Three Augmented Reality Demos at SIGGRAPH 2010

Earlier this week I reported about an interesting paper accepted to this year’s SIGGRAPH conference, studying how augmented reality makes cookies taste better. However, it’s far from being the only appearance of AR in SIGGRAPH. Following are three more AR demos that took the stage during the conference:

Camera-less Smart Laser Projector
Using a laser beam both for scanning and projecting images, researchers from the University of Tokyo (where the cookies paper also comes from) gained several advantages over the usual projector+camera setup. Mainly, they eliminated the need to calibrate between the camera and projector, and gained the ability to scan 3d objects without stereoscopic cameras.

Camera-less Smart Laser Projector. Cassinelli, Zerroug, Ishikawa, Angesleva. SIGGRAPH 2010

QR-Code Calibration for Mobile Augmented Reality
This work by researchers of Kyushu University uses QR codes in order to fix the user position in the world. It shows you the problem with academic conferences. By the time your papers gets published, some company may already deploy similar technology in the real world, as Metaio did with Junaio.

QR-code calibration for mobile augmented reality applications: linking a unique physical location to the digital world. Nikolaos, Kiyoshi. SIGGRAPH 2010.

Canon brings to life dinosaurs
Not only researchers come to SIGGRAPH, but companies as well. Canon demoed head mounted assisted mixed reality in their booth, featuring a cute velociratpor like dino (lacking feathers, they should get some new biology books). Jump to the 25th second to see it in action:

Weekly Linkfest

This passing week’s trending augmented reality topics were AcrossAir’s Tube Locator (which is two weeks old) and James Alliban’s augmented business card (which is over a month old, can’t see why it became so popular suddenly). Let’s hope next week will bring some fresh AR news. As a matter of fact, tomorrow I’ll cover an even cooler augmented business card concept. In the meanwhile, here’s this week’s linkfest:

Weekly quote:

However, I am nervous about the potential AR hype bubble. I’m pushing
“real AR” (which right now means tabletop) and the importance of tight
registration whenever I talk to the press or companies, because I want
as many people to realize that whether these apps succeed or fail
should not really be used as a metric of the potential success or
failure of AR.

Blair MacIntyre from an interesting discussion on the AR Forum whether the recent set of GPS based applications are AR or not (a point I’ve briefly touched here. I much prefer those pseudo AR application over the novelty AR applications).

This week’s video comes to us from Dutch design company Strafwerk. They described this video as “welcome to the future”, but I think it’s actually worse than Zugara‘s clothes shopping application (which wasn’t that great on itself):

Weekly Linkfest

And yet another week ends, full with exciting AR news. Some news items were put aside in order to make place to more urgent reports. Luckily, the weekly linkfest is here to mend things up.

This week’s video is of a little application you might have heard about, called tweet TwittAround.
It enables you to see tweets overlaid on top of the video input coming from your iPhone 3GS. Tweets are rendered according to the location they are coming from. Interestingly, this project comes from the same guy, Michael Zoellner, that is behind some other cool AR applications.

Have a nice week!

Weekly Linkfest

This week top post at Games Alfresco was the always classic “Top 10 augmented reality demos that will revolutionize video games“, if you haven’t read it, do yourself a favor and take a look. Lagging far behind, the top post on Augmented Times was “Augmenting Deformable Surfaces“.

Here are some more AR related news from around the web:

  • If you can’t take augmented reality with you for a dive, you may bring augmented fish to your room, with this project from Canon.
  • I’ve missed that last week, but apparently, Microsoft hired interactive design firm INVIVIA to create videos for some group named “Volume Studios”. That group goal is to “explore in a poetic narrative way how certain developing technologies could begin to blend and augment our daily lives”. Check out two of the (rather bizarre) video at “i started something“.
  • Drawing in three dimensions, a futuristic design at Yanko Design.
  • If you always wanted to play an augmented reality game where your goal is to dip chicken nuggets, you need not look any further.
  • Wired is joining the AR fun.
  • It’s always great to see amateur programmers’ take on AR. This video combined augmented reality with emerging patterns, and I find it lovely

Quote of the week comes from this post at Locative Lab, describing the connection between horror movie “They Live” and the state of augmented reality:

“They Live” in my mind is the canonical, defining vision of what any sort of Augmented Reality should start with. Sort of presenting an “anti” world — the world made strange so that we see it in a different way. Reconstructed. No Pink Pony scenarios or anything that makes the engineer-accountants get eager, sweaty palms. Weird stuff to invert things and better see the alternative possibilities beyond way-finding, tour-guiding, and informatic overlays of measured data.

I don’t exactly agree with this position, but it is an interesting take on what should our augmented future look like.
And finally, to start off the next week with a good feeling, here’s an interesting project, bringing World of Warcraft multiplayer mini games to a desk near you. It’s nothing special, but looks very exciting (at least more exciting than playing the same games using a keyboard):