Video conferencing may have enhanced the workplace for the better, offering face-to-face communications on a global level but the whole thing hasn't ever been, well, sexy.
DoCoMo, a mobile phone company in Japan, is trying to change this and has created a stunning prototype system that could change offices – and even schools – the world over if it is ever brought to market.
DoCoMo is calling it a 'future station' and it is easy to see why. The communications system comprises a massive screen and numerous projectors that not only project 3D footage on to a main screen but on to a table as well – so the user can interact with colleagues in real-time and as if they are in the same room.
To make the system work, and TechRadar was given a fascinating demo, you have to don a pair of 3D glasses which also have sensors on them – and there's also two finger sensors that have to be worn on each hand.
The demo we were shown was something that could be used in schools. It was a demo regarding information of a butterfly.
To receive this information, we were shown a simulated real-time call to someone in a butterfly field and a graphic of the migration of the butterfly. To make things interesting, the sensors on the glasses mean that the graphic can be tracked from what is projected on the table to the television screen.
The sensors on the fingers allow you to bring up information Minority Report style from the table in front of the person.
Yes, it was a demo of technology that is still nascent but it was a fascinating look at how communication may be done in the future.
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Marc Chacksfield is the Editor In Chief, Shortlist.com at DC Thomson. He started out life as a movie writer for numerous (now defunct) magazines and soon found himself online - editing a gaggle of gadget sites, including TechRadar, Digital Camera World and Tom's Guide UK. At Shortlist you'll find him mostly writing about movies and tech, so no change there then.