Emerging Technologies

Topics: Wearable computer, Augmented reality, Virtual reality Pages: 7 (2609 words) Published: November 25, 2012
Emerging Technologies

April 2012

Table of Contents

1. Introduction3
2. Augmented reality4
3. Google's Project Glass5
4. Conclusion6
5. References7

1. Introduction

Technology is a big part of our life and something we as humans adapt to easily. We have come to accept that life lived through computer systems is natural. Gadgets and other electronic devices not only help us with our every day lives but they connect us to each other in ways we couldn't even have imagined a few years ago. Technology has become coexistent with our reality and we have created new realities inside these machines. We represent ourselves online. We create new lives that can take their own course. Online reality is becoming, more and more, our lived reality. Every new technology is bringing us closer to a life that is more and more lived digitally. Twenty years ago, none could have even dreamed of the possibilities of personal smart phones or tablet device. Our lives are constantly being changed by connection with newer technologies. Using new NFC-based smart phones, we will be able to pay without ever touching our wallets. There are devices that tell us what to wear or what’s the weather will be like and all we need to do is ask. With the speed of progress over the last fiver years, can we imagine how things will look like ten years from now? How is technology going to shape our reality? Will it be through more advanced forms of the digital reality we have created? How are we going to interact with our world? More and more technological companies understand that their survival in the market depends on innovation. Technological changes are coming quickly and their response to those changes must be swift. So how is the biggest search company in the world handling change? Google has proved again and again that it can enter an already overcrowded market and bring something new to it. What can this tell us about brand new technologies being developed within Google itself? Is the search giant ready to show us the future? What emerging technologies will impress potential customers? On January 9th 2007, Steve Jobs, then CEO of Apple, unveiled new mobile smart phone to the world – almost overnight it changed our view on how the mobile phone should look and behave. Its success had a major influence on many technology companies. Apple showed that product innovation really leads to market success – you can be the first to do something entirely new and dominate the market with it. This essay will look at Google’s attempt to create ‘the new smart phone’ – to impress world with its view on where the future is headed to and to use this new technology to change the marketplace and change Google.

2. Augmented reality

Augmented reality (AR) is a live, direct or indirect, view of the real-world environment, with elements augmented by computer-generated sensory input such as sound, video, graphics or GPS data (Wikipedia). AR basically has the ability to add or subtract information from one's perception of reality, through use of wearable computer. Unlike virtual reality, where user is completely immersed inside a synthetic environment, AR allows the user to see and engage with the real world, with virtual objects added on top of it. AR is about supplementing reality, not replacing it. It can be used to not just add virtual objects to a user’s view but to remove them as well. There are two different design approaches to building an AR system. Optical or video technologies can be used for AR systems. Optical, or ‘see-though’ AR works by placing optical combiners before the user’s eye. These partially reflect light and project images, so the user sees combined images of the real environment and the virtual one. This technology is commonly used in military aircrafts, where combiners are attached to the pilot’s helmet. The second type is video, where users don't need to wear any monitors that project AR but where the monitors are fixed or...

References: * Spatially Augmented Reality, Ramesh Raskar, Greg Welch, Henry Fuchs (1999)
* A Survey of Augmented Reality, Ronald T
* How Google Works, Jonathan Strickland (http://computer.howstuffworks.com/internet/basics/google4.htm/printable / 2012)
* Wearable Computing Will Soon Intensify The Platform Wars, Frederic Lardinois, 2012
* Augmented Reality’s Path From Science Fiction to Future Fact, John C Abell, 2012
* Project Glass (https://plus.google.com/111626127367496192147/posts)
* Augmented reality, Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Augmented_reality)
* Pattie Maes and Pranav Mistry demo SixthSense, 2009 (http://www.ted.com/talks/pattie_maes_demos_the_sixth_sense.html)
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