It's really magical and wow, I've never seen this before are some of the responses you can expect when seeing Aronson Antiquairs art objects in Augmented Reality, or AR for short. It cannot be captured on paper, you can only experience it with a smartphone or tablet.
Through AR it is possible to virtually place computer-generated objects in your own surroundings. Be it creatures in the game Pokémon Go, an iPad from Apple or a bookcase from Ikea, the virtual objects have been recreated in computers and magically appear on the screen as the camera captures the actual environment. Until recently this was only possible with identical, mass-produced products, but it is more difficult to do this with unique art objects such as handmade antiques.
The technology required to register unique and complex objects to micron levels and almost realistically and naturalistically reproduce them was not available until now. Now Amsterdam-based company FloatScans has resolved these challenges with their unique and self-developed 3D scan technology. This technology scans interaction with light, besides the geometry and the color of an object. Especially in times when people are more limited in travel, I see the power of displaying an object without actually having to pack and ship it all over the world. You really get the feeling that the object is in front of you when you use AR, says Aronson.
For the first time it is possible to virtually enjoy objects from the collection of Aronson Antiquairs in your own home or in the surroundings of, for example, a museum gallery. Place the object on a table or in a vitrine and see what it looks like. As you move around the virtual object with your device, you can view every corner of the object and get a closer look in remarkable details.
The technical side of it; while a normal photo is about 5 MB in size, a scanned 3D object quickly approaches 10.000 MB or 10 GB. Advanced software manages to reduce this to a size that is apprehensible even for a smartphone of a few years old. There is no need to download a separate app or program, it works directly in your internet browser. The surface on which the object can be placed is scanned via the camera lens and the object is then reconstructed in its actual size on the screen. In the future, the cameras on both sides of the device will even measure incoming light and reproduce reflections on the object, but even now you will be amazed when trying to grab an object that is not there.
We will have to wait patiently to see it become more commonplace, but for now you can already experience the true potential of this amazing technology in your own home. Visit www.aronson.com/ar