Keynote Speakers

Vincenzo Ferrari Università di Pisa, Italy

Vincenzo Ferrari received the Ph.D. degree from the University of Pisa. He is currently Professor of biomedical engineering with the Department of Information Engineering, University of Pisa. He is the author of more than 120 peer-reviewed publications and has 5 patents. He is the coordinator of the EndoCAS Center for Computer-Assisted Surgery of the University of Pisa. His research interests involve image guided surgery and simulation, computer vision and augmented reality devices and applications in medicine and industry. He is involved in several national and international research projects. He has been the coordinator of the H2020 project VOSTARS for the development of a surgical navigator based on augmented reality (G.A. 731974; 2017-2020). In VOSTARS, thanks to a hybrid OST/VST visualization, for the first time in the world augmented reality has been used to guide the surgeon’s hand during real interventions. An “eye-opening” finding of the VOSTARS refers to the possibility of developing AR OST HMDs that yield highly accurate AR registration without the need for any eye tracking camera and/or user-dependent calibration routine positioning the virtual focal plane at the working distance. This technological solution, which is particularly effective for AR applications in the peripersonal space, paves the way to the development of OST HMDs as reliable and effective tools to aid high-precision manual tasks. 

Extend Human Performances with Augmented Reality

AR allows the integration of spatial relation between visible and invisible information under a natural naked eye view. Furthermore, the augmented information could guide the user’s hand during precision tasks improving human efficiency and accuracy. This improvement could bring human performance closer to that of the robot with a higher level of flexibility and humanization of the task. For tasks unfeasible with the sole hands, AR becomes particularly useful in robotics applications where the humans are engaged for remote controlling or cooperative working. In current AR displays, the augmentation lacks geometrical coherence along the three dimensions between real and virtual information that determine perceptual issues as wrong spatial, focus, and depth cues for both eyes. These issues will be detailed during the talk and possible solutions will be explained.

Christian Sandor Paris-Saclay University, France

Christian Sandor has very recently been appointed  as Professor at Paris-Saclay University, France. Before that, he worked at City University of Hong Kong, where he directed the Augmented Reality Lab ( In October 2020, he was appointed Augmented Reality Evangelist at the Guangzhou Greater Bay Area Virtual Reality Research Institute. Since the year 2000, his foremost research interest is Augmented Reality, as he believes that it will have a profound impact on the future of mankind.

Past and Coming 20 Years with Augmented Reality

Augmented Reality embeds spatially-registered computer graphics into a user’s view of the real world. During the last 20 years, AR has progressed enormously from a niche technology to a widely investigated one. This keynote consists of two parts. First, I speak about how major challenges for AR have been solved over the last 20 years. Second, I speculate about what the next 20 years are going to bring. The goal is to present a Birdseye view of the AR domain, including the balance of power between the major AR forces US and China. In my view, Europe has a very big, possibly almost impossible, challenge ahead to catch up. I hope that my talk will contribute to laying the seeds of a major European AR initiative. 

Nicola Masini CNR, Institute of Cultural Heritage Sciences, Italy

Nicola Masini is Research Director of the Institute of Cultural Heritage Sciences (ISPC) of the CNR, Head of the Potenza branch of ISPC-CNR, Professor of Restoration at the Faculty of Architecture of Matera, Director of the ITACA-Peru scientific mission, Editor in Chief and co-founder of the journal Heritage, Member of the Teaching Board of the PhD program “Cities and Landscapes: Architecture, Archaeology, Cultural Heritage, History and Resources”, of the DICEM of the University of Basilicata, Matera. His main scientific interests are the development and application of: i) Methodologies of analysis, processing and fusion of active and passive remote sensing data on aerial and satellite platforms for archaeological research, landscape archaeology; ii) Methodologies of analysis, integration and fusion of diagnostic, remote sensing and close-range sensing techniques for monitoring, conservation and enhancement of built and artistic heritage; iii) Machine learning approaches applied to earth observation technologies for risk analysis and monitoring of cultural heritage. He has received several awards and recognitions including in 2016 the President’s International Fellowship Initiative (PIFI) of the Chinese Academy of Science and the Choice Magazine Award of the American Library Association as “Outstanding Academic Title” for 2017 for the volume “Ancient Nasca World. New Insights from Science and Archaeology”.

Remote and Close Range Sensing, Imaging and eXtended Reality for the Interpretation and Conservation of Cultural Heritage

Cultural heritage is not only the legacy of tangible and intangible heritage assets of a community inherited from past generations, to be maintained and transmitted to future generations, but it is also a domain of study and research where multidisciplinary skills compare, combine and contaminate each other, stimulating the development of new technologies and methods of analysis and study that can be re-applied in other domains. The reason is due to the heterogeneity of data to be analysed (from historical sources to imaging), phenomena to be observed (from chemical degradation to structural risks), objectives (from safeguarding to conservation). Effective tools to enrich knowledge of Cultural properties are remote and close range sensing, for diagnostic purposes, which provide a number of data on biophysical parameters without any contact with the object/artefact/site to be investigated. However, the heterogeneity of the data and the difficulty of transforming them into useful information for knowledge and conservation of CH, makes it necessary to use tools aimed at facilitating their interpretation. To this end, a useful tool for this purpose is the creation of combined real and virtual environments, i.e. extended reality capable to cover the entire spectrum from “completely real” to “completely virtual” in the concept of reality-virtuality continuum. This approach allows to interrelate data and results of the different diagnostic imaging techniques (from thermal infrared to high frequency georadar) with the spatial and architectural contexts of reference, in its constructive components and materials, facilitating their interpretation to improve the knowledge and to support decisions for restoration.