Last week, we had a joint meetup event between the YVAR Vancouver Augmented Reality Meetup and Innovation Labs Meetup hosted at NGRAIN HQ in Vancouver.

Innovation Labs meets regularly to discuss emerging technology and their potential application in business, society and the environment. The agenda was to expose the brains in the room to Augmented Reality concepts and technologies, and to then generate ideas and discussion. AR practitioners could add to the discussion with their knowledge of what has and can be done; what works and what doesn’t; and understanding generally of the design and problem space. Success was unquestionable.

Yours truly demonstrated current applications of AR on the iPad. We had a simple if not-so-serious appearance from Link, furniture visualization from IKEA, wall art visualization from Pixels.com, five second 3D scanning with the Occipital Structure Sensor, location-aware browsing from Junaio, and last but not least, NGRAIN AR.

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What struck me most about the session is just how inspiring this Augmented Reality stuff is! For myself at NGRAIN or anyone working in Augmented Reality, this is stuff that we take for granted. Virtual objects in the real world, real objects in the virtual world, location awareness, story-telling and serious industrial applications. What I thought was going to be a bang-bang-bang introduction to the essential ingredients of AR today, turned into an hour long discussion about potential applications of the technology.

Innovation is often found in cross-disciplinary environments. While Augmented Reality is not new, it is new to a lot of people and there remains a universe of serious, valuable applications to be explored.