Sunday, July 10, 2005

Cost, Cost, Cost.

Some of the things people come up with, for the Revolution, sound fantastic. Problem is, many of these "ideas" are so cost prohibative, they just cannot be done with cost in mind. One of the many rumours to spead around the Videogame universe, is the holographic display, someone witnessed in a demo of the Revolutons controller.(In a dark room, with about 20 people, e.t.c.. you know the deal)

In the demo he described a bowling ball demonstration, where the bowling ball floated in mid-air, centimeters above the flat-display in the center of the controller. He went on to say that when he "blew" on the ball, it moved(!), and then rolled off his controller, and then instantly appeared on the television. Sounds fantastic huh? I mean, that would revolutionize the industry, and send Microsoft, and Sony reeling.

Sound to good to be true? Right, that's becuase it is. If you check out this website;

You can watch a very "Star Wars esque" type of demo with a simple wrist-Watch. It looks astounding, and fits the exact bill, described in the supposed "insiders" testimony. The problem arises when you look at the cost of one of these units;

$18,400. Yup, your reading that right. almost $19,000. Oh, and by the way, the interactive model is;

$26,200. Isn't that nice? According to this "insider", Nintendo somehow managed to find a way, to use this type of tech, for mere pennies on the dollar,(You know, Nintendo is the supposed donar of the 300,000$ research grant to NASA.) utilizing NASA technology.

Well hell, I hope Nintendo starts using Automobiles in thier console designs, that way I could purchase a Porsche, for just the cost of a X-tra value meal at Mc'donalds.

But, alas, such is the life of these "insiders". Why would they consider cost, when spewing blatant B.S.? Oh that's right, they didn't invent the technology, just the story.


Blogger MSG said...

thx :)

4:25 PM  
Blogger Micheal Bach said...

While I don't believe that "insider" at all, I think this post interprets those words the wrong way.

From what I read, the gist of it that i got was that it was simply stereoscopic, not 3D in the air technology. The bowling ball doesn't actually float but appeared to.

If the author of this blog could discredit small auto stereoscopic screens, from which the insider seemed to be describing, I think it'd be more useful.

Nice site though.

5:19 PM  
Blogger Falafelkid said...

The cost difference between "stereoscopic" and "3D in the air" doesn´t really exist. Stereoscopic technology means 3D, so it will only work with goggles or a display like that table in the watch demo. Incidentally, this is precisely the kind of technology referred to in the NASA research project that has kept people speculating. Find the document here: I´ve spoken to the Senior VP of the company concerned and he said that the screen which makes the 3D image pop up on a table (making goggles or other headgear obsolete) is quite cheap and easily mass-marketable. The expensive component is the dual projector. Or, at least, it can be expensive. It all depends on the output quality desired. Truthseeker, don´t forget that the prices you quote are for the one-off, high-tech demo prototypes. Have you researched ´Augmented Reality´ technology? I have. And similarly, those prototypes cost many thousands of dollars. But there are also mass-market versions for about $100. Best thing to do is to call up the companies involved and ask them for an estimate for low-cost, mass-market implementation.

So, Truthseeker, good on you for being spectical. So am I, if you read my blog But do some research before you write things off. I wouldn´t dismiss high tech without a solid quote or estimate. Some of it can be much cheaper than you think. Other than that, fantastic blog you got there!

11:33 AM  
Blogger Praxis said...

Thruthseeker; It's about time! Thanks for starting this blog, man!

I've been on the same crusade as you have. I've repeatedly been crushing rumors over on the next-gen boards with word-by-word analysis of each rumor. I'm a specs monger and spot them really fast. I recently absolutely demolished Anonymous Sam/Ace over on Mozlapunk; he was dumb enough to try to debate me! Utterly. Smashed.

I'd be proud if you posted my debate here as proof of his fakery, but that's your choice :)

Is there any way I can contact you? An email address? Thanks. I'd love to have some help on my side for smashing these rumors and I'm sure you wouldn't mind some as well, seeing as there are so many to keep track of.

I also recently smashed SeriousGamer's specs over here, see my big post.

I've also had some help from programmers and hardware experts analyzing several of Nintendo's patents such as cube-mapping and some of Immersion's patents such as their haptic feedback. And trust me, anyone who claims cube-mapping is of any use for making the Rev better than the competition is a blatant liar.

If you'd like a second writer to help kill rumors, please contact me at . Thanks!

3:37 PM  
Blogger Praxis said...


Don't you hate those people who say you're spoiling their fun when you prove that someone is lying to them? :/

3:38 PM  
Blogger Jasupehmo said...

I have to thank you too for this blog. As I'm quite sick and tired of more and more outrageous "revelations".

Now then. To determine fakes you mentioned two rules of thump: cost and common sense. I'd like to point out the third - practicality. As the people designing these things are just that, people, you'd think they would take the human factor into account - unlike many of the "insiders" have done.

Let me give you an example or two.

First of all the "Nintendo ON". People seem to get exited about the possibility to use your body as the controller - if you walk, the character in the game walks. Also the rumor that your room becomes a part of the game enviroment. Think about it a second, while it would be quite interesting to see, it would not be practical. You have to consider the space you have where you walk, swing your arms, do whatever you need to do. Few of us have the space for that, also if you have space, you might have furniture that must be taken out of your way when you play. Also making the room part of the enviroment - same thing applies - rooms come in different sizes, shapes with different types of furniture - it just wouldn't be practical as some games might require different types of spaces.

Second is the two piece controller where you have one side of the controller in each hand. While it would allow individual gyroscopic control and all that there is one problem - grip. People have opposable thumbs for a reason, and if you use your thumb for analog stick or buttons on top of the contoller and your index finger on the triggers you are left with three fingers to hold your controller. Try playing a game such as Super Monkey Ball using one hand only. While it is possible, in the long run it becomes straining. It's just simple ergonomics.

As for the stereoscopic/holographic screen thing... Even if you'd be able to get them cheap, you'd still have to get them. Let's see here, We'd say that you can get one of these things for $100. If implemented in controllers it would make the controllers cost >$100. As for a separate screen then, wouldn't it be another screen to be placed around your house.

Well three examples there. But I think I made my point. Try not to only think what is possible but also how would the thing work in daily usage and you'll get closer to the truth.

5:44 AM  
Blogger Larry said...

I have to agree about all the cost stuff most people these days...

ignorant they are, so sure of thier hoaxes, it saddens me.

12:32 PM  
Blogger Falafelkid said...

@Jasupehmo. A retail price tag of $100 for end consumers means a far lower price tag for mass production. Also a technology like AR would not require cutting edge hardware as far as CPU and GPU are concerned, meaning savings in other areas.

I don´t think that adding something in the region of $30-$50 to each controller manufactured would deter Nintendo from coming out with a method of playing games that could blow the competition away.

Like I said: It´s good to be sceptical about rumours. I am. But don´t dismiss them without doing some research first.

5:21 AM  

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