Travels in Augmented Reality

Travels in Augmented Reality

A game of virtual space chess between C-3PO and Chewy (Courtesy 20th Century Fox)

I’ve been having a lot of fun this week exploring the world of augmented reality.

Remember that scene in star wars where C-3PO and Chewie are playing a chess-like game but with holographic video? Well, I came a little bit closer to seeing that become a reality, sort of, without the holographic video or the chess but with augmented reality.

So, what is augmented reality?

According to Macmillan’s dictionary, augmented reality is the technology of combining real word images, video, etc. with computer-generated information and/or imagery.

You’ve probably seen it before, most likely in an iPhone/iPad application like Car Finder, WorkSnug, or iPew. You might have also heard about Google’s plans to make augmented reality glasses. There have even been entire gallery shows dedicated to augmented reality. Whatever the case, there are a lot of cool possibilities with this technology.

What am I doing with it?

I’ve just started experimenting with this stuff, and my imagination has definitely gotten ahead of my technical ability. I’ve got a lot of learning to do, but I am interested in eventually creating immersive environments (perhaps like Star Trek’s holodeck, but that’s a ways down the line)! I wanted to create a 3D model replica of a street in Chicago that I frequent and be able to stand in the middle of the road and see the building disintegrate. I can’t quite pull that off yet, but I was able to make custom markers and create some interesting video projections with the markers.

Here are some videos of interesting stuff people are doing with this.

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