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Augmented reality for mobile learning


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Presentation for internal OU conference "Mobile Learning for the Social Sciences", held on 22 Feb 2012. This talk gives an introduction to what Augmented Reality is, some examples of how it can be used and the technologies involved.

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Augmented reality for mobile learning

  1. 1. Augmented reality (AR) formobile learningElizabeth FitzGeraldInstitute of Educational Technology
  2. 2. What is augmented reality (AR)?• Goal of AR is to add information and meaning to a real object or place• Enables learners to “explore” the physical world without assuming any prior knowledge• Superimpose “information overlays” or layers, onto the world around you, using a handheld device• Add audio commentary, location data, historical context or other forms of content that can make a user‟s experience of a thing or a place more meaningful
  3. 3. Current uses of AR• Sports coverage• Retail/marketing• Networking („Augmented ID‟) or find someone in a crowd• Aviation („head-up displays‟ on windscreen of plane)• Training or task support• Navigation• Sightseeing e.g. outdoor venues; museums and art galleries
  4. 4. AR for educational use?• Link educational content with specific places and objects• Often used in fieldwork or study visits• Can be used for educational games e.g. „Environmental Detectives‟ game: students learned about environmental sciences and ecosystems by finding clues and solving a mystery on the MIT campus using PDAs fitted with GPS devices
  5. 5. What technology does AR use?• All sorts – from dedicated goggles/glasses to a simple web cam• Most commonly-used nowadays on smartphones• Need processor, display (screen), sensors and input devices• Sensors include accelerometer, gyroscope, GPS, compass etc• Most common input device is a camera – can obtain position and orientation, also in conjunction with other sensor data
  6. 6. Examples of AR apps• Layar• Wikitude• Junaio• AurasmaAlso• Google Goggles (visual searches) – manual mode only• Google Sky Map• QR code readers e.g. Barcode Scanner
  7. 7. Wikitude Layar
  8. 8. QR codes © 2011 victuallers2 London Zoo Derby MuseumSee for more info
  9. 9. How to make your own AR experience!• QR codes: – Create QR code using free QR code generator e.g. or – Link it to a web page (caution: if you do not own the web page, its content may change or disappear at any time!)• Create your own content to run in an AR app, using authoring tools like: – Hoppala (integrates with Layar, Junaio and Wikitude) – buildAR (integrates primarily with Layar , also Junaio and Wikitude with extra support)
  10. 10. Alternatively…• Many of these apps show heavily visual information• It is also possible to create audio only• Audio can work better than graphical data• One of the activities this afternoon will be looking at how you can create an audio guide/tour – we will also be looking at how to create and use QR codes
  11. 11. Summary• Variety of different types of AR apps / technologies• Can be used to overlay digital information in the real world• Information can be text, video, audio, graphics, web links etc.• Information can come from data sources such as Wikipedia or other data streams e.g. Twitter (TwittAround app)• Downside can be cost of data downloads, may need certain level of sophistication in terms of tech (e.g. smartphone)
  12. 12. Elizabeth FitzGeraldInstitute of Educational TechnologyEmail: