Showing posts with the label iphone

Sphero - a new type of game experience

Last night during a WWDC party I got a first hand look at Sphero and one of its augmented reality applications. Sphero, made by Colorado based Orbotix, is a little plastic LED-lit orb that can be controlled using a number of smart phone applications. Users can control this $129 dollar 'smart toy' either via a phone's touchscreen or with gestures, using the handset's accelerometer.

Although there are not many applications for Sphero yet, a little less than a dozen, more will be released over the next month (thanks Chuck). I can quickly imagine a variety of fun uses for such a toy. It is currently only available on iOS with Android coming soon. Seems I now have a new thing I need to hack on.

Shopping around for uses with Augmented Reality

So I was recently exposed to the post Augmented Reality Finds a Place to Fit: Shopping! The article states, "Two recent AR implementations show promise, however, by adding value and actually demonstrating how useful the technology can be." The author of the post is referring to Converse's Sampler application for AppleiOS devices and a TryOnBathingSuit application created by ImmediaC. With such an endorsement, I had to check these apps out.

Review: Converse's Sampler application
Perhaps I am biased as I work with the technology and know what is possible with it, but I am not impressed with this application at all. Sure once I activate the app I can see how the sneaker will look on my foot with a superimposed image, but I can see how a sneaker will look on my coffee cup or anything else, as it is just that, a superimposed image. It floats in the middle of the live camera feed. There isn't any form of tracking or foot recognition. I wouldn't say FAIL on this app,…

A glance @ '09 and a look ahead.

So it's 2010! The '00s are over and one doesn't need to be a historian from the future to see the Web has changed humanity and the world in the past decade in a way we are still trying to understand. There is a whole generation now that only knows life with the Internet, web2.0 is evolving, social networks are the new digital countries, cyber life to a growing number is as important as the real, and ignorance has become an option as people are able to connect, share, and access information about anything at the click of a button.
For ten years I have experienced technology ever increasing in our daily routines and watched 3D on the Web become more common place with multi-user environments, games, digital globes, and more. Google Earth, Second Life, World of Warcraft, and the like have made this an exciting past decade of web3D and other mixed reality technologies for sure. To keep this post short, let's look at some of the highlights from the previous year.
Augmented Rea…

Augment Our Reality: AR Dev Camp

Augmented reality has become quite the buzz word recently since mobile apps and print marketing are increasing the implementation of the technology to the mainstream. Well documented open source toolkits are allowing developers to create a swarm of AR applications that bring this way of accessing information to everything from your Android/iPhone to your Flash-based website.

As with any emerging tech, there comes the time that the community (developers, hobbyist, entrepreneurs, businesses, academia, governments) has to come together to address and solve the issues needed to further advance the technology. So on December 5, 2009 was the first ever Augmented Reality Developer Camp held at the HackerDojo in Mountain View, California.
"After nearly 20 years in the research labs, Augmented Reality is taking shape as one of the next major waves of Internet innovation, overlaying and infusing the physical world with digital media, information, and experiences. We believe AR must be fundam…

A quick response to QR and Data Matrix code.

So lately I have been seeing more Data Matrix and QR code around. Data Matrix and QR code is a 2D barcode consisting of black and white "cells" or modules arranged in either a square or rectangular pattern that represent encoded information. Unlike augmented reality markers, data matrix code only represents text or raw data.

Data Matrix (DM) symbols are rectangular in shape and usually square, they are made of cells: little elements that represent bits. Depending on the situation a "light" module is a 0 and a "dark" module is a 1, or vice versa. Every Data Matrix is composed of two solid adjacent borders in an "L" shape (called the "finder pattern") and two other borders consisting of alternating dark and light "cells" or modules (called the "timing pattern"). Within these borders are rows and columns of cells encoding information. The finder pattern is used to locate and orient the symbol while the timing pattern pr…

iPhone Developer Camp 3

This past weekend I attended my first iPhone Developer Camp. This year was the third annual iPhone Developer Camp, IDC3, which was developers, UI designers, testers, and other that came to share ideas, collaborate, and make some pretty cool apps. The event encourages individuals at all levels to continue to stretch the development boundaries of the iPhone and iPod touch.

Held in Sunnyvale at Yahoo's main campus, the main focus of the event seemed to be the Hackathon competition. Saturday and Sunday were nothing but people with heads down on computers as the Hackathon is an exhibition of attendee and those joining via web projects and was a showcase of some of the best iPhone and iTouch innovators.

The event had great keynotes and even a musical guest BT who performed Friday night. He came back on Saturday to speak about his app called Sonifi. I have been playing with this $4.99 music mixing app and it is fun. It needs more songs as it only comes with one, but BT announced that m…

3D My TV Please

So every now and then we here at the office do get some pretty awesome toys, er... research hardware for our projects. Our latest addition has got to be one of the most amazing products I have seen in a while. It is a custom 47" Spatial View 3D Monitor. This 3D monitor brings images, videos, and 3D objects out of the screen without the need for special 3D glasses.

Hardware-wise this monitor is a modified top of the line LG television with a parallax barrier screen attached to the front of it. Hook it up to a computer with a relatively new graphics card, install the Spatial View software, and all is ready to go. The software is Power Player 3.0, Spatial View's own player for displaying videos, images, and other content in 3D. A good amount of examples come with the software, but to create your own content, videos and images have to be created a certain way for the full coming out of the screen 3D effect.

The best feature (drum roll) is that Power Player 3.0 supports the web3D …

Planet 9 zaps planet Earth with mixed reality Raygun

Founded in 1991, Planet 9 was one of the Internets' first 3D content providers. Their mission is "building the next generation of data and software to bring 3D city interfaces to applications." Led by architect turned 3D web CEO David Colleen, Planet 9 is a long time leader in digital city creation and cutting edge applications.

Planet 9's latest innovation is RayGun™. RayGun is the first application to provide what David calls "Social Navigation". I got the chance to meet with David Colleen to ask him some questions about this first 2D and 3D geo-aware social network.

Originally developed for Boeing and the US Army, RayGun combines the technologies of GPS tracking, route finding, friend finding and social networking functions all within a state of the art 3D interface. Users and their friends are shown in their correct locations so that they can share routes, text chat, share photos and videos or use our new push-to-talk feature. The first mobile mixed rea…