Archive for the ‘Augmented Reality innovation’ Category

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Meeting Remco Vroom, TABWORLD

March 8, 2015

Another rapidly rising trend I learnt more about at Cannes is Augmented Reality, or AR as techies often calls it.For example, at the Lions, they had a second-screen app that added an AR tour to the Cannes Lions Press Exhibition. By scanning the ads on display, visitors could augment the ads and hear what the creative directors had to say about their work. Cool and functional.

via Meeting Remco Vroom, TABWORLD.

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Get the lowdown on Microsoft Hololens

March 1, 2015

microsoft-hololens-skype-rgb.pngToday at GDC 2015, Microsoft pledged the future of HoloLens to gaming as it confirmed that it will be bringing games to the headset through Xbox One.

“Gaming and entertainment is going to be critical” for HoloLens, said Xbox boss Phil Spencer. Microsoft considers HoloLens as a massive platform for games that will be built across Xbox One and Windows 10.

“We see this as a full Windows 10 device with holographic capability,” added Spencer, who also mentioned that the HoloLens APIs will be made available with Windows 10 gaming SDK.

As far as what we’ll end up seeing available on HoloLens through the Xbox One, it’s anyone’s guess. However, Spencer did make it clear that some hefty first-party muscle is behind the initiative. It’s very possible that we could see the likes of Master Chief through the AR headset in the future.

Microsoft has a vision for the future, and it involves terms and technology straight out of science fiction.

But are we actually glimpsing that future? Yes and no.

Microsoft’s HoloLens, which the company unveiled at its Redmond, Wash., headquarters on Wednesday, is a sleek, flashy headset with transparent lenses. You can see the world around you, but suddenly that world is transformed — with 3D objects floating in midair, virtual screens on the wall and your living room covered in virtual characters running amok.

Technology companies have long promised to bring us the future now, reaching ahead 5 or 10 years to try to amaze consumers with the next big breakthrough. Hollywood, on the other hand, has shown that tech in action (or at least simulations of it).

In “Minority Report,” for instance, Tom Cruise’s character used sweeping, midair hand gestures and transparent screens to do police work. Five years later, Apple unveiled the iPhone, and with it, a touchscreen operated by hand and finger gestures. Microsoft in turn served up its Kinect gesture-control device, which tracks people’s movements through space and feeds the data into an interface.

Going further, “The Matrix” showed hackers plugging computers into people’s brains to transport them to imaginary cities. And in “Star Trek,” computers used energy fields and visual tricks to create worlds people could touch and feel.

We’re not even close to those scenarios yet, but we’re taking tiny steps in that direction. Companies like Facebook, Google and Microsoft are now attempting to move that fiction toward reality, and the public is beginning to see those visions of tomorrow take form.

So how does the HoloLens measure up against other reality-altering gadgets?

What’s a HoloLens, and how does it work?

Microsoft’s HoloLens is not actually producing 3D images that everyone can see; this isn’t “Star Trek.”

Instead of everyone walking into a room made to reproduce 3D images, Microsoft’s goggles show images only the wearer can see. Everyone else will just think you’re wearing goofy-looking glasses.

Another key thing about HoloLens is what Microsoft is trying to accomplish.

The company is not trying to transport you to a different world, but rather bring the wonders of a computer directly to the one you’re living in. Microsoft is overlaying images and objects onto our living rooms.

As a HoloLens wearer, you’ll still see the real world in front of you. You can walk around and talk to others without worrying about bumping into walls.

The goggles will track your movements, watch your gaze and transform what you see by blasting light at your eyes (it doesn’t hurt). Because the device tracks where you are, you can use hand gestures — right now it’s only a midair click by raising and lowering your finger — to interact with the 3D images.

There’s a whole bunch of other hardware that’s designed to help the HoloLens’ effects feel believable. The device has a plethora of sensors to sense your movements in a room and it uses this information along with layers of colored glass to create images you can interact with or investigate from different angles. Want to see the back of a virtual bike in the middle of your kitchen? Just walk to the other side of it.

The goggles also have a camera that looks at the room, so the HoloLens knows where tables, chairs and other objects are. It then uses that information to project 3D images on top of and even inside them — place virtual dynamite on your desk and you might blow a hole to see what’s inside.

hololens-review-970-80

 

Source: cNet, Techcrunch, Microsoft and many others

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December 13, 2012

The Microsoft Bing team is doing more than building a search engine that competes head-to-head with Google.

Part of the team, as I’ve blogged previously, also built some of the first Microsoft-branded consumer apps for Windows 8.

But it turns out there’s another team inside the Bing organization that is working on Windows 8 apps, too. There’s an Augmented Reality (AR) team inside Bing that is building both an AR framework and AR applications that will ship on Windows 8 tablets and other unspecified devices.

roadtofortaleza

In keeping with Microsoft’s new charter as a devices and services company, the so-called “Bing Information Platform team” is in the midst of developing “next-generation of intelligent cloud services for developers on all screen sizes,” according to a couple of job openings posted on Microsoft’s site.

This AR-focused Bing team is working on everything from camera tracking, to visual and audio recognition, to optical character recognition and translation and vision-based natural-user interfaces. The team already has made available some AR deliverables, including the Bing translation appaugmented-reality-enriched Bing Maps, and the Bing Vision and Bing Audio technologies in Windows Phone.

But the Bing AR team — which is staffing up further — also is working on an AR software development kit (SDK) for third-party developers interested in buildng AR apps; Microsoft-developed and -branded AR apps and games using this SDK; and a Windows Azure-based cloud framework for supporting both the Microsoft- and third-party AR apps.

The AR focus inside Bing shouldn’t be too much of a surprise, given that Microsoft moved many of those working on its defunct Live Labs team into Bing a couple of years back. The Bing unit also is home to Microsoft’s TellMe and other speech-centric products.

It will be interesting to see what kind of AR apps for Windows 8 the Bing Information Platform team builds out. Will any of these apps be optimized for the AR glasses — codenamed Fortaleza, and targeted for delivery in 2014 according to a Microsoft futures deck that leaked earlier this year — upon which Microsoft’s Xbox team is believed to be working?

Mary Jo Foley

By  for All About Microsoft

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New media, Modern democracy at Lund University in Sweden

October 5, 2012

ImageDiscussing New media, Modern democracy at Lund University in Sweden. What role do mobile and more specific augmented reality play in Modern democracy.

Our host calls what we do “PR in 3D” and in some cases he’s not so far off. Augmented reality does have great impact on PR if you look at it from the perspective that every location, every person, every object has digital information linked to it. If it’s social information, digitised historical information or any other information for that matter. All will become visual when using augmented reality and that can effect a reputation in real time!

For now we use our phones as “augmented viewers” but augmented car windows, glasses and mirrors will be very common in the near future.

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TAB Worldmedia launches new generation marketing and promotion apps with augmented reality.

July 14, 2012

Amsterdam based agency TAB Worldmedia, known for their mobile augmented reality productions for Walt Disney, National Geographic, Canon and family park Efteling, launches a new generation of mobile apps aimed at the marketing and communication industry. These new generation apps, standard with integrated augmented reality technique, make them very natural to integrate as part of sales promotions, loyalty programmes and social media in combination with print campaigns.

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Metaio shows their augmented driver assistance on windshield displays concepts.

June 5, 2012

On another note… our business partner Metaio shares their skills and future projects through this fantastic video.

Eleven partners from the German automotive industry join forces to explore innovative technologies and concepts for boosting energy efficiency in vehicles. Firstly, cars are to become “intelligent” and, for example, use knowledge of the planned route to develop proactive operating strategies designed to save energy and, based on this, initiate appropriate responses in good time on the part of the car or driver. Secondly, the vehicle power supply and associated components are to be specifically tailored to the possibilities of these intelligent operating strategies. The project is supported by the German Federal Ministry of Research and Technology (BMBF) and supervised by the VDI TZ.

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Today Layar will announce its biggest launch yet!

June 5, 2012

An exiting day for the Layar team today as the company will announce, as they are calling it them selves, its biggest launch yet. Of course insiders to the company already know what’s coming but for the public and the print publishing industry this new product, service or brand is announced to be a business changer. As certified creation and development agency for Layar augmented reality concepts we will be following the media announcements closely.

Update: read our first review here!

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Googles Project Glass: Mass market augmented reality glasses.

April 4, 2012

Although with our blog we aim for sharing interesting stuff regarding mobile augmented reality. I try not to write too much about really futuristic stuff but things that are in our immediate reach. Augmented Reality glasses is one of those subjects that I find hard to write about because… well what I’ve seen so far looks kind of ridiculous on your face and the technology just isn’t there yet to make it functionally appealing to “normal people”.

However, I am truly exited about the fact that Google officially announced that they are actually producing their own AR glasses this year. Still reluctant about the rumors and speculations I tried not to jump on this too much. However this week we’ve seen some pretty exiting stuff passing over the internet that show what they are actually working on and now I just can’t help myself in believing we are actually really close in getting good looking, immersive AR glasses very soon.

Important note: Some blogs currently state that Google has began rolling out prototypes of these glasses to employees but that is simply NOT TRUE. These are exactly the rumors that we don’t want to jump on. the pictures that you see on the web are merely designs of what it could look like. If you want to read the original post from Google about this you can find it here.

Check out this video that their team posted:

Earlier articles we wrote about this subject:

Google ‘to unveil’ hi-tech Google Glasses that put a screen of information over the world?

Is Google Goggles ready for augmented reality?

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Can augmented reality bridge the gap between traditional media and mobile?

March 17, 2012

Just last week another Dutch newspaper (Wegener) has declared that they are going to stop publishing one of their newspapers. People tend to turn to mobile media for their daily news instead of their trusted traditional media. However… it is not said that traditional media will lose their right of existence in future but the mobile threat is there.

In my view publishers of traditional media can do two things to save their business:
1. Revisite their business model, kill the traditional media and turn to mobile.
2. Find a way to let both media co-exist and use mobile as a second screen to the traditional media.

There are several news media that are already advancing on this part. Take CNN as an example, but for TV news the threat is less urgent then for printed media. Mobile augmented reality could be one of the tools that can help bridge the gap between traditional media and the mobile second screen because it allows people to functionally use their mobile-device to almost fiscally interact with the traditional media. Dutch newspaper de Telegraaf is already experimenting with redactional content by using augmented realty as a tool to enhance their news. (ref. article 24/12/2011)

Dutch magazine Linda took their first step by experimenting with augmented reality to enhance a full edition of their magazine.

(Video is in Dutch)

Also the German publishing industry is taking augmented reality as a new commercial tool very seriously. For example magazine “Welt der Wunder” (World of Wonders) is using augmented reality to enhance their commercial ads. And yes I know… enhancing ads is one thing, enhancing editorial content is another but it is a start.

View this youtube video.

There are more initiatives out there so I am very curious to learn about them and start an overview including your thoughts on this subject. The augmented reality platforms that are used in the examples I am using above are.

Telegraaf: Aurasma

Linda: Layar

Welt der Wunder: Metaio/Junaio

Please feel free to share them with us below in the comments, via email or on Quora.

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What’s next for Augmented Reality: the MWC keynote by Eric Schmidt

March 1, 2012

An excellent keynote speech on the second day of Mobile World Congress by Eric Schmidt is now up on YouTube. Below an interpretation what this all means for the development of Augmented Media and a few notes I took which may help you as a viewing guide.

In general, Schmidt didn’t refer too much to our area of interest which is all about Augmented Media in a mobile setting. Nevertheless his keynote is very relevant for the mobile future.

It is all about ubiquity and better performance at the tech side, and openness and willingness to cooperate at the governmental side and regulatory side.

As a matter of fact, performance will double roughly every year and half, a fairly autonomous process according to Moore’s law – this is where the Google engineers are working on to make it happen, especially where it concerns improvements which will be visible to end users.

For Augmented Reality applications this means that we will see the more than welcome improvement in responsiveness and accuracy. A sneak preview exists today: the continuous scanning mode in Google Goggles is in fact a sandbox application of Point and Know, a strong viual approach to search and discovery which will dramatically change the way we will interact with our environment in the future.

Imagine what real-time visual discovery can mean for illiterate people for instance, or to enable the so often cited “Terminator View” to overlay products and locations with background information. New Input/Ouput devices will definitely accelerate this development further (apparently it was too early for an official announcement of the highly anticipated Google Glasses right now).

With all this in mind it is really important to see that Google takes responsibility to make this kind of mobile distributed computing power really universally accessible and conquer the digital divide by working on other means of distributed connectivity besides our traditional cellular networks (using peer-to-peer, mesh networks for example).

Eric shortly mentions connected sensors but doesn’t go in much detail. In fact this very interesting area is slightly under exposed on the whole MWC event this year. We will write a separate post on this subject later.

For those of us who continually pay attention to the mobile developments Eric Schmidt’s talk does not reveal very new insights, rather confirms a very consistent and directed vision of Google how the connected future will look. Not surprisingly this is very much dominated by bringing the results of all this computing and technology as close to the end user as possible, by going mobile. And the best part is that all of this computing power will become invisible in the process, just like the electricity power grid is an invisible resource, a given which empowers us to focus on our real needs. Very well said, and something to be proud of as a front-runner to make this happen for Augmented Media.

On to the notes…

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