If it wasn't for Twitter and social media as a whole grabbing all the headlines Augmented Reality would be the most talked about "technology" of 2008/2009.
While the roots of the technology have been around since as early as the 1990's (remember VR games!) it's only in the last 12 months has the interactive industry taken to it like moths to a flame. Below you will find some of the worlds biggest brands dipping their toe into "Augmented Reality". Some are in it for the PR aspect others trying to find a useful application. Many just to satisfy their need to do something new.
The technology has it's limitations though. Not only do you need a web cam but also a printer to activate it. Add to that one requires a download and installation of an application you cut your potential audience down considerably. That said I enjoy watching the videos and demos as much as interacting with it myself.
If you know of any interesting applications for AR please comment below. I know there is much more out there and my limited research was focused on the advertising and marketing side rather than the tech and art side.
Augmented Reality!? That's so 2008
Has AR jumped the shark? Well if Virtual Magicians are using it I think that's your answer. For me the best application of this is in store and also with kids toys. Both applications have far more useful applications than a fun web toy.
Below are 35 great examples of where Augmented Reality and their applications to the commercial and art world.
Correction Update: Apologies to Metaio who I incorrectly forgot to credit as the technology behind the Mini and Lego examples. This is why you don't post at 1am :)
I had not seen any arcade style games in AR before this. Fun and stupid and it was meant to be.
By now you're all familiar with the well-hyped event know as 'Earth Hour'. An event that won the 2007 Cannes Titanium award for Leo Burnett, WWF and its commercial supporters. If you've been living under a rock, Earth Hour 2008 takes place Saturday March 29th, at 8pm.
But how much of a legitimate event is this? To many, it's looking like nothing more than an opportunity for companies to greenwash the public.
Then again, the public would appear to have different thoughts. Here's a poll taken on Saturday March 29th @ 9am by Sky News Australia.
If you'd seen the Cannes entry, you would probably be thinking Australian's are an environmental bunch. Not really the case, Well, perhaps unsurprisingly Earth Hour is attracting its fair share of critics and has come under intense scrutiny by the Australian media this week - except that is, if the media outlet is Fairfax. Fairfax is a chief sponsor, who's major mastheads include The Sydney Morning Herald, and The Melbourne Age.
Influential media commentator Crikey took advertising industry rag Campaign Brief and the advertising industry to task this week, highlighting just how farcical the event is.
To celebrate Earth Hour, ad magazine Campaign Brief -- with Earth Hour partners Fairfax/The Sydney Morning Herald -- is offering the chance to win a trip to Cannes. Yes, in a big old emission-puffing plane.
Thanks guys for switching off your lights, we'll now use it to offset our delightful European sojourn! Campaign Brief writes:
[We're] offering two trips to the creative team who demonstrate the most effective and/or inspirational way to leverage Earth Hour 2008 and The Sydney Morning Herald is offering a trip each to the client and agency person behind the best work...
"Just about the whole industry has put aside its cynicism and pledged to support this initiative", says CB. "How many times in your life do you get offered an open brief that encourages you to openly borrow from a Cannes-winning idea?"
Yes thank you dear ad companies for putting cynicism to one side, but forgive us if we can't. Earth Hour might have noble aspirations, but the execution is a little murkier, with greenwashing as far as the eye can see.
Well said Crikey. And long overdue criticism. Take a look at the entry video and overview board produced by Leo Burnett Sydney for the Cannes Advertising festival.
You'll see media hype - otherwise known as media impressions, is the order of the day when it comes to measuring the effectiveness of an event. So you can bet that bit of footage from Sky New above doesn't make it to the Cannes Entry reel this year.
So what's the WWF make of this commercialisation? Who knows, but if you take a look around Sydney, commercial endorsements are certainly responsible for some serious carbon emissions. Posters, Flyers, T-Shirts, Caps, Billboards. You name it.
Aside from the huge amounts of printed collateral, including a 40 page 'Light's Out' supplement in Fairfax papers, there was this stunt for AGL Electricity which had commentators pointing out the emissions from that balloon alone would probably account for 10,000 light bulbs!
Here's how the WWF is promoting Earth Hour 2008. Obviously the Cannes entry video wasn't quite the award winning cut they needed.
Sure, everyone's pitching in on this topic, but here's what emanated out of the smart, shiny noggin of Seth Godin:
"The problem is that ad agencies have defined themselves as the people who take the mediocre products and add interesting ads to them, and washed their hands and say, we canÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t do anything about what the factory brings us."