Posts Tagged ‘ AR ’

The Boring User Manuals version 2.0

[tweetmeme] A lot of applications for Augmented Reality are available in the market, in fact a lot of them are available for free and need not be purchased. But just like most new platforms it misses practical usages, at least at this early stage, and new applications are the ones that define how the success of the technology and platform performs.

Most user manuals are not very user friendly. They’re full of poorly written text and confusing diagrams which can really throw off people from reading them. Worse still, the gap between problem and solution is vast because we’re forced to apply a linear format to a specific question. There is no search box in manuals for a specific function.

But here’s an idea: What if instead of leafing through pages or scrolling through an online manual, you could simply see your way through a task? Just slide on a headset, hold your phone in front of you or extreme wear the Augmented Reality Lens and work your way through a bit of customized, augmented-reality education.

That’s what Columbia University computer science professor Steve Feiner and Ph.D. candidate Steve Henderson are trying to do with their Augmented Reality for Maintenance and Repair (ARMAR) project. They’re combining sensors, head-worn displays, and instruction to address the military’s maintenance needs. Take a look at this project video and you’ll quickly see how the same application could extend to all sorts of use cases:

The user can see five kinds of augmented content presented on the see-through head-worn display:

  1. Attention-directing information in the form of 3D and 2D arrows, explaining the location of the next task to perform.
  2. Text instructions describing the task and accompanying notes and warnings.
  3. Registered labels showing the location of each target component and surrounding context.
  4. A close-up view depicting a 3D virtual scene centered on the target at close range and rendered on a 2D screen-fixed panel.
  5. 3D models of tools (e.g. a screwdriver) and task domain components (e.g. fasteners or larger components), if applicable, registered at their current or target locations in the environment.

There are many day-to-day tasks in which consumers currently need to consult written or computer-based instructions. Think of assembling a bicycle or a piece of furniture, making a complex recipe, wiring a home entertainment center, or fixing a balky lawnmower. These are just some examples of tasks in which systems like ARMAR could make the task easier and faster to perform, and make it more likely that it’s performed correctly. Another Video below:

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This valentines day try the 3D valentine’s card

If you have been taking your time to write some of the posts of this blog, you might have noticed that I do like Augmented Reality a lot and the reality that this coming to life is an aspect that I am incredibly excited about. In this post I wanna look at some new commercial applications that are coming out.

First of all, a 3D greeting cards which have been adopted as a first by Hallmark. Yes the worldwide leader in greeting cards has taken on a step to combat the dip in sales because of eCards. Like the age old saying goes if you can’t beat them join them. Meaning that the cards now mash up the real world with the Virtual world, to create a one of a kind Augmented Reality Greeting card. The person receiving the card can visit www.hallmark.com/extra and follow the directions to be able to view a 3D animated feature by holding the greeting card up to the web camera. The technology breathes a digital life into the card. The animation tracks with the movement of the card, so no matter which way the card is moved, the animation will rotate along in full 3D. In many cards, various scenes appear as the card is turned in different angles in front of the webcam for a range of digital experiences.

It does makes a lot of sense to add content to a static piece of cardboard; this would imply that although you don’t need to give an ugly marker to a person, you still give a nice greeting. They can see the card through the webcam for additional content, however if they don’t have one, then definitely they have a greeting card.However, it would have been cooler if the application was accessible on the phone so that you can see the message when you receive it and don’t have to wait to get in front of a webcam. Anyway check out a demo of the greeting below :

Give it a try, maybe this valentines day you could give a special 3D card to your geeky girl / boy friend. The link for the Hallmark card is here.

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