It is very likely that you have seen sci-fi movies such as the “Minority Report” in which computers can be seen being operated on mid-air, non-physical screens using hand gestures. Of course, many people will easily brush such scenes aside as mere simulations or fiction (which is what such movies are about in the first place), but this looks set to become feasible in real world scenarios with the HoloLens by Microsoft.
Microsoft HoloLens, a head-mounted glass gear, was unveiled at the Windows 10 event that took place at Microsoft headquarters in Redmond, Washington in the second half of January. The stylish and attractive headset takes you into the future, serving up 3D images of the real world in midair and allowing you to perform diverse operations using hand gestures.
How does HoloLens work?
These head-mounted goggles come with not only an onboard processor and GPU, but also a holographic processing unit (HPU), which is the first of its kind. To produce 3D images, light generated in the gadget’s light engine is passed to the back of the eye.
The process tricks the brain, kind of, by ensuring the light is focused on the right angle of the eye. Microsoft HoloLens is fitted with sensors that can easily pick up your hand and other movements, thus enabling you to interact with the midair 3D images using hand gestures.
Your gaze or eyes can be used to operate the cursor. Effectively, you can work on a PC without sitting in front of one.
Only the wearer of Microsoft HoloLens will be able to see the 3D images reproduced in midair – others will only notice that you are wearing a somewhat-unusual headset. But you can easily move around and engage in other activities without the HoloLens getting in the way.
Those who have tested the Skype functionality on the HoloLens described the experience as quite impressive and immersive. You can also take a trip to Mars with the Curiosity rover-based 3D environment that is generated, complete with real sand, rocks and other Martian features.
The game, Minecraft, can also be simulated by the HoloLens goggles, based on your surroundings.
Distinct in its own way
People who are familiar with Google Glass, Oculus Rift and other virtual reality headsets might think HoloLens is just another one of these headsets. But the Microsoft HoloLens differs, mainly, based on the fact that it offers mixed reality.
For instance, the Rift headset, for now, is designed to take you to a completely different world, tricking your brain into believing you are actually in that place. Unlike these rivals, HoloLens is a tool designed to help you do indoor tasks that you need to do and in a more effective manner as well. It combines both productivity and entertainment benefits in one.