A Doctor Who fan based in the US has successfully built a model of the iconic Tardis machine which actually looks bigger on its inside than its outside. To achieve this improbable scenario, Greg Kumparak turned to augmented reality.
The interior of his customized Tardis features a zebra-striped fabric, which displays a spacious interior when a smartphone is held in front of it running an AR app. The innovative idea was hatched during the Thanksgiving break, according to Mr Kumparak, who said that he carved the exterior out of wood and painted it blue. It was only then, however, that he decided to try to create the illusion that the inside was much bigger than you'd imagine.
Writing on his personal blog, Mr Kumparak said: "There's a running gag in Doctor Who, wherein new characters are always dumbstruck by the Tardis being bigger on the inside than it appeared on the outside. Once I realised I had a rough idea of how to pull that off, I couldn't not do it."
The outside-the-box idea came to life when he created a 3D computer model of the Tardis's interior using Blender, the free-to-use open source computer software program. Thereafter, Mr Kumparak used the Unity graphics rendering engine and Vuforia to allow a smartphone to bring the concept to life.
And in a recent interview with the BBC, he explained that the feedback he has got from internet users has been overwhelmingly positive. "Almost shockingly so, really. Doctor Who fans might be some of the nicest people on the internet."
He said, too, that there is genuine scope to develop the idea even further in the coming months and years. "I originally made this just to brush up on a few new skills and to have something fun for my desk - that so many others got excited about it is really just a wonderful surprise."