Ever thought that you are travelling above Antartica or walking on The Great Wall of China or diving deep into The Pacific Ocean? What if you are flying? And what if it was real? Actually it is. And all thanks to Augmented Reality. So what is this so called “AUGMENTED REALITY”? It is an interactive experience of a real-world environment where the objects that reside in the real-world are “augmented” by computer-generated perceptual information, sometimes across multiple sensory modalities, including visual, auditory, haptic, somatosensory and olfactory. We may confuse our self with AR and VR. VR is Virtual Reality which is totally different from AR keeping the main concept same. Augmented Reality alters one’s ongoing perception of a real world environment, whereas Virtual Reality completely replaces the user’s real world environment with a simulated one. AR actually brings components of the digital world into a person’s perception of the real world by not only displaying data rather through the integration of immersive sensations that are perceived as natural parts of an environment. Simply saying, we can do those things we always dreamt of doing.
The first working AR system were invented in early 1990s starting with the Virtual Fixtures System developed at the U.S. Air Force’s Armstrong Laboratory in1992. Then AR was bought to the world commercial which was largely used in entertainment and gaming businesses whereas a prospect of using it in different sectors such as knowledge sharing, educating, management, organizing distant meeting etc.
The components needed to roam around AR world are: Processor, display, sensor and input devices. We need a powerful processor, a glass compatible of AR, HUD (head-up Display) etc. Tracking and networking system are to be added with it. As input speech recognition system has been used as well as gesture. Products which are trying to serve as controller of AR headsets include Wave by Seebright Inc. and Nimble by Intugine Technologies.
The sectors for implementing AR are huge. For example:
- We can use AR for emergency management of any meeting which can be joint from anywhere in this world.
- Can be used to facilitate Social interaction. An augmented reality social network framework called Talk2Me enables people to disseminate information and view others’ advertised information in an augmented reality way.
- Can used for industrial design which is quite handy for modern world.
- It already has a huge prospect in terms of video games.
- AR provides surgeons with patient monitoring data in the style of a fighter pilot’s heads-up display, and allows patient imaging records, including functional videos, to be accessed and overlaid.
- AR applications, running on handheld devices utilized as virtual reality headsets, can also digitalize human presence in space and provide a computer generated model of them, in a virtual space where they can interact and perform various actions.
- Once Flight training was one of the most risky job of all which is not anymore all thanks to AR because AR creates a real world perception in virtual world which helps soldiers in flight training without any risk.
- AR can be widely used in the realm of commerce which will be a lot prosperous.
For everything there is both blessed and cursed sides. And AR can’t be sided from that. Pokémon GO can be a perfect example as for it life is at risk. by a pair of researchers from Purdue University’s Krannert School of Management, says the game caused “a disproportionate increase in vehicular crashes and associated vehicular damage, personal injuries, and fatalities in the vicinity of locations, called PokéStops, where users can play the game while driving.” The increase in crashes attributable to the introduction of Pokémon GO is 145,632 with an associated increase in the number of injuries of 29,370 and an associated increase in the number of fatalities of 256 over the period of July 6, 2016, through November 30, 2016.” The authors valued those crashes and fatalities at between $2bn and $7.3 billion for the same period.
The concept of modern augmented reality depends on the ability of the device to record and analyze the environment in real time. Because of this, there are potential legal concerns over privacy. There exists the way of accessing the information that one should not readily possess about another person. This is accomplished through facial recognition technology. Assuming that AR automatically passes information about persons that the user sees, there could be anything seen from social media, criminal record, and marital status. And it is a huge negative point of AR. But by overall thinking it has been one of the most hyped and noteworthy invention of all time which can actually change the way of thinking about everything by siding its disadvantages as we all know everything has both heavenly and dark side.