Archive for ‘May, 2010’

Well it had to happen sooner or later. YDreams and Canesta Inc. have announced a partnership that will redefine Augmented Reality. We’ve all seen AR demos where “Real” markers are recognized by machine vision engines and are replaced with “Artificial” objects in the video stream. Canesta has taken the next step and built a camera that can provide a realtime markerless depth map of the scene it’s shooting.

Canestavision sensor chips fundamentally, work in a manner similar to radar, where the distance to remote objects is calculated by measuring the time it takes an electronic burst of radio waves to make the round trip from a transmitting antenna to a reflective object (like a metal airplane) and back. In the case of these chips, however, a burst of unobtrusive light is transmitted instead.

The chips, which are not fooled by ambient light, either then time the duration it takes the pulse to reflect back to each pixel, using high speed, on-chip timers in one method, or simply count the number of returning photons, an indirect measure of the distance, in another.

In either case, the result is an array of “distances” that provides a mathematically accurate, dynamic “relief” map of the surfaces being imaged. The image and distance information is then handed off to an on-chip processor running Canesta’s proprietary imaging software that further refines the 3-D representation before sending it off chip to the OEM application.

YDreams has taken Canesta’s technology and applied it to AR.

To date, implementing augmented reality solutions has only been possible with very specialized techniques.  By working together with Canesta, we look forward to making augmented reality a part of everyday life,

said Ivan Franco YDreams´ R&D Director.

Until now Augmented Reality has delivered limited applications to the general public, mostly offering 3-D objects on top of visually obtrusive markers. By using Canesta’s 3-D vision sensors, YDreams applications can do real-time capture of any object in 3-D, without the aid of any special markers or enhancements.

History of London through Augmented Reality

datePosted on 12:13, May 26th, 2010 by Many Ayromlou

Yep, finally, someone is thinking in the Museum of London. They’ve just released their iPhone App Streetmuseum. Through it’s AR interface you can travel back in time and see London as it used to be. Hundreds of images from the Museum of London’s extensive collections showcase both everyday and momentous occasions in London’s history, from the Great Fire of 1666 to the swinging sixties.

Select a destination from the London map or use your GPS to locate an image near you. Hold your camera up to the present day street scene and see the same London location appears on your screen, offering you a window through time. Want to know more? Simply tap the information button for historical facts.

Below are some of the comments from U.K. iTunes users:

What a great app for anyone with an interest in the history of London. A must have for locals and tourists alike. Rediculously simple yet superbly well concieved, devised and executed. Let’s see this one grow with theamed categories like the 1888 whitechapel murders, the blitz, QEII coronation &1977/2007 jubilee parties etc.

Great interface between Google maps and historic photographs and drawings from the Museum of London collections. Your iphone becomes a window onto the past, the Blitz photographs are particularly evocative. Released as a taster for the Museum’s new galleries of Modern London opening on the 28th May 2010, if the app is anything to go by these new galleries are going to be superb. If you are London resident or a City worker get this app, and then go immerse yourself in a particularly good history museum.

Sounds like I need to take a trip to London…oh and a fake U.K. iTunes account :-).

@Google: I’m Canadian and I want my Google TV NOW!!!!

datePosted on 15:30, May 21st, 2010 by Many Ayromlou

I don’t understand what’s wrong with companies today. I, like the rest of you have been following the Google I/O conference announcements for the past couple of days and just heard about Google TV today (yeah I know a bit behind in my feed). I was all excited and was thinking of all the possibilities (think: googletalk, conferencing, streaming ppv, cloud based gaming, etc.). Then, later on, I came across a partner announcement from Logitech….Wow, wait a sec, the mouse company? Yep, it makes sense, they make webcams, keyboards and mice and have in the recent years boughtup Harmony, the guys who make the cool super-nerdy TV remotes. At this point I decide to take a look around the Logitech website and I come across this:

Q: What will I need to make it (Google TV) work?

A: All you need is a broadband Internet connection and a TV with an HDMI input. To take full advantage of the content search, you’ll need a satellite or cable set-top box with an HDMI output as well. And, for now, you’ll need to reside in the United States.

What the hell? U.S. only? Again? Google? The In-ter-net search giant? Come on guys what the hell is wrong with you?

First you come preaching that Apple’s way of creating a walled garden is badbadbad. Then you make fun of their devices. Then you make fun of their developers. But you know what…..as bad as Apple has been/become, atleast their walls are semi-climable.

Back when Hulu pulled this trick with people outside U.S. I thought well, small company tries to do something innovative and they had to bow down to the studio’s, TV producers. But google? You can not tell me that the big G could not have walked into the room with all the content providers around the table and said….”Okay We’re gonna launch this thing called Google TV, and YES, since we’re a Global company, our service will also be globally accessible”.

Sorry guys/gals, you’ve lost my vote….You might have the best (arguable) search engine, but when it comes to devices (ie: physical THINGS), you need to go back to school. In the meantime I guess I just have to hand my C$ to el Jobso, get a AppleTV and hack Boxee into it. ltr.

The new E-Book from Radio Shack!

datePosted on 17:48, May 13th, 2010 by Many Ayromlou

 The Shack rocks….well it did back in 1978. Funny part is that the so called e-book was priced around $19.95 to $24.95, just about the same as a e-book today :-)

Terminator 5: Revenge of the Microsoft Fanboy

datePosted on 15:23, May 4th, 2010 by Many Ayromlou

Todays must watch video comes to you curtesey of Leon Wang. I seriously think MS should hire this guy to do their ads. This is excellent stuff :-)….