Aim of Establishment
- Ubiquitous Entertainment, Inc. (hereafter referred to as UEI, located in the Bunkyo ward of Tokyo; CEO: Ryo Shimizu) has set up scientific research division “UEI Research” on April 1st, welcoming Professor Tomoyuki Nishita of Tokyo University as its director.
Dr. Nishita is known as a world-leading computer graphics (CG) researcher, and was the first researcher from Asia to receive the prestigious Association for Computer Machinery’s Steven A. Coons award in 2005. Only twelve people have received this award.
The founding of a private, commercally-funded CG research division follows in the footsteps of North-American based Disney Research and Microsoft Research, and is the only research institution of its kind in Japan.
Dr. Nishita is the inventor of the radiosity method, which is now utilized by practically all computer graphics cards and computer-based video games. With a background of abundant experience, he continues to actively continue his research activities. By combining the research activities of Dr. Nishita with the technological resources of UEI, UEI aims to foster greater value for its customers.
The foundation of UEI Research sets the stage for a proactive approach towards academic presentations overseas, strengthening of the enchant.js platform, and integration of cutting-edge research into the development of UEI’s products.
Message from the Chief of Research
- The founding of UEI research all started when the president of UEI, Ryo Shimizu, proposed the founding of a private research institution to me. This institution would allow me to retire from my post at Tokyo University, but still continue my research.
The aim of this research establishment is to be an institution committed to submitting research to top computer graphics conferences in the world, such as SIGGRAPH and EUROGRAPHICS, while at the same time raising the level of technology utilized at UEI.
Significance of this establishment is two-fold in its benefits.
First, I have been active in research for over 40 years as a pioneer in the computer graphics world, but due to the regrettable Japanese retirement age system, I was forced to suspend my research, even though I had burgeoning projects at the time. Establishment of the institute allows me to continue these projects.
Second, establishment of private computer graphics research labs began 20 years ago, with companies such as SGI, Apple, and Intel. Recently, large contributions to the field have come from the research establishments of companies such as Microsoft, MERL, Disney, Adobe, Autodesk, and more. At one time, several Japanese companies, such as NTT, IBM Japan, Sony, and Hitachi, were involved in such research, but in recent years, several of these businesses have eradicated their CG research divisions.
Although these types of institutions have been especially active overseas, in Japan such opportunity for academic research activities is limited to a few university and collegiate institutions. Through the founding of our own academic institution, we aim to begin a resurrection of Japanese privatized academic pursuit.
The structure of our research is as follows. The research group I worked with during my time at the university has been carried over. UEI Research is based off of a core group of people, comprised of both full-time researchers and outside researchers. Utilizing remote meeting technology, we meet with international members (over 10 so far) to engage in collaborative research. Namely, our researchers are comprised of members from Hokkaido University, Wakayama University, Hiroshima Shudo University, Tokyo University of Technology, Tokyo Denki University, Toho University, and international collaborative research is carried out with researchers from member institutions including Columbia University in the USA, National Taiwan University, Zhejiang University in China, and a private institution in Slovakia.
The intention of UEI research is not geared just towards short term research results, but also encompasses the rearing and development of tomorrow’s researchers, and to increase the level of research in Japan.
- About Professor Nishita
- Professor Tomoyuki Nishita
Born in Hiroshima in 1949, Dr. Nishita began work as a professor at Tokyo University in 1998, and retired in March of 2013. Beginning his computer graphics research in 1970, he has focused on hidden-line elimination, hidden surface elimination, and shading.
He is the inventor of the radiosity method, which portrays realistic spaces of partial illumination via the calculation of luminous interreflection, and has since continued his energetic research activities, receiving the Steven A Coons award at SIGGRAPH in 2005, and the CG-Japan award at NICOGRAPH in 2006. In 2006, the Institute of Image Electronic Engineers of Japan founded the Nishita Award in his honor, denoting excellence in CG related research.