Reality Isn’t What it Used to Be

Obama’s administration is promoting augmented reality.

How else would you explain the “Get Up and Play” campaign launched by the department of health & human services ?

“Go online, just don’t stay too long” says the ad. “Be a player, get out there and play” it presses on.

Now, why would a 21st century child go out there and play, confront reality and deal with its harsh limitations when she can Wii in or stay inside the Xbox?

Here’s how the drama unfolds:

On the one hand, kids are not stimulated by reality as their forbears were. It’s not as fun.

Reality isn’t what it used to be.

On the other hand, kids need to spend less time in front of the screen. Parents always knew it in their gut – but now, it’s scientifically proven – thanks to a mega study of 173 other studies by the National Institution of Health which  concluded unequivocally:

Too much TV, games, and internet harm kids’ health.

So, how do you resolve this conflict?

That’s where the augmented reality industry comes to the rescue.

We’ll make them go out, interact with their real surroundings – and they’ll totally think it’s all fun and games.

How are we going to do it?

Reality is actually pretty cool as it is, we just need to make it a bit more significant to them. Add a little spice. A sparkle. A challenge. A dream. A new dimension or a hidden depth. A reward for an unnoticed deed.

All these would make them do anything – even go out there and play.

The Health Department dreamed it up to the extreme with an animated donkey; what an

inspiration for augmented reality designers!

If the clip doesn’t run click here.

[The author: the “Get out and play” campaign was reportedly launched by the Health department 2 years ago. I only noticed it now…on Hulu…while watching the Colbert Report…I trusted the Obama adminstration to have not only inherited but embraced this campaign both in practice and in spirit]

One Response

  1. The thing that makes the Internet and games so attractive is two things;

    a) We consumer information rapidly, and always seek more. humans are inferiors
    Doesn’t mater what it is. School ground or soap gossip, or high-level physics and astrological discovery’s.
    We crave information.
    The Internet is a near limitless supply. Far moreso then our real world surroundings.

    b) Games set up challenges and rewards. It gives us feedback on our actions.
    Reality doesn’t do this nearly so much. Physics gives us action/reaction, but it doesn’t set up challenges for us. It isn’t interesting.

    Luckily for us, AR delivers both these things *and* gives the satisfaction of a real life context.
    The Wii has showen how popular real-movements in games can be. “Higher bandwidth” between the game system and its user.
    AR can have the same impact yet again, probably even moreso.

    I really do picture playgrounds and parks of the future being set up specifically for AR gaming.

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