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Augmented Reality

The NAVVIS interface on a user's smartphone

While we’ve pretty much got to the point where we take GPS-enabled navigation systems for granted, there’s one rather prominent place where they can’t access the necessary satellites – indoors. A number of projects have taken on the challenge of indoor navigation, incorporating things like accelerometers, “invisible” landmarks, rapidly flickering lights, and magnetic fields. The experimental new NAVVIS system, however, utilizes a database of photographs.  Read More

Disney's REVEL system applying virtual textures to  different areas of a teapot (Photo: Di...

Having long been successful with "talkies," Disney has developed technology that could allow the creation of "feelies." While designed more for touchscreens than the silver screen, the REVEL system developed at Disney Research uses reverse electrovibration to bring computerized control over the sense of touch, thereby allowing programmers to change the feel of real-world surfaces and objects without requiring users to wear special gloves or use force-feedback devices.  Read More

The EyeRing system features a finger-worn camera module and wirelessly connected smartphon...

Generally speaking, the vast majority of augmented reality applications that enhance the world around us by overlaying digital content on images displayed on smartphone, tablet or computer screens are aimed squarely at the sighted user. A team from the Fluid Interfaces Group at MIT's Media Lab has developed a chunky finger-worn device called EyeRing that translates images of objects captured through a camera lens into aural feedback to aid the blind.  Read More

British computer programmer Will Powell has created a prototype real-time translation syst...

Inspired by the Google's Project Glass, computer programmer Will Powell has built a prototype real-time translation system that listens to speech, translates it into one of 37 languages, and then displays the resulting text as subtitles directly onto the user's glasses.  Read More

The image is animated with a moving background using the LZRTAG Android app (Photo: LZRTAG...

Several years ago, every inch of the New York City Subway system – along with other public transportation systems around the world, was covered in graffiti. Now there's fewer tags, but more ways to express yourself. The virtual world is one new venue for graffiti and the art of tagging. Augmented reality app LZRTAG is hoping to advance those tags to images and even animations, but you need a smartphone to make that happen.  Read More

Word Lens translates text captured using the camera on an iOS or Android device

When we first covered the Word Lens real-time translator app for iOS devices back in 2010, a number of readers voiced their hopes for an Android version. Now the app’s developers, Quest Visual, has finally shown Android users some love with the app now available through Google play.  Read More

IBM’s Fiona Doherty demonstrates an augmented reality shopping app that automatically deli...

While the rise and rise of online shopping has eaten into the profit margins of bricks and mortar retailers over the past decade, the vast majority of consumers (92 percent according to Forrester Research) still do their shopping in-store. But with the Internet providing a wealth of product information in the form of reviews and comparisons, as well as special offers and promotions, more and more shoppers are browsing their mobile devices in store. Now researchers at IBM Labs are looking to make it easier for shoppers to get instant product details and deals in-store with a new augmented reality (AR) shopping app.  Read More

Google co-founder Sergey Brin demonstrates Project Glass on stage at the Google I/O develo...

Google's Project Glass has intrigued many since it was unveiled in April. It was then that a compelling video showing how the company imagined this technology would be used made people sit up and take notice. In the three months that have followed, Google employees have been seen wearing the Project Glass devices, ably led by company co-founder Sergey Brin. Fittingly it was Brin who took to the stage at the Google I/O developers conference to offer more details on Project Glass, including the pricing and availability.  Read More

Canon's MR System headsets look bulky, though they do pack in a lot of technology

Canon has announced a new augmented reality tool geared toward speeding up the product design process and easing the transition between the conception and execution of a product idea by allowing virtual prototypes to replace physical ones. The Mixed Reality (MR) System will make use of full-scale, three-dimensional computer generated (CG) images that change in real time based on the movements of the user.  Read More

A document allegedly leaked from Microsoft details the company's possible plans for the ne...

Rumors about a possible next-gen Xbox have been swirling for quite awhile now, dropping minor details like Blu-Ray support and major details like software that prevents used games from playing. But those were tiny pebbles compared to the avalanche of possible features that were recently revealed when a 56-page document purportedly leaked from Microsoft showed up online.  Read More

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