Augmented Reality Shows Virtual Car in Real Life
A Canon augmented reality display allows the wearer to interact with virtual objects in the real world.
CREDIT: DigInfo News
Augmented reality can do more than entertain kids with pop-up virtual images in the real world — it can allow automotive engineers to do hands-on fiddling with a car that only exists in a computer file.
Canon has made a "Mixed Reality" system that combines real and virtual worlds in the eye of the beholder, according to DigInfo News. The beholder in this case is anyone wearing the head-mounted display that resembles a visor with high-tech antennae — the device's motion-capture and gyro sensors.
Such displays allow two or possibly more people to interact with a real-world setting that has virtual elements laid on top. Canon's demonstration showed two car seats that blossomed into a fully-realized virtual car in the view of people wearing the augmented reality display.
Similar augmented reality technologies have wormed their way into other professional fields. The U.S. military tested similar displays with U.S. Marine mechanics fixing vehicles, and NASA has patented augmented reality glasses for guiding airplane pilots through taxiing and takeoff in thick fog.
Canon hopes to sell the system to industrial designers starting in July 2012. But ordinary people may want to wait for the much-anticipated Google glasses to roll out sometime in the next year or so.