Training the Visual Way

A picture is worth a thousand words. 

Homo sapiens are visual creatures.  We receive 75% of our information through our eyes.  Explaining how to do something can be tedious and inefficient.  Augmented reality offers a visual medium for explanation.  This quick demo on how to assemble a LEGO tower using ARToolKit illustrates how effective this technique can be.  If you don’t believe me, give a friend a pile of LEGOs and then try to explain how to create the tower in the video.  Time your result and compare it.  I’ll guarantee the AR method will win.

This Post is Rated AR

Very short post following my prediction that 2010 will be the inaugural year for augmented reality porn. A couple of days ago, AppScout reported about the latest venture in this area, Pink Visual’s AR Porn (NSFW link).

Well, it’s porn all-right, but the AR is gimmicky at best. Here’s Pink Visual’s Amanda Cory explaining the potential of such application -

And here’s a close-up video of the application itself, showing how much the potential is left unfulfilled at the moment (sorry, you’ll have to follow the link due to some mild nudity). Not to mention the intrinsic problem of flash-based AR porn – porn websites can record everything that is visible by your webcam while using the application. Isn’t that exciting?

via AppScout.

Even More Augmented Reality Business Cards

(previously those and those)

I’m doing some spring (it’s spring time in Australia*) cleaning in my bookmarks, that’s what I came with:
Genuine Interactive came up with these augmented business cards for its staff, which have been named “the butterfly effect cards”. Thomas has dedicated a whole post for their demo.

Visualcard.me on the other hand, lets you create your own AR enabled business cards, that shows your Twitter and Skype accounts.

I’m sure those two companies are not going to be the last ones that come up with this idea, so stay tuned.

* Alas, I’m not in Australia.

Et tu Citroen DS3?

(Before you comment, “Et tu” has the same meaning in French as it has in Latin).
The Citroën DS3 joins the ranks of cars that get an augmented reality campaign, thanks to Total Immersion.

Yes, it’s not as lame as other cars AR campaigns, with its little racing game. However, it won’t be spared from becoming the latest addition to my growing petition to stop using AR to promote cars.

Happy Rosh HaShana

For our Hebrew readers (the three of you):

It’s the Jewish new year, and Israeli web design firm Netcraft produced this new year greeting. You can try it yourself here. (thanks Alon!)

Happy Rosh HaShana, Ori!

More Augmented Business Cards

A couple of months ago, the ARSphere was gushing over James Alliban’s augmented business card (the one with the pixelated talking 3d face).

That nice little creative work led Alliban to recently launch Augmatic, a company that provides augmented reality services, and yes, among them is a personalized augmented business card.

Of course, Alliban is not the only one in the augmented business-cards-business. We have previously featured Toxin Labs. This week sees another implementation, by one Burton Posey, which can only be described as cute (of course, you can choose a more menacing avatar):

Says Posey:

This is an idea I’d been kicking around in my head since February. I wanted to find a way that a company could deliver a catchy identity for themselves. Avatars, be it the Mii’s on the Nintendo Wii, or an Xbox Live Avatar, have become extensions of the people who use them.

You can try his implementation over here. I wonder if any of the guys at ISMAR 09 is going to have augmented business cards.

Whatchoo Augmentin’ ’bout, Willis?


Obviously the end of the world came, and no one told me. The signs are all here:
1. Canadian based New York Fries is celebrating 25 years of selling, well, fries.
2. To commemorate the occasion, they looked for an eighties icon.
3. They chose Gary Coleman.
4. And made an augmented reality application, on Facebook, were you shake Gary Coleman by shaking a marker, making him drop his fries, and tell you your fortune.

You can try it yourself, here, and find more details at AdFreak, while I’m looking for the nearest nuclear shelter*.

* Yeah, I’m mean, no point commenting about it. I don’t have anything against Mr. Coleman, my sarcasm is targeted solely at the novelty AR application.

Behind the Scenes of Best Buy’s AR Campaign

Yesterday I mentioned Best Buy’s AR campaign in the weekly linkfest. The campaign itself is not that exciting, just your typical marker based advertisement. Here’s the obligatory video of some guys on Youtube playing around with it:

However, this time around we get to peek behind the scenes of the campaign thanks to Advertising Age, which held an interview with Spencer Knisely, director-brand identity, print and design at Best Buy. It turns out that while the print ad pushing the site had a circulation of about 43 million people, only 6500 of them have tried the AR application on its first day. Surprisingly, that’s double the number Best Buy have predicted.

Ad Age: Can you tell what the real business result — or conversion — of this was?

Mr. Knisely: We don’t know that yet. We saw comparatively high click-through — 12% — to other pages: the Twelpforce page, the Next Class computing page or to the dot-com site for the Toshiba computer itself. But aggregated, a 12% click-through on an experience like that is fairly decent.

More here.

AR Strippers, Oh My!

Well, you knew this day will come sooner or later. As any other media before it, porn was destined to reach augmented reality. But I bet you could never guess that the first semi-erotic application will be created to promote a movie.
Apparently, Gamer‘s last attempt at augmented reality advertisement didn’t bring the masses, so they launched this site. All for the better I guess.

The application lets you select between four exotic dancers, and about five dances for each dancer. I would have written about it earlier, but being a thorough journalist as I am, I had to test all the available options.
[via akihabaranews.com

Augmented DJ by Wrigley

The good guys from UK based creative agency Exposure and the Australian AR wizards from Boffswana show us that using augmented reality in a campaign, doesn’t necessarily means having a “look at the novelty” brain dead application (unlike, say, the Always one).
For the coming launch of Wrigley’s 5 brand of gums in France, they have created an application that lets users mix together club-music via AR markers. There are three markers representing gum flavors, each linked to a certain track, and one master marker to rule them all. The markers’ distance from the master marker and their relative angles determine the volume and effects for each track.

Once you have become experienced in the ways of the augmented DJ, you can record your own mix, upload it to the site’s gallery, and even embed it in your blog. Now, since I’m tone-deaf, and my laptop is not strong enough to register four markers at once, I’m going to embed a creation by some other guy (sorry Games Alfresco and RSS readers, no embedding for you):

Now, I’m well aware that the idea of an augmented reality DJ set is not a new one. As a matter of fact, just a few weeks ago we’ve learned about the ARDJ art project. And this application is not perfect, as it requires a good computer and setting to work, and the embedding issue could be solved if videos were hosted on Youtube. Nevertheless, we should recommend Exposure and Boffswana for not going with the easy solution, and creating a very interactive experience (only Living Sasquatch is in this league, also done by Boffswana). Now, lets see more campaigns of this kind instead of the other “novelty” kind.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 32 other followers