Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Inside the Lab of One of the World's Last Holographers

samzenpus posted about 4 years ago | from the old-school-effects dept.

Science 86

MMBK writes "In the heyday of holography, back in the 1970s, there were four schools dedicated to the holographic arts around the world, and five studios in New York City alone. Today, there are only a few left in the world. And no one is holding the candle higher than Doctor Laser."

cancel ×

86 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

WARNING (4, Funny)

jra (5600) | about 4 years ago | (#33297350)

Do Not Stare At Laser With Remaining Eye.

Re:WARNING (1)

wigaloo (897600) | about 4 years ago | (#33299942)

Dr. Fun, one of the original Web cartoons, has a cartoon for that [ibiblio.org] .

Dr. Laser? (1)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | about 4 years ago | (#33302772)

That bastard still hasn't gotten back to me with the prototype I requested for attaching laserbeam to the head of a shark!

I think S.P.E.C.T.R.E. or T.H.R.U.S.H. must have got to him!

Re:WARNING (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 4 years ago | (#33299994)

If I hadn't stared at the laser [slashdot.org] I'd have gone blind in that eye. However, it was a medical laser, not a holographic one.

I can't get to TFA, does it say why nobody is making holograms any more? It's not like it's hard to do, and they're cool as hell; we played with them in a physics class I took in college in the late '70s. Is it because it's getting harder and harder to find photographic film?

Re:WARNING (2, Informative)

Steve Max (1235710) | about 4 years ago | (#33304700)

Yes, basically that. Holographic film is photographic film with a resolution high enough to capture the interference pattern between the reference laser and the reflected one; this pattern created diffraction gratings which made the 3D image afterwards. Some companies dedicated some time per year on their facilities for holographic, and that was enough to feed the small holo market. Holo film costed a premium, of course, but it was still feasible. Now nobody manufactures regular film anymore; if they were to keep the facilities doing just holographic, the cost would be absurd, so they just close down the factories and holography dies.

Most labs saw this coming, though, and have lots of film in stock. Unfortunately, the film doesn't last forever, and in a few years it will really die. Maybe someone will find a feasible way to make film in a lab, but I wouldn't hold my breath.

Holography's not dead (4, Informative)

Flash Modin (1828190) | about 4 years ago | (#33297354)

FermiLab had an awesome holography art show awhile back. There's still some out there. This docu is great though, and Doctor Laser is too. Pretty sweet for a make your own contest.

Re:Holography's not dead (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33297570)

FermiLab had an awesome holography art show awhile back. There's still some out there. This docu is great though, and Doctor Laser is too. Pretty sweet for a make your own contest.

You know what else is great? Doctor Nigger.

Re:Holography's not dead (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33297662)

FermiLab had an awesome holography art show awhile back. There's still some out there. This docu is great though, and Doctor Laser is too. Pretty sweet for a make your own contest.

You know what else is great? Doctor Nigger.

I thought those were called witch doctors.

Re:Holography's not dead (1)

Lingerance (1117761) | about 4 years ago | (#33297996)

Which doctors?

Re:Holography's not dead (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33298360)

Which doctors?

Doctor Niggers, of course.

See that "Parent" button on every post? Use it a few times consecutively and it will answer silly questions like yours.

Doctor Laser? (4, Funny)

Dexter Herbivore (1322345) | about 4 years ago | (#33297388)

Please state the nature of your medical emergency.

Re:Doctor Laser? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33297454)

I'm a doctor not a hologra-- Oh wait.

Re:Doctor Laser? (1)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | about 4 years ago | (#33297698)

Please state the nature of your medical emergency.

If you are armed with a laser, this goes real quick.

Zap the MF* with it. No medical emergency no more.

And send the corpse to the Soylent Green factory, please

Re:Doctor Laser? (1)

davester666 (731373) | about 4 years ago | (#33298006)

Please make sure the cubes are no larger than 3 inches along any side (7.5 cm in Europe and Canada).

Re:Doctor Laser? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33298728)

You have thirty minutes to move your cube.

Re:Doctor Laser? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33301194)

I will save this patient!

Pogs (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33297398)

Is this the guy who designed my holographic slammer?

holding a candle? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33297404)

Instead of a candle, shouldn't Doctor Laser hold, I dunno, a laser?

Re:holding a candle? (0)

ultranova (717540) | about 4 years ago | (#33298944)

Instead of a candle, shouldn't Doctor Laser hold, I dunno, a laser?

It's a laser candle, duh! Instead of candlelight, it sends beams of laser light at random directions, burning everything in their path like a Death Blossom.

The only thing worse than a laser candle is a laser bonfire with sharks dancing around it.

Re:holding a candle? (2, Funny)

zippthorne (748122) | about 4 years ago | (#33299728)

Naw, he's oldschool. He obviously uses a spectrometer and a candle to get monochromatic light for his projects. Sure, it requires super-long exposure times, but it's pretty hard-core.

Meme me up Scotty! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33297418)

Step 1: Freaking Sharks

Step 2 : ???

Step 3: Profit!

Satisfactory?

wow. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33297468)

the video in TFA was like a cross between laser kenny loggins at the local planetarium as narrated by the gripping excitement that is the announcers of npr. you've got holograms and frickin' lasers, and you still failed to keep my attention. kudos, that took work.

OK THAT IS FUCKING ENOUGH (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33297506)

2 times in less than 8 hours there is a "story" on slashdot where there is zero, no JACK SHIT info in the summary

This place is turning into nothing more than a link list just to sucker us into a 1 paragraph article, 35mb of flash ad's and a shitty video sponsored by Dell

Yahoo didnt die, they just changed names

onto the article, call me when you have done something that has changed since I was in grade school back in 84

Re:OK THAT IS FUCKING ENOUGH (3, Insightful)

captaindynamo (1097461) | about 4 years ago | (#33297804)

I thought it nice that this was mentioned. The article and the video might not have had the detail you required, but the thats what the google search is for. I've seen holographic images before, and was very interested in how it's accomplished, but it was years ago and I didn't have the resources to look into it further. Sometimes its nice to be reminded of this kind of stuff. For myself, it's led to a night of googling and interesting reading. If its not enough for you, move on to the next article.

Re:OK THAT IS FUCKING ENOUGH (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33306442)

Herald the New Slashdot. Motto: We only post a title, you Google the information.
On a more serious note, I can't for the life of me figure out why GP was modded troll. Is it because the caps? Maybe, but it doesn't take away anything from the fact that he's right.

I agree AC, Slashdot ~+1= 4chan /new/s (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33307802)

If only Slashdot would hire or pay a fraction of a dollar for regulars to submit a well-written Story, then could see some fair journalism and the English students can reference some of their work onto Slashdot as good job credit. This is News for Nerds, and the Donald Knuth would agree. :-) CmdrTaco, if you pay me 10=cents for Front-page material, then I would think that is fair compensation for my bandwidth usage while I'm in the field on unrelated matters.

the kid vist (2, Funny)

bakamorgan (1854434) | about 4 years ago | (#33297564)

The part where the kid says ouch and cut off his hand was hilarious. The Dr laser should have replied with "im your father " then it would have been the best. Wheres my hologram tv?

Real-life Merlin (3, Insightful)

woopate (1550379) | about 4 years ago | (#33297582)

This is so cool! He comes off as a Wizard or a mad scientist or something. This is a man who is truly passionate about his art. Wish things were looking more up for him, he seems like a cool, optimistic guy. If I lived anywhere near him, I'd probably try to go make friends with him or support his business.

Re:Real-life Merlin (1)

gustgr (695173) | about 4 years ago | (#33297648)

True, but the video made me feel kinda sad. Despite being completely ignored by most people he lives in this world in his head where the current president would subject himself to a dark and moldy basement in order to get a half-assed hologram taken. Other than that, when was this documentary made? I thought someone would mention 3D TVs and stuff like that near the end when he says the world is dimensional but we seem to be content with representing it as flat.

Re:Real-life Merlin (1)

nschubach (922175) | about 4 years ago | (#33297816)

That's okay, I can't even see the video... in Chrome or Firefox... I can see other Flash videos alright, but for some reason this host/player seems to dislike something about my setup.

Holograms are like no other media (4, Interesting)

MacroRodent (1478749) | about 4 years ago | (#33297978)

"Half-assed hologram taken"? I wonder if you have seen a real, well-made hologram of a person? They are spooky in their combination of 3D, extremely high resolution (almost infinite, in fact) and absence of motion and color. Nothing else is like them ("death masks", casts of a deceased persons faces, might come closest).

Re:Real-life Merlin (4, Insightful)

Psychotria (953670) | about 4 years ago | (#33298066)

Despite being completely ignored by most people he lives in this world in his head where the current president would subject himself to a dark and moldy basement in order to get a half-assed hologram taken.

And that, my friend, is what separates the visionaries, the great artists, the great scientists, the great writers, and the great innovators from the rest of us.

Re:Real-life Merlin (1)

Aliotroph (1297659) | about 4 years ago | (#33298088)

He certainly has the wrong business plan. You can never just go to the President with your new-fangled thing. Presidents don't have time for that. Geeks will like it first. He should perhaps try to lure a few geeks with some cash -- preferably geeks who go on TV. While he is correct that he is established, he probably hasn't been anybody's focus in twenty years. Like all things business, networking will be key.

Re:Real-life Merlin (1)

quitte (1098453) | about 4 years ago | (#33299564)

isn't it obvious? get Robert Picardo to pose.

Re:Real-life Merlin (2, Funny)

ultranova (717540) | about 4 years ago | (#33298982)

Despite being completely ignored by most people he lives in this world in his head where the current president would subject himself to a dark and moldy basement in order to get a half-assed hologram taken.

Um, what are you trying to say here? That your president is afraid of the dark?

Besides, getting my holograph taken would be the first thing in my list of things to do if I ever took over the world^W^W^W^W became the president.

Re:Real-life Merlin (1)

Omestes (471991) | about 4 years ago | (#33304458)

I keep expecting it to have been directed by Christopher Guest, personally.

Re:Real-life Merlin (2, Funny)

tehcyder (746570) | about 4 years ago | (#33299784)

If I lived anywhere near him, I'd probably try to go make friends with him

Mod parent -1 stalker

Warning!!! (1)

alexo (9335) | about 4 years ago | (#33303196)

This is a man who is truly passionate about his art. Wish things were looking more up for him, he seems like a cool, optimistic guy. If I lived anywhere near him, I'd probably try to go make friends with him or support his business.

You know those creeps that when they're caught, their neighbours always go "I can't believe it, he was such a cool, normal guy, and he was so good with children..."?

If you watch the clip past the 8:45 mark you'll see clear evidence that he's producing child holography!

Oh shit, there's a horse in the hospital! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33297718)

Dr. Dooom is in the room...

[captcha: 'redneck'. And fucking how.]

Holographic storage (1)

DigiShaman (671371) | about 4 years ago | (#33297742)

Too bad nothing came to market from InPhase Technologies. There was supposed to be major promises from using holographic storage technology. I didn't know this before, but according to Wiki, they had some partnership with Nintendo back in 2008.

Five of the Four Schools in NYC? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33297850)

How were there five schools of holography "in New York City" alone if there were only four schools "around the world"?

Re:Five of the Four Schools in NYC? (2, Insightful)

pclminion (145572) | about 4 years ago | (#33297910)

I looked up the definitions of "school" and "studio" in the dictionary. Turns out, they're different words! Weird.

Re:Five of the Four Schools in NYC? (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about 4 years ago | (#33298052)

It might have been a pride thing and a "we can do it too", I guess over time NY had a few areas of holography that where defunded over time. Like a research reactor or big new IMB computer, neat at the time.

50 years of lasers (2, Informative)

tumutbound (549414) | about 4 years ago | (#33297938)

Lasers were first demonstrated 50 years ago (apparently) There's an exhibition of holograms on at Macquarie University (Sydney, Australia) but if you're too busy to pop in, there's a video of the display here. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RrGR-f1VNHI&feature=player_embedded [youtube.com]

storage media (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33298136)

Not the last they gonna continue it just evolved in more than a visual thing. We doing data storage on holograms now.

Holographic movies (3, Interesting)

camperdave (969942) | about 4 years ago | (#33298168)

The way I see it, there are four main problems with holograms. First, they are static. Sure you have slit holograms, or rainbow holograms, like they used in Logan's run, but those are not true holograms. They are stereograms. Secondly, they are not color. This is due to the nature of laser light. It is monochromatic. Third, you can't have mass viewings. Holograms tend to have only a narrow range of angles from which they can be viewed to good effect. Fourth, you can't generate them on your computer. Let me clarify before you start posting links to open source hologram generation software. There is no holographic output device, like a monitor, on which to show holograms. They are all done with photographic film. That means processing, slow turn around, and expense... the very reasons film was ditched for digital for regular photographs.

Re:Holographic movies (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33298308)

Well - you are right. This are indeed rainbow holograms..

I prefer to make reflection holograms. Those are -also indeed- made on photographic emulsion. Today the best known holographic material (8E75 - Agfa) is sadly discontinued. I use a material from Intergraf (PFG-01) instead. A relatively new development is the use of diode lasers. I still have a 10mW HeNe laser, but it is most times sitting in the corner collecting some dust.

I think the real "big" holographers are getting sparse, but small artist - using holography as part of their art like I do - are still around...

Re:Holographic movies (4, Informative)

blincoln (592401) | about 4 years ago | (#33298374)

First, they are static.

That's a limitation of the way most holograms have been produced, not a limitation of holography in general.

Secondly, they are not color. This is due to the nature of laser light. It is monochromatic.

So use three of them, like the people who have built colour vector display projectors using red, green, and blue lasers.

There is no holographic output device, like a monitor, on which to show holograms.

That's only because no one has come up with a mass-market device of that type. It's certainly possible to do. I feel like a broken record posting a link to the MIT Media Lab's historical page on the topic [mit.edu] , but there it is again.

Re:Holographic movies (4, Informative)

SharpFang (651121) | about 4 years ago | (#33299766)

First, they are static. There's no viable storage to contain reasonable amounts of holograph data, other than holograms themselves. So, old tape-style movies with separate frames are possible, but a computer display - not really, it would take many megabytes per second of the movie and no device has throughputs of this scale, storage notwithstanding. A video that uses generated (computed) image may be possible, a live movie - not yet.

Secondly, they are not color. Or more precisely, they are all colors. The rainbowy nature of a hologram seems inherent, it's very difficult to obtain anything near a clear color in a hologram. Some kind of RGB might be possible, but not nearly as crisp as flat image. Also, for a hologram you need a continuous image, you can't intermix pixels - one hologram per image, so it would need rather to be a Red frame-Green frame-Blue frame sequence, than an image containing mix of all.

Lastly, there is no holographic output device, like a monitor, on which to show holograms. The MarkII you linked achieves puny 144 scan lines in horizontal parallax only. That is how it translates to current displays. It could be defined as 256000 x 144 px display, the 256k pixels being sufficient to create one channel of holo photography.

Assuming we give up full parallax, and go with horizontal parallax and 800 scanlines (a low resolution for contemporary monitors) in RGB that would be 15GB per second, and not 3D in vertical direction. If we take the full parallax, we need about 256k x 256k pixels @ 180Hz (for 60Hz on each color compound). 85 femtosecond pixel clock in case of scanning laser like in the example, about 200GB per frame at 24-bit color depth, and 3 micron big pixels on a wide screen. Calculate data throughput needed for that yourself.

No, we aren't anywhere close to being able to produce a consumer grade holographic display.

Re:Holographic movies (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33300070)

First, they are static. There's no viable storage to contain reasonable amounts of holograph data, other than holograms themselves.

Wrong. You can store whatever resolution of holographic data (the diffraction pattern) you want. Higher resolution leads to higher quality.

So, old tape-style movies with separate frames are possible, but a computer display - not really, it would take many megabytes per second of the movie and no device has throughputs of this scale, storage notwithstanding.
A video that uses generated (computed) image may be possible, a live movie - not yet.

Says who? Current technology can produce __________ which can display live holograms from sources that are either computer generated or discrete captured from a high-resolution CCD.

Secondly, they are not color. Or more precisely, they are all colors. The rainbowy nature of a hologram seems inherent, it's very difficult to obtain anything near a clear color in a hologram. Some kind of RGB might be possible, but not nearly as crisp as flat image. Also, for a hologram you need a continuous image, you can't intermix pixels - one hologram per image, so it would need rather to be a Red frame-Green frame-Blue frame sequence, than an image containing mix of all.

Of course a (single) hologram can't be color, "monochromatic" is in the definition of LASER.
You only seem to be familiar with one or two techniques to produce an hologram, mind you there are more. The rainbow nature of holograms is largely associated with the technique to produce them, the conditions on how they were produced and how they are viewed.
If the viewing conditions are known a-priori, it is possible to produce a hologram with "real" colors to the viewer stand-point.

Lastly, there is no holographic output device, like a monitor, on which to show holograms. The MarkII you linked achieves puny 144 scan lines in horizontal parallax only. That is how it translates to current displays. It could be defined as 256000 x 144 px display, the 256k pixels being sufficient to create one channel of holo photography.

Wrong, there are "holographic projectors". They are not called like that per-se, but I'm not telling you the right name either, do your homework.

No, we aren't anywhere close to being able to produce a consumer grade holographic display.

Yes we are. The problem is these devices are being developed in the dark away from public knowledge. There is a lot of competition on that field, I been there for a while.

Re:Holographic movies (1)

SharpFang (651121) | about 4 years ago | (#33301616)

True that you can store whatever resolution of holographic data (the diffraction pattern) you want. True that higher resolution leads to higher quality. But you conveniently omit the fact that resolution of 1000x1000 is barely sufficient to get a hologram of two dots. Gigapixel resolution is needed to store holographic equivalent of a thumbnail image in quality that allows one to recognize the content. The rule of thumb is resolution roughly 1000 times higher than respective 2D image for similar quality. And we're talking about consumer appliances here, 100x100px equivalent won't cut it.

"discrete captured from a high-resolution CCD"? Bullshit. A 100 megapixel camera will produce a hologram that is no more than few rough, blurred shapes. 100 megapixels at what FPS? And what are the highest resolution CCDs available on the market nowadays?

"but I'm not telling you the right name either, do your homework." Of course they are not named holographic projectors, because while there is a wide range of 3D display devices, none of them uses holography. Do YOUR homework and check what principles use the devices you talk about.

And if there's so much competition and development, as you claim, why does the article state to the contrary? Why do wall projectors of >1024x768 are still so rare and expensive? Why still no holographic data storage, which is hmuch easier than holographic display? And why posting as AC?

Re:Holographic movies (1)

TheLostSamurai (1051736) | about 4 years ago | (#33304860)

True that you can store whatever resolution of holographic data (the diffraction pattern) you want. True that higher resolution leads to higher quality. But you conveniently omit the fact that resolution of 1000x1000 is barely sufficient to get a hologram of two dots. Gigapixel resolution is needed to store holographic equivalent of a thumbnail image in quality that allows one to recognize the content. The rule of thumb is resolution roughly 1000 times higher than respective 2D image for similar quality.

An AC below spoke of Zebra Imaging. I used to work there making holograms and can assure you that you really have no idea what you are talking about. First, you are trying to compare the resolution of a hologram to the resolution of a monitor. In the holography Zebra does, 1024x1024 resolution is accomplished in 0.7mm. You can do the math for a 3ftx2ft hologram as to the amount of data in the full size hologram.

Why still no holographic data storage, which is hmuch easier than holographic display

Holography IS data storage. The reason it is not commercially viable as say media for your pc is because the machines that create these holograms are not anywhere near consumer grade. Also, the physical media is not as durable as most current storage solutions.

Re:Holographic movies (1)

SharpFang (651121) | about 4 years ago | (#33311966)

Doesn't seem so.

A typical 17" display is 909cm^2, that is 185,000 of your 1024x1024 0.7mm units. At 1 byte per pixel (256 grey levels), that gives 181 gigabytes per image. Not far off from my 200GB per frame estimate. That's vs 6MB per frame of 1080p hdtv which is currently the state of art. Your hologram pixels are below 0.7 microns. The state of the art (LCD projectors) is about 10 microns, and seem to have hit a roadblock with increasing resolution while keeping this pixel size.

And you're doing no more than that 1024x1024 at a time in digital display, I guess. The result is fixed on film, and you move to expose another 0.7mm unit. The film is analog hologram storage. Like a mosaic printer that punches the image on paper and moves on.

Holography is analog data storage. Just like normal photography is. And a hologram picture vs holography data storage vs hologram display device is like an analog photo (or mosaic printer printout) vs a CD disk vs an LCD screen. You can't store that much raw data in analog photo comparing to a CD, which IS an optical storage just the same, just not meant "for human consumption".

We are capable of creating printouts, and then using old page-flip animation with these. We are not able to record a holographic scene live to a hard disk, then replay it as a movie without transferring it to a film. We might if we had holographic counterpart to a CD and LCD screen, instead of a counterpart to a paper printout.

Yes, the media is not durable enough, yes, the machines are not consumer grade. The problem is I heard exactly the same excuse 15 years ago. WHAT has changed since then?

Re:Holographic movies (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33305004)

True that higher resolution leads to higher quality. But you conveniently omit the fact that resolution of 1000x1000 is barely sufficient to get a hologram of two dots.

You are making a little confusion here. The lowest resolution required for a holographic pattern is the one required to diffract light. For example, with 20 fringes per millimeter you can diffract visible light - it isn't *that much*. I'm lazy on calculations right now, but you don't require that much diffraction area to get a *simple* hologram. Now associate this with the, "higher resolution leads to higher quality (or in better words, more information)"

"discrete captured from a high-resolution CCD"? Bullshit. A 100 megapixel camera will produce a hologram that is no more than few rough, blurred shapes.

Your claim is in contradiction of several experimental results of mine.

Of course they are not named holographic projectors, because while there is a wide range of 3D display devices, none of them uses holography.

I'm not talking about consumer display devices. There are *other* devices which operate under the interferometry principles.

And if there's so much competition and development, as you claim, why does the article state to the contrary?

The article is bullshit. Holography evolved a lot since Denisyuk and Stephen Benton.

Why still no holographic data storage, which is hmuch easier than holographic display?

This should answer a lot of your questions:
http://www.colossalstorage.net/

(I'm not affiliated with them)

And why posting as AC?

I don't want to me or my research group to be associated with any of this discussion. I just wanted to say that in contrary to what TFA makes people feel, holography is not dead - it's the future.

Re:Holographic movies (1)

SharpFang (651121) | about 4 years ago | (#33307724)

20 fringes OF WHAT SIZE per mm?

If you want to be able to dynamically vary the width of the fringe in 1% intervals you need at the very least 100px per the thinnest stripe width used. That's 2000px per mm for you.

Pixels are square, so if you want a circular pattern you have to have pixels vastly smaller - the resulting drawn circle must be comparable in size with visible light wave length, while its imperfections (pixellated border) must be well beyond that scale, and you can't cheat by antialiasing. That's the pixel size we're talking about.

What level of detail were you able to achieve with your CCD? A picture of a human face that is recognizable? A picture of a human body, where the face is recognizable? A picture of a room of people where all the faces are recognizable? I doubt anything beyond the first. And consumer grade requires the last.

I'm not going to argue "yes there are", "no there aren't". Would you just care to give examples of what level of detail are the devices you mentioned capable of? I'm pretty much aware a standard wall display projector with modified optics is mostly capable of displaying simplest holograms. Still, these seem to have hit a roadblock when it comes to display resolution, and a holographic display would need very similar parts, just vastly higher resolution...

Noticed anything missing in the page from the link you gave me? Like, say, a "products" section?
Holographic storage news appear once a year on the average, with "five years until mass production" date tag each. I was excited the first 3 times or so, some 15 years ago. Then I learned of the word "vaporware". There is NO consumer-grade holographic memory devices and there are hundreds of vaporware companies that show a lot of pretty animations about what their devices will be when they build them. The day I can order a holographic storage disk in an online shop, and plug it into SATA interface of my computer I'll say consumer-grade holographic display is a viable option.

Yes, holography might be the future, but along with flying cars, thinking AI, working voice recognition, affordable space tourism, neural UI, and a cure for cancer, it's yet another of the products that "will be on the market in 5 years" for the past 50 years or so.

Re:Holographic movies (1)

operagost (62405) | about 4 years ago | (#33303156)

The rainbowy nature of a hologram seems inherent

It's inherent in the visible light that we use to view it.

Re:Holographic movies (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33304582)

First, I am an old school holographer and you have no idea what you are talking about. Look up the difference between transmission and reflective holograms. You are probably talking about transmission holograms that you may have seen on a credit card which take light from behind a transparent substrate. Credit cards simply have a reflective foil behind the hologram. Reflective holograms reflect light from very small indentations in the recording material, which store interference patterns from a data and reference beam. The color of a hologram is only limited by the color of the laser(s) used in the recording process. In other words, you have absolutely no understanding about how holographic images are actually created or stored nor the material in which they are stored.

As for dynamic, Zebra Imaging of Austin, TX [zebraimaging.com] has been developing a true dynamic full color, full parallax holographic display with funding from DARPA which currently runs upwards of 15 fps, with live content. It can even display live LIDAR scans of an environment. Trust me, I've seen this display in person. It's also tile-able from about 10"^2 to about 80"^2. Just because you can't comprehend how to make the math work doesn't mean someone more clever can't.

Also, check out a video from AutoDesk [youtube.com] of their static stuff.

I can't believe people who have no understanding of the things they comment on get modded up.

Re:Holographic movies (1)

SharpFang (651121) | about 4 years ago | (#33308104)

I concede the color point - in case of transmissive holograms. Still, a "flatscreen holograph device" looking like a standard modern TV set/monitor would rather be reflective than transmissive. Or we're back to CRT times with big "ray tube" sticking far back, except now it shoots lasers instead of electrons.

Static imaging is there, is old, and is almost forgotten. Yes, we can computer-generate a static hologram. Create the holographic representation of an image in memory, get an old 800x600 wall projector LCD and a handful of optics, then use photographic technique to transfer the hologram in pieces where the 800x600 image is like 0.1mm. Repeat over whole surface, done. Will take a long time, lots of CPU time and disk space but is perfectly doable.

OTOH, the LIDAR imaging - first, I doubt the level of detail a LIDAR produces is comparable with a live photo, and then, we're talking military budget here. Not exactly consumer level. 15FPS is not quite there yet either.

Re:Holographic movies (1)

arakis (315989) | about 4 years ago | (#33306138)

I am not going to weigh in on all the issues here, but I interned at Jason's studio long ago when his current interns were probably infants. You don't have to be an intern there to go visit the webpage for Holographic Studios and see things like this:

http://www.holographer.com/heartproject.htm [holographer.com]

and

http://www.holostudios.com/holohelper/faq.htm [holostudios.com]

Look for the part about how many lasers you need. The technique can be as simple as something called a pre-swell of the emulsion and some selective exposures.

If you are reading this, check out his site and definitely watch the movie. Jason didn't get his body of work stretching over decades by nay-saying and giving up on things that seemed impossible to others. It is a good attitude for anything you do.

Funny that IT industry is moving to 64bit (1)

Ilgaz (86384) | about 4 years ago | (#33309740)

One really wonders if the only practical purpose of 64bit for these people's vision is only whining to Adobe for 64bit Flash?

I mean, with the exceptional speed gains for networks, 64bit pure operating systems, GPU manufacturers basically hitting what can be achieved in 2D, TB levels of storage on laptops... All they can come up is freaking extra registers and whether their "adobe flash player" comes in 64bit or not. Just the specs of "Display Port" and its future roadmap should enlighten people but they choose to be impressed in 1080P displays, which we were selling as Barco dealers back in 1990s.

Re:Holographic movies (3, Interesting)

heitikender (655816) | about 4 years ago | (#33298796)

On Causality You see, when you ask why something happens, how does a person answer why something happens? For example, Aunt Minnie is in the hospital. Why? Because she went out on the ice and slipped and broke her hip. That satisfies people. But it wouldn't satisfy someone who came from another planet and knew nothing about things... When you explain a why, you have to be in some framework that you've allowed something to be true. Otherwise you're perpetually asking why... You go deeper and deeper in various directions. Why did she slip on the ice? Well, ice is slippery. Everybody knows that-no problem. But you ask why the ice is slippery... And then you're involved with something, because there aren't many things slippery as ice... A solid that's so slippery? Because it is in the case of ice that when you stand on it, they say, momentarily the pressure melts the ice a little bit so that you've got an instantaneous water surface on which you're slipping. Why on ice and not on other things? Because water expands when it freezes. So the pressure tries to undo the expansion and melts it... I'm not answering your question, but I'm telling you how difficult a why question is. You have to know what it is permitted to understand... and what it is you're not. You'll notice in this example that the more I ask why, it gets interesting after a while. That's my idea, that the deeper a thing is, the more interesting... (Richard Feynman) If you know how, then you know why.

Re:Holographic movies (2, Insightful)

mcgrew (92797) | about 4 years ago | (#33300568)

You're the parent of a bright four year old, aren't you? ;)

Re:Holographic movies (2, Interesting)

l3v1 (787564) | about 4 years ago | (#33298936)

The way I see it, there are four main problems with holograms.

You seem focused on finding defficiencies, yet you fail to see a very unique advantage: resolution and density. I can't think of any other tqchnique that would be able to come close in resolution. E.g. holographic microccopy. And the technology didn't go away, just check topics on holographic data storage

Re:Holographic movies (1)

MancunianMaskMan (701642) | about 4 years ago | (#33299442)

Let me clarify before you start posting links to open source hologram generation software.

can someone please post some of those links anyway? I'm very interested and our company prints stuff with extremely high resolution and spatial accuracy - it would be cool to "make up" a hologram rather than have one that is an image of a real object.

Re:Holographic movies (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33299584)

There are more uses for holograms than just directly illuminated three dimensional images.
RCA made a player called 'holotape' that used interference patterns to encode full motion video!
http://www.cedmagic.com/history/holotape.html

Re:Holographic movies (1)

oodaloop (1229816) | about 4 years ago | (#33300028)

If you changed the second line in your sig to " Molecules scatter blue light", it would be a haiku.

Re:Holographic movies (1)

muvol (1226860) | about 4 years ago | (#33300234)

Those are limitations of conventional holograms. I don't know of any promising techniques to produce real time holograms for display, but techniques do exist to overcome the rest of those limitations. At least one company, Zebra Imaging , makes large, color holograms for display. And the one I saw was quite impressive. ---

Re:Holographic movies (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 4 years ago | (#33300482)

Third, you can't have mass viewings. Holograms tend to have only a narrow range of angles from which they can be viewed to good effect.

Incorrect. You get the 3D image from anywhere you can see the film. In a class I took in college, they'd taken a hologram of a pair of dice by wrapping the film around a beaker and flashing the lasers. They then developed the film, and wrap the film around a beaker and shine the laser at it and you had a 3D pair of dice viewable from ANY ANGLE.

There is no holographic output device, like a monitor, on which to show holograms

All you would need would be a high enough definition LCD display and a laser to view it (you still need two lasers to make the hologram, unless you could generate it with a computer).

Re:Holographic movies (1)

camperdave (969942) | about 4 years ago | (#33305032)

Generating the hologram by computer is conceptually fairly simple, but requires massive amounts of processing. It is similar to ray tracing, except instead of computing intensity and color, you are computing intensity and phase, which is added to another intensity/phase pair from the computed reference ray.

The problem with the LCD display is that you need to address pixels that are on the order of a half of wavelength of light across. Nobody manufactures LCDs with that resolution, as far as I know.

Re:Holographic movies (1)

blueup (225926) | about 4 years ago | (#33303290)

Actually, I saw a full-color hologram in high school (mumble-decades) ago. It was worse about angles, there was pretty much exactly one precise angle you had to look from, or the colors were all bad, but still, it worked. As for the "narrow range of angles from which they can be viewed", I thought one of the great parts about holograms was that it WASN'T "just ONE spot". Narrow, maybe, but honestly some of the new parallax barrier screens are MUCH worse.

Re:Holographic movies (1)

TheSync (5291) | about 4 years ago | (#33304338)

The way I see it, there are four main problems with holograms. First, they are static

There are several efforts underway to create video holograms using acousto-optical crystals or spatial light modulators, such as the Holovideo project [mit.edu] at MIT.

Too bad (1)

b00m3rang (682108) | about 4 years ago | (#33298290)

I saw a holographic arts exhibit in San Francisco in the late 80s that took up a huge warehouse. Saw some amazing stuff there, sad to see the art form is dying.

Direct Correlation. (1)

Reed Solomon (897367) | about 4 years ago | (#33298426)

Bart: Yo, Dr. S: have you seen Milhouse today?
Dr. S: No.
Bart: OK, thanks.
Dr. S: Wait: did you know that there's a direct correlation between the decline of Spirograph and the rise in gang activity? Think about it.
Bart: I will.
Dr. S: No you won't.

In 20 years it will be (1)

mysidia (191772) | about 4 years ago | (#33298814)

Inside the lab of one of the world's last bloggers

Its not dead.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33298842)

He's just sleepan. He's just sleepan!

Wow (1)

Combatso (1793216) | about 4 years ago | (#33299384)

It's very difficult to play the holophoner

I visited the lab (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33300142)

I remember going as a kid 15 years ago to his lab with a bunch of friends and he showed us how to make holographs. I still have one around here that we made of a little wooden choo-choo train. He is exactly as fervent as now as he was then. The place isnt that big but it is very mad scientist like.

Wait, what? (2, Funny)

chazzf (188092) | about 4 years ago | (#33300168)

In the 1970s there were four schools around the world, and now only a few are left? When you start with four you don't have all that far to drop!

Zebra Imaging in Austin, TX (2, Informative)

Luyseyal (3154) | about 4 years ago | (#33300510)

I happen to know Michael Klug, one of the partners in Zebra Imaging [zebraimaging.com] . They're still doing holography like they've done for years now. Why do people think it's dead?

On a semi-related note, our family visited the Salador Dali Museum [salvadordalimuseum.org] in St. Petersburg, Florida, recently and they have a cool hologram of Alice Cooper that Dali did back in the '70s. Definitely worth checking out -- though I recommend waiting until their new building opens in Jan 2011.

-l

Cool, but pricey (1)

b0bby (201198) | about 4 years ago | (#33301490)

My thought was that it would be cool to get a portrait done next time I'm in NYC. Then I went to his website & saw that it's $1800... too rich for my blood. It's still neat stuff he's doing there, though.

Holograms are amazing. (3, Interesting)

FiloEleven (602040) | about 4 years ago | (#33301870)

As mentioned in the movie, the resolution of a hologram is the wavelength of the light used. With a specially built microscope, you could actually look at the bacteria captured in film, even though your subject might be a macroscopic object.

The image you see when you look into a hologram is a virtual image, like that of a mirror. What's interesting and has to my knowledge never been examined for implications is that there is an invisible but real image behind the film.

Each half of a holographic plate sliced in half still contains the entire image, only at half the size. The halving can be repeated indefinitely, within physical limits. (Incidentally, this is one of several references to holograms made in The Book of the New Sun.)

The most interesting aspect is holography is that each part in some sense contains the whole. There is a theory of physics that postulates that the universe is structured as a hologram. It never gained much traction yet it was never disproven, and its creator David Bohm was a well-respected physicist. Additionally, Karl Pribam is a psychologist who believes that our brains operate holographically, our brainwaves acting as the laser with our neurons as film.

This may indeed be a technology that is simply ahead of its time, virtually useless to us without a much more mature understanding of physics or without the insight of some genius on how to do more with holograms than make eerie monochromatic volumes.

Re:Holograms are amazing. (1)

camperdave (969942) | about 4 years ago | (#33308100)

Each half of a holographic plate sliced in half still contains the entire image, only at half the size. The halving can be repeated indefinitely, within physical limits.

No, not half the size; half the viewing angle. It's like covering up the right half of a window. You can still see all of the objects through the left half, but none from the right.

hvd (1)

sixsixtysix (1110135) | about 4 years ago | (#33302506)

i am surprised they didn't ask him about holography in relation to data storage or other non-artsy usage.

A rewarding hobby (1)

SuperTechnoNerd (964528) | about 4 years ago | (#33304368)

I used to make holograms years ago and got some good results even though my laser was weak and my table not really heavy enough. It is a somewhat expensive endeavor and AGFA stopped making plates so I got out of it. However recently I bought a "Big Ass HeNe laser" from ebay and I am now intrested in getting back into it. Im glad to see some still do holography.

Re:A rewarding hobby (1)

camperdave (969942) | about 4 years ago | (#33308198)

It would be interesting to do a hologram affixed to a transparent mug. Imagine drinking a coffee with a miniature skull floating eerily in the middle.
Check for New Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>