All those cool 3D holographic interactive user interfaces that people see in sci-fi movies and TV shows are finally getting closer to reality. Microsoft Research recently showed off a new project called Holograph that was made to render large data, not just in 3D, but in a way that it looks like it is being projected above a display.
The video also has some fun in showing off how Holograph can make the dreams of sci-fi fans come true, such as one scene where an interactive Viper fighter in “Battlestar Galactica” is created in 3D. The final part of the video shows the famous Princess Leia hologram in “Star Wars” (“You’re my only hope.’) recreated in 3D via Holograph. Perhaps the whole 3D chess game in that same movie could be the next project for Microsoft Research.
Holograph enables users to examine various types of dynamic data sets—easily and naturally.
“If you have 3-D data, you could move your head around and look at things as if they were physically there,” Wong suggests. “That’s a natural way of observing something. If you want to reach in and select something that’s interesting, you could find out more information. Sure, you could do that on a flat screen, but on really complex, non-two-dimensional data, it becomes more of a challenge.
“What we’re doing with our Perceptive Pixel display and things like Kinect is tracking where your head is, where your point of view is, and dynamically altering that data. The touch capabilities of the Perceptive Pixel display allow us to understand where you’re touching and then have that touch point connect with a piece of 3-D data represented below the plane of that screen. We’re rendering 3-D data both statically and dynamically in what looks like a virtual box below the glass, but you can see the dimensionality of the data.”