Researcher sees cellophane window to 3D | CNET “Professor Keigo Iizuka discovered that ordinary cellophane wrap can be used to turn a laptop computer screen into a 3D display.

Iizuka was searching for so-called half-wave plates, which rotate the polarization of light, and ultimately found that a certain brand of cellophane gift wrap beat out high-tech alternatives. ‘I tried every possible material that might have that half-wave plate function, and this was the best I could find,’ he said. ‘Ironically, it was the cheapest.’ ”

A truly low-tech solution to a seemingly high-tech problem. How often do the simplest, most elegant solutions evade us do to our desire to solve problems using the latest technology? Can a reasonable process be used for evaluating the effects generated by applying existing, rudimentary solutions? If so, even if they aren’t the solution, can they point us in the right direction? As information explodes, we may often find ourselves “rediscovering” new applications for existing tech.

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