Windscreen Navigation, 3D Head-Up Display


3D Head Up Display Virtual CableIf I describe the True 3D Head Up Display as “an augmented reality navigational display engine designed to provide non-distracting, translucent location guidance”, your eyes will likely glaze over.

Worse, you may stop reading this piece. I don’t want either of those reactions, dear reader. So let me see if I can explain it without jargon.

The True 3D system, developed by Making Virtual Solid, a California-based company, is essentially a vehicle navigation system. How it differs from any conventional satnav system is that provides the required directions and other navigational information without the driver having to take his or her eyes off the road.

It uses projection technology to beam the information on the windscreen, so you can absorb the information even as you’re driving. Now, such Head UP Displays are available in many high-end cars. But the difference is that they only get the information on a small screen that is fixed next to the driver or on the dashboard.

Having the information projected on the front window may sound dangerous because one immediately associates it with poor visibility. But thanks to another clever feature the True3D system offers, this risk is eliminated. The system layers a luminous, three-dimensional landscape over the real world the driver sees ahead of him or her.

For example, warnings about road conditions, restaurants, tourist attractions are all identified by virtual “floating” signs. This ensures that the driver is equipped with greater situational awareness and can take action well in time.

The concept is still at the demo stage, but has already won the 20,000 Euro Galileo Master 2011 grand prize at the European Satellite Navigation competition in Germany.

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