Augmented Reality and GIS

By guest blogger, Dominik Medved, Woolpert subject-matter expert

Augmented reality (AR) is a cutting-edge technology and presents a paradigm shift in how geospatial data will be viewed. Rather than using standard mechanisms such as a website or a mobile application user interface, AR takes this a step further where the real world is your canvas/UI via live camera views using your tablet or smartphone. Digital content can be draped over these real-world objects, providing a more intuitive, efficient and accurate way to visualize geospatial content, such as utility pipelines, structures and other assets that may be underground.

The future of AR is very bright, and could be the foundation of how we not only visualize geospatial information but digital information as a whole. Our computer screens will now be all around us—starting with display of digital content in our field of vision through our camera feeds in tablets and smartphones, and soon via glasses and in heads-up displays in our cars. Eventually holographic heads-up displays and projections will replace physical devices altogether.

In the near-term though, the OGC’s ARML standard has emerged as the means to publish spatial data and content and could be implemented in integrating GIS and AR.

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