Computer science doctoral candidate helps make breakthroughs in sound simulation

College of Arts & Sciences

Carl Schissler demonstrates a pair of Oculus VR goggles at a lab in Sitterson Hall on the campus of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.While the quality of visual images in video games and virtual reality continues to advance impressively with technology improvements, the sound and music quality of those games haven’t kept pace. A team of faculty and students at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Department of Computer Science has been developing sound simulation technologies to overcome that barrier for almost a decade.
One doctoral student, Carl Schissler, has developed new practical solutions that can increase the sound quality using simulation methods and can even run on mobile platforms.
Schissler, an Asheville native working on his doctorate in computer science in UNC’s College of Arts & Sciences, has co-authored three patents and a number of papers based on his dissertation research to improve the quality of sound significantly in virtual environments. His work has drawn attention from Oculus VR, the virtual headset video game company, which has offered Schissler a position with the company.
“What we’ve been working on is simulating audio effects in virtual environments – realistic audio effects,” said Schissler, who also earned his bachelor’s degree in computer science at UNC-Chapel Hill. “I’ve always been interested in video games and video game technology, and one of the areas I felt that was really lacking was audio. I also had a big interest in audio because I was into recording music, and this was an intersection of those fields, so it was an interesting thing for me to work on.”
Schissler said his work developed through finding new ways to solve problems.
“My research is about is how audio waves moves through an environment and simulating that environment,” he said. “Depending on the type of environment you’re …

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