At the Praxis3 booth, principal Craig James was proudly explaining a catchy new tool that the Atlanta architecture firm has begun using. It is a software program that allows the company to create a holographic model of any dealership it designs for display or marketing purposes. On a 12-by-12-inch piece of plexiglass, a dealership seems to rise up off of the table.
Viewers can stick their hand into the image and point out features on the store's walls, or around its service bays. Passers by at the show picked up the quarter-inch-thick square and examined it like a prop in a parlor trick. Placed back on the display table, the dealership reemerged. James asked an onlooker what he thought of the display.
"Well, actually," the onlooker answered, "that's my store." He turned around his badge to identify himself as Bill Egan, national e-Commerce manager for the Asbury Automotive Group. The hologram on the table happened to be Nalley Toyota of Roswell, Ga., a proposed project that Praxis3 is working on for Asbury.
"I've haven't seen the store design yet," Egan said. "I've been wondering what it would look like."