Cisco is currently showing its new hologram technology at expos around the globe. There’s something about the front of the figure showing on both sides of the hologram that reminds me of those pictures of Jesus in which the eyes seemingly follow you no matter where you are.
Mark Mitchell at Front Porch Republic has a ton of questions about how this may change communications and human relations. My feeling is “not much” for a long while. Skype has already freed the public to connect pretty similarly in the visual sense without having to purchase direct access to satellite feeds. The issue is accessibility in that many do not have the means to Skype because they lack either the equipment to do so (computer with audio and video AND good lighting) or a fast and stable internet access. Hologram tech requires no less.
But probably and most importantly, the real threshold test of popular technology is portability. Video calling is sure to be coming to everyone’s cell phone fairly soon but if the hologram isn’t portable, it is severely limited.
Frankly, I like being able to make voice-only phone calls in my pajamas and no one on the other end is the wiser.