Tagged With augmented reality

The very first iPhone apps were universally dull. And then Bloom came out. Brian Eno and Peter Chilvers built the app and released it just a few months after Apple opened the App Store in July 2008. It was immediately obvious that something special was happening. The app was interesting on an artistic level, one that made you reconsider the relationship between technology and music. And my God, these two have done it again with augmented reality.

Augmented reality experiences are oftentimes a dud, and the really mind-melting ones require hardware that costs a ton of money. But Abhishek Singh seems to have figured out a way to make AR both accessible and really cool. His latest project brings the classic arcade game Street Fighter 2 to life as a multiplayer game people can play in the real world.

There are no practical applications yet for AR - your mum isn't using it to navigate a grocery store - but AR has become wildly popular in the tech community. Slap AR on a pitch and get some VC funding. Or slap AR on the side of a product and bask in the AR buzz from tech publications. Bose, a company known for nice headphones and not nice user interfaces or computers, is the latest to embrace AR. Today it announced a plan to fund AR startups through the new Bose Ventures, but more importantly, it announced a platform that includes AR glasses and, Bose hopes, a new way to interact with AR content - and thus your world.

Kids today want more from social technology than seeing something new - they want a new way of seeing themselves. Snap and Instagram's augmented reality lenses transform users into puppies, fairies, monsters, Wonder Woman, storied Jamaican singer-songwriters, and the like. It's as if there's a vibrant but invisible world all around you that you need a smartphone to see. Unfortunately, I'm not too keen on selfies and many of the early uses of Apple's ARKit, meant to democratize the tech, are plainly boring. Using AR solely to overlay new furniture or artwork for your apartments imagines AR users as dull-minded consumers.

Back in 2011, when EA's Visceral Melbourne studio shut down, Gerry Sakkas chose to take a gamble and found an independent studio - bringing four ex-EA colleagues with him. This new studio, PlaySide, quickly made a name for itself as a creator of accessible and fun mobile games - Catch the Ark, Icy Ropes, and Monkey Ropes all hit the top spot in the App Store.

Today, with over 40 full-time staff, PlaySide is one of the first Australian game studios to focus on Augmented Reality. We spoke with Sakkas about the move from AAA to Indie, and the huge impact of Pokemon Go on Augmented Reality development.

I've never had the best experiences with VR. Previously, the only time I didn't feel immediately sick was during the Evangelion ride at Universal Studios Japan. Which is weird because it's a rollercoaster.

I once nearly vomited during The Vanishing of Ethan Carter and that's basically just a walking sim.

Suffice to say, I was nervous about trying HP's Mixed Reality headset. And what I found was a pleasant surprise.

Yes, 2017's biggest tech story was probably about the ways in which social media forced us to rehash old culture wars and question who was guiding our political discourse. Rather than seeing technology facilitate greater communication, economic opportunity, and leisure, it seemed that it was exacerbating our differences, concentrating wealth, and threatening all livelihoods. But there was some good stuff too!

Federico Ciccarese and his company, Youbionic, imagine a not-too-distant future where everything we see is enhanced through augmented reality, and our body's ability to interact with the world is upgraded through augmented physicality. What does that look like? For starters, a $US2,000+ 3D-printed glove that puts two hands on the end of your arms, instead of just one.