Sleep has been elusive since I saw what can’t be unseen. My world has been turned inside out, as has the world of everyone else I’ve happily shared this vision with via a two-minute video.
On January 22, 2015, the world learned that we are one significant step closer to claiming a seat at the table on Mount Olympus. The good people that brought us the Kinect and Xbox have been hard at work in a Herculean effort to redefine how we see the world. Since there are obviously man-centuries of work involved here and we “normals” have only just gotten wind of it, I can only assume they were sequestered in some sort of programmer cave and fed and watered on a regular basis.
The vision shown by HoloLens from Microsoft is a game changer. Not because it’s from Microsoft; there are several other companies working towards the same goal. And not because of its present form; it is just a prototype that by most accounts is cumbersome and uncomfortable. The reason that it is so important is because it shows an amazing and achievable new paradigm for the future. It presents a vision; with a video of just a few use cases and two minutes of my life, it changed how I see our world.
My every view is now augmented with an overlay, or more accurately with a hologram. HoloLens shows us how we can seamlessly blend the real and the virtual worlds. But more importantly, it shows us a very possible cure for our worsening human-disconnect condition brought on by our increasing connect-to-machine condition. The vision that HoloLens promises is very very different from that of face-based computing predecessors.
No matter what I write, it will not come close to painting the picture you get from that two-minute video. If you have not seen it, check it out here and enjoy the red pill. … I’ll wait …
Now that you have viewed the video, I assume that you are now experiencing what I refer to clinically as the EXPLETIVE moment and realize there is no going back. Don’t worry, the drool is normal.
There is an infinite number of directions that this article can now go to wax poetic about the life altering value of this new medium and all of the use cases that are possible. However, as I have already pointed out, my brain is broken. So I will simply suggest three new use cases that involve your home, for your newly broken brains to visualize.
1. Holograms promise a world where YOU choose what your world looks like by mixing real and virtual any way you see fit. This is massively disruptive, because things you buy for your home, like TVs, paintings, fixtures, pets, etc., can be replaced by virtual dynamic and magical representations. And these things can be virtually shared with real people in your life.
2. Now, sprinkle in the massive world of information-generating devices collectively known as IoT, a world in which I and my brain have been happily immersed for the last 22 years. Envision a hologram of your house sitting on your desk at work. The house lights up and animates to reflect the stream of data as it originates from your IoT devices and flows into your hologram house. Truly, seeing is believing.
3. Now add in a simple security camera on the outside of your actual house and things get real. Imagine a hologram created by this camera that extends the outside of your house hologram to reflect everything that is captured within the security camera’s field of view. This means all of the people and cars going by that the camera sees are now walking and driving by your hologram house on your desk. Don’t even get me started about how you can now gamify this into a round of whack-a-mole.
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The possible variations are truly endless. As Microsoft so elegantly said to wrap the video: “When you change the way you see your world, you can change the world you see.”
Of course, this is just what I think. I would love to know what you guys think. What mind-warping hologram goodness can you imagine and see as valuable? Comment as early and often as you like. I will be here gleefully gazing at the world around me and seeing what will be … and drooling.
I should also point out that I will be tweeting about new and interesting use cases as they come into view, so follow me @theiotguru.
Jim Hunter is chief scientist and technology evangelist at Greenwave Systems. Prior to Greenwave, he was a fellow of the Technical Staff at Motorola. He also founded 4Home, acquired by Motorola Mobility (acquired by Google), and founded Premise Systems, the first IP-based connected home platform company, acquired by Motorola.