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3d hologram concerts, and supersoldiers

Also, while I'm stealing links from crasch, Japan has way better rock concerts than we do...

A description of it, and a link to the "Vocaloidism" phenomenon it's based on:


This strikes me as the future of rock and roll. I am wondering if any bands will bother to put live people out on the stage in a decade or two. Instead of selecting the best dancers with the most well proportioned bodies, we can just record music in the studio, and then use holograms to perform it for the audience. Another great leveling force that might enable a wider set of musicians to gain fame and acclaim.

In other news, CNN has a nice article on an IronMan-like suit being developed by Raytheon:

It doesn't fly, but it amplifies your strength by about 17 times--they have a video of a man smashing through a board and doing push-ups in it. In the Iraq War, there were about 4000 US casualities compared to about 100,000 Iraqi casualities (this is only deaths, including wounded or injured as casualities gives much larger numbers). I wonder, if the US military got enough funding to issue suits like this to its ground troops, how much steeper would this ratio be? We could conceivably get to a point where we could go in on some mission and have 10 of our boys killed for every million killed of enemy soldiers and/or civilians. Kind of scary, but very poweful. Also at only $150k, it could be useful for construction or all kinds of other sorts of stuff.

From the CNN article: "One big obstacle, however, is how to power the suit." Well duh, they obviously didn't watch IronMan--you just need to replace your heart with a glowing bluish white orb.


( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 12th, 2010 04:41 pm (UTC)
I wonder if that was the inspiration for the Israel/Syria episode of Metalocalypse. (to summarize it: Deathklok accidentally gets double-booked in both countries and in order to avert starting WWIII they create two giant holograph stadiums in the two countries and play from a flating platform halfway in between the two).
Nov. 12th, 2010 07:59 pm (UTC)
Sounds like a fun plot!
Nov. 12th, 2010 06:51 pm (UTC)
Actually, one of the advantages of powered armor, if we could make it strong enough to resist anything that wouldn't kill, say, a tank, is that if used right it could reduce civilian casualties by allowing soldiers to get closer to the enemy, use less powerful offensive weapons, and be more discriminating in their choice of targets. Also, the R&D for powering such suits might just be where we finally get the funding to develop the Shipstone-style superbatteries we need to make electric cars truly competitive with the infernal combustion engine.

Of course, what will probably turn out to be easier than making it a suit with the operator inside is making a humanoid drone that the operator can control remotely -- a natural evolution of the Predator from aerial to ground-based weapon. The "suit" in the linked article really has more in common with the loader from Aliens than with anything from Iron Man or (the book) Starship Troopers, anyway.
Nov. 12th, 2010 07:59 pm (UTC)
Oh, good point! Yes, I can see how using this instead of a bomb or something would be much better for casualties.
Nov. 13th, 2010 03:16 am (UTC)
Of course, whether it actually got used that way would be a political decision -- just because it could be used to minimized enemy civilian casualties doesn't mean it would -- but I think the U.S. military probably would develop rules of engagement with that as at least one of their priorities. Even maniacs like Cheney and Rumsfeld at least gave lip service to the fact that inflicting civilian casualties is detrimental to our objectives in wars like Iraq and Afghanistan, after all. Besides, taking a terrorist alive is preferable to blowing him up with a Hellfire missile -- you can't interrogate a corpse, even when it hasn't been reduced to a thin red mist.
Nov. 16th, 2010 12:47 pm (UTC)
I don't know about the rock concert idea. It works for the case you have where it seems the character is fictional, but would people actually pay much to see a hologram of their favorite band? Part of the experience is knowing you are in the presence of the actual band, as well as the changes/improvisation that a band can do live. Of course, the latter could be solved by a middle ground case where the band tele-commutes to the performance. :) That might be enough for most people, to at least know the band is at least playing live. In fact, it might catch on to have massive simul-concerts, where many venues across nations are showing the same holographic concert simultaneously.

This idea came up in a book I read, more or less, but in terms of a rave. Dozens of parties were going on simultaneously, and they rigged the walls to display what was going on in the "next party over", so you could visually interact with the neighboring parties: you could wave at the wall and see someone waving back.

Nov. 16th, 2010 03:09 pm (UTC)
Well, there are a lot of different possibilities I think.

One is that the band members would show up and still play in the pitt or whatever, but the main show would be on stage, projected with holograms. So the actual band members would be more like technicians who are putting it on. Whereas the holograms would be the stars.

In some ways, I think we are already close to this, if you think about some of the pop stars... a lot of their music is written and choreographed and edited, and enhanced with all sorts of effects anyway... all they really have to do is have a great body and show up and dance, right? So the only change there would just be to be able to use a virtual body to get that perfect, instead of having to find a "star" with a perfect body. They could even make the holograms look vaguely like the real band members, but they could add embelishments and whatever kind of crazy futuristic artistic clothing they wanted.

Then another possibility would be what you mention... the band telecommuting, playing from home instead of showing up. If the first way became popular for a while, then maybe they would start doing this to save on touring costs, since nobody usually watches them anyway while they're playing.

But then maybe the band is limited by not being able to do certain effects on the fly if they require too much editing or digital processing... so they might want to have a 10 minute delay or something. Eventually, this could turn into making it more common for them to just record it hours or days before and the broadcast it during the concert. As you say, I think there is definitely something people appreciate about a "live concert" that has to do with the spontaneity and improvisation. I don't think it's the *main* thing people go for, but it's something. So maybe all of these forms will continue to exist simultaneously.
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )


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