May 26, 2022

Cyberworld: Glance into the Future with Augmented Reality

4 min read

On September 26-27, the international conference InsideAR 2011 took place in Munich, Germany. It is the largest European event in the sphere of augmented reality, which has been taking place since 2010. This event unites experts, innovators, and interested people from all parts of the world. InsideAR is the epicenter of the rapidly developing world of AR, where the leading computer experts share their technical knowledge, present the most challenging innovations and demonstrate the latest developments in immersive technologies. The organizer of this significant event is Metaio company based in Germany — a pioneer in augmented reality and related software.

 

The opening speeches at the conference were delivered by Thomas Alt (Metaio’s CEO) and Peter Meier (Metaio’s CTO). They presented several innovations that have taken AR to a new level. Speakers emphasized that, in their view, AR will become a standard for all smartphones in the near future and the technology will evolve through practical and safe applications. During this presentation, Thomas Alt made an explosive statement: “Transform digital technologies into the matter of course,” clarifying that they offer two versions of the mobile SDK: a pro version that includes all the latest research results and tracking algorithms and a free basic version for developers. The basic version works with the same interface but with some limitations.

 

To speed up the products delivered by the developers, Peter Meier announced The Metaio Creator, which permits the linking of markers and contents and speeds up the implementation of ideas. The alpha version presented at the conference handled the marker, feature tracking, video, and 3D content well. Metaio Creator is a program that allows users to get the best of augmented reality, and it could be implemented in almost anything. The do-it-yourself approach to AR is designed for creative specialists who tend to push the boundaries of innovation. Hence, with their help, Metaio will be able to find new ways to implement augmented reality technology that it would never have found on its own. As the saying goes: two heads are better than one, but many thousands of heads, even better.

In the demonstration hall, Metaio presented a roadmap to promote AR, which displayed their vision for the Augmented City, and contextual information displayed in the real world was literally at hand on the Samsung Galaxy SII display. The booth presented a black-and-white layout of the city consisting of gray buildings, but with augmented reality, everything came to life, the city began to live its own life and develop. 

 

AR technology has always been ahead of everyone, severely limiting its use. However, things are changing; hardware technology development is gathering momentum, allowing AR developers to push the boundaries and learn what augmented reality is capable of. Collaboration with hardware, in particular, should encourage development and natural digital adoption. Vuzix a leading manufacturer of video glasses and personal displays, presented at the conference the concept of video glasses with an AR system that makes users experience another level of entertainment. The system will use augmented reality to enhance the real world with digital displays. Sony also demonstrated its concept of the product. Once these technologies become advanced enough, there will be a digital leap towards something completely new. It will be a new era of human-machine interaction and human interaction with the world, perhaps via video glasses and augmented reality.

 

Apart from keynote speeches presented by leaders and innovators in the sphere of augmented reality, there were panel discussions with experts on the current state and future vision of technologies and business opportunities obtainable via AR. One of the conference patrons, Ramil Mekhtiiev, a well-known eco-activist, marketing and construction expert, was an active participant in the discussions. His view on the current state and future of the construction business (environmentally friendly in his opinion) and his ideas for using AR caused a robust discussion. At the core of one of his ideas was the possibility of using AR technology to read additional historical information from buildings, as well as the data about the structural stability and durability of materials and the current condition of the building. This program would allow prompt certification of construction projects and benefit the end-user.

Among those who supported the businessman’s idea were Mike Hei and Andrew Scott Reiss. “It is an interesting idea… I do not see any difficulties implementing this idea, but I think these issues need to be raised on the level of the local developer. I suspect that there are already developments that could help bring examined ideas to life,” – said Mike Hei.

 

“The real world looks more and more like a computer game; it could be the case that that is how we will choose our homes in the near future,” said Andrew Scott Reiss. Minor criticisms were voiced by the Belarusian programmer and businessman Yuri Zisser, who said: “The ideas are certainly worthy of attention and worthy of a patent. But all parties should be ready for such a proposition. I don’t think it can somehow influence the conservative part of society. That’s the whole point of conservativism. Nevertheless, on the whole, it is a legitimate step.”

 

Other speakers at the conference included Vertigore Games CEO – Josh Shabtai, Head of Device Technology and Ecosystem at Ericsson Research – Björn Ekelund, ARM’s ecosystem partners manager – Srikanth Iyer, and Transitional Media founder – John K. Havens. The InsideAR 2011 ended this week, leaving many attendees full of hope for the promising future of augmented reality.