SecondLight: A Magic Lens That Goes Beyond the Surface


The brainchild of Microsoft Researchers, SecondLight is a rear projection-vision surface technology that extends and enriches Microsoft Surface through the ability to project images both through and beyond the surface display, to a translucent piece of plastic for instance. With SecondLight, the translucent piece of plastic can also function as a “magic lens” that when passed over an image displayed on the primary surface – a car, for instance - provides a view of the “inner workings” behind the image. In another application of this so-called “layering effect”, the transparency could register images of constellations when passed over a surface displaying the night sky. The technology also permits gesture-based interactions with the surface from farther away than back projected systems allow.

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