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Smell-O-Vision may have its day, after all!

  • This week's 5 most fantastic innovations and ideas!
  • Are you ready to 'feel' your movies?
  • Is the bedroom the new office?
3D glasses worn by moviegoers. Is 4D the future?

Editor's Note: Karyn Lu is Turner Broadcasting's manager of New Media Insights & Inspiration. Each week, she scouts out amazing innovations, cutting edge technology and, well, just really awesome stuff and shares them right here. Before it goes mainstream, it's going to be one of her favorite 5 Things From The Future!

1. Movies of the future: 3D, 4D, lasers!
What will the experience of going to the movies be like in the future? From around the world, we’ve already started seeing such wacky experiments as Hot Tub Cinema, Archipelago Cinema, Cycle-In Cinema, and Centipede Cinema. This week, a fantastic post from the Creators Project brings you nine mind-blowing technologies that are changing the film industry’s future. IMAX with lasers? Check. Movies projected onto any surface via a projector that fits in your pocket? Check. 3D without clunky glasses? Check. And my personal favorite: 4D cinema. Apparently already popular in South Korea, 4D movies incorporate actual physical effects such as water, breezes and smells into the view experience. A showing of “Kung Fu Panda” even involved massage chairs that beat you up during fight scenes. Clearly, movies are evolving to become even more immersive and experiential than they are today –- and that sounds like fun to me.

2. Taking the office to bed
Be honest: When you get ready to turn in for the night, does your laptop come with you into bed? Does your mobile phone live next to your pillow or even under it, so that it’s the first thing you reach for when you wake up? If so, you’re not alone. And we’re not just attached to our devices for entertainment. According to a recent poll by Good Technology, half of 1,000 workers said they read or respond to work emails from bed. If your bedroom is not a “device-free zone” and you’re OK with that, there’s a slew of new technologies ready to help make working from bed even easier: everything from beds with built-in power outlets to Wi-Fi enabled mattresses (that can’t be good for you, can it?). How do you feel about the idea of making our bedrooms the workspaces of the future?
3. BMW provides a live window into the future
Here’s a simple but entirely genius marketing campaign from BMW called “Window into the Near Future,” which you should check out today if you’re in New York City and happen to be close to Sixth Avenue. Using a series of high tech cameras, a projection screen, two projectors and car tracking technology, BMW has erected a “mirror” that transforms live traffic into BMW concept cars that look totally futuristic. It’s like stepping through the looking glass as you watch the street transform into BMW’s vision of a near future when their sci-fi looking i3 and i8 electric vehicles are on the road. A really simple yet brilliant use of technology to bring a vision to life; I’m expecting to see a lot more companies innovate within this area soon.
4. An Aston Martin, from a printer
3D printing technology has officially been adopted by Hollywood. You might have already read about how the filmmakers of “ParaNorman” used a 3D printer to print out 8,000 different facial expressions for the character of Norman. Now, for the new Bond film “Skyfall,” filmmakers have gone so far as to 3D print a 1960 Aston Martin DB 5. Actually, make that three replicas. Each of these replicas were printed out using a large format 3D printer in 18 parts, which were then assembled in much the same way a real car would be assembled –- only, in true Bond fashion, you can blow these up all you want.
5. One step closer to magic: Harry Potter’s invisibility cloak is now real
It was the headline that caught my attention to this article. As a huge Harry Potter fan, the invisibility cloak always seemed like a magical contraption of dreams. Today, scientists at Duke University have gotten us one step closer to inventing a real-life invisibility cloak: “using a row-by-row design of fiberglass etched with copper and copper strips, the intricately woven cloak bends light around an object so that it appears invisible to microwaves and the naked eye.” Granted, the cloak currently only works with tiny objects and is only successful when viewed from one direction, but imagine where we’ll be a few years down the road! I mean, location-sharing apps are already essentially our Marauder’s Maps. Thanks to science, the future appears positively magical.

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This is Van Gogh's ear, 3D-printed with family DNA
Things From The Future | See all 76 items This is Van Gogh's ear, 3D-printed with family DNA