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Displays Sci-Fi Toys

Obscura Digital Demos "Minority Report"-Like Display 124

Barence and other readers sent along word of a demonstration by Obscura Digital of a new technology it's dubbed a multi-touch hologram — reminiscent of the display in Minority Report. The demonstration shows a man interacting with holographic images projected before him, moving them around and resizing them. It's only sort of like the Minority Report display, which used hand movements to control elements on a screen. Earlier, Obscura had demoed another take on the Spielbergian technology, a multi-touch wall.
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Obscura Digital Demos "Minority Report"-Like Display

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  • The Problem (Score:5, Insightful)

    by StCredZero ( 169093 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @02:06PM (#24483389)

    The problem with this is that your arm gets tired! The Nintendo Powerglove [] from the 80's had this problem. A more natural interface would occasionally let you use your hands for rapid-fire intensive input or precision adjustments, but would follow your eyes and verbal instructions.

  • Re:ok, I want one (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Carthag ( 643047 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @02:06PM (#24483391) Homepage

    And then you'll get sick of having arms that feel like wood. Mouse-elbow would be nothing compared to this thing.

  • by El_Muerte_TDS ( 592157 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @02:11PM (#24483481) Homepage

    Hasn't anyone figured out a more interesting application of this "multi-touch" input form?

  • Powerglove != Wii (Score:5, Insightful)

    by StCredZero ( 169093 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @02:29PM (#24483773)

    Using the Powerglove is not like using a Wii. Try making a fist and waving it back and forth and up and down in front of you with the back of your hand level. Try this for hours. Eventually, you wind up trying to rest your elbow on something. With the Wii, you usually make specific gestures, after which you are free to go back to a more restful position. It's more like holding a sword/racquet/frying pan. The Powerglove is more like using a giant-sized air-joystick. There is no chance for resting. The Wii is much more "natural."

    If the interface in the article allows you to make momentary gestures, then it won't be tiring. If your hands are way out in front of you for hours, it will be a drag.

  • ok.. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by peachstealingmonkeys ( 1268936 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @02:30PM (#24483797)
    why is it that every single demo of these multi-touch technologies involve moving/rotating/resizing f-ing pictures or photographs? What am I, a private eye looking for f-ing clues? For christ's sake, show me some some practical applications, gawdammit..
  • Re:Innovative (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Vectronic ( 1221470 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @02:50PM (#24484097)

    You're starting to show your age... or just being an ass, the Surface is a good idea with our current technology, and will remain for quite a few years yet even if holographic stuff became popular/accessible because it doesnt interfere (think about schools and offices).

    But, this is entirely different from the Surface, and I don't really mean just tech-wise, think about "there is no spoon", its almost a spiritual tool, the (possible) freedom is almost limitless in what you can do, almost as good as having your brain directly linked into the computer.

    Having said that and probably some already stopped reading, depending on how (or when) portable it is, this could be a major problem, especially in the beginning with people walking around terrorizing young and/or old people, or causing traffic accidents etc "I swear Officer, there was a car there!".

    There could also be problems with subliminal things, although it could be argued that its possible (and in some cases does happen) with current technology, it would be much easier and far less noticeable to embed slight alterations, and hidden messages into the the hologram/projection, I'm thinking about this in the context of later on when there might be people who have it on permanently (think of Strange Days []).

    However, as much as I am fond of Trains, Gas Guzlers, CRT's and Physical arts, I for one welcome our new holographic overlords.

  • by Emb3rz ( 1210286 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @02:59PM (#24484283) Homepage

    +1 Futurama Reference

  • Re:ok, I want one (Score:3, Insightful)

    by kylemonger ( 686302 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @05:17PM (#24487153)
    Yah, but in Minority Report at least, the guy using it didn't sit around all day in front of the display. He waved his arms for a while then he went running out to a helicopter, rappelled out of a helicopter, kicked in doors, and laid implacable hands upon potential murderers. In other words the exercise he did in front of the screen was just an extension of the active lifestyle he already had. In that context, having a more active mode of interaction with a computer makes sense and might even be more appealing to SWAT/commando types who enjoy physical activity.
  • by Forthan Red ( 820542 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @05:37PM (#24487493)
    Of course, we saw this 5 years before "Minority Report", in the alien ship pilot interface on "Earth: Final Conflict".

    Although that show had its problems, especially after the 1st year, they got a lot of tech right. Mobile phone video with flexible e-paper type displays, etc.

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