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Hands-on: Microsoft’s HoloLens is flat-out magical

It looked for every bit like the holographic projection we saw depicted in Star Wars and Total Recall. Except that's shortchanging Microsoft's work, because these virtual objects were in fact far more convincing than the washed out, translucent message R2D2 projected, and much better than Sharon Stone's virtual tennis coach. The images were bright, saturated, and reasonably opaque, giving the virtual objects a real feeling of solidity.

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arstechnica.com
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1368d ago Replies(6)
no_more_heroes1368d ago

It seems people are generally impressed with it.

Metallox1368d ago

I was genuinely impressed by it, that teaser was amazing, and I never say this stuff about technological devices. Hopefully Microsoft can turn it good, I don't want other Kinect because the HoloLens look promising.

Well, perhaps I'm exaggerating, but I really like the idea.

freshslicepizza1368d ago

yes, except for the usual people who bash everything that microsoft does have now simply vanished. kinda nice.

personally i think it's a cool concept and is more interesting outside of gaming.

k3rn3ll1367d ago

oh dont worry, if MS has a mis-step with this, no matter how small, they will be back in full force ready to crap on it. Saying, "see, I said all along that this thing was overhyped and destined to be a disaster." Like they alkways do

mkis0071368d ago (Edited 1368d ago )

Im impressed because I thought of it last year, and how cool it would be. Then I see it this week almost exactly as imagined.

Mine though was both VR and AR with the ability to block out the things in the world it didnt want you to see. You could walk down a sidewalk with my version on and know exactly what is around you (safety) while at the same time be in a completely new environment. The sidewalk could be metal, or the wall to your left could be glass, the possibilities !!!

I really think ms knocked this one out of the park as compared to say kinect or project morpheus.

Can't stress it enough how well MS seems to have done on this one.

Edit: upon further reading this may be EXACTLY as I had imagined it.

IcicleTrepan1368d ago

the thing is, they've been working on this for 7 years.

mkis0071368d ago

That is not my point, ice, my point is seeing something that I would have made given the chance made for me, instantly...no waiting involved. There haven't been any real leaks of this.

Its like me wanting a flavor to exists and then finding out a day later it now exists!!

daxter19191368d ago

I am disappointed.

Augmented Reality is an old technology already available on portable console and smartphone and there are already other AR Glasses available.

mkis0071368d ago

these ones according to those who have tried them have no movement shifting, the overlay stays where it is supposed to, that is new

beans1368d ago

How about some links? Not trying to call you out but I would love to see a device this ambitious already out and available. VR itself has been out for many many years but I don't think It's disappointing that companies are trying to bring it to life.

daxter19191368d ago (Edited 1368d ago )

@beans

Look "AR Glasses" on Google

ThinkThink1368d ago

The same could be said about VR Technology. I remember using VR at E3 over 10 years ago. It's all about the content and what you do with it.

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4Sh0w1368d ago

-Good write up from his hands on experience:

"Microsoft calls it holography. I'm not sure if it really is (Wired describes HoloLens' "light engine" as having a "grating," so perhaps it really is using interference patterns to reconstruct light fields rather than providing the same simple stereoscopic 3D found in VR systems), but this is a detail that only pedants will care about. (Though if it is true holography, it should solve the focus issue that many people find with existing 3D systems.)

However it works, HoloLens is an engaging and effective augmented reality system. With HoloLens I saw virtual objects—Minecraft castles, Skype windows, even the surface of Mars—presented over, and spatially integrated with, the real world."

-Very interesting new hardware/tech Microsoft has shown, I'm sure they have a ton of patents in place and aren't going to share any trade secrets but I'd really like more details/explanation on the basics of this tech actually works. Just curious....either way I'd sure like to try those demos.

Naga1368d ago

All registered patents are publicly available for viewing; the rights to use the patent, however are restricted to the owner for a period of 20 years.

Trade secrets are simply that - secrets. Their only protection is found in their secrecy. Think: Coca Cola's recipe.

So if you want to know how a patented device works, you absolutely can. Just in case you didn't know that already. Cheers.

4Sh0w1368d ago

Thanks bro...guess Ill do some research in the next few days to get a basic understanding of whats behind this tech...granted its highly technical stuff but I should be able to sift through it for something understandable.

pompous1368d ago (Edited 1368d ago )

It's nothing more than augmented reality with MS pr spin thrown in. Impressive use of already in used tech we've been using already. Obviously with other tech or other ways to go about the same tech- different patents.

Kavorklestein1368d ago

What a fitting username you have.

rainslacker1367d ago

I really don't think it's holographic at all. The images I've seen are way too solid to be holography. Holograms, no matter how they're produced are not completely opaque, and have a shimmer to them that is perceptible no matter how good the display/projection is. This is a by product of the technology used to create holograms, and unless MS came up with something new, which means this device would be super expensive, there is no reason to believe that this is some magical hologram projection.

My guess is that the images are being super-imposed onto the viewers field of view by the software taking depth fields of all the object(possibly on the pixel level) and making it look integrated into the environment.

That is how AR is done today for the most part, MS just has a twist by taking it off a display screen and sticking on people's heads to be more compelling.

That's a good thing IMO, because AR never stays interesting very long when it's just on a screen. The practical application available with this technology is kind of exciting as a game dev, and I could definitely see it benefits in education or presentations. Only time will tell if devs and gamers will pick it up as a new way to play games.

I'm assuming some things of course, and I may be wrong. If MS comes out with more information on the actual tech involved that negates my assumption then I'll be even more impressed than I already am with the tech.

christocolus1368d ago

cant wait to try it out for myself.

vega2751368d ago

Im with you..I want this but not just for gaming. I hope MS adds GPS support for people who drive out of state this would be awesome for me. Since I do some traveling with my company and they rent me a car.

aviator1891368d ago

damn. pretty much everyone is impressed by hololens.
here's to hoping it's priced right.

Moldiver1368d ago

I think it will be cheaper than VR headsets, personally.

1368d ago
Pandamobile1368d ago

I dunno, there'a lot of on-board processing happening in a device like this. I see this device being more around high-end smartphone range in price.

TFJWM1368d ago

Umm that would be nice but I don't see how it could be cheaper than Google glass

MelvinTheGreat1368d ago

Its tough to say because MS wants the people who play minecraft to buy and they wont buy it is upwards of 1000+ dollars. But on the other had the tech is extremely impressive would seem to be very expensive to make.

Moldiver1368d ago

"Umm that would be nice but I don't see how it could be cheaper than Google glass"

Umm...I said "cheaper than VR headsets". What is it with people on this website having terrible comprehension skills?

hololens does not pack two screens in its visor, or the tech needed to power two screens (one for each eye) The cost of the CPU inside is anybodies guess, but MS have already said its a low power consumption device, So doubt it is running much more than an ARM based chip, especially given the size of the headset.That would make sense. low heat generation and low power consumption are ARM traits. but only MS can clarify those specs. We will just have to wait and see.

TFJWM1368d ago (Edited 1368d ago )

My reading comprehension is fine, thank you. Use common sense... Google glass is over 1k, every indication has been the VR headsets would be priced under 500. Even if they are more than they are are 100% likely to be below the cost of Gglass

Also they have not demoed a working prototype at the size they showed, its alot bigger. So to make it that size anytime soon would increase the price even more

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