Track objects and visualize the story behind!
Object-tracking – simple visuals and endless possibilites
by Lex Goetz
Object-recognition becomes mature.
Creating a scan and use it for an object recognition? Sounds simple, and it is in fact if you have the right software at hand. For a long time tracking appeared to be the weak point of Augmented Reality applications. Digital twins which didn’t snap to their live brothers and sisters or weren’t able to survive fast moves of the camera. A lot of great marketing videos were made to make people believe in the idea, but mostly the live-tracking couldn’t meet expectations even closely.
That all has changed within months, when Apple’s ARKit rocked the scene and elevated object-tracking to a yet unknown level. Yes, object tracking started to become real and suddenly developers worldwide started to take it seriously. Markus Meixner, CTO and founder of ViewAR, a well-known provider of AR applications, rose to the challenge and gathered his team.
Nice to have or must have, that’s the question.
When ViewAR published its first research video on object tracking, using a simple WLAN router for its purpose, the result seemed far from impressive. A router, so what. The funny thing happened when the video was presented in various meetings with industrial players and infrastructure- and telco providers. Executives raised their eyebrows as it became obvious, which powerful ideas could be realised finally, revolutionising the world of “explainers”, allowing interactive communication with customers and drive more efficient ways of education and training.
Encouraged by its media perception, ViewAR published another yet most recognised research video in co-operation with Beckhoff, a well known automation technology firm. Again, a simple routine turned out to reveal some bold visions of future training- and maintenance environments. Stable tracking technology combined with a strong and mature AR engine did the trick. So what is object-tracking now? Just a nice show-case tool or a fundamental new level of communication?
Object-tracking drives Augmented Reality applications
Industry 4.0 already waited for such opportunities
Training and education is one field for research
Maintenance 4.0 is another one
Definitely a “must have”!
As simple as it looks, but technology behind it is far from “simple” but the time is right now to produce show-cases and real-life examples to scale the growing bunch of ideas connected with object tracking. Industrial summits are the ideal place to discuss such ideas because of the growing pressure to foster digitisation in all areas of business. As already said in my post about AR and energy transition projects, digitising a bunch of “old-fashioned” processes is number one priority throughout all industries. Not just for the sake of modernisation but to identify new fields for cost-savings, increasing productivity on the way.
Finally there is a mostly unmentioned argument for the new technology and it comes from the department of HR, as employer branding means nothing more or less then to compete for the best people in all fields of business. Well-educated young people are increasingly demanding when it comes to choosing their future employer. Augmented Reality simply is the future and the next generation of workers, managers and CEOs know that already. Object recognition may be just one small footprint on a large field of technology, but nevertheless is a place to invest massively to prepare the arena for all existing and pipelined future visions.