architect, Mary Bon

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Is 3DTV a necessity benefitting society or a gimmick for the advertising industry?

3DTV is a rapidly advancing avant-garde technological innovation in the film and television industry, with 3D content production tool kit slowly becoming affordable for small independent producers, even in a country such as Chile, and it is not just an expensive toy for large broadcast media companies to play with. It is to some an increasingly desirable tool for all sorts of advertising companies the world over to woo audiences but user issues such as the current need to wear 3D glasses and effects on health have had a varied effect on public opinion up until now.

There are promising future developments in the nature of television screens that dispose of the need for 3D glasses and non-commercial applications for 3D television and video content is perfectly possible.

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    Mar 15 2012: Necessity - No
    A TV is not a necessity.
    If it adds to peoples enjoyment, it is more than a gimmick.
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    Feb 23 2012: this is a piece I wrote recently on the subject.
    • Feb 24 2012: James. Many thanks for posting this pro-3D piece and keep playing 'GREAT hockey!' Personally I believe the challenge is now lying in mastering and continuously perfecting the true art and science of creating 3D and would also like to see even smaller-scale independent film producers successfully using it and feel the advertising industry is ideal for 'court-metrage' 3D, under the umbrellas of Internet and later Smart TV. There is also beginning to be cross-over and interest with the field of architectural visualisation; which will form part of my next TED Question! Fun times!
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    Feb 23 2012: Mary,

    The most interesting development in 3D this year was the story-driven filmmakers like Scorsese, Wim Wenders, and Herzog making 3D films. Suddenly it is not just kids films and Hollywood blockbusters.

    Also, mobile and tablets are going 3D glasses free! This will drive the market even faster that TV IMHO.

    I spoke about it at TEDU in Long beach last year.

    • Feb 24 2012: Absolutely! I will add your talk when I find it!!
  • Feb 20 2012: Connected TV Linked In Discussion contributor, Fady Beyhum says • technologically, 3D is still at an infant stage. when this technology matures in a couple of years, then it might become of interest.
    people purchase their TVs for a long period, and in the current situation, most people just switched to LCD or LED. so I do not see consumers purchasing new TVs unless there is a major breakthrough in the 3D technology that will motivate such a move.
  • Feb 17 2012: Connected TV Linked In Discussion contributor says

    Paul Gray • So far 3D to me has been a party trick - it's fun the first few times but then becomes tiring. Who would ever want to watch Avatar again? It's technically interesting but the plot is predictable - with 2D characters...

    In the home, 3D is a different experience to the movies - more distractions, ambient lighting etc. Viewing in cinemas is an appointment event and you are prepared to assign undivided time to it.

    3D really adds to gaming however - depth makes games more playable and immersive. The games studios are working hard on true 3D games.
  • Feb 16 2012: Nice to feel I am one of the crowd George.

    Enjoying the conversation, even if it is only us in it for now, (the other 6.95 milllion where are they1)...will reflect on things you are saying and continue thread soon.
  • Feb 16 2012: 3D as it is today, is gimmicky. Without a doubt. But implementation is cheap enough that no new TV sets need be without it, and it draws people into theatres enough to justify the additional expenses of distribution and filming.

    That said, ideal 3D in the future will be paradigm changing... and the 3D of today is simply a stepping stone to getting there.

    What form will 'ideal 3D' take? High quality head mounted display - providing the user with a full field of vision, head/vision tracking display that uses transparent lenses or cameras to overlay real world information. This will allow us to essentially project computer imagery into our environments... like in Minority Report.

    There are simply too many things to list in terms of how it could change the way we interact and use and think about technology. I simply ask you to contemplate... imagine for a moment, that if you took away the monitor or display, and had user interface elements floating around you, and that your hand gestures were been tracked accurately and served as the input devices... just imagine how you would go about using your computer or your smartphone, or playing games, or watching movies... or anything else that you can do on a computer nowadays. Think about the kinds of things you could do with that, that we couldn't really do now...
    • Feb 16 2012: Thanks for answering George. I am aware of so called sixth sense developments that you are advocating and find the developments exciting but feel head gear would be less user-friendly than glasses!

      I have shortened my question to make it tweetable too. That way the conversation will go beyond the TED community.

      I am a newcomer to the 3D content world through a particular link with the first Chilean 3D content producer and find it fascinating. I am aware of the significant impact of technological advances in developing economies in the world, particularly the communications role of the mobile phone and would like to think that by pushing advances in highend 3D content technology, more will benefit from lowend 3D advances and more people will have access to even 2D content; which used correctly can be a valuable educational tool.
      • Feb 16 2012: >feel head gear would be less user-friendly than glasses!

        You and about 6.95 billion other people Mary.

        Don't worry... you're not alone in this preference... as a result, the onus is very much on developers and manufacturers to continue to improve the functionality of the kind of thing I'm describing (which already exists in various forms) to get it to the point where its benefits exceeds its costs (in this case, cost is primarily in the existing awkward form factor).

        Nonetheless, this is the logical direction of our advancing computing technology... with continued increasing processing power, and both mobile phone and tablet form factors been maxed out at least in one respect (resolution), the push to provide an ever more immersive and more functional experience will make this stuff happen sooner than later.

        Of course, this technology will eventually filter down to lower end economies... and because of the relative size and material usage compared to traditional displays, will scale down in costs quicker as well. My personal estimated time frame is 10 years for developed economies, 12.5-15 for developing economies.