Thanks to the new iPadâ€™s front-facing camera, researchers at Franceâ€™s Engineering Human-Computer Interaction Research Group have been able to deliver real-time glasses-free 3-D using some clever head-tracking software.
The system is named â€œHead-Coupled Perspectiveâ€ and works by following your head movements to provide a 3-D image that extends into the screen rather than towards your face, somewhat like looking through a window. It could also be applied to other Apple devices that sport a front-facing camera, like the iPhone 4.
In the past, there have been applications that use the iPad as a tool for 3-D modeling, as well as iPhone apps and gaming accessories that provide 3-D effects, with varying degrees of success. Johnny Chung Lee also created a similar, albeit more hardware intensive head-tracking system that used a Wiimote and IR-outfitted safety glasses.
Head-Coupled Perspective exists only as a tech demo for now, but may get turned into a full-fledged iOS app at some point.