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You don't need a headset to see these 'no-lograms'

They're projected in 2D but change perspective as you move around.
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Joanie Lemercier

Genuine, Princess Leia-type color holograms are still pretty rare. Most of what we think of as holograms are actually Pepper's Ghost, Tupac-style illusions that trick your brain by using 2D images to simulate 3D. A French artist named Joanie Lemercier has taken the idea and added motion tracking to make it work even better. That way, the "no-logram" can change perspective as you move around it, fooling your brain into thinking the objects are truly 3D.

Lemercier says he's been obsessed with mid-air projections since he first saw the original Star Wars, and was also inspired by Tom Cruise's user interface in Minority Report. The tech works much like what we saw at Theoriz in Lyon, France, but that system is projected on walls and floors, and tracks a camera rather than the viewer. With Lemercier's system, "unlike AR and VR, no headset, device or screen is required," he says.

Instead, Lemercier projects the image, and then tracks the individual viewer to make it match their perspective, as shown in the video above (presumably, it only works with one person at a time). "I use common tracking technologies (depth sensor and image analysis) to allow interaction between the user/audience and the projections," Lemercier says on his website. Since he doesn't want to mislead people about it, he calls the system a "no-logram" rather than a hologram.

As for the images themselves, his works "explore geometric patterns, repetitive shapes in nature and ... the structure of the universe at various scales," he says. "The volumetric projects are a great medium to question the nature of reality, and how technology can modify our perception of the world we live in."

Lemercier is working on a new technique, projecting the images onto high-pressure gas and fine water particles, "to create true volumetric impressions." He aims to develop an interactive installation for festivals or special commissions and build a "permanent installation in a public space."

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