Tag Archives: #VR3D

“This video is 2D and 3D Simultaneously: the Pulfrich Effect”

Tom Scott has created a brilliant demonstration video of the Pulfrich Effect. You’ll need a pair of ordinary dark glasses – use just one side to cover just the right eye. Then watch his video. You’ll see the video in full color 3D, event though it is a 2D video.

3D video enthusiasts may already know a bit about how this works. When a camera is panning across a scene, each frame records a “position” in time. We sometimes use this trick to convert a 2D video into a 3D video by recording in 2D, but then creating a separate left and right track with the tracks separated by a single frame from the original 2D recording. This creates a left image track – and a right image track – by taking advantage of the movement in the scene.

The technique works as long as either the camera is moving or one or more objects in the scene are moving laterally. It does not work if objects are moving vertically or if objects or the scene are stationary.

The Pulfrich Effect uses the same idea but incorporates the peculiar nature of our optic system. Specifically, our eyes process darkened images slightly slower than bright images. The darkened image seen through dark glasses covering one eye are processed with a delay of about 15 milliseconds which works out to about 1/60th of a second. (The actual processing delay depends on the actual darkness of the image and could be more or less.)

Tom’s Youtube channel is here. He’s always got fascinating topics and I encourage you to subscribe to his channel on Youtube.

Experiment: I suspect this works also for VR 3D. Take a VR 360 video but keep the camera slowly rotating during filming. Then, cover one eye with a dark glasses shade while watching the VR video using a VR set up. As long as the subject is slowly moving laterally, the 3D effect should be visible in 3D!

[The featured photo for this post is from Pixabay.]



CNET thinks #VR is already dead, apparently #VR3D #VR360 #CES2017

The media bad mouthed 3D – falsely referring to eyeglasses as “goggles” – contributing to the stunted market for consumer 3D TV. This CNET story reads like those old stories – just change “3D” to”VR”:

Virtual reality promises to be a mega-trend that upends how we use computers and just plain get along. So why’s it such a snooze at the world’s biggest tech expo?

Source: Virtually boring: VR really disappoints at CES this year – CNET

Yep, it’s 2017 and VR is just a snooze, practically dead, isn’t it?

Reminder – 3D was launched into a market in the midst of a near global economic depression. People who had just upgraded their old TVs to new HDTVs were asked to upgrade to more expensive 3D TVs. That was a non-starter. Second, there was very limited 3D content available. A limited selection of 3D BluRays – plus one or two 3D TV networks available only to a few. With little to watch, there was little reason to upgrade one’s HDTV to a new 3D HDTV.

News reporters, many of whom admitted they did not like 3D movies, invented their own explanation – they proclaimed consumers did not like “3D goggles”, referring to eyeglasses. The same reporters who wrote that then later wrote enthusiastically about Virtual Reality – never mind that VR elevates the “goggles” to literal helmets.

Now some reporters seem to be turning against VR because VR is not already in every home and being used for every possible application. The technology just isn’t roll out fast enough!

VR has something going for it that 3D TV did not – Google Cardboard-style viewers. Low cost, simple viewers that use existing smart phones enable consumers to enjoy VR 360 and VR 3D videos and games – at low cost! No large investment is required – no need to purchase an expensive 3D TV and upgrade your DVD player to 3D BluRay.

Second, content is delivered as gaming applications – no cable TV or satellite network support needed, as was needed for 3D. Users can watch VR 360 and VR 3D videos hosted on Youtube, Facebook and other online sites.

To summarize, VR has going for it:

  • Inexpensive ways to begin using VR today!
  • Access to free and inexpensive VR content, readily available!
  • Can also be used to watch 3D video – as a bonus feature – at no additional cost