic touch sensing. Such electronic touch sensing methods are impractical to implement on non-planar rear-projection displays. This dissertation introduces a generalizable camera-based method for touch input on such rear-projection displays, allowing for touch interactions with complex virtual content registered to the surfaces. In a human-subject study, we demonstrate several advantages of this paradigm compared to others, including improved touch performance and decreases in cognitive load. We are particularly inspired by patient care: despite the importance of touch for both diagnostic and therapeutic purposes, modern high-fidelity mannequins and other patient simulators are typically unable to naturally respond to touch input, which can limit the effectiveness of training. Our research focuses on supporting touch input in a general way, making it suitable for patient simulation and other applications.


Touch sensing on non-parametric rear-projection surfaces: A physical-virtual head for hands-on healthcare training, Jason Hochreiter, Salam Daher, Arjun Nagendran, Laura Gonzalez, Greg Welch, in Proceedings of IEEE Virtual Reality, 2015.

Optical touch sensing on non-parametric rear-projection surfaces for interactive physical-virtual experiences, Jason Hochreiter, Salam Daher, Arjun Nagendran, Laura Gonzalez, Greg Welch, in Presence: Teleoperators and Virtual Environments, 2016.

A systematic survey of 15 years of user studies published in the intelligent virtual agents conference, Nahal Norouzi, Kangsoo Kim, Jason Hochreiter, Myungho Lee, Salam Daher, Gerd Bruder, Greg Welch, in Proceedings of the 18th ACM International Conference on Intelligent Virtual Agents, 2018.

Physical-virtual agents for healthcare simulation, Salam Daher, Jason Hochreiter, Nahal Norouzi, Laura Gonzalez, Gerd Bruder, Greg Welch, in Proceedings of the 18th ACM International Conference on Intelligent Virtual Agents, 2018.

Cognitive and touch performance effects of mismatched 3D physical and visual perceptions, Jason Hochreiter, Salam Daher, Gerd Bruder, Greg Welch, in Proceedings of IEEE Virtual Reality, 2018.

Optical touch sensing on non-parametric rear-projection surfaces, Jason Hochreiter, in Proceedings of IEEE Virtual Reality, 2018.


2014, System for Detecting Sterile Field Events and Related Methods, 9808549B2

Multi-touch detection and semantic response on non-parametric rear-projection surfaces

Modern interfaces supporting touch input are ubiquitous. Typically, such interfaces are implemented on integrated touch-display surfaces with simple geometry that can be mathematically parameterized, such as planar surfaces and spheres; for more complicated non-parametric surfaces, such parameterizations are not available. In this dissertation, we introduce a method for generalizable optical multi-touch detection and semantic response on uninstrumented non-parametric rear-projection surfaces using an infrared-light-based multi-camera multi-projector platform.

In this paradigm, touch input allows users to manipulate complex virtual 3D content that is registered to and displayed on a physical 3D object. Detected touches trigger responses with specific semantic meaning in the context of the virtual content, such as animations or audio responses. The broad problem of touch detection and response can be decomposed into three major components: determining if a touch has occurred, determining where a detected touch has occurred, and determining how to respond to a detected touch. Our fundamental contribution is the design and implementation of a relational lookup table architecture that addresses these challenges through the encoding of coordinate relationships among the cameras, the projectors, the physical surface, and the virtual content.  Additionally, we present and evaluate two algorithms for touch detection and localization utilizing the lookup table architecture.

We demonstrate touch-based interactions on several physical parametric and non-parametric surfaces, and we evaluate both system accuracy and the accuracy of typical users in touching desired targets on these surfaces. In a formative human-subject study, we present an exploratory application of this method in patient simulation. A second study highlights the advantages of touch input on content-matched physical surfaces achieved by our method, such as decreases in induced cognitive load, increases in system usability, and increases in user touch performance.


2012, UCF Presidential Doctoral Fellowship
2018, IEEE Virtual Reality Doctoral Consortium
2018, Graduate Travel or Presentation Fellowship

Jason Hochreiter: Defense Announcement