June 8, 2015

3D’s plus-one

The growth trajectory of 3D may not accelerate to the degree desired without help from other, complementary technologies. 3D’s plus-one, if you will.  Only by joining 3D together in symbiosis with other enabling technologies will it be hoisted into commercial and educational prominence.

The German mycologist Heinrich Anton de Bary explained symbiosis as “the living together of unlike organisms.” In the field of life sciences, symbiosis is defined as a close and prolonged association between different organisms of different species that in some way benefit each other. In a sociological or psychiatric context, it refers more to a relationship of mutual benefit or dependence. And in modern business culture, we often refer to a memeplex, a combination of ideas that is more likely to survive and thrive together than apart.

In order to truly achieve its potential, I believe 3D will not stand on its own. The future rests with 3D’s plus-one.

In a recent survey of business leaders, I challenged folks to vote on several nominations for the most receptive combinations as a 3D symbiont in the education space. I provided these five voting options:

3D + Gesture Recognition. “The eyes and hands have it.” Envision combining stereo 3D with the ability to control objects, navigation, or actions via natural hand gestures.
3D + the Cloud. “The cloud has left the building.” Imagine being able to deliver stereo 3D via the Internet, enabling 3D companies to dispense with the complexity, copy protection, installation, and reinstallation schemes that so agitate customers. Putting 3D in the cloud will simplify the storage, delivery, and frequent refresh of 3D learning objects and simulations.
3D + Volumetrics. “Dispensing with the fourth wall.” Imagine 3D combined with volumetrics, dissolving the barrier of the fourth wall and presenting  a new type of “circle 3D” or near-holography.  (See the MiCoy Corporation for one group that has patented solutions in this area.)

3D + 4K. “Okay—it sounds like a math equation—I get it.” Nonetheless, will the combination of stereo 3D and the stark realism of a 4K resolution display produce the crowds and clamor we all hope for?
3D + Other. “3D done your way.” Perhaps there is another technology that makes sense as a symbiont with stereo 3D. What would you suggest?

Which combination won the day? Come back next week for the results. 

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