Magic, Games, Education, and Live Coding at the Augmented Reality Meetup in NYC

Magic, games, education, even live AR coding – we had it all last night at the Augmented Reality Meetup NY (or as we fondly like to call it ARNY.)

51 AR enthusiasts showed up in an amazing location (Thanks Sophia!) – out of 211 registered members – but who’s counting…we are all about quality ;) What I like about this group is that it represents all walks of life: developers, gamers, attorneys, artists, journalists, magicians, even a police officer!

ARNY’s purpose is to help advance the business of Augmented Reality, by bringing together the best of AR with the best talent in NYC. And have fun while at it.

Thanks to Chris Grayson, the “revolution” was “televised” (aka live streamed)

In case you want to remotely take part in this meetup, or any other AR meetup around the world – there is a site for that: ARmeetup.org. (Last night wasn’t recorded due to a Ustream glitch)

Yours truly kicked off the evening with a recount of AR at GDC by the Numbers. Sony Move was the most exciting AR news at GDC.

Then, a fantastic lineup of speakers took the stage:

1) Alejandro Echeverría – Student at Engineering School in Chile, who came all the way from Chile just to be with us (seriously he’s a visiting student at NYU) – presented Games for learning with AR. I loved the simple yet memorable approach to use movement and augmented reality to teach kids about electricity.

2) Patrick O’Shaughnessey – Patched Reality – FLAR in Five: building a FLAR app “from scratch” (mostly) in five minutes. Patrick which is one of the most experienced AR developers out there received the bravery medal of the evening for demostrating live coding!

The feature presentation of the evening was next:

The man you’ve all been waiting for. He’s been traveling all over the world, blowing people’s mind with his AR magic show – and today he’s here, live at ARNY. Ladies and gentleman please welcome – Marco Tempest!

3) Marco Tempest – The highly anticipated Augmented Reality magician brought the house down.

See a live account of the show, along with a rare explanation of how it all works – in the video below:

4) Ohan Oda – Archemist – Augmented Reality Game with Goblin XNA

Last on on the program was another kind of magician, returning fresh from a demo at the game developer conference in San Francisco; he’s known for Goblin XNA – a development framework for AR applications for the Windows platform, and an avid AR game developer. This time, Ohan demonstrated his latest gravity-based AR game using Vuzix Goggles: Arble.

Here’s a video of a previous game with a similar mechanic.

UPDATE: Here’s a live video by ARNY member David Polinchock.

Next was my favorite part – high energy conversations in smaller teams. That’s where the true magic happens. Free beer courtesy of Topp didn’t hurt at all; the discussions went on late into the night.

UPDATE: Check out live commentary by AR aficionado Dan Romescu – all the way from Germany.

But wait, there is more!

Have you registered to the Augmented Reality Event (ARE 2010 in 2-3 June, 2010 – Santa Clara, CA)?

You are in luck.

Here is a discount code for the first 100 folks to register to the event (before the end of March). Go to the registration page, type in code AR245 and you’ll be asked to pay only $245 for 2 full days of AR goodness.

Watching AR prophet Bruce Sterling, and gaming legend Will Wright deliver keynotes for this price – is a magnificent steal. And on top, participating in more than 30 talks by AR industry leaders will turn these $254 into your best investment of the year ;)

Augmented Reality has Gained Gravity

Here’s the latest AR dish from Ohan Oda and Steve Feiner at Columbia University‘s Computer Graphics and User Interfaces Lab: an augmented reality marble game that uses gravity as a game controller. No iPhone required.

See the video and recipe after the jump.

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A New Platform for The Next Generation of Augmented Reality Games

Today we are celebrating!

Ohan Oda from Columbia University in New York just released his new version of Goblin XNA. Kudos!

Goblin XNA is a development framework for Augmented Reality apps with a focus on games. It is based on Microsoft’s popular XNA Game Studio 2.0 that enables game developers to be successful on Microsoft gaming platforms (i.e. PC, Xbox, Win Mobile)

Ohan built it as a one man show (under the supervision of Steven Feiner and with help from his lab colleagues) as part of his PhD research project.

Has anyone tried it so far?

Ohan says he just released it to the public, so as of now, only he and his lab members have. However, the framework was used in 3DUI and Augmented Reality course, so approximately 60 students have used it so far.

What can you do with it?

Check out these demos created with the framework:

AR Racing Game

AR Electronic Field Guide

Want more? Check out the AR Domino on MSDN.

Here is the announcement in Ohan’s own words

We would like to inform you that Goblin XNA is finally released, and
it’s downloadable from http://www.codeplex.com/goblinxna .

We apologize for those of you who waited very long (some of you
probably waited for almost a year).

Source code, API documentation, user manual, installation guide,
tutorials, and a relatively large-sized project (AR domino game) is
included with the release.

For questions and bug reports, Please do NOT email me directly, but
instead, please post your questions and bug reports through Codeplex.
I won’t be able to guarantee quick response since I’m the only
developer of Goblin XNA, but I will try my best to answer your
questions and fix bugs.

Thanks
Ohan

Ohan will be working on the framework for his research at Columbia for another couple of years – so until then you can count on him to continuously update the framework for both bug fixes and new feature additions.

Try it and show us what kind of reality experiences you can build.