IBM predicts we’ll interact via 3-D holograms in 5 years

[A press release from IBM; a 3:27 minute video is available here]

IBM Reveals Five Innovations That Will Change Our Lives in the Next Five Years

ARMONK, NY – 27 Dec 2010: Today IBM (NYSE: IBM) formally unveiled the fifth annual “Next Five in Five” – a list of innovations that have the potential to change the way people work, live and play over the next five years:

  • You’ll beam up your friends in 3-D
  • Batteries will breathe air to power our devices
  • You won’t need to be a scientist to save the planet
  • Your commute will be personalized
  • Computers will help energize your city

The Next Five in Five is based on market and societal trends expected to transform our lives, as well as emerging technologies from IBM’s Labs around the world that can make these innovations possible. 

In the next five years, technology innovations will change people’s lives in the following ways: 

You’ll beam up your friends in 3-D

In the next five years, 3-D interfaces – like those in the movies – will let you interact with 3-D holograms of your friends in real time. Movies and TVs are already moving to 3-D, and as 3-D and holographic cameras get more sophisticated and miniaturized to fit into cell phones, you will be able to interact with photos, browse the Web and chat with your friends in entirely new ways. 

Scientists are working to improve video chat to become holography chat – or “3-D telepresence.” The technique uses light beams scattered from objects and reconstructs a picture of that object, a similar technique to the one human eyes use to visualize our surroundings. 

You’ll be able to see more than your friends in 3-D too. Just as a flat map of the earth has distortion at the poles that makes flight patterns look indirect, there is also distortion of data – which is becoming greater as digital information becomes “smarter” – like your digital photo album. Photos are now geo-tagged, the Web is capable of synching information across devices and computer interfaces are becoming more natural. 

Scientists at IBM Research are working on new ways to visualize 3-D data, working on technology that would allow engineers to step inside designs of everything from buildings to software programs, running simulations of how diseases spread across interactive 3-D globes, and visualizing trends happening around the world on Twitter – all in real time and with little to no distortion. 

[snip]

Contact(s) information

Steve Tomasco
IBM Media Relations
(917) 687-4588
stomasc@us.ibm.com

Kelly Sims
IBM Media Relations
(408) 927-1261
kelly.sims@us.ibm.com

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