Augmented Reality

Augmented Reality
March 24, 2015 thesigner

In the last decades we have witnessed a technological improvement at all levels with particular emphasis in hardware and mobile devices. These became increasingly lighter and cheaper, and transferred from the office to the car, to equipment and other utensils. The amount of (digital) information available in the environment has increased exponentially, requiring a technological response in order to improve and facilitate its access and assimilation. The concept of Augmented Reality acts as a bridge between real and digital inviting to new models of user interaction. The AR (Augmented Reality) incorporation is intended primarily to make systems more usable by decreasing the need of cognitive load inherent to their use.

Before the computers advent people used more natural interfaces in their daily lives, using essentially their senses. Rarely needed to interact with machines or push buttons.

Computers have brought a new process, more sophisticated, to interact with applications, but this interaction process is not natural because it uses abstract and symbolic associations, as such, requires appropriate training.

With the evolution of technology came an evolution in the interfaces, which became more complex.

For decades people had to adapt to machines although these were supposed to be at their service. With Technological developments in hardware, software and telecommunications came other interfaces using voice, touch, giving users the ability to access applications as if interacting with the real world, talking, walking or gesturing.

In an ideal context users shouldn’t need to perceive the existence of technology since it should be at their service in a transparent manner.

Originally included in Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality is today considered a major independent research. AR is not a virtual reality but a variation of this since it allows the user to “see” the real world with virtual objects superimposed or combined.

This way the user is not completely emerged within a virtual world, where he loses contact with what exists around him, but adds virtual elements to his reality. This is a supplement to the reality but not a substitute for it.

Augmented Reality aims to develop new paradigms of human-computer interaction with a focus on using mobile devices. Instead of presenting information on separate screens, the goal is to show it in the real world.

Augmented Reality blurs this way the separation between the real world and the user interface, making it an all-natural way, allowing the creation of new simple and usable interactions.

The future of Augmented Reality is clearly brilliant. This technology addresses the strengths of virtual reality and is not constrained by their weak points as the feasibility, cost and detachment from reality that immersion usually entails. The real environment is the “stage ” where all things happen. The reality is not represented or changed, only augmented with digital information.

In the near future augmented reality will increasingly be an integral part of our daily lives. Children will use it as a learning tool in schools. Consumers will use it to see how products will fit in their houses and even aid its installation / placement.

Thesign Augmented Reality is one of our favourite research and development fields.

Video source: Hidden Creative
Video source: Hidden Creative