For lounge room entertainment Hanna-Barbera’s space age family The Jetsons replaced television shows with live-action holograms in the futuristic cartoon world envisaged by the show’s creators of the 1960s. In Back to the Future Part II an advertisement for the fictional 2015 film Jaws 19 is projected on a giant hologram. Princess Leia requests Obi-Wan Kenobi’s help via a hologram in the all-time Star Wars scene, and more recently holographic overweight versions of their former selves accompany the newly slim and trim contestants down the catwalk in the finale of tv show The Biggest Loser. Holograms have always been a symbol and vision of the Future in pop-culture, but those flickering transparent beams of light might be part of the present before we know it.
According to developers working with holographic technology, video conferencing and webcam meetings might be a thing of the past with live, 3D holograms taking their place. This new development in holographic technology will mean that speeches can be delivered, audiences entertained, meetings can be held and acts performed all without the person being physically and geographically present. Instead, they will appear via a 3D hologram. It’s very L. Rob Hubbard.
Although this technology is said to be the latest step in the ‘telepresence’ evolution, it is still very much in its infancy with various limitations including the exorbitant cost and elaborate set-up – i.e. a simple set-up currently costs between $20, 000 – $30, 000. To provide a bit of perspective, for that price you could fly first-class to the other side of the world, pick up your respective client in a chauffeur-driven limo, feed them a recent vintage glass of Dom Perignon and a cracker of Beluga caviar before flying them back to your office. Time is money, like they say but why not just Skype?
What does the future hold you might ask? We are hedging bets on Google buying Skype to produce an advanced smartphone that enables the recipient to jump out of the display screen and manifest on the seat next to you. Then the obvious next step is holographic porn.
Farfetched? I bet you once thought The Jetson’s world was…
Written by Jess Glass