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Tutorial 1: Designing and Developing Handheld Augmented Reality Systems



  • Istvan Barakonyi(Imagination Computer Services GesmbH),
  • Mark Billinghurst(University of Canterbury),
  • Blair MacIntyre(College of Computing, Georgia Institute of Technology)

Length: Full day

Mobile devices with small displays and cameras have become a pervasive part of our everyday life.They are now powerful enough to run Augmented Reality applications, allowing people to see virtual information overlaid on the real world. This is significant because for the first time AR developers can deploy their applications on hundreds of millions of cell phones and handheld devices used by people every day. However, the design and implementation of user interfaces and interactive applications for mobile devices differ significantly from the development of similar
programs for desktop PCs or notebooks because of the remarkable physical differences of the devices, differences in the software and in the context of use. Despite this, in 2007 there will be over 600 million mobile phones
sold with a camera, significant processing power and screens. Mobile devices have the potential to be the largest platform for consumer level Augmented Reality.

The aim of this full day tutorial is to teach the design and programming of AR applications for small mobile platforms. Particular attention will be paid to human-computer-interface (HCI) and design issues for applications and games using these platforms. The details and best practices on designing and developing applications using currently available hardware and software will be presented.

This tutorial is planned as a full day tutorial split in two parts:

  1. HCI and design issues related to handheld devices focusing on AR
  2. Details on how to implement the interface concepts presented in part one.
    Attendees who are only interested in either HCI or technology
    development, can attend for a half day.

The tutorial should be of interest to those who want to a quick start on the development of AR applications for mobile devices and the HCI aspects that should be considered. The intended audience is academic and industrial researchers. No background knowledge on mobile device development is required, but a basic knowledge in real-time computer graphics and C++ development us useful.

Participants will learn:
- Differences between desktop, backpack and handheld AR
- Design guidelines on HCI techniques for handheld AR
- Information on programming Windows Mobile and Symbian devices
- Standards for handheld devices (OpenGL ES, Collada)

This tutorial has been taught at the VR2007 conference in March 2007. In the feedback forms ratings ranged from above average to excellent. All attendees recommended the tutorial to be repeated at future VR conferences.

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