Catawba County News

Explore Augmented Reality

Explore Augmented Reality

Published: July 03, 2018

Do you know the differences among virtual reality, augmented reality, and mixed reality? If you thought that standard reality is simple and straightforward, prepare to discover otherwise! With computers involved, perception and illusion are now harder to define, which can be eminently entertaining or more than a little disconcerting, depending on your relationship to the experience.

So, first, a few definitions:

Virtual reality (VR) – this is the fully immersive version where everything seen and experienced is artificial or computer-generated – it requires a headset to override actual sensory input with the virtual world

Augmented reality (AR) – in this version, people move and function in the real world as usual, but digital components add to, or augment, what you typically see – an example is Pokemon Go, where people use their smartphones to discover a digital component not visible with the human eye

Mixed reality (MR) – this experience kicks AR up a notch, so that people don’t just see the digital add-ons, but they can actually interact with them – in some cases, the digital world becomes so prominent that it practically subsumes the real elements (almost to the point of VR), although they continue to have a real-world connection

While the library isn’t taking a deep dive into the various explanations, we are offering a kid-friendly workshop to introduce young folks to the concepts of augmented reality. Participants will get to create coloring sheets that they can view through a smartphone app, watching the objects they’ve just colored rise up and come to life! The 3-D experience is incredibly cool and shows just how prominent AR is already – and where we can expect it to go.

Kids will also be able to leave with a temporary tattoo that turns into a hologram when viewed through technology. Imagine: if they think video games are awesome on a screen in front of them, watch their reactions to these fantastic, blow-your-mind activities that seem to infiltrate the real world!

Friday, July 13 at 2 pm at the Sherrills Ford-Terrell Branch Library. Ages 3 and up.