Dower: In order to help, I'd really, really need you to rephrase... because honestly I couldn't understand much :)
It seems like you're describing the process known as Matchmoving? This is, a virtual 3D camera is created by analyzing and matching the motion of the camera in a footage sequence, so that the any 3D items you add in post in-sync with the original camera? Could it be that? If so, the way it works is: the camera solving itself is done in a dedicated program (there are lots of them, like Boujou, Syntheyes, etc) and then that application will export AE-compatible camera data that you can use in AE.
At some point you mention "real time"... no, Matchmoving is not something you do "live".
But again, let me know if this is what you had in mind, or if I really didn't understand a thing. :)
Adolfo Rozenfeld - Adobe
Adolfo: First of all thank you for your response! I appreciate it so much.
I have gone and looked up Matchmoving, but that is not quite what I was looking for. On the Bonjour site (2d3 company) I did find another product, "TacitView" that seems more like what I need. It tracks movement in video.
Hopefully I can better explain myself this time around :)
I want to set up an unmoving camera, have the movement in the video be tracked, and have a graphic map itself to that movement.
A scenario example: A camera is at the end of a hallway. It is recording and I walk into its view. Software detects my movement. A graphic I created then moves side to side as I do.
My ultimate goal was to have that graphic then be projected/displayed back out so It creates a mirror effect. Except instead of your reflection you would see a graphic element moving along with you.
I'm pretty sure after effects wouldn't even be the software here, and it will probably be multiple software's routed together, but it's the only one I know that might even touch this idea.
Thanks for any help!
VizRT and other studio graphics software do such things. TacitView is just a plug-in/ data provider for these kinds of softwares. Nothing you can do easily in any consumer product you will be able to afford, but you can find any number of Java applets and other programming demos explaining techniques of contour detection, feature tracking, pattern analysis etc.. So to summarize: Unless there is a specific reason you need it to be realtime, you should quickly forget it and investigate other, more conventional techniques. That, or renting one such outfitted studio for a lot of dough...
Dower: If you absolutely need it to be "live", in real time... I have no clue :)
If not, motion tracking in AE (plus the addition of Mocha in CS4) might be just what you need.
I myself am trying to figure out a similar idea for a demonstration and I know it's possible since they did it at Six Flags: Great Adventure on The Dark Knight ride as shown here:
Now it's just figuring it out that's the question...
The video that you're pointing to on YouTube was probably done with a very simple live switcher and a camera. This is easy to do with a very minimal minimal hardware investment.
Definitely would not be doing something like this using AE or even PPro.
From my iPhone.