AR and VR explained simply. Augmented reality (AR) is a…

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Augmented reality (AR) is a technology that is superimposed on the user’s real world, through text or virtual images generated by a computer or through an image on the screen, a helmet, glasses, a projector, a window or even windshield of the user’s car, etc.

This superimposition of text or images has to be done in real time. These virtual text or images can be overlaid on selected objects in the user’s real-world view, where the virtual text or images are about that object.

If we look at the definition of AR, it becomes clear that it is based on context-aware computing. For an AR user, the real world and virtual objects coexist in his vision.

For example, in a museum we have any painting. If we view that painting through an augmented reality smartphone, the information associated with the painting will be superimposed on top of it. Additionally, this overlay may contain other information such as the artist, the year in which the painting is estimated to have been painted, the origin of the painting or the author, etc.

The superimposed contents are nothing more than a computer-based configuration, linked to a smartphone and a server -which can be in the cloud-, of augmented reality, which is accessible through a wireless access point or the network. mobile and containing speed and power measurement tools, connected to the smartphone.

We will explain below the augmented reality Y virtual reality so that we can distinguish between them. First, a little history:

In 1901, author Frank Baum first mentions the idea of ​​a character creator, an electronic projection superimposed on real-life people. In 1989, Jaron Lanier creates the phrase “Virtual Reality (VR)” and conceptual models of it. In 1990, Thomas Caudell created the concept and phrase “Augmented Reality (AR)”. Since then VR and AR are used.

Then: What is the difference between virtual reality and augmented reality?

Augmented reality seems to be an old technology. I mean, it was mentioned a long time ago. Why learn about her now?

It’s true, it’s old. But it has not been until recently that it has been able to be implemented and provided reliably. The reason is simple; High-resolution cameras in today’s smart devices allow for precise image capture, making it easy to identify objects. Before, the cameras of the devices did not have this resolution, so any object they identified carried a very high error rate.

Added; the current improvement in processing capacity due to the high performance of central processing units (CPUs) and graphics processing units (GPUs), in smart devices. This enables faster and more faithful image processing, object identification, and feature extraction, which are much needed for augmented reality.

Also; Increased memory size and fast input and output access to memory have allowed large amounts of information from augmented reality objects to be stored and used quickly. The other component is the high resolution of smart device screens. This enables access to crisp text and images, overlaid on smart devices in an elegant and eye-catching way. In addition, the rise in the improvement of broadband networks allows information from AR servers and databases to be quickly accessible and sent to devices to be displayed on the screen for the user. .

Looking ahead, new AR platforms are clearly in sight. More types of smart devices are being developed. (Smart phones, smart devices, smart glasses, smart watches, IoT wearable devices, etc). All potential opportunities for AR platforms and they all come from different paths. Namely; augmented reality is not only going to improve, but it will also be faster, more precise, it will have more information, it will consume less energy and therefore; it will last longer on all these devices. Additionally; it will be easier to use, more portable, cheaper, it will have more functionalities, it will be more reliable and durable, and for this reason it is necessary to study today about augmented reality.

Now let’s talk about virtual reality (VR).

Say that VR was developed first. A VR user receives total immersion. Namely; you will be completely immersed in the virtual environment, like being inside a video game and being part of that environment and by the way, it is common for a video game player to use an avatar to exist and interact with the virtual space. What the VR user sees is different from the real world, the fantasies and illusions around the avatar are very easy to create in the virtual world.

In counterpart; AR is a mix of real life and VR. And this is the difference with VR. AR combines information and does other things, but its basis is in real life, what the user actually sees. Namely; an augmented reality user can obtain useful information about a location or an object and can interact with that virtual content, in real life. Therefore, the virtual content is superimposed on the real world, which the user can actually see. The AR user can distinguish the overlapping virtual objects.

In addition, the user can enable or disable certain AR features, which may be related to certain objects. For example, I am only interested in objects and not places. In this case, I would adjust the augmented reality functions so that the information of the places does not appear on the screen, and thus only receive the information of the objects. These types of functionalities can be controlled in these futuristic systems.

Compared to virtual reality, an augmented reality user is often perceived as less removed from the real world, basically because the base of what he sees is the real world, the rest is superimposed on that user’s real world view. Therefore, fantasies and illusions can be created and superimposed on the real world.

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Some definitions of augmented reality for example: Paul Milgram opines “as we can see, on one side there is the real environment and on the other side there is the virtual environment, and these two are combined, where augmented virtuality is based on reality, which in turn is based on virtuality, where reality is virtuality based on reality. Therefore, we can see how augmented reality is based on reality where virtual information and images are overlapped and superimposed in the correct position”.

For his part, Ronald Azuma believes that “AR is the combination of the real world and virtual reality technology. In addition, it combines elements of real-time interaction and three-dimensional images”.

AR is classified as sensor-based, such as GPS sensors and accelerometers. Another type is vision-based VR which is based on machine vision and free graphics libraries. Then there is hybrid tracking-based virtual reality; which is the combination of vision and sensor technologies.