A hologram is a photograph of an interference pattern that, when illuminated, produces a three-dimensional image. Microsoft uses the term to describe its volumetric videos, viewed through augmented-reality or virtual-reality headsets in its Mixed Reality Academy in Redmond, Washington. Producers, musicians, athletes, and dancers are invited to utilize the new studios where holograms of Buzz Aldrin, Reggie Watts, Max Frost, and Cirque Du Soleil have already been captured.

Microsoft is expanding the Academy to San Francisco and London where developers and creators can take workshops to learn the basics of developing apps, experience VR and HoloLens headsets, and make holograms from real life objects. The holograms can be used on regular 2D screens, a HoloLens device, or Microsoft’s new Windows Mixed Reality headsets. The downside of the technology is that it’s likely to be some time before the expensive hologram-making process is widely accessible. Are you concerned that holograms may eventually replace actors? Join the discussion on Vialogues.

Excerpts from the discussion:

@00:28 Buster Wainwright: OK. So, I admit to my overblown ego but man, I sure want to immortalize myself in one of those holograms!

@1:30 RuthS: Maybe this technology is the beginning of holographic communication, kind of like you see in Star Wars. I would love to send text messages that are actually holograms.

@1:35 Dallas Milanovich: I'm still struggling to understand the practical aspects of this technology. It seems cool, but viewing a movie in isolation is so different from viewing it with others - the theater experience could never be replicated by this, so while the initial spectacle may capture imaginations, I don't think it'll ever replace normal movie viewing completely.