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No Glasses Needed For TI's New 3D Display 165

Posted by timothy
from the you-may-still-need-them-for-driving dept.
adeelarshad82 writes "At the MWC, TI showed off a tablet-sized device with a 3D display that doesn't require glasses, running on an existing TI OMAP3 chipset. The 3D demo showed images and video in 3D by using a standard 120-Hz LCD with a special overlay film from 3M that can direct images either towards your left or right eye. By flickering two images very quickly, running at 60 frames per second rather than the usual 30, the display transmits a different picture to each eye, creating a simulated 3D image. The 3D picture can be created using a handheld with dual 3-megapixel cameras and an 800-MHz TI OMAP 3630 chipset."
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No Glasses Needed For TI's New 3D Display

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  • This might just blow my mind, I have to RTFA.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @05:35PM (#31176450)

      For those that didn't RTFA, it uses that technique where you have to move your head from left to right at 60-Hz

      • by Stele (9443)

        Can we assume a free coffee travel mug is included then?

      • by dimeglio (456244)

        I don't get it. How does my left know if it's meant for my right eye and vice-versa? Hence the 60-Hz movement? Woah!

        I'm going to be really impressed when I'll be able to turn my 2D girlfriend to 3D!

        • by reboot246 (623534) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @09:39PM (#31179142) Homepage
          >>I'm going to be really impressed when I'll be able to turn my 2D girlfriend to 3D!

          If you keep doing that, you'll need glasses anyway! :)
          • by LBt1st (709520)

            Am I the only one that could care less about all this 3D hype?
            I'm still waiting for something with a good story to come along. A 3D turd is still a turd.

            • It can enhance movies (Avatar), or serve as a stupid gimmick where shit flies out of the screen at you (every 3D ad I saw when going to see Avatar). If Hollywood can restrain themselves from going the gimmick route there is a lot of potential for the idea. Quite honestly I'm more interested to see what game developers do with 3D because I don't think most movies would benefit that much from it.
      • For those that didn't RTFA, it uses that technique where you have to move your head from left to right at 60-Hz

        My head has Tru-Motion 120Hz technology.

      • by Chuck Chunder (21021) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @10:35PM (#31179594) Homepage Journal
        I just couldn't do the alternate winking fast enough to make them work.
    • by MrKaos (858439)

      This might just blow my mind, I have to RTFA.

      It looks great in the picture, it really captures the 3dy'ness.

    • by vikstar (615372)

      I've seen tens of posts with devices and TVs promising true 3D without the glasses, and they're all bullshit vaporware. If you want true 3D you need glasses, period. There is no other way to effectively direct a different picture to each of your two retinas at the same time. If someone invents such a way you'll first hear about it in scientific publications, not on some bs device that no ones ever heard of. If a device claims to give true 3D without glasses, then it is either bs, or requires you to position

      • by fractoid (1076465)
        Actually, 'directional pixels' is exactly what they need, albeit not with eye tracking or whatever. The only way to get "real" 3D is for each pixel to transmit different colours in different directions. If you think about it, our current lenticular sheet 3D screens are a very primitive version of this, with only two directions (and hence only a very small viewable 'sweet spot' where it works). I predict that as tech improves, we'll have a new metric for 3D screens, describing the number of different colours
        • by vikstar (615372)

          You're overlooking that adding more viewing angles doesn't change fact that you're only adding more sweet spots, with the requirement that your eyes must not be located in between sweet spots. Otherwise given sweet spots A and B, your right eye could be looking at the left eye version of sweet spot A, and your left eye could be looking at the right eye version sweet spot B.

          So you still have to keep your head still and within the sweet spot otherwise you creep into an inverted 3D image. Only thing you're add

          • by fractoid (1076465)
            Actually no - you're adding more 'slices' of the 3D scene, different views each projected at the correct angle. As long as your eyes are each getting a different view and that view is close enough to what it 'should' be, you'll get a 3D view. Once the slices are much thinner than the distance between your eyes, the 3D experience becomes seamless.

            Due to our eyes being a fixed distance apart, this approach works best with small screens viewed from close up. If you consider slices an inch thick at 5 feet fr
            • by vikstar (615372)

              I see now, you're not trying to project only 2 images cloned into multiple slices, you're actually projecting the 3D scene itself where each slice has a unique image of the scene viewed from that angle. So instead of a camera with 2 focal points capturing what you should see with your left and right eye, you'd need a camera with a focal point per slice to capture what you would see at each eye position.

              • by fractoid (1076465)
                Yes, exactly! Generating the image would be challenging unless it was computer generated (in which case adding virtual cameras is easy) - it would probably be done with a setup similar to what the screen itself uses. Doing it per column instead of per pixel is a bit of a hack but is sufficient for our binary optic system as long as viewers keep their heads upright. Doing it with a full variable-directional-emission image per pixel would effectively be making it a realtime hologram, rebuilding an approximati
      • by paganizer (566360)

        If you want true 3D, you don't need glasses, you need holographic projection.

        I've seen working examples as simple as a aquarium filled with very fine glycerin mist with (if memory serves, this was 5-6 years ago) 6 sets of RGB lasers lighting up the droplets at the point where 2 or more similar frequency lasers intersect; the demo I saw had a pretty terrible "framerate", something like 10fps. But that should be an easily solvable hardware problem with enough money thrown at it; you could, I would think, even

  • No glasses? (Score:4, Funny)

    by Mashdar (876825) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @05:32PM (#31176400)
    Great, now if only they could find a way to require no glasses on the person watching it.
  • The usable viewing angle has to be something like 5 degrees +/- unless it somehow can target your eyes with a camera and tune the overlay to compensate... Either way it is limited to one user at a time, which is probably acceptable for most tablets.

    Now, how about something for the 5% of us with Amblyopia?

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by mcgrew (92797) *

      Now, how about something for the 5% of us with Amblyopia?

      You can't see 3D in the real world, what makes you think you'll see 3D in an image? That's as unrealistic as expecting technology that enabled my dad to be able to tell red from green.

      Your only recourse is surgery, and in many cases not even that will help.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by jeffmeden (135043)

        Think big. Sooner or later, we will have neural implants that can feed visual information directly into the brain. All I am saying, is that it would be cool if it came along *sooner*.

        • by jeffmeden (135043)

          And another thing. When are they going to finally perfect the first two dimensions? For those of us with Amblyopia that would be good enough. All they need is a display with a gamut equal to or better than typical vision, along with a resolution beyond the Nyquist limit of the eye at the practical viewing distance.

          Oh, and I guess a camera that is all of those things too. Not too much to ask, all things considered.

          Seriously, why is everyone obsessed with the third dimension? We have barely scratched the

          • by vlm (69642)

            All they need is a display with a gamut equal to or better than typical vision, along with a resolution beyond the Nyquist limit of the eye at the practical viewing distance.

            Already done, more or less.

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_displays_by_pixel_density [wikipedia.org]

            Theres still some issues with dynamic range, which in a way is good. You know how cruddy teen romantic comedies always have the audio mixed with the "music" 30 dB louder than the talking? I dread the day extreme dynamic range is available to our video "artistes".

            Why is pop music compressed to 1 dB of dynamic range, but pop movies have the music 30 dB louder than the talking? I hate both.

            • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

              by Rathum (1406047)

              Almost every movie I've watched in the last few years has had a terrible range. Why must all dialogue be whispered nowadays?

              whisperwhisperwhispeBOOMEXPLOSIONwhisperwhisperOPEwhisperRAMUSIwhisperC

              Watching movies with any sort of sound going in the room with me gives me the choice between ramping up the volume and making my ears bleed, missing half the dialogue, or having to constantly adjust the volume.

              • by fractoid (1076465)

                Watching movies with any sort of sound going in the room with me gives me the choice between ramping up the volume and making my ears bleed, missing half the dialogue, or having to constantly adjust the volume.

                I have exactly the same problem. I used to live in a tiny apartment, and I have a nice surround sound system. Then suddenly every movie that came out had moments of incredibly quiet ambience and pins dropping and whatnot (which I couldn't hear over the road noise from outside anyway) switching suddenly to thunderous explosions and shit. It's great if you're in a cinema but if you just want to watch something at home over some level of background noise without the loud bits demolishing your building (and wit

              • I always figured the problem was that by the time you work your way through the business until you've got the veto power of being the head sound engineer, your hearing has degraded to the point that you really don't know what you're doing. Through a combination of age and too many hollywood cocktail parties, you can't hear the music OR the dialogue very well, but can feel the vibrations (like a snake) if you push the music up high enough.

                • by mcgrew (92797) *

                  Through a combination of age and too many hollywood cocktail parties, you can't hear the music OR the dialogue very well, but can feel the vibrations (like a snake) if you push the music up high enough.

                  They've found that today's geezers have better hearing than yesterday's geezers, and they credit hearing protection in the factories and better medical care for it. A sixty year old sound engineer today will have better hearing than one who was sixty when he was making movies in 1930.

              • by mcgrew (92797) *

                In some situations, I like the increased dynamic range; a shotgun is a whole lot louder than a human voice, so when a shotgun goes off in a movie and it's the same volume as speech, it's not realistic. Other times (late at night when someone is trying to sleep) it gets in the way. I'd like a button on my TV remote that removes the dynamics so that all sound was the same volume when I didn't want the dynamics, or with full dynamics when wanted.

          • by mcgrew (92797) *

            along with a resolution beyond the Nyquist limit of the eye

            The Nyquist limit doesn't apply to analog data, and all human senses are analog.

            • by jeffmeden (135043)

              It's not about the signal itself per se, it's about the discrete resolution of a cross sample of the signal gathering area. Human senses are interpreted in analog, but eyes have discrete photoreceptor sites for vision (rods and cones); meaning there is a fixed limit at which the retina can derive detail out of the light being fed to it. Go over the limit, and you start to see weird artifacts like red-green-blue concentrations appearing to be white.

        • by ivan256 (17499)

          Who's going to be the early adopter of that? You want to be the person stuck with the low-res neural implant when the new ones come out in 6-months?

      • Now, how about something for the 5% of us with Amblyopia?

        You can't see 3D in the real world, what makes you think you'll see 3D in an image?

        Now, how about something for the 1% of us with blindness? Will it allow us to see [wikipedia.org] (and in 3D, no less)?

    • by Animaether (411575) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @05:45PM (#31176602) Journal

      The viewing angle isn't 5 degrees, though.. it's a good bit larger than that.

      The major problem is that the overlay (lenticular lenses) don't direct individual images -to your eyes- - such systems would be vastly more expensive and have whole other issues - they simply direct underlying pixels into different directions. If your left eye happens to be in the area where the left image is being directed, and your right eye in the area where the right image is being directed.. congratulations!
      Now move your head an inch to the left/right. Now your right eye is seeing the left image and your left eye is seeing the right image. ouch.
      Try half an inch.. each eye gets a portion of both images. ungh.
      In other words.. there's sweet spots to sit in, and if you don't sit in one of those sweet spots, you're going to get conflicting sensory input.

      So 1 user at a time isn't strictly true - if the person next to you sits in one of the other sweet spots, they'll be fine as well.

      Half your resolution lost, however (they have to either alternate rows or columns.. 1920x1080 becoming 1920x540 or 960x1080). The human visual system can fill in the blanks from the other eye's perception, but that's just literally plugging holes.

      There's far more disadvantages, including 2D quality (another display handles that partially by activating a liquid much like an LCD liquid in order to somewhat destroy the lenticular effect), but basically... Lenticular 3D is still crap.

      Those who don't want to 'look ridiculous with one of those stupid glasses' on, though, should get Lenticular systems; it's their best bet for viewing stereographic 3D without glasses *right now* until we can perfect the whole realtime holographic plate thing and get some decent color reproduction off of those as well... -and- have it be affordable.
      ( barring any even more zany systems such as helical 3D displays which are more intended for volumetric displays than stereographic 3D etc. etc. )

      • by gd2shoe (747932)

        I doubt that's the solution their using (unless you know for sure). The problem is, the distance between the eyes varies by person. It's impossible to calibrate when manufactured to work for everyone.

        Besides, the article says that they half the refresh rate here, not the resolution. Sounds different, but might be related.

      • Half your resolution lost, however. The human visual system can fill in the blanks from the other eye's perception, but that's just literally plugging holes.

        Wow, I didn't know I could literally plug holes just by partially blocking one eye's vision. I'll have to remember that next time I have some hold plugging to do; could save a lot of time.

      • You’re mixing up terms there.

        stereographic 3D

        This would mean: two volumes (you know a volume has 3 dimensions).
        “3D display” is correct for the helical and some holographic systems.

        Everything else is still just a 2D plane acting as a screen, in 3D space (which is why you can’t focus on blurry areas, or rotate them at will, while watching). So it’s still essentially 2D. Just stereo instead of mono. (It’s an unfortunate thing, that “stereo” is mostly reserved for audio.)

      • by Thagg (9904)

        It's not a typical lenticular display, exactly.

        The real innovation here is the 3M material, not the TI chips driving the display. The material requires that the image be illuminated alternately fro the right and left edges of the screen, the material deflects that light into the right and left eyes respectively. Unlike lenticular displays, there is only one viewing direction that works, but it won't diminish the spatial resolution of the display (only the temporal one.) It will work great for something l

      • Tell me more about helical 3d displays. I tried googling for it, and ironically this very slashdot post was the second hit. A lot of links to CT scanner stuff, but nothing about how an display actually works.
    • by RESPAWN (153636) <caldwell&tulanealumni,net> on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @06:21PM (#31177118) Homepage Journal

      Now, how about something for the 5% of us with Amblyopia?

      You're 5% of the population. Where's the profit in catering to you?

      • by ianezz (31449)

        You're 5% of the population. Where's the profit in catering to you?

        The inhabitants of EU are less than the 5% of the population. Where's the profit? Even that 1% of that 5% having the means and the desire to buy a product is still a respectable number.

        • by RESPAWN (153636)

          The inhabitants of EU are less than the 5% of the population. Where's the profit? Even that 1% of that 5% having the means and the desire to buy a product is still a respectable number.

          That's a good point, but maybe not an apt comparison. And perhaps in the interests in brevity, I didn't fully elucidate my point. We're talking about an emerging technology requiring significant R&D. 5% of the population may be targeted later, but not initially. That 5% of the population isn't going to be where you wi

        • The inhabitants of EU are less than the 5% of the population.

          But much more than 5% of the global spending power.

        • by Eudial (590661)

          How did you come to that value?

          World population ~ 6.8 billion
          EU population ~ 500 million

          So the EU is roughly 7% of the world population. The US, on the other hand, is less than 5%.

      • by adolf (21054)

        Easy. You just price it high enough to be profitable, and hope the market (however small) will bear it.

        • by RESPAWN (153636)

          Easy. You just price it high enough to be profitable, and hope the market (however small) will bear it.

          Point taken.

      • by tool462 (677306) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @08:28PM (#31178676)

        Apple.

      • Plenty, but I know what you meant, 95% is even better! Sort of how Honda and Ferrari are both profitable, but I'd much rather own Honda.
      • You're 5% of the population.

        Come on people! These fat jokes have to stop!

    • by quenda (644621)

      Now, how about something for the 5% of us with Amblyopia?

      Actually, you can still gain benefit from these 3D displays, much more easily than with systems using glasses.
      You move your one good eye left and right between the two images, thus seeing Motion parallax.
      I saw a demo with a camera at a sports game, where they bob the camera up and down. This dramatically improved the depth perception.

      Of course, especially with a moving picture, you probably have a ton of depth cues already, just like the rest of us.
      I don't see this latest 3D fad lasting any longer than the

    • by fractoid (1076465)

      Now, how about something for the 5% of us with Amblyopia?

      Here ya go... I call it a 'monocle'.

    • Probably the only thing that would work for you would be a form of "Wiggle Stereoscopy"

      http://www.isnichwahr.de/r16975-beeindruckende-stereo-bilder.html/ [isnichwahr.de] Is an example.
      Probably not too helpful, but really the only thing I am aware of that might work.
    • I'm not sure why anyone would care if what they were doing on a tablet was in 3D. I just can't imagine who is going to buy this.

      Despite being loved by movie studios, I doubt 3D is going to catch on anyway.

      I watched a few cartoons in 3D: Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs, The new Christmas Carol one, and the GForce 3D, and I was all gung ho about 3D, but when I saw Avatar, I realized why 3D just will never catch on:

      The first ten minutes or so of Avatar made me sick, so much so, that if it had continued for

  • Since I already wear glasses, I don't really care about those 3D viewers since its a pain to have to remove my glasses, put on contacts just to turn around and put on another pair of glasses. Removing the middleman here would be a step in the right direction since I'm not alone with having to already wear glasses and not everyone can/has contacts.
    • by ricotest (807136)
      Since so many of us geeks wear glasses, it's no surprise that most 3D glasses technologies are designed to comfortably slot over existing specs. It's not really a big deal in practice.
  • But on a device that small, not so great. It sounds like the overlay TFA mentions is like the static 3-D images that have been around forever. If so, it wouldn't work on a large screen across the room, or if you weren't right in front of it.

    As to "no glasses needed", most folks over 40 are going to need glasses to see anything that small whether 3D or 2D.

    I want the polaroid technology, the glasses are light and cheap, require no batteries or electronics, with realistic colors. It would be hard to do with a

    • by ceoyoyo (59147)

      "I want the polaroid technology, the glasses are light and cheap, require no batteries or electronics, with realistic colors. It would be hard to do with a plasma or LCD, but I think it could be done."

      Go ahead and build yourself one. Just get a couple of data projectors, a silver screen and some filters: http://www.geowall.org/ [geowall.org].

      It's not hard to do with an LCD or plasma display either. Effectively an LCD display is already half of a polarized 3D display. TV manufacturers are already trying to convince us

  • TI-9000+ (Score:2, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward
    Their next graphing calculator is going to make some awesome graphs!
  • by EasyTarget (43516) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @05:57PM (#31176780) Journal

    There were 5 reasonably large (22''?) screens using this tech, or similar, in the metro station in Amsterdam CS over the holiday period. Just showing adverts, but rather impressive despite that.
    There were definite 'sweet spots' for the 3d effect, and the whole image jumped if you changed the viewing angle by more than a few degrees; but it cheered me up because I saw the future of the flat-panel monitor being demo'd ;-), just add compiz.

    • by StikyPad (445176)

      Which is the problem. Without glasses, there will always necessarily be a "sweet spot." Even if you could build advanced features like retina tracking, they would only work for a single individual at a time, unless you could speed up the framerate to a multiple of the number of viewers. The only way for multiple people to watch a single display in 3D is using glasses.

      • by EasyTarget (43516)

        There were multiple sweet spots, separated by maybe two to four degrees of viewing angle, people standing side-by-side could all get the 3d effect. And even outside of the sweet spots you still got a reasonable level of effect. Maybe you need to actually see this in operation to appreciate how well it worked.

        And anyway, the overwhelming majority of all monitor use is solo (at least for normal people and environments); there are very few people who will find this such a big problem that they refuse the techn

  • by carl0ski (838038) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @06:24PM (#31177174) Journal
    I'll say it. This is what the movie industry needs to deal with those pesky pirates. What wooden legged, one eyed pirate is going to steal a 3d film that requires two good eyes :)
    • by Thaelon (250687)

      Ones that also have 120hz displays with special film from 3M.

      Coming soon to an Amazon/Newegg/Tigerdirect/Dell/Apple near you.

      Cause you bet your ass display manufacturers will be jumping all over this once it's mature, and 3M will happily take currency in exchange for this film.

    • by Chris Burke (6130)

      I'll let you in on a secret. Most pirates only wear an eye patch for show. When they're at home with their friends, they'll take the eye patch off.

  • by Itninja (937614) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @06:56PM (#31177690) Homepage
    I used to play a PC game called Magic Carpet. It had a mode where all the game graphics were rendered in a 'magic eye' type mode. Once you got your eyes tweaked just right, it was all 3D and no glasses were required. Of course, it also looked like a box of crayons exploded.....
  • I cannot see how 3D will be any more than a gimmick like it was in the 70s without some huge leap in technology, which has not occurred. There is a huge change in the way content is being delivered to people's homes with internet only programming and it would seem there would be a whole lot more opportunities in trying to make it easier for people to view it on their TV along with regular cable and broadcast programming.
  • They use the tiny vertical lens prisms to deliver four different angle-views depending where your eyes are. This very similar to the 3-D or blinking image plastic pictures you get in novelty shop or crackerjack box. The lateral resolution is reduced by the number of lens angles in the system (typically four). If you move you head a lot you lose the effect temporarily. And it doesnt work when you are laying down.

    This kind of table in a system might have issues delivering enough angles and screen-width
  • If you could hook an interface into each optic nerve to overlay images over a person field of vision it could be a whole lot more convincing.

    And it wouldn't cause people's eye to bug out. Mark my works, real 3-D display will only be acheived by tapping into the brain and bypassing the eye.

    • If you could hook an interface into each optic nerve to overlay images over a person field of vision it could be a whole lot more convincing.

      And it wouldn't cause people's eye to bug out. Mark my works, real 3-D display will only be acheived by tapping into the brain and bypassing the eye.

      Actually, I'm thinking that elements within our vast tracts of dormant DNA will switch on, allowing people to see and process information from multiple moments across "time" rather than just one frame at a time, as it were. Imagine; being able to see and comprehend the rear side of an object at the same time as the front.

      I came back from a meditation once being able to do this for a fraction of a second. Freaked me right out.

      The future is coming, and it's not about plugs in the head. (We can hope, anyway

  • The DS is old and two screen gimmick is old, it's time for a 3D display gimmick in a hand-held video game device. I bet this will be one (of possibly multiple) things Nintendo is going to latch onto and turn into a new handheld game console.

    If they were already developing a new game console, I suspect they will abort the development and shift into this, it seems like the obvious next step for Nintendo.

  • I'll believe it when I see a photo.
  • Let me check. Yup- still running at the usual 75fps.

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