The University of Groningen, in the Netherlands, has converted a 3D theater into the world’s largest touchscreen, used for teaching mathematics and computer science students interactivity. The screen has a curvature of 135 degrees and is transparent. It can handle over 100 touch points at the same time. One of the great things about this touchscreen is that it doesn’t rely on any fancy new technology. It was basically put together with some PCs, video cameras, projectors and cheap infrared illuminators.
While this at first might just seem like a cool thing some college kids in the Netherlands made, which it is, it still means more to the world then look what our students can do. This shows that we don't have to limit touch screens to small phones or computer screens and proves we can have creations such as touch screen walls or tables. If this idea catches and is taken by a company and made into such items, the global market could be in for a large shift. With something as a touch-wall would you still need paint? with touch-tables would you still need magazines and newspapers? Would common building supplies like drywall still be needed as much? and would furniture companies have to or get to create as many coffee tables? This could even potentially remove the need for desktop computers because it is now on your wall. No more sticky notes on the wall to remind you to do things, white boards would soon start to disappear from schools and businesses to be replaced with these high-tech touch-walls or smart-walls. If someone just takes this idea and runs with it they could soon make millions but at the cost of others. With a change in consumer interest from all of the products listed above to these new virtual surfaces it could potentially cause hundreds of companies to go out of business. The overall demand for those products would go down, so if you have no demand why have the supply? so it would drop as well. Soon enough entire lines of products that once were big hits and the must have items would simply disappear. Yet this has happened in the past and businesses did go under, or changed to feature the new items. Yes this will cause some problems but nothing major, it is a step forward and one that could potentially be quite awesome. With this idea that has now been created, the possibilities are endless and only time will tell what will come of this, but I hope some day we all can have walls that are interactive like we have all seen in sci-fi movies for years.