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Objects as they appear on digital devices

What happens as we digitize the world’s transactable objects?

Digital 3D models have been in use for decades — primarily by designers of physical objects like furniture, cars and buildings — and yet they are just starting to influence mainstream digital experience.

If you don’t design physical objects, you might wonder why you’d want to have 3D digital models of these objects in your daily life. Many of us — myself included — similarly wondered why we’d want a camera on our phones, much less want to capture and share video via these devices. Ten years into the era of widespread mobile visual media, it’s fair to say we have our answer: People love visual communication and the rich self-expression it offers. And, it helps drive commerce in all of its forms.

Photorealistic 3D objects are going to be the next major media type, and will follow in the footsteps of video: Device capability + format standardization + cloud services + bandwidth will all play important roles, and this time AI/ML will be critical.

And yet we’re just beginning to understand what people will do with these objects. Early forays into shopping and exploring physical spaces via mobile Augmented Reality (AR) are compelling harbingers, albeit just scratching the surface of possibility. It’s clear that lots more of us will be designing and designing-for these objects.

Photo of Neil Redding

Written By:

Neil Redding