The augmented reality it's another way of seeing the world. With this new technology you will be able to superimpose layers of visual information to the vision of the real world, crossing the border between the real and the virtual, and opening a door to the society of the future.
It currently has devices and tools with which to work on multiple projects. There are also infinite applications in the field of medicine, The education, cinema or sports.
Table of Contents
What is augmented reality?
Virtual reality should not be confused with augmented reality, below we explain the differences between virtual reality and augmented reality:
- The augmented reality (OUT) consists of adding visual elements and integrating them into the real world thanks to a device that captures images from outside. Through the augmented reality device we can observe how new virtual information is added to the images that are being recorded.
- The virtual reality (RV) differs from the augmented one in that the former offers a totally immersive experience in which nothing seen is real. Nevertheless, augmented reality combines the real elements with the virtual ones, offering an integrating result.
These tools represent a great technological advance. Thanks to them, it is not necessary to imagine in our mind, but, we can observe the result of our ideas on a screen.
What is augmented reality?
To make use of this technology, a series of components are required.
- Needed a device with a camera (computer with webcam, tablet, smartphone, glasses, etc.)
- A “trigger” (pitcher) that activates the appropriate vision or additional virtual information to display (a marker, picture, place, etc.)
- The application that will transform said launcher or trigger into additional information.
The procedure is very simple. The software must have an application installed that is capable of reading the information that will activate the augmented reality.
When available, the camera is focused on the trigger and immediately, the device will transform in real time the data received into additional information that will be available on the screen.
Types of augmented reality
The "trigger" or activators can be of various types:
- Augmented reality may be marker-based. Bookmarks activate information thanks to images, objects, black and white geometric shapes (like QR codes), etc.
- or on the contrary, can be geolocated. It is based on the type of positioning, being able to activate information in a specific place. This occurs thanks to sensors that indicate the position of the device, like a GPS, a compass or accelerometer.
Augmented reality levels
There are also different levels of augmented reality depending on the degree of integration.
- Level 0. Links in the physical world. When scanning barcodes and 2D (for instance, QR codes) with the appropriate app on the device, hyperlink with the physical world and display content that interacts with reality.
- Level 1.RA with markers. Scanning schematic markers in the form of black and white quadrangular figures activate a model of the real 3D image.
- Level 2.AR without markers. Triggers are images, objects, places, etc. that superimpose points of interest on the real world.
- Level 3.Augmented vision. They need devices (like smart glasses) that offer a fully immersive experience.
Augmented reality glasses
A device to which special mention must be made are augmented reality glasses or smart glasses. From the pioneers of Google, the GoogleGlass, more models from other companies have started to appear (Samsung, Sony, Microsoft, Intel, etc.) that exceed the first prototype.
- Take photos and record videos. You can capture the moment in Full HD of what we are seeing with a simple verbal command, or even just blink.
- strong>Internet access. You can access certain information about what we have in front of our eyes, What obtain personal data of whoever crosses us on the street (there is an application that shows the last tweet you wrote on the social network), or the buildings, urban advertising, etc.
- Make payments. In addition to paying in a store (having previously installed the corresponding application) as well you can order home delivery of a product that we have seen on a billboard.
- Play video games. This feature is nothing new. There are various games and sports that can be practiced with augmented reality glasses and extend your entertainment experience.
- Perform administrative tasks. Review the agenda, check email or view phone calls is another of the functions that you can perform with augmented reality glasses.
- Monitor fitness. Depending on the sensors that the glasses have, They can also follow your vital functions so that you carry out your training with the best control of your health.
Some use case
The functions of smart glasses are amazing. It seems that we are in front of the doors of the future.
They make life so much easier for us than in China, for instance, have already implemented some augmented reality glasses for police uniform patrolling the streets. Thanks to its camera and its integrated facial recognition system they can scan the faces of all the inhabitants of the country and recognize who is the suspect of a crime.
In addition, these glasses give information about your name, address, occupation and even your internet browsing history.
There are also other smart glasses that would help the visually impaired. They won't be able to see through those glasses, but thanks to an auditory assistant you will describing everything that the built-in camera is recording. So you can hear everything that you cannot see with your own eyes.
Augmented reality applications
AR currently has many applications that favor new possibilities for interaction, knowledge and fun.
The uses of augmented reality in education are very advantageous. Students will be able to experience new ways of obtaining knowledge that are much more interesting and interactive.
They will be able to view 3D images that come out of textbooks, even manipulate these elements or obtain information from specific places thanks to geolocation.
This technology also allows you to use methodologies in the field of education that improve the motivational part of students with the use of interactive games and that favor both practical and discovery learning..
Some of the applications that can be downloaded are:
- Star Chart. Show the constellations focusing on the sky. Make astronomy interesting and fun, plus an interactive experience.
- 4D Anatomy. This application allows you to manipulate the elements of the image to learn the human anatomy, offering you a fully interactive experience.
- FETCH! Lunch Rush. Helps teach basic math skills by visualizing items. Children can learn to add and subtract with real-life examples, not only with numbers.
- ZooBurst. Storytelling stories come to life with ZooBurst. Children will be able to view a gallery of digital books in 3D, interact with the characters and even become the protagonists thanks to the built-in webcam. Stories can be personalized using an image library, changing the narration, etc.
- Acrossair. Acrossair works like a 3D browser, that combines the elements of your environment with useful information about these things.
- Aug That. It is an application that displays three-dimensional educational content when you focus the camera on a specific target image, as workshops, video lessons, etc.
- Google Translate. Just by focusing the camera on the words, these will appear on your screen translated into the language of your choice.
The use of augmented reality in the medical field can be revolutionary. At first, would save a lot of money by reducing the costs of existing machinery to obtain conventional biomedical images (X-rays, magnetic resonance, etc.)
On the other hand, would also provide new information and new ways of applying medicine, how to visualize surgical operations in 3D, create simulations of the results, etc.
Thanks to RA, clinical data of patients can be visualized, prepare a surgery, carry out a diagnosis and even a therapy or rehabilitation.
Some of the applications in medicine are:
- AccuVein AV400. It shows you the veins and arteries so that it is easier to locate them and put a line.
- Advanced Surgical Navigation Platform. El SNAP (for its acronym in English), allows doctors to plan surgery and test various techniques beforehand to see which one works best. This is how you can reduce errors and make the best decision.
- MyOrgans. Of a more educational nature, projects an interactive image of the human anatomy onto our body.
- Augmented Reality Liver Viewer. It is an application that allows you to visualize the liver and its main pathologies in 3D.
- iSkull AR. Similar to the previous one, this app allows you to see the inside and outside of a skull.
- Augmented Reality Magic Mirror. As if it were a mirror, you can observe the skeleton of various parts of your body.
The best known game is the popular Pokémon Go that came out in 2016 by Niantic. Thanks to geolocation, This game consisted of locating all the Pokémon you find around the world.
Another video game for smartphone is the Father.IO, in which you can use your mobile phone as if it were a weapon on the street and shoot other players.
Another fighting game that combines real spaces with virtual reality is the Street Fighter.
Some video game They also need other devices to play, like star wars: Jedi challenges, which needs a Levono Mirage augmented reality glasses that work with the smartphone to offer you a whole Jedi experience, in which you will fight with your lightsaber against Darth Vader.
Among the best augmented reality games for Android are:
- Ingress. From the creators of Pokémon Go comes another game that encourages you to explore the outside world to find energy sources and save the world.
- Parallel Kingdom. It is a role-playing game with a geolocator in which you will form your own kingdom within your city.
- SpecTreck Light. You must hunt the ghosts that you meet on the way.
- Clandestine: Anomaly. Your neighborhood has been invaded by aliens and you have to fight and defend your domains.
- Warp Runner. You are in a maze from which you have to escape.
- Zombies, Run! It is another game in which you must escape from some zombies that are chasing you.
Applications in the world of fashion and design they are one more step towards the future. Focusing on someone with your smartphone you can see the images on his t-shirt come to life and come out of the fabric. A world of possibilities for designers.
You can too "Try on" clothes without even touching them while looking in the mirror. Or know the price, composition and size of the garment that you have in the shop window.
Or if you want to design your own wardrobe, choose colors, textiles, complements or accessories, Now it is possible. Buy a product just by scanning your QR code, or even photographing the outfit of someone passing by the street and we like how he is dressed.
3D movies are nothing new. The objects and characters go off the screen and we can see them in front of us thanks to glasses.
Nevertheless, when augmented reality hits the big screen, the experience will be much more immersive since it will seem that we are inside the movie.
In the future they try to suppress the need to wear glasses to be able to see augmented reality in the cinema, but it is still being investigated and they have only released prototypes that are not yet on the market.
Augmented reality also reaches sports, on the one hand affecting the spectators of a match, that they will feel as if they play themselves,
On the other hand, interfering with the athletes themselves, like snow goggles for skiing, or the Raptos glasses for cycling.
In Japan they have already invented a sport with augmented reality. It's called HADO and you need glasses and a sensor on your arm to play. In teams of 3 people, they must throw energy balls at each other and protect themselves with a shield from the attacks of the others.
A group of Japanese researchers, la Superhumans Sports Society (S3) has already designed 12 similar games and creating what they call "Augmented humans", which consists of enhancing their physical qualities so that they have extraordinary sports skills.
With this they not only manage to increase their dexterity, but also give it to those who lacked it, as disabled people. A) Yes, augmented reality favors integration and ethics in society
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