Digital cinema, 3D and business

Digital cinema, and in particular 3D, is all the rage right now. But does this technology have a place in business? We investigate.

As with conventional digital 3D cinema, Musion's holographic technology has been widely used for entertainment purposes and has been used in stage performances for the likes of Madonna and Gorillaz, but O'Connell agreed that its technology would be an ideal way for a chief executive to deliver an interactive keynote speech to an audience across the ocean, without having to go to the effort of getting on a plane instead he'd just need to step into a specially prepared broadcast studio.

O'Connell sees Musion's technology as the future of telepresense for enterprise customers a step beyond the simple high-resolution video currently offered by the likes of Cisco. He envisions dedicated rooms where chief executives can go to and conduct meetings across the oceans as if they were face to face, making for much more flexible, dynamic and natural interaction than current conferencing technology.

However, as it stands the bandwidth necessary means that dedicated networks are required, which limits it to companies with large purses. It also currently needs to be set up on a case-by-case basis, with lighting that's specifically calibrated for each individual's skin tone. O'Connell admitted that its long term plan would be to partner with a large company that as he said could create simple, "customer interfaces", enabling companies to run 3D projection studios themselves. One day he said consumers could even walk into 3D cafs and have holographic Skype-style conversations.

As for the near future, O'Connell admitted that the recession had slowed progress down, but was still confident that the company's 3D tech could become more established in 2010. "I would hope that we had a partner that would implement a permanent installation of corporate communications by the end of 2010," he said.

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Digital cinema and 3D then are on the cusp of having serious impact beyond pure entertainment. So the next time you're wowed by the realism and impact of 3D at your local multiplex then brace yourself - it could be a taster of the sort of experiences that could soon be coming to your workplace.

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