Thursday, November 25, 2010

State of the Art

As far as current technology goes, I am amazed by what has been achieved in home theater technology. That is, televisions. High Definition TV in the past decade has become spectacular in quality rivaling even the best theater quality screens.

What truly astounds me is that the video of a 240hz 1080p HDTV playing some kind of high-speed camera-shot slow-motion video (ironically) like the Discovery Channel’s “Life” will seem archaic and outdated ten years from now.

Images filmed in HD on an HDTV look fantastically clear and realistic. So what is the next step?Television that appears so real that your eyes, or perhaps your mind cannot decipher that it is only a projected image. When broken down to bare mechanics 3D video is simply a cheap optical illusion. Two images are juxtaposed in a fashion whereby polarized lenses bring them into focus as two separate images for each eye giving the illusion of depth. 3D video will advance, as will the quality which video and displays are able to fool the viewer into what is reality. My prediction is that we will eventually have imagery that appears so real that the mind will have a difficult time deciphering whether something is a display and whether it is a window to another room with someone cooking, firing guns in a battle-scene, or feeling the cool breeze of a beach scene in a romantic drama. That old standby joke of “smellovision” will become a reality, not because of some ridiculous release of olfactory effecting chemicals but by tricking the mind into thinking that an image is so real that other senses will react in kind. The blast from an explosion in a film will result in a warm flushed feeling in the face much like during supposed “4D” performances in theme parks and the ocean breeze of a film will remind audiences of their own time at beaches prompting the smell of the the salt-water and sand cooling them in their theater seats.

No comments: