When we mention Virtual Reality (VR), we think of gadgets such as the Oculus Rift and the HTC Vive VR Headsets. Plug it to a computer and immerse yourself into this computer generated reality. With Augmented Reality (AR), we think of mobile applications such as the Pokemon Go. Real world with augmented objects. Pretty cool right? Then there’s Mixed Reality – the Microsoft Hololens head-mounted display is currently on top. But what about Augmented Reality? What is it?

Let’s begin by taking a look at the Reality-Virtuality Continuum published by Paul Milgram and Fumio Kishino in 1994.

From the RV Continuum, we can see terms such as MR, AR and AV. VR is not added here but it on the Virtual Environment section. Before we discuss AV, let’s briefly discuss the rest first.

Virtual Reality (VR)

The term VR involves full immersion in the virtual world. Everything that you see is computer generated. You won’t see the real world at all so mind your shin on that edge of your table! VR has been used for a lot of gaming but has also been helpful with other industrial and medical training.

Augmented Reality (AR)

With Google’s ARCore and Apple’s ARKit, AR has been pushed towards mobile applications. It is useful for adding information on physical objects such as for educational interactivity. Zubr have been able to complete more than AR Projects.

Mixed Reality (MR)

Currently the term MR is unclear as it can be a confusion with AR. But following the RV continuum, it consists of two terms AR and AV. MR, ultimately, is the combination of both real and virtual objects. Now that we have a brief idea of the different terms, we can talk about what Augmented Reality (AV). AV is similar to AR but it is actually the opposite. Within the virtual world, real world objects are composited on top.

Who would want AV?

With the research project Mixed-Reality Production Solutions, we are essentially creating a real-time AV application under the umbrella term Mixed-Reality. The application is to enhance viewer engagement with the player playing in VR. Wouldn’t it be helpful to actually see what the player is interacting with? Wouldn’t it be helpful to be able to see the VR world from the third person point of view?