No Moore’s Law In Optics

If you want to build better head-mounted displays for augmented reality (AR), Moore’s law won’t hold you back—but the law of etendue will, a member of Microsoft’s AR research team told attendees on the last day of Frontiers in Optics+Laser Science 2019.

Bernard Kress, partner optical architect for the computer-software company, assured his audience that the informal “law” that has governed the roadmap of silicon-chip development for more than half a century will not keep optical AR hardware from becoming smaller and lighter over time. And while the basic physics of light puts limits on the optical design, researchers can squeeze the size of their AR, virtual-reality (VR) and mixed-reality (MR) systems by using hybrid optical lenses and designing ever more complex optical pipelines.

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