Even though it has been almost four months since Pokemon Go was released, you can still find people of all ages playing. Everyone knows the concept but what people don’t know is that its main component utilizes a technology that the world is still trying to adapt to—Augmented Reality.
Augmented Reality (AR) is a live view of a physical environment in which the elements are augmented by computer-generated sensory input such as sound, video, graphics or GPS data. Pokemon Go wasn’t the first to showcase AR, but they brought it to a mass audience. One of the first functioning AR systems came out in 1992 when Louis Rosenberg developed Virtual Fixtures. These Fixtures allowed the military to work in remote areas. In 2004, see-through AR was brought to cell phones. Other than in mapping and gaming, there are many other uses of AR. Here are some applications of AR that you may not have realized before:
Imagine visiting all historical sites and seeing what they looked like hundreds or even thousands of years ago. Augmented Reality has made this a possibility. With your smart phone or tablet, you can now relive what these areas were like in the past.
We thought greeting cards that played music were exciting but now greeting cards can be implemented with digital content that users can view by scanning the card with their smart phones. The content can be pictures, videos, or 3D objects which the viewers can interact with. Mage and iGreet are some places where you can get AR greeting cards.
Donating blood is not always the most pleasant experience. Now, with AR, giving blood has become a quicker and less painful process. Devices like VeinViewer can locate veins inside a person’s arm using harmless near-infrared light allowing for quick and painless entry.
Traveling in foreign countries and figuring out directions can be very challenging and even nerve racking. With Augmented Reality, foreign text on signs and menus can be translated and re-displayed in the user’s language. In 2014, Google incorporated Word Lens into its Google Translate, so now it has the function of instant translation from your phone’s camera.
AR is still developing and the potential uses are endless. Pokemon GO opened the door for other AR apps to flourish, but it’s only the beginning. We are eager to see how Augmented Reality grows and evolves in different aspects of our daily life over the next few years.
“Augmented Reality.” Mashable. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 Oct. 2016.
Nelson, Fritz. “The Past, Present, And Future Of VR And AR: The Pioneers Speak.” Tom’s Hardware. 30 Apr. 2014 Web. 04 Oct. 2016
I’m sure you’ve noticed the emergence of students with backpacks on street corners, traffic-inducing school buses, and Halloween decorations at Walgreens, you know what that means? Yes, it’s back to school season! It’s the highly anticipated time of year where we all become swamped with work and wonder, how will we manage everything? Lucky for you, we’ve designed a compilation of smart phone apps developed and in development that will help you balance life’s daily turmoil. So sit back, relax, and let’s get a little Zen talking about this “soothing” technology.
For Your Mind: It’s important to read up on the news each and every morning, but who really has time to flip through every article? Zolt is an app that supplies you with 60-word summaries of major news stories. Best part? The more you use it the more personalized it becomes. It’s a tailored news feed created just for you. Keep it simple, and be in the know.
For Your Stability: Are you a planner? If you’re a part of the event industry then of course you are! We can all agree that sometimes it’s a little hard to balance everything we have going on, let alone know what everyone else is up to. Check out Tweek, it’s an app that allows you to share and assign tasks with your colleagues, family, or significant other. Since everyone is on their smartphones all the time anyways, try taking a digital approach to getting work done.
For Your Body: Setting aside time to go to the gym can be difficult and anxiety-provoking. That’s why there’s Kenzai, an online health platform that pairs professional workouts with a weekly nutritional plan. You can take the app-equipped program anywhere and have 90-day access to professional trainers, nutritionists, and a supportive community. The work week may be busy, but no one can judge you from your living room, it’s a plan you can actually stick with!
For Your Heart: Humans are explorative creatures (the end.) But really, we travel to find ourselves, to lose ourselves, and to see a different way of life. Basetrip is a website and developing app that puts your journey angst to rest by gathering travel details on countries from all over the globe. Simply select where you’d like to go and be amazed by all the weather reports, electricity sockets, currency, tipping recommendations, dial tones, and many more helpful materials. What’s the official language of Mozambique, you may ask? Portuguese, of course!
And Just Because You Deserve A Giggle: Whether you’re a professional photographer or not, we all enjoy taking pictures with our friends, families and yes, pets. PictoGif is an app that enhances your pictures like no other. Snap that picture of Muffin, your cat, and watch her transform into a hilarious gif. You can share it with friends, and who knows, perhaps she will be the next viral sensation.
We hope you feel a little more at ease, and remember balance is essential to a healthy and happy life. Check back next time for another edition of FLIRTcasting!
Mobility is a movement that is not going anywhere any time soon and with our current focus on entertainment (because of the Olympics, obviously) we realized that the easiest way to seek entertainment is in fact, on our smartphones. So, we put together a list of the newest entertainment apps developed and in development that we are currently excited about. Recommended use: outside of the office.
Travel By Drone – A collection of drone-generated masterpieces grant intrigued viewers the opportunity to search and explore the world by video. Get an aerial perspective of popular views and destinations from Boulder Beach, Australia to Bourbon Street in New Orleans, Louisiana. Truly embark on the world’s most mystifying views all from your smartphone.
Anchor FM – Do you find yourself talking about hydrangeas, Pilates, car restoration, or Yoda for hours on end? If you said yes to any of the above, chances are your friends are getting pretty annoyed hearing about your obsession – BUT – it’s possible the podcast community is interested! Anchor is an iOS app for recording, sharing, and listening to short audio clips or mini podcasts. Not only can users start conversations, but also contribute to them. So go ahead, your global audience about Yoda’s endeavors, you can educate.
Buttered Popcorn and Surround Sound – You know better than anyone else what you like, but what if there was an app to measure your movie interests? Before anyone gets any ideas, I have to stop you – There is an app and it’s called Taste! Taste is a movie recommendation engine that suggests films based on how your personalized calculations relate to the ratings of other movie-goers curiously “similar” to you. Expect the app to be released later this year, until then please continue to aimlessly guess which movie to see.
Time to Upgrade from Microsoft Paint– Tayasui’s Memopad is the quickest, freshest digital notepad equipped with 9 tools for doodling, drawing, painting, sketching, and more! Doodlers can create masterpieces and then easily share on any social network. Interested? The app is compatible with any iOS-equipped device, so get ready to become the next digital van Gogh!
That Can Only Mean One thing – Yes, it’s time for a [fun] one! Apparently Drake has his own search engine…and yes, it is exactly what you’d expect it to be. “Let me Drake that for you” allows users to search anything and reveal how it relates to Drake. If anyone has heard of anything more absurd, please let us know!
We hope you found your daily dose of entertainment, check back next time for another edition of FLIRTcasting!
How is it already August? Welcome to a month of sticky humidity, beach vacations, farmer’s markets, and…national s’mores day! Everyone mark your calendars, August 10th, for this very important celebration. This week we’re not only inspired by s’mores (duh) but we are also excited about progressive technology, so we’ve compiled some of this year’s latest and greatest gadgets to come:
No More Ink Cartridges! – The Renegade 3D-Printing Pen works by recycling plastic bottles, containers, and bags. It is the first of its kind, an eco-friendly 3D printer that liquefies plastic, producing a molten gel that cools down forming a solid frame.
Cool Pics. No Really, Cool Pix! – Nikon recently announced the novel Coolpix W100 digital camera, the perfect gadget for families with young children or just clumsy people in general! Brightly colored, this camera is dust-proof, waterproof, shockproof, cold-resistant, and it even has wireless sharing capabilities! So when you manage to get marshmallow stuck to the camera, it won’t be an issue.
It’s a Bird, It’s a Plane, It’s an Amazon Drone – Amazon Prime Air will employ small, unmanned aerial vehicles (AKA Drones)
to deliver packages to customers in 30 minutes or less. You’re probably thinking, where are we going to keep these drones? In Amazon’s Patent Docking Stations, of course! Said stations may be found anywhere from cell towers to your neighborhood’s streetlights…comforting, right?
Nintendo’s Mini Powerhouse – Who here’s a gamer? Let’s be real, everyone has a little bit of “gamer” in them. The Retro-Bit Generations takes over 100 classic NES games from the arcades of our childhoods and packs ‘em into one mini system. The Retro-Bit connects to the TV and comes with two old-school controllers. It’s time to restore that old gaming rivalry you once had with your older brother.
Ah, finally. The best for last!
I’ll Race Ya – Why use your legs when you can easily ride your luggage throughout the airport? The Modobag is a carry-on suitcase with an internal 150-watt electric motor and battery that reaches 8mph. Think it’s too good to be true? Well, its battery also doubles as a USB charger for smart phones, tablets, and laptops. What more could you want from a suitcase?
Wasn’t that fun? Remember, at the core of any technological idea is creativity, so it’s okay to think a little differently. Check back next time for another edition of FLIRTcasting!
Being in the cold and windy city of Chicago, one thing all of us at FLIRT always look forward to is summer! Between the many festivals, beautiful beaches, and outdoor events, it’s rather easy to find ways to stay busy in the sunshine. As a team we try to make the most of the season, even when we have to spend days in the office. We’ve taken boat trips on Lake Michigan, attended White Sox games, and we try to eat lunch outside as often as we can whether it be on our rooftop or across the street in Millenium Park. Besides our outings with the office, Chicago summers are also a blast for family, friends, and even solo outings. Here’s the FLIRT guide to making the most of the summer in Chicago:
Being in the Midwest, typically people don’t think of Chicago as having beaches. Contrary to their belief we have lots of beaches that are brimming with beauty! There’s a different beach for whatever activity you’re looking for. Whether it’s volleyball, taking the dogs out, or just getting some sun, there’s the perfect place for every beach lover out there. Follow this guide to find exactly the beach fits your day the best.
For any big city, and many small ones as well, summer is the opportune time to emerge yourself into the local music scene. Besides just your big name music festivals like Lollapalooza or North Coast, there are less expensive and more versatile selections of music to hear all around the city. Check out this list for an amazing selection of music to experience this summer.
I’ve mentioned before how we at FLIRT love food, but seriously, the FLIRT family consists of a big group of foodies. So if your anything like us, coming across a delicious food truck on a beautiful summer outing is more than blissful. Here you can track your favorite food trucks to see where they’re going to be, when, and what’s on the daily menu.
Besides just music, during the summer you can find all sorts of festivals that take over the streets of Chicago. Whether it’s art, food, or a cultural event, street festivals are flowing with variety around this gorgeous city. If you need a street festival survival guide, check out this blog by our very own Mae Quach.
Who doesn’t love a good movie night? The only thing better than cuddling up on your couch to watch one of your classic favorites, is gathering outside on a chilly summer night with all of your fellow Chicagoans. Every summer, The Millenium Park Film Series takes place in the Jay Pritzker Pavilion, and shows a movie every Tuesday night. So pack a picnic dinner, and grab your friends and family, because this is an ideal fun and free summer activity. Check out this list for the movie schedule.