5 Trends at SPAR 3D 2016: 3D is Moving Past Laser Scanning

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4. 3D end users are getting serious about new visualization tools

Though a majority of the exhibitors left their augmented and mixed-reality solutions at home, these technologies were a common fixture in the keynotes and presentations I saw. The consensus is they’re an important part of how we’ll create and consume 3D data in the future.

Paul Davies of Boeing, for instance, spoke about how augmented reality solutions can make a total newcomer an “expert” at assembling extremely complex airplane wings in virtually no time. JP Suarez of Walmart spoke about how these same technologies could help transport executives from the boardroom to the site of a new construction project, giving them an intuitive understanding of the complex spatial work being performed there.

Wearality’s Sky, along with Microsoft HoloLens, the forthcoming Magic Leap, Daqri’s Smart Helmet, the Oculus Rift, and so on, are technologies that help people to understand 3D data by presenting it in a way that is intuitive and simple to grasp. Given that the 3D technology space is always talking about how complex 3D data can get, and how we need to make it easier to understand, it’s a wonder we’re not throwing all of our money at virtual reality, augmented reality, and mixed reality technologies. Ignore them at your peril.

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