Product Releases

3D Tries For a Second Chance

Thu, 05/28/2009 - 5:13am

Editor's Note: I've been following the optoelectronics industry for a long time and still feel that 3D display tech needs a little more development before it can become mainstream living-room entertainment. There are a lot of display applications that 3D is well suited for, but its potehntial is dependent upon the technology's maturity. I need to be able to play Bioshock for over an hour without eyestrain or have everyone in the living room be able to watch a 3D movie without worrying where they will have to sit or if there are enough glasses for everyone.

( - In the early 1950s, as the advent of television threatened the supremacy of movies, 3-D was hailed as the future of cinema, the magic solution to Hollywood's postwar slump. Jerry Wald, Columbia's production chief at the time, was understandably thrilled when a quickie picture rushed out by his studio to cash in on the craze, "Man in the Dark," became a hit. "Now we got a gimmick," he said. "We'll throw things at the public until they start throwing them back!"

Now, in 2009, 3-D is once again being hailed as the savior of cinema, but no one has the guts to call it a gimmick. Instead, depending on who's doing the talking, the new and improved 3-D is a brilliant leap in technology, a fresh tool to enhance storytelling, a new way to bring families together for an allegedly inexpensive good time in a troubled economic climate. The new 3-D doesn't make you throw up; the glasses are plastic, not paper, and don't have those old-fashioned red and green lenses; and, come on, the whole thing is just cool. Plus, Steven Spielberg and James Cameron are really excited about it, so it's got to be great -- right?

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