Definition of Augmented reality

Augmented reality (AR) is reality superimposed by virtual reality (VR). The system allows the user to see virtual objects, which are embedded in the physical environment. While "virtual reality" completely immerses the user in an illusionary synthetic world, "augmented reality" just adds synthetic elements to the user's perception of the real world.

The Project

The project title living-room is ambiguous. It can be understood to be at once a living-room and a room that lives. This research project tries to fuse the two concepts with the aim of creating a dynamically extended room with the application of AR-technology.
There is a specially constructed real space wherein the players can move with a HMD (Head Mounted Display). A camera fixed to the HMD recognises markers attached to the walls, which are analysed in real time to calculate the position and the “look-at direction” of the player (visual tracking). According to the incoming coordinates, the virtual 3D-world is superimposed on the vision of the real world. This is achieved by combining two software products: ARToolKit for the tracking and Max/Jitter for real time superposition.
The special approach of living-room is the immersive application. In comparison to known examples where objects can be moved around, the user him/herself moves in space where the objects are placed or animated. This space can be visually transformed, extended to infinity, populated, etc. The arising possibilities open new ways for applications in the fields of Architecture, Scenography, Tourism and Museology.
There are several artistic scenes described under the menu item “scenarios”. Those examples where elaborated to examine different aspects of the hybrid physical-digital space. Perception and meaning of the room become influenced by movement, contrast, scale, colour, transparency/opacity, etc. User interaction is implemented by using the user position needed for the tracking for triggering scene elements too: the room comes to life.
The room can be dismantled to be exposed at events for art and technology. It will be further developed and will become part of an educational process.

Future Implementations/applications

- evaluation of concrete applications of AR for interior design, Scenography, museology, tourism
- new implementations: "multi user",
"collaborative space", "populated information terrain", "intelligent room", history functions
- adaptation of the installation as an educational unit
markerless tracking in an open architectonic space