How would I define AR? Iron Man’s head gear obviously, and with Morgan Freeman’s voice as FRIDAY. On a serious note, Augmented Reality is a state-of-the-art interfacing medium that allows users to overlay digital information onto the physical world.
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This can be done through a head-mounted display with optic lenses. They’re basically magic glasses that make you think like you’re hallucinating sober.
The first popular glimpse of this tech emerged in the gaming industry, with Pokémon GO, only you needed a smartphone. Now we have AR headsets to make the experience more hands-on. The US army has already begun research in AR to create simulated real-time environments for soldiers to train in.
The commands come simultaneously and the soldier can react to it much faster than waiting for traditional methods like radios to relay the information. Other advantages include the ability to process a combat environment in a real-time 3D model, thereby making it easier to avoid potential ambushes. The possibilities are endless.
Application in business/job training:
The ‘where’ for this question makes my head explode in awe, the ‘how’ is something I’d like to narrow down to.
The biggest win with AR is in R, as in Reality in real-time. Learning on the job takes a new meaning with this piece of tech. Instructions are displayed right in front of your eyes making it easy to follow, especially with better 3D visualizations.
Recognizing equipment on-field is easier when you don’t have to leaf through the instruction manual or listen to a superior describe what it looks like. This saves a lot of time on the job and accuracy is increased ten-fold.
SWIS or See What I See glasses allows an AR user to be connected to another in a way where both users can see the same thing through the headset, no matter the distance between them.
This is extremely useful for trainers, as they can guide different trainees on the field from a single place, just by looking at their progress through the headset. No need to connect on a video call, trying to figure out the best angle to show what you are looking at. Need a second look at the situation? Backup is right behind you, AReally.
Historical experience on-the-go comes really handy when working with AR. Quitting your job? Handover from home. Quite simple really, the data recorded from SWIS can be used later or implemented through machine learning to create simulations for future trainees, especially when they are faced with unfamiliar situations for the first time.
Empirical data from past experiences can be used to guide them through. With the advancement of machine learning, anyone can benefit from the other’s discovery.
Lastly, simulation training is A Reality. For businesses that employ physical labor in dangerous locations like in oil rigs, construction or a hazardous chemical factory, training in a safe and controlled environment is difficult. AR makes it easy to create digital renditions of objects in any environment. A crane worker could easily control a simulated crane to practice with and simply reset if they make a mistake.
People from the 90’s thought we’d have flying cars by now. I’ll settle for AR as it’s way cooler.