Alex Kipman talks HoloLens: Cortana, Kinect and a close up of the hardware

The name Alex Kipman may not be familiar to you but if you have heard of HoloLens, then you know his work. Kipman is the human behind the product and is the person you see on stage every time Microsoft shows off the device.

During all the craziness that Microsoft calls Build 2015, Kipman was interviewed by Channel 9 (this is a Microsoft entity, so don't expect any tough questions) and shared new details about the device.

For starters, Kipman hopes that HoloLens is the first of many different types of holographic devices and that Windows Holographic is not reserved only for Microsoft. He states that he "hopes in the not so distant future that there will be many devices and that Windows Holographic will be what we put on [them]".

One previously unknown feature coming to HoloLens is called Mixed Reality Capture; you can record video of what you are seeing and share with others. Kipman hopes that this feature is used to create new types of videos and that holographic videos become a new medium for artistic expression. While he does not say what the camera quality is, he does say that it is not a 4k/2k camera, so at best it is 1080P.

Cortana is part of HoloLens, to no surprise, as Microsoft is including the digital assistant in all of its products and Kipman says that to interact with it, you use your voice. The speech dictation tools built into HoloLens are the same ones used on the phone, Xbox and desktop which makes sense as the device is running a version of Windows 10.

Inside the HoloLens is a "next generation" Kinect that is significantly more powerful than what Microsoft is shipping today and is of course, a lot smaller too. This shouldn't come as a huge surprise as the device needs the same type of data as a Kinect to function properly so the company leveraged its existing technology to build the holographic computer.

The close up images of the HoloLens are interesting as well, as Microsoft would not allow us to photograph the device during our demos but as you can see here, all of the sensors and the displays over each eye can be clearly seen in excellent detail.

In the image above you can see the lenses used to create the holograms and the tinted area is the field of view where they can be observed. As you can tell, there is significant space to the top of the tinted region where holograms cannot be seen; this is why we noted the field-of-view issue in our most recent hands on experience.

The entire interview is embedded above and if you are at all interested in this device, it's worth a watch. The video is thirty minutes in length and Kipman talks in detail about what access developers will have to the device (sensor data/APIs) and additional scenarios they have built to demonstrate HoloLens.

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