Videochat is cool enough, but it’s got nothing on R2D2’s 3-D holographic projector (think Princess Leia repeating “Help me Obi-wan Kenobi; you’re my only hope”). Now, a team at the University of Arizona College of Optical Sciences is brining holographic telepresence closer to reality with a new 3-D holographic imaging technology that can record and project a three-dimensional, moving image in real-time without the need for any special eyewear.
Need help with something? Your roboreceptionist is here to assist you. Researchers at the U. of Arizona and Carnegie Mellon University are developing a robot receptionist that is more than just a pre-programmed phone answering system. “Hala,” the prototype roboreceptionist at Carnegie Mellon’s Qatar outpost, is a bicultural, bilingual robotic interface that interacts with visitors based on each person’s linguistic preference and cultural customs.
Five amazing, clean technologies that will set us free, in this month's energy-focused issue. Also: how to build a better bomb detector, the robotic toys that are raising your children, a human catapult, the world's smallest arcade, and much more.