ISMAR – Enjoy your physics class again! Even more demos.

Today, I’d just want to follow up quickly (damn these days without time!) with two more demos from ISMAR 2011 in Basel. Next week I’ll conclude the demos here with a great mixed reality finish!

Augmenting Magnetic Field Lines for School Experiments

ISMAR11 - Fotos (C) Tobias Kammann

The German university of Bonn/Rhein/Sieg had the perfect educational augmented reality demo at ISMAR, where everybody just had to say: “yeah, that’s what AR is for and where AR can make the difference!”. Where metaio’s LEGO-demo is one of the best examples for industry/shops, this first demonstrator is the one for the field of education!

“We present a system for interactive magnetic field simulation in an AR-setup. The aim of this work is to investigate how AR technology can help to develop a better understanding of the concept of fields and field lines and their relationship to the magnetic forces in typical school experiments. The haptic feedback is provided by real magnets that are optically tracked. In a stereo video see-through head-mounted display, the magnets are augmented with the dynamically computed field lines.”

ISMAR11 - Fotos (C) Tobias Kammann

The magnetic field lines chance accordingly to the positions and interactions of the two (real) magnets. They are not fake, and so you even get haptic feedback (holding them) and force feedback (they actually attract and push off). It’s not really a huge success to overlay e.g. a 3D globe onto a 2D world map as a magic book (while the actual real-world globe is covered in dust in the back of the room)… but to show physical “invisible” behaviour in real-time in your view is a great interactive and immersed way of learning! I blogged on educational AR with good and real interaction between real and virtual objects before. It’s just so crucial to have a good physical interaction. This demo gives another great use case, so I just loved it and hope we will see further results from their research group!


ISMAR11 - Fotos (C) Tobias Kammann

The second demo for today is about 3D real-time reconstruction and tracking. A coarse model of the real world was recreated using a mono-camera from a tablet device (during run-time). This way they could make the virtual object (the stuffed pink bear to say) interact with the real world (and even fall/hide behind the couch). :-) The reconstructed poly model was rather rough, but shows great possibilities to help AR with mixing the realities:

“In this demo, we will demonstrate our AR technology, named SmartAR, on mobile devices. SmartAR has two main features, object recognition capability and 3D space recognition capability which is based on a single camera SLAM, and is notably fast and robust enough for various AR applications on mobile devices such as smart phones, tablets and game consoles.”

While the minimal game (you could even interact with another pad-user moving around his or her pet animal) was just a quick demo to show the functionality, I think the reconstruction part will have another big impact and it’s a good proof to see, that it is already possible with mobile devices (not yet including structured light Kinect options or other more advanced approaches). Cool!

Have a great weekend!

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