Holograph project brings interactive 3D platform to big data

Curtis Wong, the Microsoft Research scientist who gave the world the WorldWide Telescope, demonstrated a project called Holograph during Microsoft Research’s Silicon Valley TechFair Thursday. It’s an interactive, 3D data-visualization research platform that can render static and dynamic data above or below the plane of a display, using a variety of 3D stereographic techniques.

“Holograph is yet another step in our effort to democratize access to large data sets,” Wong explains. “It started with WorldWide Telescope, in terms of making all that data available to everybody.”

Holograph enables users to examine various types of dynamic data sets — easily and naturally.

“If you have 3D data, you could move your head around and look at things as if they were physically there,” for example, Wong said. “That’s a natural way of observing something. If you want to reach in and select something that’s interesting, you could find out more information. Sure, you could do that on a flat screen, but on really complex, non-two-dimensional data, it becomes more of a challenge. What we’re doing with our Perceptive Pixel display and things like Kinect is tracking where your head is, where your point of view is, and dynamically altering that data.”

To find out more about Holograph, head over to Inside Microsoft Research.

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Athima Chansanchai
Microsoft News Center Staff