The December 2022 issue of IEEE Spectrum is here!

Close bar

The Erasable Holographic Display

New three-dimensional holographic material can be written and rewritten indefinitely, paving the way toward 3-D movies

4 min read

19 February 2008—The iconic image of three-dimensional holography—Princess Leia inserting Death Star blueprints into R2-D2 and intoning, ”Help me, Obi-Wan Kenobi. You’re my only hope”—may be just a few years away from reality, says a researcher who has developed a method to write, erase, and rewrite holographic images.

Holographic motion, as featured in Star Wars, has long been confined to the realm of science fiction. But now, according to Nasser Peyghambarian, a professor of optical sciences at the University of Arizona, ”we can see we are pretty close to that.”

Keep Reading ↓Show less

This article is for IEEE members only. Join IEEE to access our full archive.

Join the world’s largest professional organization devoted to engineering and applied sciences and get access to all of Spectrum’s articles, podcasts, and special reports. Learn more →

If you're already an IEEE member, please sign in to continue reading.

Membership includes:

  • Get unlimited access to IEEE Spectrum content
  • Follow your favorite topics to create a personalized feed of IEEE Spectrum content
  • Save Spectrum articles to read later
  • Network with other technology professionals
  • Establish a professional profile
  • Create a group to share and collaborate on projects
  • Discover IEEE events and activities
  • Join and participate in discussions

Why Functional Programming Should Be the Future of Software Development

It’s hard to learn, but your code will produce fewer nasty surprises

11 min read
Vertical
A plate of spaghetti made from code
Shira Inbar
DarkBlue1

You’d expectthe longest and most costly phase in the lifecycle of a software product to be the initial development of the system, when all those great features are first imagined and then created. In fact, the hardest part comes later, during the maintenance phase. That’s when programmers pay the price for the shortcuts they took during development.

So why did they take shortcuts? Maybe they didn’t realize that they were cutting any corners. Only when their code was deployed and exercised by a lot of users did its hidden flaws come to light. And maybe the developers were rushed. Time-to-market pressures would almost guarantee that their software will contain more bugs than it would otherwise.

Keep Reading ↓Show less
{"imageShortcodeIds":["31996907"]}