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Ask HN: I think I know how to build a Holodeck-like 3D projector, now what?
4 points by elisk 1802 days ago | hide | past | web | 8 comments | favorite
For the past 6-7 months I have this idea that I'm slowly but surely developing in my head of building a holedeck-like 3D projector, essentially allowing both fully immersive virtual reality and true augment reality.

I don't have much hardware technical background (I'm a web developer / designer), but I have researched the subject, and all the components are already existing and are a working technology, some are available commercially others are used mainly in advanced robotic and avionic research labs, but all are accessible and quite cheap.

I believe that a working prototype can be developed in 6-9 months, and a commercial product in 18-36 months, leading to a fully immersive display technology that can work indoors and outdoors, support a lot of users at the same time and providing a different image for each of the users depending on their location in space, and it would cost no more than $2000 for the first commercial product.

What do I do? Who do I talk to?

Just build a working demo and put it to Kickstarter. You need to prepare final product design and spec. Just define your goal and make people invest on you.

Easier said than done.

Building a prototype would not only require a significant investment upfront, because as I've noted already, some of the tech is still only used in labs and R&D centers for a whole other purpose, but it's yet to be widely available off-the-shelf product. And I by myself couldn't afford even buying the raw materials, not to mention about working on it for a few months, which I'm unable to do because at the end of the day somebody needs to bring food to our table.

On top of that I don't have the technical knowledge to actually build a working prototype, mind you that even though the final product might be simple and neat, making the components work with each other the way they suppose to, isn't.

How would I prepare a final product design and spec without having any knowledge in doing such thing? I don't have a CS degree, I'm not versed in the barebones of technology, but I do understand how to connect various components together to create something new.

apply to enter a university doing research in this area. there you may find a lab you can eventually work with.

I don't have much hardware technical background (I'm a web developer / designer), (...) and all the components are already existing (...)

I would be interested to know why you feel that, without any actual training in the relevant fields, you can accomplish on the cheap what the actual researchers and engineers with funding and training and high-tech equipment haven't been able to?

Building the prototype initially won't be that cheap, the final product will probably be cheap because the underlying technology already exists and as noted some are available commercially (and not very expensive).

I can't say why others have failed, I can only assume that it simply hasn't been thought of using the tools and technologies I'm thinking about. It's not a matter of creating a new technology, it's a matter of combining existing technologies in a way that might be unorthodox.

If you don't understand why others have failed, how can you claim to even understand the problem, much less provide its solution?

I can disclose the details privately, the underlying is complicated, but working (with plenty of examples), but the device I'm proposing isn't.

I would be interested to know what an actual engineer or physicist thinks of the details -- they're useless to me.

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