. . . into the mysterious third view

    Digital video and editing software now make it possible to present 3-D movies as side-by-side stereo pairs.  As with the Holmes card stereoscope, the True-Vue filmstrip viewer, and the familiar ViewMaster on the previous page, the side-by-side, one-image-per-eye method of viewing gives us an unfiltered pathway to depth.  There is no need for polarized or red-blue glasses, there is just one lensfull of light and picture being directed to each eye. 

   

When you cross your eyes to see the movie above (where the left/right views have been reversed to right/left) the eyes are able to isolate the two views as if you were using a lensed viewer.  If it works for you -- it doesn’t for everybody -- you will end up seeing 3 frames, the one in the center being a virtual 3-D one which exists only inside your head.  Notice that it is brighter and sharper that the two outside “source” views.  It is slightly brighter because the brain is adding together the light from the two views.  


    The merging power of the binocular fusion process is also apparent in the crop circle scene above, where the color is noticeably different between the two views if you look at them separately.  When the fusion happens, the brain has no trouble, in fact cannot avoid, averaging the two colors into a blend between the two.


    Why is the third view sharper?  We propose an answer here.   If you have some sort of optical viewer, or you are an experienced stereo freeviewer, you can see a conventional left/right, parallel version of the movie here.

 

Combining the two views . . .

Cross-view version:  Cross your eyes to see this movie in 3-D

(for parallel version, click here)