I have no idea how long this has been in development, but oh man, this looks awesome. Just take a look at the picture below. Then, realize that this thing is a computer.
Forget about going crazy over a table top computer with multi touch, this thing is the future of computers. Though I can't imagine having this contraption in my living room right now, I can see it replacing the computer desk in the long run. Besides, it just looks so bad ass.
The way it works is that you can step inside the cocoon and the Internet can become a fully 360 degree world that you can walk around in. Suddenly, instead of viewing webpages about Paris, you can actually walk through a virtual rendition of Paris. Cameras inside the machine will read your movements and you can watch and move through the various websites. You can even go shopping in this cocoon. The reference the article uses (see the first link in this post for the jump) is imagine looking for a book in amazon, walking up to a virtual bookshelf, picking out the book you want, digitally previewing it, getting other customer's opinions about the book (who also happen to be walking around) and then purchasing it. Crazy.
Now of course, I see this thing and think how awesome this could be for video games. The article also acknowledges the potential of this machine. With motion sensory equipment and fully wrap-around visuals, a first-person shooter suddenly becomes the most awesome game to play. Imagine instead of having to press a button for cover, you actually need to dive to cover to remain from getting hurt. Even better, imagine a game like Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion where you are parrying and attacking with a sword or standing at the edge of a cliff actually shooting arrows with a virtual bow. Yeah, I know, I'm geeking out right now, but damn, the potential of this is mind-blowing. With this technology, you can actually become a video game character.
Yeah, I think this may make the brain-reading controller I just talked about obsolete.