Having problems with your eyes can cause problems with properly perceiving 3D and that is a well known thing among people that are either working in producing stereoscopic 3D content or among enthusiasts that are a lot more into the technology than most other people. However a lot of the moviegoers and users that are interested in stereoscopic 3D photography or 3D videography, even stereoscopic 3D gaming may not be aware of that. In fact people having problem with 3D technology, not being able to perceive the full effect or even at all, or feeling negative side effects of watching 3D content such as nausea or headaches can often suffer from some sort of an eye condition that causes the problem. It is possible that the condition may also affect their normal stereoscopic vision, but these people may not be aware of that, though you should not forget that there are other possible causes like badly done 3D that give you bad experiences when watching stereoscopic 3D content. Problems with properly perceiving stereoscopic 3D content can be a good sign that something may be wrong with your eyes and you may not even be aware of that, thinking that what you see is actually what you are supposed to. So next time when you go and watch a 3D movie with friends or family try talking with them how they’ve experienced the 3D effects in it and compare to what you’ve seen…
The issue of experiencing 3D not the way that it is meant to by people with vision problems has also been covered by Barry Sandrew from Legend 3D in his personal blog and I’ve mentioned that here. The good news is that at least some of the people suffering from different eye conditions can go trough Vision Therapy in order to be able to properly perceive 3D in the real world as well as in 3D movies and other stereoscopic 3D content. A good example for that is the personal experience shared by the neuroscientist Dr. Sue Barry in her book called Fixing My Gaze: A Scientist’s Journey Into Seeing in Three Dimensionsk. Another more recent example is Shelli Welter from Minneapolis, who started vision therapy in order to restore her proper stereoscopic 3D vision and be able to enjoy 3D movies they way they were meant to be. And she went further by creating a blog dedicated to her therapy and documenting how it goes step by step. Hopefully this will encourage other people with vision problems, first to find out about them, regardless of their age, and then to go ahead and do something in order to resolve them. And here is a simple and easy Depth Perception Test in order to check if you have fully functional stereoscopic vision or something may be wrong with your depth perception. But even if you pass this simple test this does not mean you may not have an eye condition that can cause problems for your proper stereoscopic 3D vision.
Ok, we know that movie studios are totally ignoring all the millions of people that already have 3D HDTVs, 3D-equipped PCs, or event 3D-capable smartphones by not officially releasing stereoscopic 3D trailers for upcoming 3D movies online (with still very few exceptions). It seems that most of them don’t care about bringing these people in the cinema by showing them a glimpse at the 3D experience they have prepared for them in the movie theater, but at the same time they want to convince them to go and see a 3D movie by showing them a 2D trailer of that movie. Many 3D enthusiasts and 3D professionals are still wondering what is the stupid reason behind all of this and there could be a lot of these, some more reasonable, others not that much. For example the fact that a traditional 2D trailer with a lot of short and fast cuts does not work that well in stereo 3D, or that you need to find the right person for making a good 3D trailer, or the extra cost for making such a promotional material, or simply because you have crappy stereo 3D effects and want to cheat more people to go into the movie theater and get disappointed by the 3D effects they see. Who knows what it is exactly.
But why the hell you need to make only a 2D video trailer for an old blockbuster movie that you are going to be re-releasing converted in stereoscopic 3D? I mean you’ve seen the movie in 2D already, the whole movie and whether you liked it or not, there is no new footage in 2D that you can actually see in the “new trailer” and that video footage to make you go and see the converted to 3D version. Like in the case of the embedded official trailed for the Titanic in 3D that is coming on April 6th 2012, they could’ve just present the last part of the video with the text saying that Titanic is returning on April 6. But then again would millions of people watch an official trailer with just some text saying something that they’ve already read about, well the “new” 2D trailer for Titanic in 3D is here and millions have watched it already. But only talking about the movie in 3D even if it is by James Cameron himself probably won’t convince people that are not that big fans of the movie to go and watch it, for the movie fans however, 3D or not 3D they will surely watch it yet again, even probably multiple times. And one more thing, the original 2D version of the movie Titanic was a bit over 3 hours long (194 minutes to be exact) and going to see a 2D to 3D conversion that is over three hours might be a bit of a challenge for a lot of people. Watching a 3D movie like Avatar that is almost three hours long is one thing, but watching a converted to 3D movie like Titanic would be for over 3 hours, can turn out to be a big problem for a lot of people that are still fairly new to 3D and you can expect a lot of these… and if the 3D conversion is not at its best, then who knows.
Anyway, back on the 3D trailers thing. The problem is that it is not just one hit movie like Titanic, others are doing the same by pushing out “new” 2D trailers that contain no clue or information, let alone a glimpse of the experience that awaits the viewers when they go to the movie theaters to see the 3D conversion. And with all the negative media coverage that 3D conversions are still getting (some crappy ones fully deserve it) it may be quite hard to convince people that are not sure if they want to go and watch the new 3D return of a movie they liked a lot in 2D some years ago. Of course releasing a 3D trailer could be a double edged knife, because if you’ve done a crappy job with the 3D conversion or even with the trailer in 3D you can actually drive away viewers instead to attract their attention. So are movie studios too afraid not to mes up, or it is all about the money and they don’t care about the viewers as long as the numbers are satisfactory in the end… what do you think?
The classic book “The Theory of Stereoscopic Transmission and its application to the motion picture” by Raymond and Nigel Spottiswoode with illustrations by Brian Borthwick, originally published in 1953, but out-of-print for many years, is now available in electronic format and for free for everyone willing to read it. This book is the latest addition to the Stereoscopic Displays and Applications conference Virtual Library, and joins several other pioneering but hard to obtain texts in the field of stereoscopic imaging. By converting classic publications into electronic editions, the SD&A aims to make these volumes easily accessible to stereoscopic researchers once again.
“The Theory of Stereoscopic Transmission” provides a theoretical analysis of the three-dimensional geometry of capture and presentation of stereoscopic images as typified by 3D movies, so it is definetly an interesting read as the 3D basics are still the same as they were may years ago. Titles of chapters in the book include: Stereoscopic Depth Range, The Stereoscopic Window, Stereoscopic Calculators, Cameras with Variable Separation and Convergence, Projection, The Human Factor in Stereoscopic Transmission, and much more. An errata list is provided at the end of the book. Also included is an 8 page anaglyph 3D insert “Stereoscopic Diagrams” by Brian Borthwick and Jack Coote which illustrates some of the concepts in the book in 3D.