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Coming soon: Holographic Skype

Researchers close to creating real-time 3-D TV

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A palm-sized Princess Leia pleading for help is no longer the stuff of science fiction.

Arizona researchers have created the first 3-D hologram movie that plays almost in real time, they report in the Nov. 4 Nature. It’s the fastest known demonstration of telepresence, where a 3-D hologram depicts a scene from another location.

The key to the invention is a new type of plastic that can refresh the hologram once every two seconds. While that’s too slow to watch the World Series in 3-D, the researchers estimated holographic TV could be coming in seven to 10 years.

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