Projected Augmentations

Maybe you are sick of iPhone or android augmentations for the moment? I can definitely relate, since they are eating up your battery and it not yet socially accepted to scan your RL chat buddy with your smartphone all the time. ;-) With HMDs out of consumer reach for the time being, there has always been an alternative to weak portable devices or glasses: projected augmented reality – or spatial augmented reality (SAR). Like Oliver Bimber I’m a big fan of this approach, since it really augments your real life objects without the need of special glasses, an extra screen to look up to or any kind of handheld device. The augmentation really appears where it should be: on top of the real furniture, etc.

I’ve posted a couple of examples before (e.g. on animating buildings or the augmented GO game (posted on’s facebook page last friday)), but here again is another great example of how to enhance a given existing scenario nicely with AR.

Samuel Jordan and Michael Greenspan from Queen’s U did a project on spatial AR showing a neat AR pool assist.

Of course this is another use case than a location based approach of the mobile devices. But I always enjoy these projector approaches, for the simplicity and the non-visibility of technology. In a controlled environment it is easy to augment – even without a marker in front of a webcam. So, if you play pool not often enough to remember the physics or rules, this could help you out a lot… but then again it’s just theory and hopefully the cushions work well to get the angle right.

I’d love to collect some more projects that are heading this direction of SAR. So, if you have something up your sleeve (or your University Lab) please let us know in the comments or by mail! I’d love to compile an overview of good spatial AR 2010 for you guys! :-)

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