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Augmented reality is going to be one of the biggest movements of 2010, in my humble opinion, why? ... "are you sitting comfortably?, then i'll begin!"
I first heard about augmented reality around 6 months ago in connection with the iPhone apps Sekai Camera, but at the time the technology wasn't available in the UK.
Now augmented reality is "IN" and I have been playing around with augmented reality now for the past few weeks on Sekai Camera, Becks gig finder, Magicam and left loads of bizarre little messages all over Newcastle at Xmas, such as "the bar men here ignore you" and "try the peanuts, only 16 types of urine". I have also been messing about on the new Quaker Oats website pawridge and looking for down loadable augmented images to print out.
Before I talk about why Augmented reality is such a digital revolution, lets look at what it is.
Augmented reality a phrase coined by a Boeing employee Thomas Caudell in 1990, is a term for something that blurs the line between what's real and what's computer-generated by enhancing what we experience. It is an indirect way of looking at the real world usually via a device such as a; handheld like a smart phone, game console or headset, that merges what is seen with virtual computer generated imagery. Information, such as an image or written content can then be stored on a layer that sits over the real-world view and accessed via a device.
A how stuff works article on augmented reality said "Everyone from tourists, to soldiers, to someone looking for the closest subway stop can now benefit from the ability to place computer-generated graphics in their field of vision."
Why do i think augmented reality is a revolution?
Because of its potential to reach beyond the web and into peoples homes, heads and everyday life's. Augmented reality has the ability to inspire and amaze people of all ages because of it's ability to inform user decisions in seconds.
For example, i bought a box of Paw Ridge Quaker Oats today and noticed that it said it had a paw print on the packets that would interact with the website. Just sitting their waiting for the little black and white image in my hand to explode into an animated character was as exciting as the first Starwars movies for me, sad perhaps .... but true!
This is the pawridge demo, crap? perhaps but filmed at 12.00 last night so.. "hey!"
It's the sheer newness of it all, it is truly different and revolutionary and this basic technology integrated with the awesome technology of Pattie Maes, wearable tech 'Sixth Sense' takes social media to a whole other level. This is way beyond Twitter and Face book and Flickr and YouTube, the realms which this technology with open up, is mind blowing.
Lets look at what i mean by the 'wearable tech' device called 'Sixth Sense' (be ready to be amazed), this is what augmented reality is, not a fad or an advert that pops out and says hi, this is augmented reality for the near future.
What is the SixthSense device made of?
The components it is made of is a basic web cam, portable projector, mirror and they all communicate with a mobile phone, which is the computation device, marker caps on the finger tips in different colours.
The IQ car demo
Find the Nearest Tube
Your augmented ID
Check out 7 free augmented reality printouts also