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article imageHeliodisplay H3: Virtual TV goes high-def

By RobotGod     Mar 2, 2007 in Technology
A TV with no screen? Sounds crazy, but Chad Dyner at MIT's MediaLab thought of it and created the Heliodisplay a couple of years back.
Made by IO2 Technology, the Heliodisplay actually forms floating 2D images in midair from regular video inputs, essentially a virtual 30-inch video screen. It's not a hologram, it works by affecting the properties of the ambient air above the "projector" (about the size of a desktop PC on its side). The images can't actually be touched, but the display can respond to the movement of your hand, making it a virtual touchscreen.
Now the technology is getting an upgrade. The new version, called the Heliodisplay H3, can display video with 1,024 x 768 "pixels" (good enough for your basic HD signals) and uses an improved system to make the image more stable, uniform, and bright. The technology has a long way to go before it can really compete with the flat panel in your living room, but it's still progress. The $18,400 starting price is pretty steep, though it wasn't too long ago that plasma sets cost about the same.
After time, I can see this technology sized down and incorporated in, say...a conference table etc. The future is here.
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