Thursday, October 13, 2011

AR - through the looking glass

A few years ago you saw people in town walking or standing with a mobile phone at their ear, talking. Today most people hold their mobiles in front of them texting, checking e-mail or watching a video clip. But in the near future we'll be holding the mobiles in front of our eyes and looking at the world through the eye of the mobile. At least that's what the developers of Augmented Reality (AR) are hoping. By watching the world through our mobiles we get an overlay that provides information about what we see: menus from the restaurants we pass, information on tourist attractions, what rooms are available at the hotels we pass etc.

An article on the site PSFK, Augmented reality: fad or the future? includes the following videoshowcasing potential uses for augmented reality. I've shown several AR videos on this blog in the past and the number of possible applications keeps growing. This article wonders if we really will wander around looking at everything through the lense of our mobile devices but it's no stranger than today's mobile habits. The question is whether we will dispense with the small talk at social gatherings and instead check everyone's details first via AR. Before you've even said hello you will have been through the person's LinkedIn and Facebook profiles and checked out their online CV. Standard chat-up lines like "Haven't I met you somewhere before?" just won't work any more.

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