Land Rover – Augmented Cars in a New Way

April 9, 2014

If you haven’t heard already, Land Rover is working on an augmented reality car hood concept that makes your hood transparent. The concept is simple: when begins tipping up (on a rising hill for instance) the hood or “bonnet” becomes transparent allowing the driver to see the space normally obscured by the hood at such an angle. If you’ve ever driven in San Francisco  (or any place where you seem to drive uphill more often than not) this is pretty big news. Applied to vehicles going off-road it can help you can avoid hidden trenches; applied to vehicles in an urban environment it can help you can avoid dangerous accidents.

 

Concept Video

Courtesy of Land Rover UK

Thinking outside of the proposed concept, imagine having similar augmented reality tech on your car’s blind spots or installed on slow-moving trucks. There’s a vast amount of potential this augmented reality concept could bring to the automotive industry, but its implementation may be difficult considering the rugged nature of Land Rovers and the camera’s location. Hopefully the concept turns into a reality, but we’ll have to wait and see.

Check out Land Rover’s concept video below:


Weekest Links – Mid March

March 17, 2014

Let’s find four-leaf AR clover

Gearing up to present at the AEC Hackathon. So many cool projects!

Metaio | Junaio Recap

An SAP Warehouse Concept for Error Detection in Warehouse Picking Processes [Augmented Blog]

SunHub – Explore the Sun’s Trajectory [Augmented Blog]

Augmented Reality Software Developer Takes B2B Sales Globally [Internet Retailer]

Augmented Reality Across the World

[AR]e We There Yet? [Storyboard]

Winnipeg Game Developers Creating a New Reality [CBC News]

Skully AR Helmets Win the Wearable Tech Award at SXSW 2014 [Augmented Reality Trends]

Augmented Reality is Blurring the Line Between Mobile Gaming and Reading [Mobile Commerce Press]

Make Friends with a Brazilian, Via Coke’s World Cup Mini-Bottles [Creativity Online]

Epson Showcases Its Augmented Reality Smart Glasses [MCAD Café]

This Is the Future of Retail: Robotic Fitting Rooms and Magic Augmented Reality Mirrors [TheNextWeb]

Measuring Human Motion with a Soft, Wearable Sensors Kit [Digital Journal]

Upcoming Events

Metaio at Laval Virtual [Laval Virtual]

InsideAR Tokyo, Register Today! [InsideAR]

Webinar- Junaio 5.3: The Basics [Register Here]

Pick of the Week

Coca-cola has all sorts of ways to make people smile. In preparation for this year’s World Cup, Coca-cola Brazil has released an app to help you make friends in Brazil using their Coke Minibottles. Create your own personal augmented reality avatar and share with the world. For more information check out the video below.


Technical Insight into Junaio’s Redesign – An Interview with Anton Fedosov

February 27, 2014

An interview done by Anett Gläsel-Maslov 

With the introduction of a new Junaio interface, we decided to take a moment and sit down with Anton Fedosov, Senior User Experience Designer, and see if we could get any information about the redesign.

What is Junaio for you?

Anton-Fedosov-2

Anton Fedosov: For me, Junaio is an Augmented Reality Laboratory, in a sense that is a window-to-the-world with the latest technology developed by our company. It has the top-notch detection and tracking technologies, advanced sensors and localization services in the consumer space. it is an important platform to test our ideas with our users ad to verify our concepts.

I believe one of the strongest advantages of Junaio is that you are able to identify any object in front of you and the app gives you, instantaneously, information about it. For searching visually is very helpful.

What problems did you face with the old design of Junaio?

AF: We tried to bring a new look to the location-based channels. Through our statics we see that our customers use Junaio as a tool to recognize different objects and to scan something. At the same time, every modern phone or tablet has embedded sensors like GPS, gyroscope and compass, whose use was lagging a bit behind.  We wanted to bring location-based experiences closer to users and this was the idea behind redesigning Junaio.

First of all, we tried to define problems in the former version. For instance, it was hard to read the points of interest (POIs) that were really far away. They were occluded and cluttered and in the majority of cases there was an information overload. It was also hard to interact with the POIs which were not in the first line. Human factors should be explored more in Augmented Reality scenarios. When you look through wearables like Google Glass it is almost impossible to read. With the redesign, we are trying to treat our data equally and improve the discoverability of POIs.

What are the advantages of the new design?

AF: The idea was to update the Junaio interface to make it flatter, lighter and easier for the users to understand possible interactions. The first important part was to change the hand posture, which was often a very unnatrual experience while holding a tablet or smartphone in mid-air. We improved on usability goals, making the Junaio interface easier to learn and more efficient to use. Now you see the annotated information about POI on the bottom of the screen  and the board acts as a signifier to discover interactions with POIs. For tablets this means that the thumbs remain the main trigger in the lower corners and for smartphones the experience is now even more natural.

AR browsers often suffer from a lack of focus and our brains are overloaded with information. With the redesign of Junaio we now only show up to five POIs at once. We have integrated a seamless discover mechanism for POIs. While moving the tablet or smartphone to the left or to the right, the POIs change. From now on we differentiate between the POIs that are focused or unfocused by the user. We tried different color variations and decided on a light color scheme for focused POIs and dark, translucent for unfocused ones. Also the pin itself takes the color of the icon associated with the given POI. E.g. we use color to define different categories. We also use the database of Foursquare to visualize venues where you can check in.

junaio2

The new Junaio is also optimized for wearables. At InsideAR we presented the first AR browser called “Junaio Mirage” which seamlessly integrates the new POI visualization (“Natural POI”). Depth-perception, the visual ability to perceive a world in three dimensions, is often used by artists and makes it possible to identify relative distance to an object. The POIs now have different sizes: the bigger the POI, the closer the object. We also use monocular cues such as lighting and shading and emphasize occlusion to provide depth information. We try to align the POIs to the shape of the earth and simulate the horizon. Parallax effect is also very important to mention: POIs rotate slightly based on your view angle and the models motion changes depending on the viewport. This makes the experience much more natural.

How does the redesign of Juanio affect developers?

AF: The redesign will affect location-based channels and therefore we prepared guidelines to make sure to accommodate the new POI representation scheme. These guidelines are now available in our developer portal and provide all the necessary information.

There you have it folks. For more information about the redesign head over to the Junaio Blog and to see the guidelines check out the developer portal. Junaio is free to download from Google Play and the iTunes store.


Leviathan – A Whale of a Tale

February 25, 2014

LEVIATHAN was originally inspired by the steampunk universe of the Scott Westerfeld novel of the same name- an alternate universe where the British empire genetically engineers wondrous whale-like beasts that soar amid hot-air-balloon jellyfish. Though fantastical and as far as one can get from consumer electronics, this was the back drop for what transpired at the 2014 CES Intel booth.

The Cinematic Art World Building Media Lab of the University of Southern California (USC) worked closely with Intel Labs, the innovation arm of the giant chipset company, to bring the world of Leviathan to Las Vegas in a narrative-driven experience that no visitor would forget.

CES attendees and visitors to the Intel Booth were treated to daily shows were they could watch a digital story unfold before them. Starting on the main screen, the giant Leviathan “whale” would swim through the sky, only to turn and head directly for the foreground of the video screen. Visitors were instructed to hold up the Intel Ultrabooks that had been passed out to them and watch as the creature emerged from the video screen and proceeded to drift slowly over the entire audience.

leviathan1

Unlike any other augmented reality experience, every single visitor with an Ultrabook was viewing the same exact content but from their own relative position. It was as if a portal had opened into a different universe, accessible only through the wonder of the participants and the mysterious magic of emerging technology.

It’s clear from Intel’s press release that this is exactly the kind of effect they want to bring consumers in the near future: LEVIATHAN is a new storyworld, powered by Intel technology and USC imagination. We, along with other explorers in the entertainment industry, are building these world and beginning to deliver them to audiences. In five years, will your living room become a portal to these new storyworlds? Will you be able to step inside these worlds like Alice stepping through the looking glass, and explore new kinds of stories. We think so.

Tawny Schlieski of Intel Labs, one of the researchers responsible for launching the experience, said “Intel is exploring this new narrative platform with tools that enable artists and technologists to collaborate, integrate, and create immersively from the earliest inception of story, while giving fans the ability to move and play naturally built virtual worlds.”

Metaio utilized cutting-edge sensor fusion and the latest tracking technology in order to bring this world to reality. In order for each Ultrabook to sync with the augmented content, Metaio developed indoor-position protocols that would enable a virtually seamless user experience.

leviathan3

According to Intel and USC, this is the first of “many storyworlds” the two organizations plan to build and install. Metaio looks forward to working with them again, and hopes to be part of something as unique and immersive as the LEVIATHAN experience in the near future.

For more information on upcoming projects, check out http://digitalrim.org.


Weekest Links, Early February

February 3, 2014

Roses are red, violets are blue, AR is sweet, all thanks to you.

We don’t just change art, we augment it.

Metaio | Junaio recap

Digital Surrogates: Tele-travel & the Future of Long Distance Relationships (LDRs) [Dirrogate]

Metaio at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona: Win your free ticket now! [Augmented Blog]

Metaio to lead AR become the user interface tech of the future [webrazzi]

DLD Conference and Metaio present interactive Museum Tour [Metaio]

Metaio Augmented Reality Solutions Now Available with Education Discounts at Studica.com [abc27]

Interesting Stuff Happening

Insurance companies could be the driver Google Glass needs [Live Insurance News]

Augmented reality launched on buses in Scotland [Mobile Commerce Press]

How Augmented Reality is Augmented Its Own Future [TheNextWeb]

Prototype lets users read the web in augmented reality [BBC News]

Augmented Reality Samsung Wearables are on their way [QR Code Press]

10 ways  how augmented reality can help retailers [Mobile Marketer]

End of the mechanic? BMW smart glasses make it possible for ANYONE to spot and fix a car engine fault just by looking at it. [Daily Mail]

Upcoming Events

Webinar: How Will Augmented Reality Change Business in 2014? with Trak Lord [Metaio Developer Portal]

Mobile World Congress – We’re going, and you’re coming with us! [Facebook]

Pick of the Week: Augmented Reality TV System

This would have came in handy during the Super Bowl. We’d love to interact with the web without changing a channel. Here’s a Mashable article and their Kickstarter page.


Weekest Links, 2014 Consumer Electronics Show Edition

January 15, 2014

CES and desist. 

Kobayashi-san of Epson

Kobayashi-san of Epson repairs the Mitsubishi Electric unit with augmented reality, and honor. 

We just came back from a riveting and harrowing 2014 Consumer Electronics Show (CES). For those of you who have never attended, CES is a never-ending journey consisting of smoke-filled casinos, endless lines, iPhone cases, and strange and confusing conference food. But the chance to see many of the gadgets and technology that will be released later this year along with 150,000 other attendees keeps us going back year after year. And, in addition to a strong showing by augmented reality and wearable technology, CES was full of innovations like smart home tech, drones, robots, 3-D printing and more.

CES 2014 Wrap-Up:

  • 10 Innovations from CES you should know about [Business Insider]
  • 2014 CES: Hardware Startups are big at Consumer Electronics Show [LA Times]
  • Android dominates Apple at CES 2014 [Business Insider]
  • 5 trends we noticed at CES [Digital Trends]
  • CES 2014: Auto Tech Developers Getting Into the Fast Lane [Time Warner NY1]
  • CES 2014 proves that wearables are still a work in progress [TechCrunch]
  • The story of CES as told by Tweeted cries for help [Digiday]

Augmented Reality @ CES:

  • CES: Wearables break out all over the body [USA Today]
  • CES 2014: Best in Show [ZDNet]
  • Epson introduces new Moverio glasses with head-motion tracking and camera [engadget]
  • Metaio leads next-generation augmented reality on wearables at CES 2014 [blog]
  • Augmented Reality smart-glasses impress at CES 2014 [Mobile Marketing Watch]
  • Wearables with augmented reality are mind-blowing – and an ethical nightmare [CNET]
  • Metaio integrates 3-D augmented reality into Intel RealSense SDK [blog]

Upcoming Events

  • Back to Barcelona for Mobile World Congress 2014! Metaio will be in the App Planet once again- stay tuned for more!
  • South By Southwest Interactive 2014, Metaio’s Trak Lord will speak on a panel entitled “DIY Everything with In-Car Augmented Reality” [panel info]

Pick of CES: The AirDroid Pocket Drone

Yes, this is exactly what it sounds like. There’s still time to fund these guys on their Kickstarter page, but check out this video from the CES Expo floor.


Post-Thanksgiving Weekest Links

December 2, 2013

So long, and thanks for all the tryptophan. 

Mirage: illusions of grandeur.

Metaio | Junaio Recap

  • Metaio CEO Thomas Alt discusses augmented reality for smartwatches, Google Glass and more [TechCrunch]
  • Junaio featured on US TV Channel ABC 6 In Philadelphia through “Virtual View” [Junaio Blog]
  • Xcope – creating an immersive AR experience [Augmented Blog]
  • Satisfying consumers with Augmented Reality [Augmented Blog]
  • SCARLET: Interactive learning for augmented reality [Junaio Blog]
  • Enabling AR with stronger hardware[Augmented Blog]
  • Vanatur and Warner present AURYN’s augmented reality debut [Augmented Blog]
  • The new Metaio Creator – the perfect tool to optimize AR scenarios [Augmented Blog]
  • Cars, cars, and more cars – Junaio & Automotive augmented reality [Junaio Blog]

There are things that are happening

  • CastAR and the promise of augmented reality games [Gamasutra]
  • Apple Confirms Acquisition of 3-D Sensor Startup PrimeSense [AllThingsD]
  • Augmented Reality: General Electric meets Google Glass [Wired: Beyond the Beyond]
  • The “AR Rift” – Grad Student William Steptoe hacks the Oculus Rift into a 360 augmented reality machine – check it out [Project Website]
  • Visionary – Google Glass moves from concept to clinical care [Forbes]
  • Epic Google Glass Douchebaggery 101 [VentureBeat]
  • Current TV Founder Michael Rosenblum writes of his first two days with Google Glass [Huffington Post]
  • Seattle restaurant boots Glass-wearing patron [PCMag]

Events

  • Catch Metaio at the APPNATION V “Garage”, December 4 at the Moscone Center in San Francisco, CA [event site]
  • Going to the 2014 CES in Las Vegas? Don’t miss Metaio CEO Thomas Alt’s panel, “Augmented Reality: Next Big Thing or Information Overload?” [link]

Pick of the week: Augmented Reality Super Mario [Kotaku]

No, it’s not real. Yes, we wish it were. No, not really possible with current technology. But still fun to watch.


Metaio CEO Thomas Alt Discusses Augmented Reality For Smartwatches, Google Glass And More

November 26, 2013

Trak:

Today in TechCrunch, Metaio CEO Thomas Alt sits down with Jay Donovan to discuss the state of augmented reality and wearable devices. Read on and learn all about the exciting announcements and developments that have happened since InsideAR 2013!

Originally posted on TechCrunch:

Augmented Reality pioneers Metaio hardly qualify as a startup these days (being incorporated since 2003 and funded by a stream of project work from the likes of Volkswagen and IKEA), but they behave very much like a startup and are constantly inventing new systems for their considerable augmented reality SDK.

Many of their yearly announcements come from an annual event called insideAR that they host in their hometown of Munich, Germany.

This year there were many announcements. Everything from their new “Edge-Based Tracking” methodology to the new augmented reality browser they built for Google Glass called Junaio Mirage. The event took place in October, but I recently had a chance to speak with Metaio CEO Thomas Alt and discuss some of these announcements in greater detail along with his viewpoint on the general state of augmented reality today. You can read the interview below (or just skip to the…

View original 1,882 more words


Enabling Augmented Reality with Stronger Hardware – A Review from InsideAR 2013

November 22, 2013
Metaio augmented reality hardware, AREngine

Power Overwhelming

Before we continue our series of reviews from InsideAR 2013 we have a question for you: what allows always on, always augmented? Powerful Hardware! Take a seat and watch as Neil Trevett of NVIDIA, Ofri Wechsler of Intel, Paul Evans of Imagination Technologies, Deborah Meduna of Sensor Platforms and Markus Tremmel of Metaio give their impressions on the future of augmented reality hardware.

Neil Trevett, NVIDIA: Silicon Innovation and APIs for Mobile Augmented Reality

Neil has spent over thirty years in the 3-D graphics industry and is currently responsible for driving the apps ecosystem on NVIDIA Tegra mobile devices. Neil is also the elected President of the Khronos Group where he initiated the Open GL ES standard, helped create the WebGL initiative and chairs the OpenCL and EGL working groups. Khronos is defining open, international standards for advanced compute, graphics, camera, vision and sensor processing on a wide range of mobile, embedded and desktop systems – many of which will for the foundation for accelerated Augmented Reality applications.

Ofri Wechsler, Intel: AR Acceleration – Challenges and Opportunities

Ofri Wechsler joined Intel in 1988 and served in many architecture related roles throughout the recent 25 years. Until 3 years ago, Ofri served as the architecture lead of Intel’s Israel Design Center and was responsible for defining and delivering the architecture of many successful products such as Intel’s first mobile CPU (code named Centrino), Intel’s first dual core processor (Yonah), Intel’s first converged server-mobile architecture (Intel’s Core™), Intel’s first integrated GFX CPU (code named Sandy Bridge) and many others. 3 years ago, when Intel formed the Visual and Parallel Group Ofri transitioned to lead VPG architecture focusing on media, imaging, computer vision and high performance computing. The recent Haswell and IvyBridge products are a great demonstration of Intel’s capabilities in the media and imaging space. Ofri is working closely with the Mobile Computing Group to make Intel’s media, imaging and computer vision solutions are optimized for mobile usage.

Paul Evans, Imagination Technologies: Improving the Augmented Reality Experience

Paul Evans joined Imagination Technologies in January 2012 as the Business Development Manager responsible for the CPU division and Cloud Services. Prior to joining Imagination, Paul worked for Altera Corporation for 11 years, most recently as the Senior Marketing Product Line Manager for Altera’s mid-range Arria family FPGA series. Prior to Altera, Paul acted as Technical Services Manager for Ometron Ltd. where he established Ometron’s technical services department. Paul has also held engineering positions at Image Automation Inc. and Smiths Inudstries Ltd. He holds a BEng in digital electronic engineering from the University of Kent at Canterbury in England.

Deborah Meduna, Sensor Platforms: Integrating Pedestrian Dead Reckoning with Computer Vision Localization

Deborah Meduna is the lead engineer of context-aware and localization algorithms in the Sensor Platform‘s FreeMotion™ Library. Prior to joining Sensor Platforms, she developed terrain based localization algorithms for her doctoral research. Using this work, she enabled beacon-free navigation capabilities on sensor limited and computationally constrained autonomous underwater vehicles at the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute. She holds a Ph.D. and M.S in Aeronautics & Astronautics from Stanford University and a B.S. in Engineering from Harvey Mudd College. This presentation shows the results from fusing PDR from the Senor Platform’s FreeMotion™ Library with a computer vision engine on a standard Android device. The combination of these sub-systems increase accuracy compared to vision-based localization alone, especially where the vision system loses track due to camera occlusion (e.g. the device is in a pocket) or from rapid device motions. In addition, the vision system can assist PDR when it loses track due to an absence of steps.

Some crazy stuff, right? Stay tuned for more InsideAR 2013 reviews or check out our Youtube channel for the complete collection.


Weekest Links November 11, 2013

November 11, 2013

Note from the editor: As much as I love puns and defunct British game shows, I’ll be renaming “Weekest Links” in the near future. 

LeVar Burton [Geordi!] on Google Glass: “It disturbed me.” [engadget

Metaio | Junaio Recap

  • Augmented Reality has changed the gaming universe [Augmented Reality Trends]
  • The Metaio Creator 3.0: A user’s experience [blog]
  • Xcope: Virtual & Augmented Reality Headset [Kickstarter]
  • Brendan Scully talks about how AR will revolutionalize maintenance and information transfer [video]

There are things that are happening

  • Smartphones + Smart Glasses: Augmented Reality to jump 333% by 2018 [VentureBeat]
  • Google Glass second-hand sales no longer disabled [SlashGear]
  • Six new technologies set to lift off in 2014 [StartupSmart]
  • Augmented Reality projection turns windshield into navigation screen [PSFK]
  • Google’s augmented reality game Ingress is coming to all Android owners next month [FastCompany]

Events

  • Did you miss InsideAR 2013? Check out photos from the event and catch up on what you missed! [photos]
  • All the InsideAR presentations from Day 1 and Day 2 are available on Metaio’s YouTube page [youtube.com/metaioAR]

Pick of the week: Blow Up Traffic App

I’m sure some of you out there appreciate this. I’m looking at you, people who drive in Connecticut.


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