All about the Mixed Reality holograms

According to The Verge, Microsoft opened its first Mixed Reality capture studios in San Francisco and London, allowing developers and creators to create holograms from real life objects. Microsoft has been using its own studio at its Redmond headquarters to capture Buzz Aldrin, Reggie Watts, Max Frost, and Cirque Du Soleil performances and bring them into virtual reality and augmented reality holograms.

The new studios in San Francisco, London, and Redmond will allow third parties to create holograms that can be used on regular 2D screens, a HoloLens device, or even Microsoft’s new Windows Mixed Reality (VR) headsets. Microsoft will be licensing these studios, and it’s likely to be an expensive process to capture items as holograms.

At the same time Microsoft expands its Windows 10 Fall Creators Update rollout, which brings support for mixed reality content that can be viewed through VR headsets from Dell, HP, Acer, Lenovo, and Samsung. Microsoft also acquired AltspaceVR to support its VR and AR strategy.

“Our goal is to make high-quality holographic captures accessible for mixed reality creators everywhere,” Microsoft said in a blog announcing the initiative, quoted by ZDNet.

Moreover, according to Microsoft’s blog, HoloLens lets you create holograms, objects made of light and sound that appear in the world around you, just as if they were real objects. Holograms respond to your gazegestures and voice commands, and can interact with real-world surfaces around you. With holograms, you can create digital objects that are part of your world.

“The holograms that HoloLens renders appear in the holographic frame directly in front of the user’s eyes. Holograms add light to your world, which means that you see both the light from the display and the light from your surroundings. HoloLens doesn’t remove light from your eyes, so holograms can’t be rendered with the color black. Instead, black content appears as transparent. Holograms can have many different appearances and behaviors. Some are realistic and solid, and others are cartoonish and ethereal. Holograms can highlight features in your surroundings, and they can be elements in your app’s user interface,” pointed out the blog.

What can a hologram do?

  • It can be placed in the world or tag along with you
  • It interacts with you and the world around you
  • It can be whatever you dream up

“HoloLens differs from devices like Facebook’s Occulus Rift virtual reality headset in a couple of important ways. First, it doesn’t need to be tethered to a PC to work, which means a wearer can roam around while using it, as all the processing is done locally on what Microsoft calls a holographic processing unit. And second, it doesn’t block out the outside work like a VR headset: instead, HoloLens adds new elements like the aforementioned planets and asteroid belt to your existing environment — in this case, the demonstration suite in one of Microsoft’s London offices,” wrote ZDNet.

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