Yesterday the future arrived, in the form of a Microsoft announcement of all things. Microsoft announced the HoloLens, a computer that allows you to view and manipulate holograms in your environment. While the tech demo started out showing how scientists at NASA will be using this to help their Mars rover projects, the most interesting part of the demonstration came when they showed us how this will help us play games in new ways. And of course they started with Minecraft.
You'll recall that Microsoft purchased Mojang last year, probably specifically so they could apply everyone's favorite block sim to the HoloLens project. What does this mean for gaming? Well first of all, it means that we will have the chance to play creative mode Minecraft with the HoloLens, and most likely it will be launch software for the device. If there ever was a shining example of how far gaming has come, of how ubiquitous it now is in the modern culture, it's Minecraft.
While specifics on now this works are limited at the moment, the message is loud and strong: Microsoft built a computer that can help everyone do what they enjoy doing better. This technology doesn't separate the user from their environment the way that the VR headsets to. Because it's projecting imagery in the room around you, it is augmenting reality in a rather meaningful way. I can see the HoloLens being a great tool for connecting people together, for allowing us to play games as a group using a shared hologram interface.
The future is now kids. It's a great time to be a gamer. But what do you think? Does the world really need holographic computing, or is this just a Star Trek gimmick? Would you buy one of these for yourself? Are you tired of Minecraft ports, or love the idea of playing this game on as many devices as possible? Personally I can't wait for the Hearthstone HoloLens version. Leave us a comment and let us know what you think.