Weekly Linkfest

I’m a bit sleepy today, so please excuse any increase in grammar mistakes.

before I fall to sleep, here’s a very short video illustrating Minecraft brought to the real world using augmented reality (more specifically, using Kudan’s Qoncept engine). 

enjoy your week!

Weekly Augmented Reality Linkfest

As always, here the augmented reality news stories and tidbits, I didn’t have the time (or will) to cover this week:

This week’s video is a neat meshup between the insanely successful indie computer game Minecraft and augmented reality, by one Scott Kronick (or at least I think that is his name). Kronick, an artist by trade, came to the realization that it would be great “to hack away at and modify your city or school made of cubes”. The result is “RealCraft”:

Have a nice week!

Weekly Linkfest

It’s Sunday, and here are some links from around the augmented sphere:

Ever played Duplo (the big blocks version of Lego) as a toddler? Worried that your kids will only want to play with things that have touch screens on them? Worry not, legoplatformer.com will turn your old bricks into a mobile augmented reality platform capable of running computer games. On a serious note, that’s one example of the power of Qualcomm’s AR SDK:

The Great Disappearing Act

If you thought that augmented reality can only place virtual object in real environments, think again. AR can also be used to ‘delete’ real object, making them transparent.

Case in point, Francesco I. Cosco’s work presented at ISMAR09 (which reminds me that ISMAR 2010 is less than two weeks away!). In this work, Cosco and other researchers from the University of Calabria, Italy and the Rey Juan Carlos university in Spain, tried to add haptic interaction to an augmented environment. Problem is, haptic devices are visually not attractive, and aren’t really a part of the scene. The solution they came up with was quite ‘magical’:

More details on Cosco’s home page.

Cosco F. I., Garre C., Bruno F., Muzzupappa M., Otaduy M. A. “Augmented Touch without Visual Obtrusion”. Proceedings of the IEEE International Symposium on Mixed and Augmented Reality 2009.

Weekly Linkfest

Got a little bit addicted to Google AI Challenge, so I haven’t updated as I should have during the last week. Luckily, still have time for a quick linkfest:

Last week I had a video in Dutch, this week we have a video from Lithuania. It seems that in Lithuania the national sport is augmented basketball (or am I making this thing up?). More details, in Lithuanian, here.

Have a splendid week!

Online Image Learning – The Next Big Leap in Mobile AR?

Mobile, image recognition based, augmented reality is very cool, as evident from the Popcode’s demos we posted yesterday. However, creation of a model used by the mobile phone to recognize a new image still requires a desktop, hindering realtime creation and sharing of AR content.

Thanks to the work of researchers from the Korean Gwangju Institute of Science and Technology and the Swiss EPFL, this needn’t be the case anymore. In a paper titled “Point-and-Shoot for Ubiquitous Tagging on Mobile Phones” accepted to ISMAR 2010, they present a method to scan surfaces and create “recognition-models” by using your phone (no data is sent to a remote server).

You don’t even need to take the perfect straight-on picture. As the video below shows, this means you can augment hard to reach surfaces. Best of all, you can share those models with your friends.

A little bit more detail over Wonwoo Lee’s blog.

Weekly Linkfest – ISMAR Edition

Back from my short hiatus. As I wasn’t able to attend ISMAR, I had to follow the conference via the impressions of others:

  • If you hadn’t read it yet, you sould – Ori’s ISMAR summary: “Top 10 tidbits reshaping the augmented reality industry“. I’ve found his sixth bullet point, the shortest of them all, the most interesting. Microsoft is pursuing augmented reality, and they have a plan. Also check out Ori’s impressions from the Mobile Magic Wand seminar.
  • By far the most numerous reports come from Gail Carmichael who covered rather extensively the “Falling in Love with Learning” workshop (part two and three). She also had a post on the Handheld AR Games workshop, and a post covering a bunch of ISMAR papers that revolve around human factors and user interfaces (which is my favorite, touching on some surprising results). Gail also made a video summary of some of the demos presented.
  • Thomas Carpenter had an excellent review of the head mounted displays presented at the conference. Above all, it’s Tom’s enthusiasm that makes me feel depressed that I missed ISMAR.
  • And of course, Robert Rice shares his impressions from ISMAR. His post made me wonder whether there’s a place for another AR conference, dedicated to the industry (while ISMAR will mainly be for the academy). If augmented reality really takes off, I bet O’Reilly will set such a conference.

I’m pretty sure more posts will come later this week (I’m looking at you Tish), and I’ve probably missed a few that were already published, so feel free to add links in the comments. In the meanwhile, today we have not one, but three weekly videos, all coming from ISMAR.
First, here’s conference attendees playing with Sony’s EyePet, the mini-games look like a lot of fun:

Next is the winner of best demo award, Cambridge’s “ProFORMA: Probabilistic Feature-based On-line Rapid Model Acquisition“, showing, well, rapid 3d model acquisition:

Last is a demo for Carnegie Mellon’s “Dynamic Seethroughs: Synthesizing Hidden Views of Moving Objects” paper, presented at ISMAR, courtesy of New Scientist, showing a neat transparent wall trick that could one day be incorporated into cars. I cannot embed the video over here, but do check it out at the link above.

Have an excellent week!