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May 24, 2012




Genius, that's a great post on AR. Thank you!

Please enlighten your fans with more of such stories & wisdom on media, digital, mobile and future technologies, instead of stories on gloomy Nokia.

Sad but true, Nokia is already dead.


Amazing, truly amazing... I have developed a AR Browser to display near by Bus Stops, I thought of it as a mere navigation support system. Your article proves to me that AR is the 8th Mass Media.

Bow of respect.

Rishikesh, India


There is no blood to attract us ;)

I also have a mixed view about augmented reality, so I keep it for myself.


I thought it was very interesting. Some day the nokia story will end and we can get back to what else is happening. Tomi has the pulse of the cutting edge with this AR stuff. PS, I love my N9.

Kay Ross

Thank you Tomi! Glad you liked the TED talk by Professor Ottik - she thanks you for your kind comments. Her research truly is inspired by Ilya Prigogine, who really did win the Nobel Prize for Chemistry in 1977 for his Theory of Dissipative Structures - see
And if you like improvisation, come to a show by the English-language improv group here in Hong Kong that I'm a member of, People's Liberation Improv (Peter, the Russian guy who heckled Professor Ottik, is also a member of the troupe). We perform on the first Friday of every month at the TakeOut Comedy Club in SoHo. See



don't mind it, it gets deleted anyway ;-)

talking a lot about AR technology without considering the sensor fusion part is useless. You won't get nice AR experiences without high quality sensors support (gyro, gps, compass/magnetometer, accelerometer, viewfinder) which are able to provide you a reliable six degrees of freedom.

am I right? Or should we talk more about Elop and MSFT since it will attract more visitors and comments? haha



It depends on what the usage is. There are basically two types of AR. One that is heavily dependent on position and orientation. The other is heavily dependent on image processing. Possibly that some implementations needs both of these.

Example of position dependent AR is overlaying landmarks on live video feed. For example arrows are overlayed on a live video feed to show all the tourist attractions.
Example of image processed AR is real-time translation of live video feed. For example you will be able to pan around in the middle of Kowloon and get real-time translation of all those signs you usually have no clue about.

The amount of useful applications with AR is staggering and there is a long way to perfect this.


You mean AR on mobile device doesn't depend so much on the quality of sensors? I would make my life so much easier in that case. And real time image recognizer or processing on device offline for AR purposes? that would be also great if it exists.



The quality of the sensors are important of those AR implementation that needs them. I think we can expect all sorts of lag and misalignment in early implementations. For example image processing can be added to further increase the accuracy. This technology has a very long way to go.

Real-time processing of video feed already exist. The translation program Pleco has real-time recognition of Chinese characters. This only works in ideal conditions and in a small search area of the video feed so there are a lot of improvements in this area as well.

Basically it will be interesting to witness this development.

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The translation program Pleco has real-time recognition of Chinese characters. This only works in ideal conditions and in a small search area of the video feed so there are a lot of improvements in this area as well.

Basically it will be interesting to witness this development.

Katherine Dale

Lovely to meet you TedXMongkok - your talk was fun & interactive: just like augmented reality.
I like that the photo of the sexy lady can be avoided; one of the participants at the conference was asking for simplified reality... this lack of picture would work for him. With simplified reality we would only see the people we want to see, other faces would be blurred. We would only see the restaurants and shops we've selected to see.
The overload of the world confuses our senses - decreasing our ability to be creative and to interact with each other on a base level. Let's simplify reality.


Well, let's make a try:
AR offers a lot of advantages; it will allow me to find nearest restaurants or hospitals, it will help me to find a place to park, it will help me to get faster to my flight's gate, etc.

All that is cool... in a perfect world. Do we live in a perfect world? I don't think so, and I'm not even sure I'll see it with my own eyes.

First of all, if in the past, value was represented by gold, then by oil, then by $, now it's information's turn. Information is better than gold or oil as it's easier to extract... we actually give it for free through Facebook, Google+, etc.

I don't want to be tracked. I don't want commercial companies to know what I do in my holidays, what I like to eat, what movies I watch, etc.

So just for that, AR is a problem for me.

Then, there is the human problem:

Let's take the example of Museums, which lend iPods to tourists with audioguides; with AR we can expect even more efficient audioguides.

Will they be better than human guides ?
To me it won't; it's more unemployment, it's less human contact, and it won't have necessarily more reliable information.

So maybe I'm pessimistic or paranoid, but I see AR as a better way to track me.


Just an insider hint: Google Chrome or Android tracks you even more than what you think...


I know... and neither do I trust Safari, IE, or even Firefox.

I was also surprised when I updated Skype; it found a lot of contacts from my cellphone from my emails and other systems I didn't ask/expect to import.


This is a great post indeed, I would say that when all the platforms, OS, devices etc will be by default AR enabled and brands will have the expertise to enable them then only Augmented Reality will become mainstream. Otherwise some umbrella technology will take over. However for now, everybody wants to do an AR campaign.


Tomi T Ahonen

To all

The video is now up, see link in the above - also note the other must-see video link of the two teenager boys and their amazing presentation also has a link now up early in the text


Tomi Ahonen :-)

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Just an insider hint: Google Chrome or Android tracks you even more than what you think

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The University of Leningrad explicitly doesn't exist as such, and has never existed, but there was a "Communist University of Leningrad". The city of Leningrad of the Soviet Union has years ago changed its name back to the origina


Researching a new AR game i'm working on, if anyone with an interest in AR could fill out my short survey with your experiences that would be great, thanks

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