[Tig] The 3D tech cycle--Let's throw in Mark Schubin...

Richard Kirk richard at filmlight.ltd.uk
Sat May 2 21:58:51 BST 2009

Back in the 1970's we thought the Russians had cracked projection
holography. I believe they could show something that showed 3D to an
audience without glasses, but the 'film' only ran for 90 seconds.

You can do this sort of thing without holography. The 3D postcard images
use an array of cylindrical lenses to deliver different views to either
eye. It is possible to arrange the viewers so that more than one person
can see the 3D image, but this rapidly gets tricky or impossible  if you
are trying to give an image to a small theater.

However, supposing you have a holographic screen, so that the light from
one projector goes to the right-hand side of every seat in the audience.
Suppose you manage to reach the left-hand side of each seat in the same
way but with a different image. This would give everyone who sat properly
in their seats the 3D effect, but necking couples in the back row might
get the images reversed. This is not 'holography' as we usually know it,
but using holograhic techniques to direct light in a structured way within
a theater - our two eyes are still getting a fixed stereo view. If you  
stood on your head, or lay on your side then the projection system might
not bother to cope.

Face recognition technology is good at recognizing eyes and noses. We
could identify all the eyes in a theater. If there were means to make an
adaptive holographic screen, we could send the left and right images to
the right regions on the faces we see. Instead of using about four times
as much light to produce a 3D image (two separate channels and 50% loss in
polarizing), we would end up using less light, the contrast ration in the
cinema would improve, and we could use the extra light to make the images
more intense and colorful by the Stevens effect.

Sounds cool. But first, we need our adaptive holographic screen...

Richard Kirk (in rare non-3d-curmudgeon mode)
FilmLight Ltd.     Tel: +44-(0)20-7292-0400 or -0409-224 (direct)
Artists House,     Fax: +44-(0)20-7292-0401
14-15 Manette Street
London W1D 4AP, UK

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