New Holographic 3D Maps, No Glasses Required!

There’s been a lot of new 3D tech getting shown off lately. TVs and monitors are using special glasses to get stuff popping off the screen. However, the 3D tech that really has us excited are the displays found in upcoming devices like the Nintendo 3DS and ViewSonic‘s 3DV5 camcorder and 3DPF8 Digital Photo Frame. These gadgets are on the leading edge, displaying 3D images and videos without having to drop $100 on lame eyewear.

More and more companies are working on glasses-free 3D and now Zebra Imaging can make a 3D holographic print out of almost any 3D image provided. The fact that the maps are holograms is what really makes them cool. You can set these things on a table and walk around them to get a full 360 degree aerial-view of city blocks or battlefields. Images can be also layered and then “peeled back“ giving us more than one view of whatever it is we’re looking at.

Apparently, Zebra Imaging uses 16 cameras, lasers and a “smart” plastic film to create the new maps. (I’d like to see that go down) The material is flexible, allowing you to roll it up, and you can even take a marker to it without any permanent damage! The team at University of Arizona behind this new tech says it may be awhile before something like this becomes widley-available, not to mention affordable, and currently their main customer is the Pentagon….figures. Unfortunatley, the new tech doesn’t come cheap, with each 2’x3’ ZScape costing between $1,000 and $3,000!

If you head over to Zebra Imaging’s website you can check out a few videos showing how well the new tech actually works, they even show the layering affect in use on some kind of technical diagram.

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