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Augmented reality

What is augmented reality? Our parents thought it was only real in Star Trek, but is it? You’ve bought your chair, but all you’ll need is the edge. So strap in and prepare to journey into a realm where anything is possible.

What is Augmented Reality and how is it used?

Augmented Reality or AR is using a device to superimpose digital images, videos, and sounds over the natural world. Most people see AR as some new technology strictly used for things like entertainment or gaming, but that is not true AR has existed for 60 years. The Sword of Damocles, created in 1968 by Ivan Sutherland and Bob Sproull was used to display computer graphics into the view of the user. Since then the technology has greatly improved, used in games, heads up displays used in fighter jets, and in the Ikea catalog so you can see how your new furniture will look in your home just to name a few.

Different categories of Augmented Reality.

Marker based:

Marker based AR uses image recognition to bring up information on your display (QR codes are an example of this type of AR)


Markerless AR uses GPS, digital compass, and  accelerometers. It is the most popular form due to devices like smartphones.

Projection based:

To do this light is projected onto a surface and sensors detect movement(Projection keyboards are a good example of this)


This replaces parts of the view with digital images.


AR is a very interesting technology as the possibilities are endless, almost anything imaginable can be done with AR. Unlike Virtual Reality, AR doesn’t need to rely on a virtual world therefore  you can interact with virtual objects in a real world setting. Medical fields have adapted AR interfaces to help with difficult surgical procedures displaying vital information for the doctors to use such as patient history, medical records, and vital signs. While this technology isn’t technically new we are just now seeing it come into the mainstream, so who knows where this exciting technology will take us.


One thought on “Augmented reality

  1. I really enjoyed your blog! You wrote it in a way that left me wanting to know more and that’s not always the case with AR. I was surprised to find out that AR is used in the medical field and not just for entertainment purposes, that was definitely the part I wanted to read about the most since it’s not a widely discussed topic. I think that your post may have benefited from another picture or two. I liked the use of the Pokemon Go photo as your header because it’s relatable and draws you in to something familiar even if your subject is something new.

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