In the movie The Terminator, the viewer is taken frequently to the Terminator’s point-of view.
We know this is Terminator’s POV because there is image digitization and the people he is chasing are more luminous than objects in the foreground and background, which suggests infra-red. In the margins of the view we see columns of characters, including numbers and acronyms. The data changes so rapidly that it leaves no doubt that we are seeing the world as the Terminator sees it.

Science fiction? Well, parts of the Terminator’s POV are no longer scifi.

Augmented reality (AR) is the application of computer-generated imagery embedded into live-video streams as a way to expand information as it relates to the real-world. Through the use of AR technology, information about a user’s surrounding environment, and the objects within it, are stored and then retrieved as an information layer on top of a live real world view.

Since one really need to see it in action to understand it:

As far as using AR technology in libraries, Ken Fujiuchi proposes possible uses:

“When someone finds a book in the library catalog, they can have the option to snap a QR code or unique image of the book, which will first store the information about the book. Then the user can first be directed to a specific section of the library, and once they are in the right section they can use a mobile device to scan the book spines to start being guided towards the book they are looking for.”

Helene Blowers paints this scenario:

“When I shift my thinking about AR apps to the physical library space I see our whole collection opening up before our eyeballs. Imagine the ability to walk down an aisle and see the reviews and popularity of an entire shelf titles just by pointing the camera lens on your phone at the spines (or outfacing covers).”

Here are some other possible uses for AR, with the assumption every information source and service is networked:

– Scan a building to find out if study rooms are available
– Scan a building to identify hours of service, or which librarians are on duty. Touch screen to contact (text, IM, etc.)
– Scan a bank of public terminals to identify which ones are open
– 3-D images of special collection artifacts are viewable from a QR code or bib record.
– Physical exhibits can provide 3-D images of supplemental materials

Do you have any ideas?


Educause: 7 things you should know about Augmented Reality
How Stuff Works: Augmented Reality

Eric Schnell