Supposedly to be unveiled in the 2012 Tampa US Republican Party National Convention before it was “upstaged” by Hurricane Isaac, was the Ronald Reagan 3D hologram nothing more than mere political eye candy?
By: Ringo Bones
Some dyed-in-the-wool US Republican Party diehard might have been hoping that it might steer the general public’s general impression of the GOP away from the Congressman Todd Akin legitimate rape controversy, but a high-tech 3D holographic version of Ronald Reagan was never unveiled at the 2012 Republican National Convention in Tampa. Rumor has it that the GOP’s top brass are too afraid that the 3D hologram of Ronald Reagan could upstage a rather one-dimensional Mitt Romney or the GOP top brass responsible for getting insurance for the high tech equipment used in the 3D Ronald Reagan didn’t had time to get one. And there’s even a GOP insider who voiced out that the 3D hologram of Ronald Reagan could be used for partisan purposes given the current fractious political climate in Washington, D.C. But to the public at large, many of them now wonder if the Reagan 3D hologram slated to appear in Tampa is really more advanced than previous 3D holograms?
To older folks closely following advances in 3D video technology, they could safely assume that the Reagan 3D hologram truly represent the current state of the art in 3D holography because back in May 24, 1991, NASA used its newly developed 3D laser scanning technology on a happily retired Ronald Reagan in his home in Santa Barbara, California, making Reagan the first ever US President to get a 3D holographic portrait. Sadly, the GOP top brass remains silent on whether or not any of the 3D holographic data obtained by NASA on taking Reagan’s holographic portrait was ever used on his 2012 3D hologram slated to appear in Tampa.
But according to the New Scientist magazine, the technology used on the Ronald Reagan 3D hologram was the same one used on the Tupac 3D hologram used on his posthumous Coachella show. It is called Pepper’s Ghost projection technology and it has been around since the 1800s. 3D imaging data was obtained via CGI and live footage then processed by 3D holographic technicians at Digital Domain – James Cameron’s visual effects company. Pepper’s Ghost technology works by partially reflecting light off a piece of glass from a hidden room. In practice, this 3D video projection technique only works best in exhibition halls and room not too brightly lit by ambient sunlight. Though 3D holography may represent the latest in political campaign gimmickry, they can’t improve the image of a one-dimensional politician. This belongs to the eye candy bin.