Wednesday 16 December 2009

Washington Post: "Google phone would break industry model"

The advent of the Android-based Google phone "Nexus One"

Google has tested their first mobile phone, "Nexus One," through their employees.

The appearance of an advanced mobile device this year has led to an outpouring of mobile augmented reality applications.

So it is very interesting to hear that Google is going to launch their first mobile phone, "Nexus One."

Here is an interesting news article from the Washington Post about the new Google phone. It compares the policies of iPhone and Google phone to the OS battle between IBM and Apple in the 1980s.

The full detail article is here.
The image from here.

Monday 14 December 2009

Augmented reality games

Since augmented reality technology became widespread, one of the most active industries in using augmented reality technology has been the game industry.

The game industry is less affected by the current technical limitations of augmented reality.

In order to use augmented reality in real life, we need to superimporse virtual objects on the real world with precision. A built-in GPS and digital compass help us determine the correct locations where virtual objects should be placed. However, GPS has a margin of error in location (most built-in GPS units that we use in our smart phones have an average margin of error of 10m ~ few hundred meters ) and you can't use GPS indoors.

On the other hand, the interface in most augmented reality game applications is the situation (or environment) programmed under the scenario that the provider designed.

Here are several augmented reality games:

1. Pac man

2. Invizimals

3. Eye Pet

Thursday 10 December 2009

My 3 favorite mobile augmented reality applications

Since the iPhone 3GS and Android platform mobile phones have appeared, a lot of mobile augmented reality application have launched. These include LBS (Location-Based Service) mobile augmented reality applications, games and so on.

I have tried some of these applications and here are my three favorite mobile augmented reality applications so far. This is only my personal opinion, and I only chose applications which are related to GIS or LBS.

1. Layar
Layar is a platform for mobile augmented reality. The great thing about this platform you can make your own augmented reality application on your Android phone and your iPhone.
In order to do this you need to get a developerID and a developer Key from Layar. I think Layar will help to diffuse the usage of augmented reality in the mobile world.
The video clip is here

2. Acrossair's Nearest tube
Acrossair's Nearest tube is one of the first augmented reality applications on the iPhone. The reason I like this application is that the user interface is very simple and easy. I think that is the most important factor if an application is to become widely used. In addition, this application has showed how we can use augmented reality with GIS (or LBS) in the first stage of mobile augmented reality.
However, producing only directions and distance is not enough for real-life usage. I have used this application only once since I downloaded it several months ago, but it does a great job of showing us what the future can hold when we combine augmented reality with GIS and LBS.
The video clip is here

3.WIKITUDE Drive - AR Navigation
AR Navigation is the best application when it comes to combining GIS with augmented reality. It also features world-wide coverage. In order to improve this application in the future, it could be fused with other technologies. For example, as display technology has improved there have been several attempts to use a car's windshield as a display material. If we can use this transparent display to provide information to a driver, we can have a significantly safer driving environment. And in order to enhance the accuracy of figure information, image recognition and detection technology should be improved.
The video clip is here

Wednesday 9 December 2009

An amazing image recognition technology - Google Goggles

Since I began to study augmented reality, I have recognized that image recognition and image detection are significant technologies that can enhance locating accuracy.
Now Google has introduced an application (a new searching method) called Google Goggles. It recognizes the image of a book's front page, the text of business cards, and even buildings. In the cases of books and buldings, Google Goggles shows further information about those objects. In addition, it directly extracts text from business cards (name, phone number, etc.)

Tuesday 1 December 2009

UrbanDiary on Layar

Another cool video clip made by Fabian Neuhaus who is a Ph.D. student at CASA (Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis) at UCL.
This is a part of his research on "Urban Diary - The Spatial Narrative of Everyday Life" Urban Diary focuses on the cycles and rhythms in the urban environment.
In this video he shows people's tracks using Layar which is an augmented reality platform.

Tuesday 22 September 2009

Junaio - New augmented reality platfrom for iPhone

One of augmented reality companies, Metaio is going to launch a new augmented reality platform for iPhone, Junaio on 2nd November.
According to their press information, Junaio will allow users to see location-based content through the display of a mobile device, which is most mobile augmented reality applications' basic concept. The expect contents on Junaio will be trace, messages or objects and visually interact with user's friends or anyone else in the world. More features will be released soon after, including capabilities on the Android and Symbian platforms.

Wednesday 2 September 2009

Wikitude Drive – AR Navigation System

Mobilizy GmbH has released a new Android based augmented reality car navigation system. According to the website, this application has world wide coverage. However, your mobile device must be connected to a mobile internet network while you are using it, because this application is designed to get data in realtime from the internet.

Saturday 29 August 2009

London Bus 3.0 Augmented Reality app for iPhone 3GS

This is the bus version of augmented reality application which leads you to the nearest bus stops in London. This application called the London Bus 3.0 app for iPhone provides the nearest bus stops and POI(Point Of Interest) Elements located at a distance less than 1km (0,621miles). This application will be very useful not only londoners but also travelers from overseas. Becuase of this application provides multi languages such as English, French, Spanish, Deutsch and Japanese.
More information of this applicaton is here.

Wednesday 26 August 2009

Augmented Reality: Augmented Traffic Views

This augmented reality application shows how augmented reality can be used for ITS (Intelligent Transportation Systems) in contrast to the last few augmented reality applications, which give you information about restaurants and buidlings. The augmented traffic views application shows you current traffic scenes from traffic monitoring cameras. The application augments points of traffic monitoring cameras which are located near you. It basically works with GPS and a digital compass. According to the video clip it displays traffic monitoring camera scenes remarkably fast.

Thursday 20 August 2009

SREngine : Augmented Reality Engine for iPhone

SREngine is a software engine which recognizes static scenes of architecture, such as streets, posters, rooms, and so on. SREengine stands for Scene Recognition Engine. Here is how this engine works:
while your iPhone camera is facing a builing as an SRengine client or user, SREngine recognizes the image and gives you information about the building from the Server. The engine can recognize static scenes only and it cannot recognize simple scenes such as a solid white wall. But it looks like it works very well on iPhone.

SREngine for iPhone Prototype from Sein on Vimeo.

Wednesday 19 August 2009

London Small World - Timelapse

This cool timelapse animation is made by Fabian Neuhaus who is a Ph.D. student at CASA (Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis) at UCL.
He spent two days taking these pictures at several places(i.e Gordon Square, the Millennium Bridge etc) in London.
Enjoy this cool video.

London Small World from urbanTick on Vimeo.

Monday 17 August 2009

GraffitiGeo : iPhone Augmented Reality app for restaurant reputations.

These days, people rely on reputation websites, or something like the Michelin guide, when they choose a restaurant. Especially, when you go somewhere on vacation, reputation websites can help you a lot to choose a decent restaurant for your perfect holliday. Now you can be helped to find a good restaurant through an iPhone AR application.
A company called GraffitiGeo is going to launch a new AR application for iPhone. This application can tell you the reputation of the restaurant your iPhone is displaying.

Sunday 16 August 2009

Acrossair browser - AR for your local restaurants, estate agents etc.

Acrossair, the UK Augmented Reality application company which launched the nearest tube station augmented reality application has released a new AR application.

This application shows your local restaurants, properties, theatres and so on in AR view. In addition, you can find the places that you choose from this application through Google maps. This application works only on iPhone.

Tuesday 11 August 2009

Introducing Augmented Reality from BBC

This video clip is about introducing Augmented Reality and how Augmented Reality Application works on mobile device. BBC interviewed the person who is the founder of the UK based AR application company which launched "The nearest tube station AR application" few weeks ago. According to this interview we can expect more AR applications before the Christmas.

The original BBC article is here .

Augmented reality meets scavenger hunt with GeoBeagle, Wikitude

This is another Android based Augmented Reality application which is made by U.K.-based developer Nicholas Tollervey. It is Augmented Reality version of treasure hunting game. I found this this post from the Venturebeat website.
The more detail information about this application here.

Geocaching, an outdoor game where players use GPS on mobile devices to leave or track down hidden packages, may be about to get a bit easier.

Instead of relying on GPS coordinates and written clues to find packages, players can see visual markers on an Android phone’s viewfinder thanks to an augmented reality project by U.K.-based developer Nicholas Tollervey. It’s one of augmented reality’s newest uses after two companies released application programming interfaces last month to encourage experimentation. Augmented reality is a young field that lets you overlay information or graphics in a viewfinder. It was considered more of an academic pursuit until smartphones opened the door to potential everyday use.

Tollervey took data from GeoBeagle, a free, open-source application for Google’s Android platform and marked it up in the Wikitude browser. Wikitude is an augmented reality browser from Austrian company Mobilizy. When it launched last year, it was a travel guide that let you hold up your Android phone’s viewfinder and see Wikipedia articles tagged to places around you. (See examples here.)

Since then, the company and its Dutch rival, SPRXMobile, have opened up APIs and are competing to lure independent developers to build apps. So the space could be set to balloon with lots of interesting commercial applications. Think restaurant recommendations, real estate listings, or search queries that could be launched directly from your phone’s viewfinder.

Monday 10 August 2009

A review of AR-media™ Plugin

I tried to use AR-media™ Plugin which is made by the Development Lab of Inglobe Technologies, an Italian company specializing in the development of Augmented Reality solutions. It is very quick and easy way to make an Augmented Reality scene on your screen.
In order to use AR-media™ Plugin you should have the Google SketchUp program which you can download at google . In addtion you can download a trial version of AR-media™ Plugin from here.
If you install the AR-media™ Plugin correctly you can see the AR-media™ Plugin button on your Google SketchUp program. And then you can simply generate a virtual object on your screen. In order to augmente a virtual object you need a paper tag which is provided by AR-media™ Plugin.

It is really easy and instantaneous. However, there is one shortcoming, which is that you can augment only one scene at a time.

Friday 31 July 2009

Microsoft sustainability

Since iPhone's remarkable hit on the mobile device market, new keywords such as "New User Interface", "Touch Screen," and "Haptic" have become new paradigms on most markets. Mega pixels and MP3 player functions were big issues on the mobile phone market just a few years ago. However, most major mobile phone providers emphasize their new user interface, especially interfaces using 3-D and touch functions. In addition, as pervasive computing and Ubiquitous computing has appeared, the demand for new user interfaces and new display technologies has increased enormously.
On the other hand, as display technology has been developed we begin to rebel against the restraint imposed by monitors.

This video clip shows our new life with new display technologies and new interfaces. To keep pace with the times, we encounter new formats of GIS data such as portable light. 
(From :

Thursday 9 July 2009

Augmented Reality GPS Tour Video

This video was recorded around the middle of 2007. It is a HMD (Head Mounted Display) based Augmented Reality application. The one big benefit of HMD AR is total immersion as contrasted with Monitor-Based AR.

Tuesday 7 July 2009

Nearest Tube iPhone App Adds Digital Directions to Your Surroundings [IPhone Apps]

iPhone 3GS only: The Nearest Tube iPhone app uses the iPhone 3GS's newly-adequate camera to show the direction of the nearest tube station by adding directional arrows to a real-time "video" you take of your surroundings. Seriously, check this out.

AcrossAir, the makers of the app, claim it as one of the first "augmented reality" apps for the iPhone, meaning it adds digital signs to a real-time video. It only supports the London Underground for now, and is currently being approved by Apple, but we could definitely see this coming in handy for most any major city. Can we humbly request a version for Chicago, city of the miles-apart subway stations? We'll let you know when it's eventually approved and released into the App Store. (From

Thursday 2 July 2009

Pattie Maes demos the Sixth Sense

This demo, from Pattie Maes' lab at MIT (and spearheaded by her student Pranav Mistry), was the buzz of TED2009. Sixth Sense is a wearable device with a projection screen that paves the way for profound, data-rich interaction with our environment. Imagine Minority Report and then some. (Recorded in February 2009 in Long Beach, California. Duration: 08:42.) (From TED website :

Monday 29 June 2009

Interaction of Mobile Camera Devices with physical maps

This video clip shows another way to use Augmented Reality with Maps. The application augments POIs (Point Of Interest) on your mobile device screen when your mobile device displays a map.


WikEye is a mobile application which uses printed Maps as Magic Lense to access Wikipedia Content.

Traditional paper-based maps are still superior to their digital counterparts used on mobile devices in several ways. They provide high-resolution, large-scale information with zero power consumption. On the other hand digital maps provide personalized and dynamic information on request, but suffer from small outer scales and low resolutions.
Combining the advantages of both, the “WikEye” project uses mobile camera devices (such as the Nokia N95) as a map-referenced magic lens that displays georeferenced information on top of the physical map.
In the WikEye project georeferenced Wikipedia content is made accessible by moving a camera phone over the map. The live camera image of the map is enhanced by graphical overlays and Wikipedia content.

Friday 19 June 2009

Augmented reality android app: Wikitude

This is the one of the first augmented reality applcation for Android. It shows the POI(Point Of Interest) through your mobile device screen.
GPS, Digital Compass and Accelerometer were used to catch up your location and visual angle, and Image Recognition, Data Connection were used as well.

Thursday 18 June 2009

IBM’s ‘Seer’ Brings Augmented Reality to Wimbledon

IBM has unveiled an Android application designed to change the way tennis fans keep up to date with all the action going down at Wimbledon 2009. The app called Seer features location-aware visualization built for the T-Mobile G1. Using augmented reality, Seer works as a real-time guide and interactive map and provides users up to the second scores. Like other augmented reality apps Seer Android Beta uses the camera and lays content and map tools right on top.

Everything from tennis matches to dining and points of interest will be plotted using the combination of GPS, camera, compass. Users get a ‘heads up display’ to so they can see exactly what it is they are looking at. One added feature that other AR apps don’t use is tying in live data. For instance if you point your G1 towards a tennis court, users not only get basic information like the court number, but also details about the current and subsequent matches.

These applications were designed with tennis fans in mind and add a whole new dimension to the event whether you are attending in person or sitting in your garden 5,000 miles away. I can see the incredible potential here to change the way people will engage with major sporting and other events both now and in the future, as the applications help address common challenges such as getting lost, encountering queues or momentarily missing some of the action. - Rob McCowen, Marketing Director at The AELTC.

IBM will be showing off the new app and giving demonstrations at Wimbledon.

Wednesday 17 June 2009

Augmented/Mediated Reality Concpets

This video shows how Augmented Reality changs human life style. Fusion of GIS, LBS, and Computer Vision(Augmented Reality) technologies could make our life totally different from now.

ARhrrrr! Augmented Reality Game

Using an SDK for NVIDIA's Tegra chipset, Georgia Tech and SCAD-Atlanta have teamed to design a new platform for gaming: Augmented Reality.

Taking props and backgrounds from the users perspective, using a camera and a 3D portable platform, Augmented Reality can take the future of the mobile device to a whole other level. Using a flat picture that resembles a map of a city center, Skittles and camera movement, Tegra' SDK platformed with GT's and SCAD-Atlanta's project game ARhrrrr, users can battle zombies in reality on the mobile device.

This will allow for users if produced publicly and on a massive scale, to bring objects in their environment and the items surrounding them, actively into the software they are using. This project will open and allow a much greater advancement for tomorrows portable tech and will greatly change what portable users do on their personal devices.

Although AR is currently only a concept, there are hopes that NVIDIA Tegra based devices are released and that production, sales and development for said devices are financially open to users on all levels.

Augmented Reality on your Mobile

Brightkite Augmented Reality from Brightkite on Vimeo.

The World’s First Augmented Reality Browser. Layar is a free application on your mobile phone which shows you what is around you by displaying real time digital information on top of reality through the camera of your mobile phone.
Layar will be available for the T-Mobile G1, HTC Magic and other Android phones in Android Market before July 1st 2009.

How do you use Layar?
By holding the phone in front of you like a camera information is displayed on top of the camera display view.
For all points of interest which are displayed on the screen, information is shown at the bottom of the screen.

What do you see in the screen?
On top of the camera image (displaying reality) Layar adds content layers. Layers are the equivalent of webpages in normal browsers. Just like there are thousands of websites there will be thousands of layers. One can easily switch layers by selecting another via the menu button, pressing the logobar or by swiping with your finger across the screen.
We offer companies the possibility to publish their own layer in our browser(through an API). Currently several companies have already signed up for Layar and will publish their own content in their branded layer soon. We will share with you soon which layers will be available in your country.

Features of Layar
Layar has some cool features. We have listed a couple of them below.
Switch layers easily
Radar widget to give you an overview
Logobar to indicate which layer is active
Link through to mobile websites
Integrated map view
Custom filters for each layers (like distance, category, search box)
Who is the team behind Layar?

Layar is developed by SPRXmobile. A Mobile Innovation Company run by Raimo van der Klein, Claire Boonstra & Maarten Lens-FitzGerald.

Tuesday 9 June 2009

Ubiquitous Geocontext

Wednesday 3 June 2009

How to develop an application for Android