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May 30, 2012

2D, 3D or 4D: What's your dimension?

Whether you’re a ‘flat-earther’ who refuses to accept the onward march of technology (maybe – shock – you haven’t even got a digital TV yet), or you embrace future technology and all it has to hold, you’ll find a ‘D’ that’s for you.

via White Knight Press

2D – Flat Earth, Curved Screen

You refuse to buy a new TV, and think flat screens are for ‘trendies’. You’re worried that analogue signals being turned off will make your microwave stop working. You read your news in paper form. You are a member of the 2D generation.

If you’re wedded to your PC screen, you’re in good company. When looking into business models, Benoit Sarazin contends that ‘Microsoft is a 2D business’. So why move on?

Reading an actual, physical newspaper every day has many benefits – including reading the full version of many stories, increasing your vocabulary and keeping your mind active and can also be a family activity.

3D – The Current Trend

It seems that every movie nowadays contains a 3D element (making you watch using those lovely plastic glasses), whether it is necessary or not. People have 3D TVs in their homes where they willingly sit as a family and wear glasses (having experienced this briefly, it is kind of awesome).

Now even your Maps are in 3D – via Symbian Tweet

The trend is continuing with augmented reality now working it’s way into our lives (Nokia City Lens Beta helped me greatly on a recent weekend away), and the prospect of AR glasses for wearing every day just around the corner. Just another way that our mobile experience is making our daily lives better (or not, but that’s a debate for another day).

Another revelation of recent times is 3D printing. Actually turning something from a 2D screen into a 3D object using a printer. If I tried to explain this to my parents, their heads would no doubt explode. In fact, come back on Thursday when the Future Tech series will be taking a look at 3D printing.

4D – Coming Soon

Seen most commonly as prenatal scans of unborn babies, 4D is coming. But isn’t watching a ‘4D’ scan of a baby on a 2D screen a step backwards? This is new technology, so maybe parents-to-be will soon be equipped with glasses to watch the pictures. Only time will tell.

via MedicExchange

As a side note, the ‘4D’ rides at theme parks have taken a different spin on the 4th dimension, by showing you a 3D movie, and spraying water or blowing wind into your face to make the experience more…real (although when watching an animated cartoon, there is only so far the imagination can stretch).

5D – The Future?

Just when you thought we’d seen all the D’s, Director James Cameron is looking to the future of 5D (but is it a new technology, or just sitting a 3D camera on top of your 2D camera, making 5?)


So where do you stand on the 2, 3, 4 (and even 5) D spectrum? Personally, I’ll stick with a small amount of 3D for now, in doses I can control (on my Nokia Lumia 800 with City Lens, in the cinema, at my friend’s house), before jumping in with both feet and wearing glasses – or getting evangelical about extra dimensions. Let us know what you think in the comments, or by sending your 140 character thoughts to us @Nokia_Connects.