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April 16, 2012

Technology 'Revives' Deceased Rapper for Concert Appearance

By Stefania Viscusi, Assignment Desk Editor

While the verdict is still out in the minds of many fans of deceased Rapper Tupac Shakur, as to whether or not he really is still living today  - conspiracy theories were put aside for a while this past weekend when the rapper appeared onstage alongside Snoop Dogg and Dr. Dre at the Cochella Valley Music & Arts Festival in California.

Fans watched Tupac perform hit songs with Holographic technologies from AV Concepts, a San Diego-based provider of immersive technology solutions for the enterprise.

These types of holographic images have been most commonly used to bring animated characters to life on stage by Pop groups in Japan. But the possibilities of 3D holographic technology for music, enterprise and personal communications is far reaching. 

Face-to-face meetings that have become a wildly popular benefit of video conferencing, for example, can take leaps and bounds and communications can quite literally become a very real-life experience.

At Cochella, mixed reactions from the event included excitement around bringing more holographic artists back to do performances, while others were disturbed by the realness of Tupac’s presence with the technology.  See for yourself in the video below. (Note: Other higher-quality, non-censored online versions are available that show the life-like detail of the holographic image on stage.)

 

To pull off the groundbreaking performance, AV Concepts used Musion’s Eyeliner display technology, which creates what is described as a modern type of stage illusion, using a special thin film with a reflective surface stretched across the stage, and that receives an image from a projector or LED screen.

AV Concepts also used live video assistance from Digital Domain Productions, and technical experts spent months planning with Dr. Dre’s production company for the design and engineering needed to pull off the effect. 

“A highly choreographed, live, outdoor holographic production of this magnitude with hundreds of thousands of people watching gave us the added incentive, and pressure, to deliver,” said Nick Smith, president of AV Concepts.

Recent research from Global Industry Analysts notes that while the market for Industrial Applications using holographic technologies is strong – set  to reach $16.7 billion by the year 2017 – some of the largest potential industries for this technology are the entertainment, medical and automotive markets, as live presentations to advertise products, maintaining viewer retention and better and more efficient collaboration are recognized. 

For fans who want more than just this one time performance, @HologramTupac is a new Twitter (News - Alert) handle set up just 10 hours ago, and already gaining a large following. 




Edited by Braden Becker
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