Sunday, March 28, 2010

So what is the 3D tech in the 3DS?

In one week we've gone from one PDF file carefully placed on Nintendo's website to a full-on blitz of speculation and hype that spanned across the internet. The biggest part of the buzz being the ability to create 3D without the uses of glasses, which is the complete opposite of the 3D push going on within the movie theaters and with television sales. What is this technology? That seems to be the center of the hype that's circling the new handheld.

So from what I've been reading around is that it's some way of displaying images either by way of Stereoscopic/Lenticular display. So what is that you may be asking? Stereoscopy is a way of presenting two images that displayed at two different perspectives to provide the illusion of depth. The procedure itself has been in use since 1840, and has been used in everything from viewfinders to military reconnaissance during WWII. Lenticular stereoscopy takes that same image and provides the same illusion of depth from multiple angles instead of looking at the image directly (I can almost hear someone yelling "booooring"). Of course the biggest example today are the 3D movies that are being shot with stereoscopic cameras, and the 3DTV trend that has erupted because of it.

Between the two; Lenticular Stereoscopy would be the most likely choice since this effect can be created without the use of glasses like in Rittai Kakushi E Atta Kore Da  which should be currently out in Japan as you read this.

In the video you can clearly see that the camera is being used to track what angle the viewer is seeing the image is. Good use of Lenticular stereoscopy, but this isn't the only option to consider. Hitachi electronics just released the Wooo  H001 3D cellphone in Japan which comes equipped with a 3D button which can display any image on the phone with a three dimensional illusion of depth (This also includes email and text). Unfortunately, if you want to see this technology in action, you'd better either start importing, or move to Japan, because Hitachi currently has no plans to release the phone overseas. People in the gaming community are saying that this could very well be what Nintendo is planning to use in their new handheld, but if this is the case what of the recent statement that Iwata said about the Gamecube's latent 3D technological powers?

The truth of the matter is we really don't know what Iwata and Nintendo have up their sleeves. The news of a glasess-less 3D display is mindblowing in itself, but as we've seen with the DS and the Wii, there will be even more features that will be revealed as more information is released on the 3DS. E3 is only a couple months away, and I can't believe the level of hype and speculation on this alone. To top it off, we haven't even heard everything on the Vitality Sensor, and it's games. I'm not particularly interested in 3DTV, and I have yet to see any of the latest big 3D movies in their intended glory, but if this feat can be pulled off, and done in an innovative way then congratulations on making a believer out of me. Meanwhile, someone needs to get on giving me an arcade perfect port of this in holographic format.

Source(s): Wikipedia - Lenticular printing / Stereoscopy , The games blog , Joystiq

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