There is an emerging confluence of innovations in technology and computing. I call this confluence 3DHCI–Three Dimensional Human Computer Interfaces. 3D is becoming a common experience, but only for giving dimension to a flat space—Pixels (2D) replaced by Voxels(3D). I see a 3D projected object that will be manipulated by hand, at will, in real time. With a 3D Voxel the user experience becomes intimate.
I see great opportunity in developing this next generation intimate user experiences for 3D projected interfaces, massive real-time collaboration on 3D objects, new formats for entertainment, and interactive responsive environments. This promises the transformation of entertainment, medicine, education, commerce, security/defense and synchronously changing the meaning of “user interface” and therefore changing the meme of computing. This change will be analogous in transformation and magnitude to that generated by the browser and by Netscape’s tools in the transformation of the UX of the Internet.
While today the first use of 3DHCI is appearing in gaming and entertainment, I see this as becoming the common interface for all computing environments and devices of the future. The solutions and software that drive this evolution will become the dominant modality in mainstream computing UX.
Most people use the word “Voxel” to refer to the “Volumetric Pixel”, a unit of display in three dimensions.
I see the voxel as something more important: a unit of Meaning.
Serendipitously Voxel contains the Latin word “Vox” or voice, the voxel helps us to . . .
Give voice to the voiceless, by using new interfaces to help disabled users and users from different cultures to communicate.
Amplify the voices of storytellers, by bringing new technology to ease the process of film and television production, while reducing cost. Kicking down the fourth wall, removing artificial barriers between story makers and their audiences.
Clarify the voice of scientists, engineers, designers and educators, using new interfaces to facilitate the processes of discovery, creativity, and communication.