gCubik Display Puts Touch-Sensitive 3D Models In Your PalmS

The gCubik display cube, which simulates a fully rotatable, multi-viewable 3D object within its walls, has evolved quite a bit since we last saw it: its six sides, up from three, now respond to touch.

Like its predecessor, the newest gCubik is a strange device—more of proof-of-concept than anything else. It's purpose is to give the impression, via its six touchscreens, that it contains a 3D model. Cleverly, it does this while remaining a "naked-eye" tech, which means that the effect succeeds without glasses, from all angles, or even from multiple angles simultaneously. It pulls this off with a complex lens system, which reflects different images depending on the viewer's perspective, much like a simple hologram toy.

The lens arrays accounts for the low resolution, but the effect is still evident and very cool. And the newest model is much, much closer to the handheld design implement that its creators originally envisioned: all surfaces are now touch sensitive displays and accelerometers, meaning that the cube can be rotated in all directions, viewed from all angles and interacted with in a number of ways. Japan's National Institute of Information and Communications Technology, the agency behind the project, only had the somewhat gimped model (video below) to show, but say the device will soon be able to simulate objects that respond realistically to movement.

In other words, you will soon be able to buy a box that can convincingly simulate another, smaller box within itself. This, I think, is called "progress". [Tech-On]