by Anura Guruge
3D Holographic projections (showcased by CNN during the November 2008 elections) is now all the rage in high-tech, ‘money-no-object’ India. Politicians love it; who wouldn’t when you can be in four places at the same time (like Indian gods of yore).
Given Microsoft’s (and Bill Gates’) enormous vested interest in promoting “Common Core” (and recouping their investment in the biometric bracelets) it makes sense that Nadella, trying for an early dramatic hit, would go for something like this. The technology is easy enough. There is, however, as is to be expected, a hefty hardware investment required. But, Microsoft plans to get around this via an attractive, hard-to-refuse leasing program. All schools in the U.S., provided that they are board approved to teach “Common Core”, will be eligible for the Microsoft “Common Core” virtual-teachers. Though I am not sure how many schools will permit this the kids will actually have the option of choosing who they want to be their teacher, for any given module, from a library of best-of-breed teachers from around the World. But, you can also customize, à la high-end GPS, the language, voice, accent and tone in which the module is to be delivered. So, if it will amuse the kids and keep them engaged, you could have a virtual Japanese teacher go through a module in English conjugation in a funny Indian accent. There is no end to the possibilities. The holographic virtual teachers will be able, in the U.S., in August 2014 for the 2014 – 2015 school year. Installation and setup of the cloud servers, quintuple-band streaming Wi-Fi projectors and the huge software libraries will take at least a month. So schools will have to get on board soon. Cameras will be used, with centralized monitoring stations, to make sure that the kids are paying attention since the holographic teachers can be utilized with a teacher or even a substitute having to be in the classroom.