.
Presenter: Bob Sumner, Adjunct Professor at ETH Zurich and Associate Director at Disney Research Through the evolution of technology, the expansion of both virtual reality and augmented reality has increased exponentially in the past decade. While virtual reality has made large strides in recent years, it is the up-and-coming augmented reality systems that will be disrupting sectors across the board. From healthcare to engineering to education and everything in between, augmented reality has the ability to shape our imaginations, upgrade our toolboxes, and revolutionize the way we approach education, entrepreneurship, and especially creativity. And with augmented reality becoming more and more common on all devices – especially smartphones – it is only a matter of time before everyone’s reality is augmented by technology. Augmented reality has a plethora of potential uses. Because augmented reality can be easily accessed on almost all camera-enabled devices, the amount of potential uses for this technology is unending. From designing a complex building and its framework to planning how to decorate your home, augmented reality can be used in any sector and by any person who has access to a smartphone. There is a difference between virtual reality and augmented reality. While virtual reality brings participants into a technologically synthetic environment, augmented reality does the exact opposite – it projects virtual objects into the real world by simply using a camera. Augmented reality can directly interact with physical objects in the real world. Beyond simply projecting virtual objects into real space, augmented reality now has the ability to directly interact with reality. One such example is a software system that is built in conjunction with physical coloring books in order to create a game where children can turn the characters on their coloring book pages into three-dimensional characters. Augmented reality is the perfect holistic approach to creativity. With augmented reality’s ability to alter a user’s environment in a nearly infinite number of ways, this technology is especially well suited to the nurturing of creativity and imagination. Through Disney Research’s partnership with the ETH game technology center, programs are being developed to holistically teach children how to be creative on their own terms. Creativity is becoming less common due to passive consumer culture. Due to the ease with which entertainment and one’s environment can be consumed, children no longer have an incentive to directly interact with their environment in creative ways. Through augmented reality, however, virtual objects and games can augment a child’s direct interaction with the world around them in order to turn rudimentary tasks into creative playgrounds. There are several games and apps that have already been developed to increase creativity. Disney Research has not only created an interactive 3D coloring book, but also interactive maze puzzles and word searches that project 3D characters onto paper, an app that augments real world art by allowing the user to change the specifications of the piece to their liking, and a pack of cards that creates 3D musical ensembles with a variety of instruments, characters, and tunes. These technologies are already widely available. With several augmented reality apps already available for smartphones and tablets, it is only a matter of time before augmented reality becomes a staple consumer product. “Augmented reality allows us to combine physical interaction with the power of digital tools. When you put these two together, there’s an exponential increase in our power to create.” – Bob Sumner To read or download the rest of the essays from this special report on the Future of Work and Education, download our free app on your favorite device (iStoreGoogle Play, and Amazon Kindle) or click to view the Digital Edition. Photo courtesy of ETH Zurich.

About
Winona Roylance
:
Winona Roylance is Diplomatic Courier's Managing Editor and Special Series Editor.
The views presented in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent the views of any other organization.

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Augmented Reality: A Holistic Approach to Creativity

May 3, 2017

Presenter: Bob Sumner, Adjunct Professor at ETH Zurich and Associate Director at Disney Research Through the evolution of technology, the expansion of both virtual reality and augmented reality has increased exponentially in the past decade. While virtual reality has made large strides in recent years, it is the up-and-coming augmented reality systems that will be disrupting sectors across the board. From healthcare to engineering to education and everything in between, augmented reality has the ability to shape our imaginations, upgrade our toolboxes, and revolutionize the way we approach education, entrepreneurship, and especially creativity. And with augmented reality becoming more and more common on all devices – especially smartphones – it is only a matter of time before everyone’s reality is augmented by technology. Augmented reality has a plethora of potential uses. Because augmented reality can be easily accessed on almost all camera-enabled devices, the amount of potential uses for this technology is unending. From designing a complex building and its framework to planning how to decorate your home, augmented reality can be used in any sector and by any person who has access to a smartphone. There is a difference between virtual reality and augmented reality. While virtual reality brings participants into a technologically synthetic environment, augmented reality does the exact opposite – it projects virtual objects into the real world by simply using a camera. Augmented reality can directly interact with physical objects in the real world. Beyond simply projecting virtual objects into real space, augmented reality now has the ability to directly interact with reality. One such example is a software system that is built in conjunction with physical coloring books in order to create a game where children can turn the characters on their coloring book pages into three-dimensional characters. Augmented reality is the perfect holistic approach to creativity. With augmented reality’s ability to alter a user’s environment in a nearly infinite number of ways, this technology is especially well suited to the nurturing of creativity and imagination. Through Disney Research’s partnership with the ETH game technology center, programs are being developed to holistically teach children how to be creative on their own terms. Creativity is becoming less common due to passive consumer culture. Due to the ease with which entertainment and one’s environment can be consumed, children no longer have an incentive to directly interact with their environment in creative ways. Through augmented reality, however, virtual objects and games can augment a child’s direct interaction with the world around them in order to turn rudimentary tasks into creative playgrounds. There are several games and apps that have already been developed to increase creativity. Disney Research has not only created an interactive 3D coloring book, but also interactive maze puzzles and word searches that project 3D characters onto paper, an app that augments real world art by allowing the user to change the specifications of the piece to their liking, and a pack of cards that creates 3D musical ensembles with a variety of instruments, characters, and tunes. These technologies are already widely available. With several augmented reality apps already available for smartphones and tablets, it is only a matter of time before augmented reality becomes a staple consumer product. “Augmented reality allows us to combine physical interaction with the power of digital tools. When you put these two together, there’s an exponential increase in our power to create.” – Bob Sumner To read or download the rest of the essays from this special report on the Future of Work and Education, download our free app on your favorite device (iStoreGoogle Play, and Amazon Kindle) or click to view the Digital Edition. Photo courtesy of ETH Zurich.

About
Winona Roylance
:
Winona Roylance is Diplomatic Courier's Managing Editor and Special Series Editor.
The views presented in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent the views of any other organization.