TPDR

Lenses Augment Reality

Posted in Gaming, MediaArt, Society and Technology by tpdr on March 29, 2009

This post is related to an article of March 2008 on the WIRED-blog.

If you would ask the Pentagon and DARPA (the technological department of the US military that also ‘invented’ the Internet), soldiers will, in three to five years from now, see all information needed in front of them at any given time. How they want to do this? Simple, you create a new kind of lenses that work as a projection screen, but remain transparant, thus adding a digital layer to reality. Of course it sounds really easy like this but how do you create this kind of ‘screen’ and how do you feed it with power and data? DARPA is thinking about lasers, light-emitting diodes, …, ‘metamaterials’ . Like they said before they will be spending about 3 million $ on technical research, no doubt this will pay off. Maybe they even could be exchanging know-how with the University of Washington, since they are working on a similar ‘gadget’.

Wearing these lenses would be like walking around in the ‘real-world’ as if you were playing a first person shooting game. Of course I don’t need to say this technology will be found usefull in non-military situations as well. Why not use this kind of lenses to replace these gps-devices we carry around? Or even use them to get all kinds of information when walking around, lets say the supermarket? Think of looking at products and seeing the prices, ingredients, etc. right in front of your eyes without having to take the product of the shelf. Will this be a positive evolution? Maybe if you didn’t, you should now read another post related to augmented reality titled ‘Augmented Unreality’.

I will of course keep an eye on the development of this technology and if any of you knows more, please leave a comment. I am sure I will be more interested in the way this could be used to play games in the ‘real world’, than how it will be used as a navigation-system. As with maps I prefer the power of subjective/personal cartography to the so called ‘objective’ maps.