Augmented Reality (AR) is the mixture of video and 3D. So-called tracking procedures make sure that the 3D models appear exactly at the desired place, size and behaviour within the video film as if the film would have been shot in reality. All this is today possible in real time and the user can choose viewing angles and explore the scene just like reality. AR is used in the consumer area for games, furniture visualization at the consumer's home as well as in mechanical engineering to allow the animation of planning procedures prior to their realization.
How does this work? A camera takes pictures from the reality. The tracking system computes distances from the camera to an optical marker visible in the video scene. Exactly at this distance a 3D object is placed by the renderer creating the illusion that the object is already part of the movie. Even tracking without visible markers is possible today.
Augmented Reality has a variety of application areas, both in the industrial as well as in the consumer sector. In an industrial environment, e.g. the so called digital factory for instance the existing production lines can be tested whether they are well fitted for the manufacturing task or can be optimized with the help of AR. In the consumer area, particularly for product presentations, there are various application areas to mention, such as configurators for furniture and design planning or 3D designed books.
BS Contact is well suited for AR as the mixture of video films and interactive 3D objects is done in real time. In addition, it supports the usage of computationally intensive tracking, based on the BS off-screen library.