As if the 2008 US Presidential election wasn't exciting enough to watch, CNN went above and beyond charts and graphs in its coverage and brought us the future. I thought that using tech like Microsoft's Surface was cool but I guess that was so 6 months ago.
A lot of focus has been made about the so called holograms used when Wold Blitzer played out his Star Wars fantasy while interviewing a Jessica Yellin in Chicago. Now, this strikes me as equally cool technically as much as it does pointless in its use as it added nothing in regards to delivering news. Making use of 35 HD cameras and 20 computers to pull this off this really was CNN doing a "hey look at what we can do" moment.
Now CNN called that a hologram projection but it turns out that wasn’t the case. There’s a good article on CBC News' web site where Hans Jürgen Kreuzer, a professor of theoretical physics at Dalhousie University and an expert on holography claims that what was used was a tomogram. So basically Wolf didn’t see anything in the studio, rather it was overlayed on the outgoing signal.
Getting less attention was CNN’s use of 3D projected models. I think this was more impactful in regards to delivering information and a bit less cheesy.
So I guess we can thank CNN for giving us a preview of how the big networks will be trying to top each other in the future in regards to big event coverage.
I look forward o the 2012 election when I can only assume we’ll see Minority Report style floating interactive interfaces being used.