Microsoft’s HoloLens aims to break the walls between virtual and reality by superimposing a holographic display onto a wearer’s vision.
There have been many hardware and software developments over the past 18 months in the worlds of augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR). However, most of them solely existed only within the separate realms of AR or VR.
Mixed reality is born and another name for augmented reality, which merges the real and virtual world using virtual reality technology.
Devices built on the Windows platform will be interoperable.
This means that someone wearing HTC Vive virtual reality gear would be able to virtually visit and collaborate with someone using HoloLens virtual reality goggles, Microsoft executives told AFP.
According to CCS Insight, a mixed reality headset would place virtual objects in the real world and allow users to interact with them through gestures and voice commands.
The best AR experience with VR capabilities will have extremely complex 3D objects to work with, not just these transparent and light ones today in AR. VR and AR are coming together and it’s just a matter of time. Google realizes this too. While Google hasn’t officially connected AR and VR, Google does show off Daylight scenarios with Tango to create mixed reality experiences.
At the keynote speech on Wednesday, Microsoft executives promoted Windows Holographic, it’s a computer operating system which could help lead the way in mixed reality technology.
“Imagine wearing a VR device and seeing your physical hands as you manipulate an object, working on the scanned 3-D image of a real object, or bringing in a holographic representation of another person into your virtual world so you can collaborate.”
The virtual HoloLens developers kit
HoloLens developers kit costs $3,000. The device weighs just a little over one pound and consists of a 64GB of Flash memory and 2GB of RAM.
Several high-profile virtual reality devices are being released this year, such as the Oculus Rift and many others. Expectations are high for the technology: Myerson said the market for VR devices is forecast to reach 80 million devices per year by 2020.
Microsoft was primarily the facilitator of things like PC VR through their Windows operating system and DirectX 12 low-level graphics API. And even though nearly all the new devices are shipping on Windows, Microsoft had very little hand in how the devices were made or used. This is because Microsoft behaved as more of a passive facilitator than an active contributor.
They are more and more contributors and developers, transhumanists are very interested by this new technology, It can be a big evolution for the human condition.