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The first hologram was recorded in 1962 by Soviet physicist Yuri Denisyuk, but the general public did not really get interested in holograms until 1977 when Princess Leia (Carrie Fisher) appeared as a 3D projection in Star Wars. Since then, the fascination with holography has gone in all different directions, both fictionally and practically. From video games and movies to homemade prisms, holograms have been a strong and persistent cultural phenomenon that has even spurred the AR and VR arms race that we see today.
Setting the AR and VR headsets aside, a creative design studio called Théoriz has devised a proprietary motion tracking system that allows them to project 3D images in an empty room. The effect is quite stunning. Some of the visualizations such as the floating cube (00:51 in the video) are quite convincing.
"We are a multi-awarded studio gathering a team of professional engineers, visual artists and creative developers. We combine scientific and artistic research to create beautiful and creative experiences."
The effects are created using a tracking system called "Augmenta" that Théoriz engineers developed in-house. In addition to Augmenta, the team uses Vive VR tracking technology as well. Everything seen in the demo is real-time with no camera fakery. Once the projections are initiated, the room basically becomes the holodeck on the U.S.S. Enterprise.
While its technology is not going to replace AR or VR headsets, the entertainment potential of the system is evident. If Théoriz decides to commercialize its gear, we could see it implemented in amusement parks or other entertainment venues. However, the group told Digital Trends that they are primarily interested in providing the tech as a service.
"For now, we are providing the system and our creativity as a service," David-Alexandre Chanel, co-founder of the studio said. "We are also developing the software and hardware during that time and it might be commercialized at some point, but it's not a priority for us."
Théoriz views its work as art rather than tech. The studio's tagline is "Bridging art & technology," and they have performed at many different venues including the Lyon Lights Festival in France and the Leipzig Festival of Lights in Germany.
It would be interesting to experience this technology in person, as long as you are not prone to motion sickness.