Augmented reality is occupying the cyberspace gradually but inexorably. Indeema is looking for reasons exploring the subject from the very beginning.
Bees perceive ultraviolet light, bats can hear ultrasound. Lacking the advanced sensor perception, humans outperform the rest living beings with intellect. Otherwise, how would we know about bees and bats? Laboring mightily with brains people had long aspired to expand the scope of the perceived reality.
Galileo invented a comet-seeker to make stars more comprehensively perceptible content of the sky. The stethoscopes, microphones, echo sounders, night viewers, roentgen units and other technological innovations have been serving the extension of human cognition. Thousands years before the technological development people had endeavors to create an alternate or virtual reality. The human imagination came welling up naturally from inside. Throughout history, the cave drawing, oral storytelling, theatre, literature, cinema all have composed the virtual reality elements inaccessible to all creatures but humans possessing the imaginative power.
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VR vs AR
The virtual and augmented realities acquired quantum leap with the invention of microchips. Computer graphics and special effects are deploying the endless space of virtuality the only limitation of which seems to be a lack of the developers’ creativity. While the direction of virtual technologies’ development is clear more or less, the augmented reality is not so straightforward. Being covered up with VR-headsets, sensors, gloves, and even… genital stimulators (Japanese developers are walking at the face of the Earth as usually. Recently they have already arranged a virtual erotic conference. Indeed, sex against the machine!), one could hardly refuse the awareness of the fact that virtual space belongs to the phantasmagoria created by the digital technologies.
Virtuality grasps, amuses, and sometimes blows out. However, the world of mundane, the solid reality of politics and disease, birth and death, labor and shopping remains the environment of human life and struggle. Right in this pandemic and oftentimes tedious world, the augmented reality is able to introduce vivid colors of digital content.
Empathy with scientific approach
By a stretch of imagination, the hallucinogenic drug effects could be called an augmented reality experience. LSD can layer virtual elements on the perceptible ordinary world. In due time, the science fiction writers prognosticated such a tendency development. Recollect Philip Dick’s “The three stigmata of Palmer Eldritch”. Nevertheless, humankind has chosen the technological development instead of the pharmacological one. The hallucinogens have one major drawback. This is not so much about the fragility and elusiveness of the effects. The worst thing is the impossibility of sharing the experience. Once human is a herd creature, the issue of repeatability and sharing of the experience remains significative. This is empathy.
Definition in accordance with Wikipedia
Augmented reality (AR) is a live direct or indirect view of a physical, real-world environment whose elements are augmented (or supplemented) by computer-generated sensory input such as sound, video, graphics or GPS data. So, basically, augmented reality brings out the components of the Digital world into our perceived Real world.
Digital AR starts travelling
The army traditionally made first steps towards the robust digital AR. The digital elements layered on the visible world have been present at military pilot headsets since the early 90th. As a reflection of human imagination, the art took up the AR initiative. In 1994, acrobats of Australian ‘Augmented Reality Theater’ performed the installation with virtual objects projected on the physical space. The widespread distribution of smartphones invited AR into mobile app development. Wikitude AR Travel Guide launched on 20 Oct 2008 with the G1 Android phone. Since that time, the digital dinosaurs have begun smelling about AR technologies. Augmented reality Google Glasses were announced by Google in 2013. Microsoft represented HoloLens headset equipped with various sensors for hologram projection in 2015.
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All the time, AR was hardly standing out the rest developing trends of the digital industry. Everything changed in July 2016, when the world got crazy against the newly released Pokemon Go mobile AR game. All over the world, seemingly adult aunts & uncles started running around the streets in pursuit of not-being beasties. After the game release, 500 million users downloaded the application. The unprecedented case when state governments of several countries along with municipal authorities imposed a ban of a mobile game prohibiting playing at certain areas. Pokemon Go has really interrupted people’s pattern. At first glance, it sounds surprising for the society spoiled with the digital era achievements. Which aspect of the AR game exactly has snagged audience so badly?
To where the power lies
“No Pokemons!” keep-out sign on an object of the city infrastructure enables a virtual content to be a phenomenon of the physical reality. This is hardly imaginable for the pre-digital era. This is just as absurd to find “No erotic dreaming!” on a cloistral gate. Most probably, the very transfusion of the ordinary everyday life and the digital dreamworld has gripped the audience. You can steer events in both worlds. You can modify realities. This is control and domination. If it isn’t the omnipotence? Reread Nietzsche, fellows!
Whatever we suppose, the augmented reality has arrived. This is inevitable. Get it up for New Brave World! In the second part of the article, Indeema will explain how to deal with AR for the e-commerce, tourism, education, transportation, brand building, and advanced shopping. AR does not put limitations for business scale or mobile app complexity.