Augmented Reality

Weighing Capabilities, Possibilities, and Safety

Commercial Uses

Construction

An image of a set of blueprints

Augmented reality (AR) has the capability to make construction and engineering jobs easier, safer, and faster. AR technologies can allow construction managers to see equipment placement...

Space

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Augmented reality can be utilized by those in the field of space exploration to make practicing complex procedures more lifelike. NASA has approved the use of AR in rehearsing the complex...

Advertisement

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Advertisers everywhere have and will continue to notice the capabilities of AR in the realm of advertising. AR can easily make an ad campaign interactive and entertaining. Advertisers have already...

Educational Uses

Interactive Assignments

An image of a student using AR

Teachers in any space could use AR in their classes to make their assignments more interactive. These could come in many forms, such as giving students the ability to scan a problem on an...

Medical Teaching

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Training and teaching medical students on complex surgeries or other medical procedures is an extremely difficult task without the use of augmented reality. AR gives medical students the ability...

Location-Based Learning

An image of someone learning about their location

“Location-based learning” in respect to augmented reality means that a student can point their AR enabled device at the world around them and learn. This technology can be useful literally...

Recreational Uses

Games

A picture of Pokemon Go demonstrating augmented reality in games

Video games and game technology have come a long way over the years, but its growth doesn’t end with the introduction of augmented reality. Games heavily dependant on AR have already...

Entertainment

A picture of a phone displaying a sports figure demonstrating augmented reality in entertainment

In the world of rec-entertainment-thumb, augmented reality has the potential to allow anyone to consume entertaining media without interrupting their view or awareness of the world around them...

Location-Based Learning

A picture of a phone helping someone learn their location

Augmented reality can be useful in a number of ways when it comes to location-based learning. “Location-based learning” means walking up to a historically or otherwise important statue...

Research Uses

Space

A picture of Pokemon Go demonstrating augmented reality in games

Space exploration and research teams at NASA have already begun implementing augmented reality to help train astronauts on complex procedures, but have also been working on more of the...

Collaboration

A picture of Pokemon Go demonstrating augmented reality in games

Microsoft has already begun some studies on the social implications of augmented reality in collaboration amongst people in their recent Room2Room experiments. Microsoft is accomplishing...

Medical

A picture of Pokemon Go demonstrating augmented reality in games

Augmented reality has yet another capability in the medical field, and that is with research. AR can be used in medical research by allowing doctors and nurses to be able to see constructions of a...

Technology

Augmented reality has been around for 55 years, and is now reaching its original intents and much more. This technology has grown to be capable of several tasks and obtained many features, including the ability to superimpose heat maps on objects, attach files and videos to objects, create interactive 3D blueprints, and even display instant messaging over the real world, so you don’t have to take your eyes away from where you’re going.

One of the features advertised by the Microsoft HoloLens is being able to check the compatibility of 3D blueprints in real time. In this way, someone making the circuit board for a controller, and someone making the shell for that controller could compare their blueprints to see if the receptors on the circuit board lineup with the holes in the shell. This could lead to dramatically reduced prototyping, and much less funding spent on the resources for those prototypes.

Another example is with the DAQRI Smart Helmet. It can display when something like an engine or any other object is too hot to touch. This could reduce burns of employees, and even show places where pipe leaks are imminent.

There are also augmented reality apps, such as Augment or Aurasma, that can attach videos, files, and even animations to everyday objects. In this way teachers can attach tutorial videos to homework papers to help struggling students, or even have large in-class augmented reality lessons.

There’s also a pair of augmented reality glasses called the R-7 being produced by a company named ODG that can act fully as a phone or a tablet in the package of an augmented reality headset. This device can send texts, play videos, give turn-by-turn directions, and even more.

Even now, further advancements are being made in this amazing technology, and it seems as though many more will be made in the future.

Concerns

With every form of technology, no matter how advanced it is, there are safety concerns. This remains true for augmented reality as well.

One of the most prevalent concerns is the thought of information overload. Constantly having digital objects in your face all day could be overwhelming, especially if they’ve never seen anything like it before. With the brain constantly functioning at the level of activity, it could easily lead to mental exhaustion to anyone who might be wearing it.

There is also concern of the cameras in augmented reality being hacked and used for video surveillance. This could create a fleet of workers leaking company secrets by simply looking at them, or use a person as a drone to take surveillance of their own home to some unknown source. This could obviously be an enormous violation to both business confidentiality, and personal privacy.

There is also concern of people hacking into the augmented reality headsets and creating objects that the user would believe are real, such as false speed limit signs in the user’s field of view while they’re driving. This would greatly increase the likelihood of a crash to anyone hacked in this way, and anyone driving in their general vicinity.

Another concern that has to deal with augmented reality games, like Pokemon Go, is that people could go into, or be lured into dangerous areas. There have already been reports of people using the lure devices in Pokemon Go to draw people into secluded areas at night to rob them, or sometimes maybe worse.

Even now, as augmented reality progresses it creates more concerns with each advancement. That being said, there are still many benefits.

Benefits

Augmented reality has proven to be a very progressive study over the years. It has proven to benefit our modern society in many ways.

One of the problems that almost every American has experienced is hearing “Turn right now” from their GPS while they’re in the far left lane, or some other variation of that. Augmented reality seeks to eliminate this issue by giving a heads-up display to drivers showing them directions in real time.

Augmented reality also adds the ability to take a more hands-on approach in the classroom. Children can use augmented reality applications to do things such as combining elements, or watching their drawing come to life all on the screen of an iPad. This causes them to become more invested in their learning, and in turn retaining more of the knowledge.

It could also help the medical field, allowing a specialized surgeon from China to guide a less experienced one in America through digital hands superimposed into their field of vision. This could lead to a much lower rate of patient deaths on the operating table, as well as lead to more real life training for new surgeons.

There are even benefits to the field of factory and construction workers. Augmented reality can be used to check for pipe leaks before they happen, guide a worker through an unfamiliar process or diagnostic, and even superimpose a heat map on objects to show if they’re safe to touch.

These are only a few of the benefits of this amazing technology. There are many, many more,and that list will only grow as we continue to make advances in this widely unexplored field.