Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Cinema al fresco

Our yearly heat wave is coming, with temperatures predicted to reach 30º C in Palo Alto. A popular escape is to hit the road for the foggy beaches, but with the concomitant 4th of July holiday, staying at home may be a safer choice. Here is an HP way to weather the heat wave at home…

A favorite spot to stay cool is to hide in an air conditioned movie theater. However, since the beginning of cinematography, in Mediterranean countries it has been popular to enjoy movies al fresco in the gran piazza. You may have seen it in Cinema Paradiso or you may even have attended the famous International Film Festival in Locarno, which celebrates its 60th birthday this year.

Here in the Silicon Valley quite a few people own portable video projectors they use to give presentations when they are on the road visiting customers. On hot evenings many of them check out a movie at the library and enjoy it with their families in the back yard.

Pluribus researchers Niranjan Damera-Venkata (left) and Nelson Chang (right)The latest latest news story on HP Labs' Web site teaches you how HP technology allows you einjoy your al fresco movies in grand style, on a 16-foot screen and with bright vivid colors. HP Labs' Nelson Chang and Niranjan Damera-Venkata had a hunch they could make a cheap projection system by combining the outputs of several smaller projectors to create a single, high-quality image.

Pluribus systemEssentially you invite a dozen friends who own an HP display projector and have them bring their projectors along. All you do is then is to use your HP digital camera to gang together all the projectors using a version of HP's resolution enhancement technology, and voilà, you can flood your 16-foot screen with the combined photons of all the projectors.

Here is the link again, and do not forget the ice cream!