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Real-Time Holograms Beam Closer To Reality

samzenpus posted more than 3 years ago | from the holodeck-here-I-come dept.

Displays 79

sciencehabit writes "It's not quite the flickering blue projection of Princess Leia begging, 'Help me, Obi-Wan Kenobi, you're my only hope!' from the classic sci-fi movie Star Wars, but holographic projection has just beamed a bit closer to reality. Researchers in Arizona have devised a novel plastic film that can be used to generate holographic 3D images sent electronically from one location to another. The technology opens the door for everything from holographic surgery to movies that literally surround the viewer."

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Movies that literally surround the viewer? (1, Insightful)

XxtraLarGe (551297) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116492)

...to movies that literally surround the viewer.

Why on earth would I want that? I have a hard enough time taking everything in with 3D movies!

Re:Movies that literally surround the viewer? (2, Insightful)

CyprusBlue113 (1294000) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116520)

The goal with that wouldn't be for you to take it all in, the focus would still be at singular points, or on an overall scene. The goal would be the feeling of complete immersion in the movie, which would be *amazing*.

Re:Movies that literally surround the viewer? (4, Funny)

Flea of Pain (1577213) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116644)

Porn. That is all.

Re:Movies that literally surround the viewer? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34116830)

PoV has a whole new meaning...

Re:Movies that literally surround the viewer? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34118974)

Six Flags Magic Mountain in California had (has?) "Shrek 4D". When donkey sneezes, the audience gets sprayed for real.
So....
Imaging PORN in 4D!

Re:Movies that literally surround the viewer? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34123322)

Six Flags Magic Mountain in California had (has?) "Shrek 4D". When donkey sneezes, the audience gets sprayed for real.
So....
Imaging PORN in 4D!

You bastard!!! I'll never be able to watch bukkake again!

Re:Movies that literally surround the viewer? (2, Interesting)

CCarrot (1562079) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116654)

Why on earth would I want that? I have a hard enough time taking everything in with 3D movies!

just think of the gaming possibilities...talk about a first person shooter!

Re:Movies that literally surround the viewer? (0, Redundant)

XxtraLarGe (551297) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116718)

I could totally get in on the gaming aspect, but it just seems over the top for movies.

Re:Movies that literally surround the viewer? (2, Interesting)

CCarrot (1562079) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116794)

True that. Plus, I'd imagine watching this would provide even more headaches/accessibility problems than dear old 3D does now...so it'll probably be relegated to a niche market.

That being said, way back when not many people expected this whole 'home computing' thing to take off, either...so who knows? If only my time machine weren't on the fritz again...and me fresh out of flux capacitors, too!

Re:Movies that literally surround the viewer? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34117314)

The headache problems are not due to the 3D tech. It is poor film making. 3D film is an entirely different form of movie making. Or you're just a wimp who whines.

Either way, for all you complaining about 3D, don't go see a damn 3d movie. There is always a 2D version so stop bitching. Who cares what you think? You are the same people who bitch about Xbox vs PS3, Nvidia vs ATI, Intel vs AMD, /. vs Digg. Who cares, you are all a bunch of whiny bitches who think you are a lot smarter than you really are. Until they make you watch 3D you should stop complaining about it.

Back when I was a kid we had people just like you complaining about talkies. What's going to make kids read if we have sound? Boo Freaking Hoo. Then we had complainers about color. Color take away from the message of the film. What's wrong with black and white? OMG.

Re:Movies that literally surround the viewer? (1)

Stregano (1285764) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118526)

I am not going to lie, getting teabagged by teenagers would be a little gros when I got dominated in Halo

Re:Movies that literally surround the viewer? (2, Insightful)

rolfwind (528248) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116730)

Think of Avatar, but as a video game (you don't watch the protagonist, you are the protagonist). That's where games are heading and will overtake movies. The holodeck.

Re:Movies that literally surround the viewer? (1)

spazdor (902907) | more than 3 years ago | (#34117264)

Passive entertainment isn't going to be entirely supplanted by active entertainment. Sure, as it gets more sophisticated it will become more compelling to more people, but the human desire to sit down and let someone else do all the work for your enjoyment is not going away.

(come on make a double entendre I want you to)

Re:Movies that literally surround the viewer? (4, Informative)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116734)

Holograms aren't about walking around the image (although they can be), they're about true 3D; 3D that uses all the visual cues for depth rather than just one (or 2D plus one more cue).

Today's 3D movies aren't really 3D, they're stereoscopes. Your right eye sees a slightly different image than your left eye, and your brain combines them.

With a hologram, if your eye focuses on something close in the image, things farther away blur, and if your eye focuses on something farther away the foreground blurs. With stereoscopy, the camera does all the focusing, which is why some people get eyestrain with it -- the parallax tells the brain an object is s certain distance away, while its focusing tells the brain it's a different distance.

But as I said, TFA wasn't clear whether or not it's a true hologram, as it mentioned several cameras arrayed aroud the subject. With a hologram, you have one camera and two lasers.

I wish I could find a more technical FA about this, it looks fascinating.

Re:Movies that literally surround the viewer? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34117152)

TFA mentions lasers, interference patterns, and a recording film. sounds like a hologram to me. the multiple-cameras and some number crunching are likely what is used to synthesize the interference pattern. transmitting an unmolested pair of beams from the source to the destination for reconstruction sounds technically infeasible considering the beams would not be point-like.

Re:Movies that literally surround the viewer? (1)

DubC (1934338) | more than 3 years ago | (#34117860)

It is not a "real" hologram because there is not a "real" object on the table. It is a holographic stereogram, like a magic eye, but with many perspectives of the object encoded rather than just the two. The different pixels of the display are what is transmitted, and then the lasers used to write the material. Look up integral imaging, or there a number of good books on these principles, like "Holographic Imaging" by Benton.

Re:Movies that literally surround the viewer? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34119208)

I would think stereoscopy would be superior to holograms for movies in the long run. A holographic image would only be able to appear as far away as there is room. If you wanted to show images kilometers away I think you would need a theater with a kilometer long holographic stage. Stereoscopy with sufficiently advanced technology could redraw the images depending on what you're looking at and how far apart your eyes are.

Re:Movies that literally surround the viewer? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34119970)

I believe they are generating a synthetic hologram by interpolating a number of simultaneous camera images into a real hologram.

Re:Movies that literally surround the viewer? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34121242)

From the few details in TA, is sounds like they are well behind Zebra Imaging (http://www.zebraimaging.com/products/motion-displays [zebraimaging.com] ), who have been working on this for several years backed by DARPA money. It's not something you'll have in your living room anytime soon, though.

Re:Movies that literally surround the viewer? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34124770)

From reading TFA:

The image acquisition is not holographic, 3D images are composed by combining 16 2D images from different cameras.

The image reconstruction is indeed holographic. Images are reconstructed by shining a reference beam (or three beams for RGB) through the display from behind.

The novelty here is how information is written to the display by a separate beam at high speed, also from behind.

Re:Movies that literally surround the viewer? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34117390)

Screw 3D movies, I have troubles with real world and such.

Re:Movies that literally surround the viewer? (0)

Gilmoure (18428) | more than 3 years ago | (#34117606)

3D movies give me a bloody headache. I'll pass.

yet another excuse... (1)

snookerhog (1835110) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116510)

for me to not buy a 3D TV. saving up for basement holodeck...

Re:yet another excuse... (4, Insightful)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116674)

5 years. It's always 5 years away. Has been that way ever since I can remember.

Keep saving for the Holodeck. It's good for the economy (I guess).

Re:yet another excuse... (2, Informative)

maxwell demon (590494) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116922)

Keep saving for the Holodeck. It's good for the economy (I guess).

No, it's better for the economy if he buys a 3D TV now. Followed by a "Real 3D" TV tomorrow, and a "Full 3D" after that. Or however they'll call the next few standards for 3D TV.

Bad news (3, Funny)

dkleinsc (563838) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116554)

He's Arnold, Arnold, Arnold Rimmer
Without him life would be much dimmer
He's handsome, brave, and no one's slimmer
He will never use a Zimmer.

(Let's just say that's one smeghead I never want to see again!)

Re:Bad news (1)

Gilmoure (18428) | more than 3 years ago | (#34117770)

What about Ace Rimmer?

Re:Bad news (1)

zmollusc (763634) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118790)

What a guy!

Surgery? (3, Funny)

countertrolling (1585477) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116576)

How's a hologram going to take my appendix out?

Oh... [startrek.com]

Re:Surgery? (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116822)

We're not quite ready for JohnnyCab [wikipedia.org] to do surgery yet... Oh wait, we are. [wikipedia.org] We just don't have solid holograms yet.

Re:Surgery? (1)

Machtyn (759119) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116916)

My question is, "Why this push to do remote surgery?" I can see why in specialized cases, but wouldn't the expense to fly the patient or doctor and staff/equipment to an appropriate place be cheaper at this point? Would the cost differences ever merge to the point that holographic remote surgery is feasible?

Re:Surgery? (1)

Belial6 (794905) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116978)

Seriously, remote, 'turn off the coffee pot', or remote 'put away the dishes' would seem more useful. I would say remote 'mow the lawn' or remote 'vacuum the floor', but those have already been taken care of with 'automatic'.

Re:Surgery? (2, Insightful)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 3 years ago | (#34117180)

My question is, "Why this push to do remote surgery?" I can see why in specialized cases, but wouldn't the expense to fly the patient or doctor and staff/equipment to an appropriate place be cheaper at this point? Would the cost differences ever merge to the point that holographic remote surgery is feasible?

That's a good question on per-procedure costs.

But there are tons of other cost savings and benefits... like the cost of having a dozen(s) different specialist surgeons at every hospital. Access to better surgeons, not just whatever-surgeon-your-local-hospital-is-affiliated-with.

But think of the possibilities of offshoring! An insurance company could save millions upon millions each year by paying surgeon salaries in India or China instead of in the US.

Re:Surgery? (1)

Tordre (1447083) | more than 3 years ago | (#34119050)

So not only are we outsourcing our tech support to India we are also going to outsource our health care. luckily if the robot surgeon breaks down tech support will be in the same call center.

In all seriousness there is also a legal issue here, where must a surgeon be licensed to do surgery to if the robot is in one country and the surgeon is in the other, health care practices are different between countries.

Re:Surgery? (1)

DZign (200479) | more than 3 years ago | (#34122584)

Military.

You've got a soldier with a bullet somewhere in the middle of a desert.. it's easier and faster to put him somewhere in a closed container somewhere at the military base, where he can be operated fast.. no need to fly a medical team to a dangerous area, and no need to fly a wounded soldier who might not survive the flight without being operated first.

The doctor himself can be in the usa, and opeate dozens of patients a day located over the whole world..

You just need the 'remote box' at a military base to which you bring a patient in .. you could have dozens of these boxes set up over the world, without the need to have a team of surgeons at each and every base on the battlefield..

Re:Sex ? (1)

sempir (1916194) | more than 3 years ago | (#34121352)

Husband away on business, on phone to wife at home, "How was that for you Babe?" Wife, "didn't feel a thing but heard the woman in room next to me moaning rather a lot." Husband, "Shit...I'm gonna sue those fucking Hollogramaticsex bastards!

Use for storing data? (2, Interesting)

mlts (1038732) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116594)

I wonder if this technology can help further holographic storage. Holographic storage has been hovering at the edges for a while now, and maybe this might be the impetus that drives this mainstream.

Of course, it wouldn't be memristor fast, nor compete with SSDS, but as a medium to replace tapes or WORM optical storage for low speed, high capacity, it would be ideal, assuming the archival life of bits stored in 3D is up to par.

Re:Use for storing data? (1)

chemicaldave (1776600) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116634)

What? Don't you want to see how many platters we can cram into a 3.5" drive?

Re:Use for storing data? (1)

mlts (1038732) | more than 3 years ago | (#34117112)

If we hit a wall with storage, that is likely what will happen. We might even see full height 5.25" drives return with a smart controller that moves data around depending on how it is accessed, or multiple heads to further balance the load (one head primarly accessing inner tracks the other outer tracks to help reduce average seek time), as well as some flash storage for very frequent data use that is too big for a DRAM cache.

Porn? (0, Redundant)

santax (1541065) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116614)

Is it available yet?

Let me be the first to say... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34116638)

Therrrrre isssss nooooooo saaaanctuaryyyyy

Every 2 seconds? (2, Interesting)

Ambvai (1106941) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116652)

So this thing updates every 2 seconds [with a 100x one in the works]... compared to typical games running at 30-60 times per second? But another interesting question-- exclusive of processing power, is the refresh rate limited by size, or can it scale up pretty much indefinitely?...and CAN it be large? The image makes it look like it's difficult to maintain.

Re:Every 2 seconds? (2, Informative)

Bigjeff5 (1143585) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116906)

So this thing updates every 2 seconds [with a 100x one in the works]

Holy crap how did you misread that so bad? It's every 2 seconds now, which is more than 100 times quicker than it was two years ago. That's a huge improvement in a short period of time, and it is only going to get better. They need another order of magnitude (10 times) improvement to get it to a reasonable frame-rate of 30fps. Expect that in another year or so.

Also note that this is live video at 0.5fps. They could probably get that order of magnitude improvement if they weren't shooting live.

Re:Every 2 seconds? (1)

DubC (1934338) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118040)

The laser runs at 50Hz, and since there are about 100 "pixels" to fill the 4in wide material, the refresh rate for the whole image is about 0.5fps. So the speed is limited by the laser and would increase with material size. Certainly gaming and videos require at least 30 fps, but many applications do not, like visualization of medical images.

Re:Every 2 seconds? (1)

EkriirkE (1075937) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116952)

Watching the video, the speed looks to be limited by horizontal resolution/motor feeding the recording film under the laser

Re:Every 2 seconds? (2, Informative)

monopole (44023) | more than 3 years ago | (#34117342)

Speaking w/ 30+ years of experience in holography, this is going to be really miserable to make practical. The computation involved is hideous for realistic scenes and the bandwidth is insane. If you want to get real time and something better than sick figures you have to heavily constrain the wavefront reconstruction.

A true hologram reconstructs the entire wavefront emanating from a scene, which gives it it's unique nature. Cut back the bandwidth and the realism or the viewing angle go to hell.

Wrong 'Star' (1)

MonsterTrimble (1205334) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116662)

The technology opens the door for everything from holographic surgery to movies that literally surround the viewer."

Say it with me everyone! HOLODECK!

Re:Wrong 'Star' (1)

Lanteran (1883836) | more than 3 years ago | (#34119774)

that would require some type of force field technology or else you'd just walk right through. If they got that out of the way, most holodecks would need a good cleaning crew, preferably robotic.

Refresh? (4, Insightful)

demonbug (309515) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116686)

Sort of interesting, but the video doesn't really show the image being updated - it just goes from a blank bit of plastic to one with the hologram etched inside. The article also doesn't really make it clear if the same bit of plastic can be re-used fro the next image, which it seems would be a requirement to show video; if that's the case, why don't they show the image being changed? It's great that they can make the image in 2.15 seconds, but how long does it take to erase and write the next one?

Re:Refresh? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34117402)

Nature article [nature.com] (reg required)
Here we use a holographic stereographic technique and a photorefractive polymer material as the recording medium to demonstrate a holographic display that can refresh images every two seconds. A 50Hz nanosecond pulsed laser is used to write the holographic pixels. Multicoloured holographic 3D images are produced by using angular multiplexing, and the full parallax display employs spatial multiplexing. 3D telepresence is demonstrated by taking multiple images from one location and transmitting the information via Ethernet to another location where the hologram is printed with the quasi-real-time dynamic 3D display.

If you understand any of the above you probably need to spend more time outside.

ScienceDaily [sciencedaily.com]
"At the heart of the system is a screen made from a novel photorefractive material, capable of refreshing holograms every two seconds, making it the first to achieve a speed that can be described as quasi-real-time," said Pierre-Alexandre Blanche, an assistant research professor in the UA College of Optical Sciences and lead author of the Nature paper.
[...]
Currently, the telepresence system can present in one color only, but Peyghambarian and his team have already demonstrated multi-color 3D display devices capable of writing images at a faster refresh rate, approaching the smooth transitions of images on a TV screen.

Sounds like they've still got a way to go before we get Holo-TV.

Re:Refresh? (5, Informative)

DubC (1934338) | more than 3 years ago | (#34117990)

The same bit of plastic can be re-used for every image, and there are more videos that show the material being re-used. Check out the BBC coverage: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-11685582 [bbc.co.uk]

Early adoptor: the porn industry (1)

neo-mkrey (948389) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116690)

That's my bet.

Re:Early adoptor: the porn industry (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34117688)

It's going to be a race between real-world porn and 3D-rendered cartoons (hentai). I'd bet on the hentai because rendering puts aside all the technical problems of actually shooting all dimensions at once in real-time, but also because the Japanese already have excellent 3D hentai rendering software.

CNN (2, Insightful)

MrEricSir (398214) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116740)

So what? They've had this on CNN for at least 2 years now.

And man, it's made their news reporting so much better.

Projection into the air (4, Insightful)

erroneus (253617) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116766)

We see things because light either comes from, through or bounces off of the things we see. The problem with our concept of projected holograms is that we need to get the light to do something special in the air. Either we cause light to be generated in the air or somehow cause a reaction with particles in the air at specified points. Projecting onto mist and smoke in the air has been successful. We know how to bounce things off of solid objects, even when those solid objects are in the form of tiny particles.

So just as most people are WAY off in thinking that we can make lightsabers and blasters with laser beams, most are way off in thinking we can project light beams to create a hologram.

It may never be possible until we start working out how we can teleport antimatter streams into patterns into 3D spaces occupied by existing matter. A matter+antimatter reaction in tiny amounts in air just might create the points of light needed to create holographic images in the air. Even that would not be sustainable for a video stream, I fear, as all sorts of things are likely to go awry while antimatter reacts with the matter particles in the air.

Projecting light onto a plastic film is a LONG way from creating a hologram in the air and it is probably moving in the wrong direction even to try.

Re:Projection into the air (4, Insightful)

Interoperable (1651953) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116924)

A matter-antimatter reaction in air might work if your eyes see gamma rays. Mine only see this lame portion of the spectrum called visible radiation.

I also think it's a bit funny that you feel that an anti-matter teleporter is a more tractable problem than a free-space hologram. Here's an idea: use high-intensity infra-red beams to heat tiny pockets of air and then use the index-of-refraction gradient to deflect (or better yet, scatter) visible light. Maybe that won't work, but my point is that there just might be hologram technologies that are easier to implement than a teleporter.

Re:Projection into the air (1)

T Murphy (1054674) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118246)

I don't know, I'd rather my holographic projector come with a free teleporter than a bunch of hot pockets (however tasty).

Re:Projection into the air (1)

dkf (304284) | more than 3 years ago | (#34122762)

A matter-antimatter reaction in air might work if your eyes see gamma rays. Mine only see this lame portion of the spectrum called visible radiation.

That's because you're using antimatter that is too massive. You need to use lightweight AM so that the amount of energy liberated puts the electromagnetic emission in the visible range. (Finding a suitable collection of fundamental particles with masses that convert to visible light photons is left as an exercise for the reader.)

You also have the problem that the direction of the photons produced is totally random, so it would be like a monochromatic light hovering in space and not a hologram.

Re:Projection into the air (3, Funny)

Machtyn (759119) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116964)

I never thought I'd see a Resonance Cascade, let alone create one...

Re:Projection into the air (2, Interesting)

CCarrot (1562079) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116990)

Projecting light onto a plastic film is a LONG way from creating a hologram in the air and it is probably moving in the wrong direction even to try.

I have to disagree with you there. True, this is not the way to produce a 'true' three-dimensional light construct, at least not the way you or I imagine it, but anything that helps suspend disbelief and brings the environment closer to the user is worth pursuing.

Just because this needs a solid surface to work from doesn't mean it is without worth. Line a room with these films and *poof*, instant 'teleportation' to wherever you feel like going. Can you imagine the benefits to the mobility challenged? A chance to see the pyramids, dive with the dolphins, or even just have dinner with the grandparents from halfway across the globe?

(okay, okay, it also brings a new 'dimension' to feelie booths. ick.)

If they feel they can do something with it, I say fly at 'er!

Re:Projection into the air (1)

blincoln (592401) | more than 3 years ago | (#34117288)

So just as most people are WAY off in thinking that we can make lightsabers and blasters with laser beams, most are way off in thinking we can project light beams to create a hologram.

What you describe has already been done. I'm not going to dig up the MIT Media Lab holography link again, because I've posted it 4 or 5 times in response to similar claims from previous holography discussions here. I don't know why people keep claiming it's a physical impossibility. It's been done, in colour even.

Re:Projection into the air (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34117932)

Of course you can make a laser beam hologram... with an IR laser split into a minimum of two beams more for varying degrees of shades (color values) then having it reflected in a symmetrical matrix with adjustable lenses.. I actually just made that up and googled it since it seemed so obvious. And yeah, someone has already done just that [physorg.com] .

And.... this could actually make me a millionaire, extending on that it would be a piece of cake making a lightsaber (at least the visual effect of one).

Re:Projection into the air (1)

yariv (1107831) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118484)

What are you talking about? We can already make holograms! We see because light hits our eyes, and if we can generate it to behave as if it's coming of some objects, we will see those objects. We can do that using the wave behavior of light. To make holographic movies, we need to be capable of adjusting phase of emitted light at any point, not only amplitude (and computational power, I'm not sure how complex generating the image will be). There is no need for teleportation of any kind.

Thank you very much (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34116788)

But I'll rather take a Lightsaber any day.

No mention of color holograms... (1)

Interoperable (1651953) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116828)

in the Nature abstract, but there certainly is on their group's website! [arizona.edu]

Also, it's rad that they mentioned Star Wars in a Nature article; although it would have been better if they'd actually referenced A New Hope.

Re:No mention of color holograms... (1)

EkriirkE (1075937) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116962)

404: You dropped the "L" in HTML [arizona.edu]

Re:No mention of color holograms... (1)

Interoperable (1651953) | more than 3 years ago | (#34117142)

Ah damn. Thanks.

Not a Holograph (1)

BJ_Covert_Action (1499847) | more than 3 years ago | (#34116878)

Perhaps I am missing something, but this technology doesn't seem like a holograph at all. It seems like it's a dynamic hologram. While that is interesting, it still requires a custom display sheet upon which to project the image. So I would still have to carry around a square of material in order to view my electronic hologram message, or whatever. When I think holograph, I think about a three-dimensional figure of light being projected onto a table top. I don't think of a moving hologram. In other words, it's not a holograph until there is no display to truck around anymore. Combine this dynamic hologram technology with a projector that constructs a life-size (scalable of course) light-only version of an object, and then you've got a holograph. I am waiting. =)

Re:Not a Holograph (5, Insightful)

Mr2001 (90979) | more than 3 years ago | (#34117268)

Perhaps I am missing something, but this technology doesn't seem like a holograph at all. It seems like it's a dynamic hologram.

A holograph is a document written entirely in the handwriting of the person whose signature it bears. [wikipedia.org]

When I think holograph, I think about a three-dimensional figure of light being projected onto a table top.

That's a special effect you see in movies. It's not real, and there's no real theory for how such a thing could even be made. Dismissing this real, working technology because it doesn't look like a Hollywood "hologram" is like dismissing a laser-powered rifle because it doesn't shoot a solid, brightly colored chunk of light that flies across the room like in Star Wars.

(Sorry, I'm closely related to a pioneer in holography and worked in the field for several years, so I can be pedantic about it sometimes.)

Re:Not a Holograph (2, Interesting)

TheSync (5291) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118872)

That's a special effect you see in movies. It's not real, and there's no real theory for how such a thing could even be made.

You might want to see the AIST free space plasma display [physorg.com] , as a theory on how such a thing could be made...

Re:Not a Holograph (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34123266)

The Star Wars holograms have occlusion.

Here's what holograms are (2, Informative)

Okian Warrior (537106) | more than 3 years ago | (#34119868)

This is a common misconception about holograms which has come about because of movie special effects.

A real hologram can show the illusion of something floating in front of you, but only so long as your gaze is directed *at* the hologram. Thus, a hologram "picture" hanging on the wall can only show an object while you're looking at the picture, but direct your gaze to the wall left or right and you see the wall. You can see a little bit around the object, but you can't walk around and see behind it because then you would be looking away from the hologram.

For a complete 3-d image you need a "band" of hologram that goes all around the room. Now, wherever you look you are looking into the hologram, and will see the image at the corresponding angle. The requirement to be looking at the hologram is still there - you can't look down through the object to the floor.

If the hologram covered every surface of the room you could have a the illusion of a complete 3-d representation of an object. In this case you could walk around it and view it from any angle, including from below and from above.

However, if another person were in the room with you, you could not see the object if they were between you and the wall. If they are opposite the image from you then you will see them, not the object. If you and they are at 90 degrees to the object, then you can see the object... but you can only walk around it to the point where the other person obscures your view of the wall.

Holograms don't cause light to change direction in mid air. It's just an optical effect that 'kinda reverses the focus in a way that tricks your eyes into thinking there's an object there.

Thank you summary, (2, Insightful)

HeckRuler (1369601) | more than 3 years ago | (#34117274)

Thank you summary, I was unaware of where that quote came from. It is only due to your diligence that I am now informed of that piece of movie trivia.

Well, it's important to be clear about this... (1)

d474 (695126) | more than 3 years ago | (#34117616)

We wouldn't want someone to confuse Star Wars (the classic sci-fi movie) with Star Wars (the contemporary adult-midget porno flick). Of course, the famous quote from the latter is "Penetrate me O-B-its-Long Ushorty, you are my only poke." How the two could be confused I have no idea.

Re:Thank you summary, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34144484)

Help me Wolf Blitzer.

Telstra (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34118746)

You know something is ancient news when Telstra has done it:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IBxGzfc9wL4

mod doWn (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34118842)

Tossers, went out Don't walk around Ulsenet posts.

documentary (1)

johncadengo (940343) | more than 3 years ago | (#34119026)

I'm not sure if these two forms of holograph are related, but I watched an interesting documentary about holographs recently.

Doctor Laser [motherboard.tv] : Inside the Wondrous Lab of One of the World's Last Holographers.

Learn some neat facts about this lost/dying art.

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