And finally… Hologram headsets to transform building design

Hologram headsets that will show construction workers virtual reality projections of completed building projects are being developed.

They will allow staff working on site to have 3D reconstructions of blueprints flashed up in front of them.

It is hoped the technology, which is being developed by Microsoft and specialist firm Trimble, will revolutionise the way building projects are designed, planned and managed.

Prototypes of the headsets were unveiled last week as part of a technology conference in San Francisco, US.

The finished versions will make use of Microsoft’s cutting-edge holographic technology HoloLens, as well as Trimble’s specialist modelling software.

A spokesperson for Microsoft said: “HoloLens is a head-mounted, holographic computer that provides a mixed-reality experience for a range of commercial and consumer applications.

“When used by architecture, engineering and construction professionals, the HoloLens device extends interaction with 3D models beyond the confines of a 2D computer screen, creating new ways for the many stakeholders of complex, multi-phase construction projects to visualise, collaborate, share ideas and manage change.”

A video put together by Microsoft gives an indication of the headsets’ practical uses, going on to suggest they could become commonplace on building sites in five years’ time.

Users will be able to select individual aspects of a building’s design, allowing them to move different parts around and see further information about things like size and scale.

They will also see changes made by architects on computers flashed up in front of them instantaneously.

And there will also be collaborative features, meaning headset wearers can communicate with each other no matter where they are.

Bryn Fosburgh, vice president responsible for Trimble’s construction technology divisions, said: “We believe that HoloLens is a game-changer for design and construction teams by facilitating improved communication, and enhanced transparency.”

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