IndieGames just posted a recently released iPhone game which features “holographic 3D”, where the perspective of the rendered 3d view changes as the phone moves around. With the inclusion of a red/green anaglyph view mode, this is a really engaging 3D display system.
These 2D displays – which recognise viewing angle and render accordingly – have some important advantages over more exotic 3D visualisation systems; they are cheap, require very little software/hardware investment, and are less likely to lead to motion sickness. Just how little hardware investment is needed is demonstrated in this project video by Johnny Lee (via Hack-A-Day), showing his “simple, but incredibly effective VR head tracker”:
And this seems like a good time to mention a 3D photography project I worked on from a while back. I’ve already posted the results, but have a good write-up of the setup that I’ve not published. The background to the project is that after dismantling my 30 x 6MP camera array, I naturally had a lot of cameras on my hands, all with hacked cable-release connections. I managed to reappropriate some of them into 3D cameras:
3D photography works by capturing two simultaneous views of a scene, and then recombining them for viewing. There are many different ways to display 3D photographs; the most popular among them include creating Cyan-Red Anaglyphs for viewing with coloured 3d glasses, Direct Stereo Pairs (where the two images are placed next to each other and either viewed "cross-eyed", or with a viewer), and "wiggle" stereoscopy, where the two views are animated together. This setup allows quick and easy creation of 3d images with your chosen method, and even allows recording of synced 3d video!
This 3D photo setup consists of two 6.1 megapixel cameras, a dual-camera bracket (can be used on a tripod or by hand), and a shutter release sync cable. The bracket provides a stead mount for the cameras, at an optimum distance, and allows tripod mounting. The setup also comes with two 512MB memory cards.
I’ve found that the best viewing results are produced with Direct Stereo Pairs using a viewer. Cardboard foldup 3d viewers can be purchased online very cheaply.
There is a large collection of free software for creating anaglyphs and other 3d images.
I’ve always loved how effective "Wiggle" stereoscopy is. I will try to find the time to experiment with wiggle-interpolated video, although one attempt already on YouTube doesn’t seem particularly effective.