Cirque du Soleil demos motion-tracking virtual acrobats in your browser

First there was skydiving Google Glass; now Google IO has brought us Cirque du Soleil in the browser. The famous acrobatics company took the IO stage to show how they'd used web technologies to put motion-tracking dance and interaction into Chrome. The webcam of a Chromebook was used to follow the movements of the user, all rendered in smooth 3D; even more impressive, it all worked in the browser on a tablet, too.

In the case of the tablet – which used an iPad for the IO demo – the accelerometer was used to navigate through the 3D environment, with a virtual acrobat filling the screen.

Cirque du Soleil's sytem uses a combination of HTML, web video and markup to create "virtual set pieces" using CSS. The end result is hugely scalable and easily edited, the group said, and will be featured on the troupe's site.

Of course, not everyone is interested in being a virtual acrobat, but Google is pushing the interactive web technologies as ideal for any developer looking to make more of their site. Earlier today, the company confirmed that Chrome has 310m active users.