It's an undisputed fact that holograms are cool. So when we first caught wind of castAR, a pair of glasses created by Technical Illusions that uses projectors to create 3D stereoscopic images on a surface, we were immediately fascinated.
The castAR Head-Mounted Display (HMD) uses two micro-projectors for each eye, a "Magic Wand" controller that lets you control your virtual space with a one-handed joystick and an RFID Tracking Grid that allows identification, tracking and augmentation of physical objects like game pieces and cards. This allows wearers to play a holographic game of chess or the Dungeons and Dragons tabletop game with a new, virtually-recreated view.
CastAR glasses fit comfortably over prescription glasses and have three different viewing options: projected augmented reality, augmented reality and virtual reality, the latter requiring a super-dorky AR/VR clip on-style lens set to be used.
Each of the two castAR projectors generate a perspective view of a 3D image onto a 3x6 foot reflective surface, similar to that of a traffic sign, at a comfortable viewing distance from your eyes. Then, an additional tiny camera in the middle of the frame scans for infrared markers on that surface to track your head orientation and position to give you the best holographic image for your own eyes. The glasses receive its video signal through an HDMI connection, and the middle camera connects to a USB port on your PC.
Sure, these $189 castAR frames won't score you any points in the style department, but since this HMD has the ability to create interactive holograms right before your eyes, who cares? The glasses weigh 3.5 ounces (a bit heavier than your average pair of sunglasses). The Kickstarter project still has 31 days to go, leaving plenty of time to further refine the design, which we hope Technical Illusions will do, since it's our only gripe assuming it works as advertised.