Internet DNA Podcast

This week we are discussing holograms; the difference between a hologram and holograph and if they will be the next big thing, or if the uses are somewhat gimmicky - how they could effect Medicine, Education and even the art of Film Making. Feeling we hadn't quite finished on genetic engineering and the power unlocking the gene sequence could give... think Mutants from X-Men... we meander through this enormous subject too, taking in VR & AR as we go.



(this transcription is written by robots… so don’t be surprised!)

[inaudible] and me dad this week we're going to discuss holograms, are we? Yeah, well, I mean I'd be looking at

holograms and while I appreciate their amazingness, I don't really understand what their application is in the modern world.

Do you remember when we were young? There are holographic stickers. Yes, yes I do. Yeah, but at the same time as scratch and sniffs and actually I much prefer scratch sniffs than I did holographic stickers. [inaudible]

holographs but holograms like slightly different, aren't they?

So what's a hollow graph then too?

Well, holograph is an image where the refraction of light changes the image. So you remember you used to have a thing where you could change the angle of it. It would move from one picture to the other picture. Yeah, that's kind of a hollow graph. So it's a drawing,

well, you should see a three d, but in its simplest form it was really just a sort of rainbow metallic sticker. But sometimes they had images that looked three d because of the reflection. The refraction of delight, as you say.

Exactly, yeah, they used for security because you can imprint a very specific double or triple image that can be scabbed so he can say, okay, rather than just having one picture, you've got three that you've got to replicate and you've got to replicate exactly the angle at which they change. So I can see holographs they have a place in the world, but holograms, which I'm talking more of a three dimensional presentation of an object.

Yes. Princess Layer in star wars is actually standing there talking to the room when she was actually somewhere else.

Yes. And exactly my point, which is if that had been presented on a video screen as her just talking to the video, would it have changed the input of the message?

Oh, so that's what you don't like. You think that someone standing 3D yeah, in the room. So backdrop is no better than a video of them.

Yes. I don't see the advantage of the technology bearing in mind. It takes up a space on the floor generally that you can't walk over.

He could have a weeny weeny weeny person. If you're having a phone call, a holographic phone call with your boss, you could make your boss really tiny and then you'd feel really quite big.

Yeah, but you could do that with video as well. I mean this is the 40 riches I have difficulty understanding is what is the advantage of a holograph over given that we already have video. So I'm not saying if we didn't have any saying would you rather have a video or a Hologram? Like would you rather have a TV or something where you could actually watch stuff walking around on your mantle piece? Yeah, I'm sure I would like, it's cool to have a Hologram, but what's its practical application in reality?

Okay, so holograms like a lot of things we talk about. Yeah, have been invented because they were imagined in Sci-fi starting Princess Layer and then they've been in every sort of book and film minority report, Hologram for the king, which was Dave Eggers, who's the guy that did the circle. Do you remember that? Social Media Book and film?

I mean, I know Dave Eggers from more firm, you should know of velocity and breaking work of extraordinary genius.

See, I was thinking of getting more of his books. You might, okay, phenomenal. I will look those up. So it has been used in Sci-fi for years as a more modern way of communicating than what we currently have in this world because the whole point of site fires, it needs to be in the future and therefore it's got to stick. Now, there is nothing wrong with sitting down to watch TV. And when you're sitting down to watch a story or a film, you need the backdrop. So you need the river or the building or whatever it is that's going on behind. But a Hologram, which I think is incredible the way it's made, it's made by same thing, light bouncing off object energy. So it used to need smoke or something like that, but now they've started to do it in a way that, you know, if you get LEDs or a sparkler and you wave them around and they leave the lights behind, don't they?

So you can write your name in the sky. So that is the technology or that is the premise behind the technology. [inaudible] hello guys, which I think is amazing, but also perhaps you don't need a holographic phone call. I think where it becomes really, really useful and where it will find this initiatives is where you need to see the three 60 degrees of it. So let's say you are doctors and you are trying to understand about someone's lungs and you needed to see all around because you couldn't see where the issue was. So if we're getting the cameras inside the body and then it was showing you a three 60 look, so you could turn it round, maybe there's an incident or

well three the modeling where you can actually move the model around, and I can understand it in terms of a UI

either it's a replicating image of something that is there.

But if you were, let's say designing a three d objects, like doing product design and you just had a mat on your table that was projecting a hologram where you could grab the object to move it, turn it around, move bits on it. Just see what I mean. I can understand that part of a hologram. So you're actually seeing a three d object in 3D and able to manipulate it so that you can move it into, like you were saying with doctors where you can move the lung around and have a look where it is alternative. You have to walk around it. But that seems less helpful. It'd be easier if you could just spin it and see it all in 3D but actually see it in 3D rather than looking on a screen where it appears to be just that.

Yeah. And if you think of VR and Ar, that is what's called an immersive experience, isn't it? And so instead of watching on the screen, which you go, it's fine. Why do I need anything else? The moment you put these glasses on, you are in it. That's really now imagine with Holograms, if instead of you being in it, it was in your room, all these monsters and dinosaurs and things were chasing you around the house.

Yes. Okay. Now you put me off again, but also like one of my problems with VR is how much you know other than sort of driving games or flying games where you're naturally locked into a space, they either require a vast amount of space in your house because obviously you don't want to be banging into your coffee table while you are chasing these monsters. So then what we're saying is you're not going to have a television. You're going to have a visual room where you can go and immerse yourself in game of Thrones and fight dragons or maybe not fighting them. Maybe just run away from them, but it seems like an incredibly interesting technology, but I don't really see outside of some very specific UI cases and I can see how medically that might be very interesting. And where you're working with 3D elements, it might be really interesting. It's difficult to understand how it would work for me, let's say as a technology tool other than replacing the television with something a little bit more 3D.

So let's say you're in a business meeting, do you think that it would be more inclusive if everyone's Hologram walked in and sat down as a chair at your table as opposed to half the people in the room, the other half of the screen that you sometimes forget about?

Okay. Now that sounds interesting. Like how many meetings where you're sitting on something like, I don't know, zoom or teams or Skype and it's very disjointed and I can see, yeah, if they walked in and you had holograms sitting around one half of the table so you could see their facial expressions, it would feel much more like they were there. So yes, I can understand that's a useful place.

I mean, it's got to be said that the computing power and the graphics engines and the Internet, which certainly wouldn't get this, and Suffolk ever needs to be incredibly powerful and we're not there yet. Interestingly, one of the companies that are quite far along the line in the Hologram are reaching out to any company to start to find applications for it. So even they haven't quite worked out what it's going to be useful. But I think that's what's interesting. I think there's no doubt that in 50 years holograms will be a normal part of our technological lives

and, and, and um, obviously not. Do you know what? I just haven't actually sort of considered it like that. Cause you know, my mind's immediately going and we had that conversation about social media, about switching off and actually meet the people that you're going to meet. And then you've got this kind of weird thing where you can go and meet people but you're not really there, but you are there as a hologram. And so my brain just started spinning off in a really odd angle.

But somehow to me, meeting a Hologram of someone in the room, let's say there's an incredible scientist who does lectures on Holograms, he comes to your university in a Hologram form to talk in the lecture hall. Now if he's on a screen that's not nearly as engaging as if he's actually standing on the stage or at the podium.

Yeah, and I one of these,

so I saw one where it was a ted talk I believe, where he looked like an old, I think he was the guy that invented Heineken maybe or one of those type of bears and he was standing on the stage and obviously there was a camera there so that he was reacting because obviously the thing about presence [inaudible] invented holograms. Maybe I didn't watch it to the end, but my thing was obviously they had a camera so he could react to the people. So it wasn't as if you could send like a prerecorded Hologram for that personal presence because otherwise it is just the video isn't it? It's just a projection. Okay. It's in 3D but it has to be live like a phone call and so then you,

you could have one guy doing a presentation to 60 rooms. I can see that. That could be maybe useful where he's standing there and he can answer questions and even could even point out the person that he's potentially talking to.

I think the education for children as well. Yeah, you can have done a soul slang in the classroom. You've got everybody's attention

and also if you are trying to understand how something happened, the fact that you can see, one of the things I was thinking about half the art of film making is framing and shot. If you move it to 3D, you kind of lose that because people can choose any frame in any shot that they want. It then becomes very interesting. Let's say you were teaching children about just cause my kids are doing the first world war, the assassination of arch Duke Ferdinand, so you could actually walk around that table and look at where things were, who was where, what things were going on. I could really understand. Or if you were able to walk around like a world war one trench while the battle was going on and actually see what it looked like from different, which is what VR and AR is starting to do now. Yeah. [inaudible] nephew are all walking around, well maybe there'll be a technological race and maybe VR will win or maybe holograms will win. I think VR would seem like a very second rate. I think there will be different things like, so obviously

if we were to talk about, the main use of VR at the moment is basically racing games because one of the problems with VR is if you want to run down a corridor, that's quite a difficult thing to achieve in VR because you're not really going to run down that corridor and and trying to overcome the fact that you're not really moving is quite difficult for VR. I mean a lot of the things I've looked at VR, you tend to be floating around in space because otherwise

do you need a treadmill and all that stuff? Yeah,

well you need a huge barn. And so obviously for home VR where you're not going to have all that nonsense. The fact you can sit in a seat with a driving wheel tends to work well with those kinds of experiences where your not as a human being moving relative to the space.

So how would holograms and prove that because you still need quite a lot of space don't. And that's the thing where let's say you had a hollow graphic table and you could see, okay, it'd

be really useful for certain things. And then we've just talked like education. They, every classroom had a holographic table where they could show things in 3D where you could have a look at a ship or something in your or your geography class where you could go in and you could show the uh, the, you could walk around it or the universe but like Google earth. But in 3D where you could actually look around and move and see how the sun moving round with the moon moving round, how that costs shadows on things at different times. It'd be a really interesting thing to show people how time works.

It would, and I wonder if you've gets the stage right, if you will, haptic sensory gloves that you would be able to touch the model gram and you would therefore get the feeling of it as well, which would be quite interesting. And that takes me on to something that I'd really like. I'd like holographic pets please. And they can have a pet that they could put some gloves on and they could touch and feel. It's really lovely. But the dog can run around too because he's not going to eat. In fact, you could have every sort of pet under, you could have wolves and they could all live happily together. So there's the thing also, they were the Hologram. You don't just have to have the table because if you had a holographic headset, so your projection would be coming out from your head. So then you could run around the house off to somebody because it would always be in front of you.

Yes. But then you've got to think about, that's quite an interesting technology because obviously running around your house and running around my house, you're trying to program whatever that is. It's got to actually take into account the different houses. There is quite a lot of complication in that and while I think, yeah, that's brilliant. The first application I could see would be a holographic table. You know, when you say with haptic gloves, you could touch when that was what I was talking about with making three d models. Let's say you were designing a car, the fact you can turn it round, move bets swipe way, just a bit like Photoshop or illustrator or even three d design programs, but instead of having to awkwardly with your mouse scroll things to the left and to the right, you could just move and turn it to the exact angle you wanted it at and then work on it for a bit. So I've never seen it. So yes, no, I have a slight aversion to Tom Cruise, I think.

Well, there's one thing that I wanted to touch on from last week as well. When you're talking about genetic engineering, because you said, imagine if we got good at genetic engineering that we would probably unlocked some genes that had never been able to be used before because either you couldn't get them because it was blocked by some form of illness or there was a void. And so there may be genes or combination of genes that would be advanced from what we have and can do. And I was thinking, oh, what do you mean? What sort of things do you think we might have genes that have just never been used? I mean, one idea, I thought it was possibly their skin and organ and limb regeneration that we talked about, but what sorts of things could be unlocked that maybe dormant within us?

Okay. So for instance, if you think about abilities that other animals have, so yeah, or eagles that have the ability to focus on the very center part of their eye, therefore magnify. So they've almost got the ability to do a magnifying glass in them, center of their eye. But what I was saying is more like your ability to use your brain. Let's just start there, that you could actually start unlocking parts of your mind, which maybe at the moment are very subconscious, but you could actually start to provide a genetic ability to use more of it in a conscious way. Or you might say actually the fact that you could echo-locate blind people are slightly able to do this, they're able to emit a sound and then kind of understand from the echo coming back where things are. But you could have that developed like just as an ability, I mean pretty much it's what superpower would you like? I mean my kids are always asking me this and maybe flying is not one of them.

So a bit like how spiders and things use the little has declined bulls. We just need to look around at the other living organisms and see what they can do and then maybe we've got that within our associates. That to me is fascinating. Okay. It needs technology to enable it, but that's not technology. What you're saying is there's a locked away part of human beings. Debt could be huge. So what's very clever is in Sci-fi people love to talk about mutants. People who have mutated and have incredible powers be that a magnetic force or being able to read people's minds or being able to fly. Maybe they are all within our genes and that's not so far fetched.

So there are some snakes that can sense heat aren't there. So if you imagine you could develop the fact that you would have heat sensors, let's say in your cheeks and you could flick into a mode where you would look at infrared basically that would be able to say, okay, I actually want to see an infrared so I'm going to close my eyes and now I'll get an infrared image of my environment. So it's things like that, which probably there has been no requirement for human being to be able to see it in infrared or the steps towards it have just never been that evolutionary mandated. So you can subvert that system and go, actually that would be a really useful skill to have. A lot of these might be initially very military technology. In fact, your soldiers can see in the dark with heat sensors without having to attach them to a battery packs and kilograms worth of equipment. But then that would slowly filter down into civilian usage.

Yeah. I thought that was worth picking up on as it was quite interesting. Anyway, that's all we've got time for today.

So holograms is out of future,

I think so. My bets on them over VR, AR.

Oh, definitely. Ever VR AR, well, not necessarily AR but certainly over VR. I think VR is a very limited [inaudible].

Very good. Have a good week. Next Wednesday. Next Wednesday. Bye.

Dan & Abi work, talk & dream in tech. If you would like to discuss any speaking opportunity contact us.