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Augumented Reality: Boon or Curse?

By August 15, 2019 3 Comments

By: Ruchi Acharya

Do you wonder to blend the best of both real and virtual worlds? The pursuit of digital transformation has led our technology to develop a new digital interface into the natural environment. When someone talks about Augmented Reality (AR), they are referring to a technology that makes more significance to the existing world by overlaying it with artificial vision. This process is further comprehend with person’s multiple sensory modalities such as vision, sound, touch, motion etc. in order to ensure that the user receives information. The growth of AR applications has led a whole new revolution in terms of:

  • Visual arts

  • Engineering

  • Education

  • Entertainment

  • Tourism

  • Militarisation

  • Marketing

For example, with the help of AR one can take an accurate measurement of the furniture. The best app to provide such facility is Home Depot. In recent years, this application was able to provide customer satisfaction by eradicating the widespread worry about furniture’s fitting or appearance. Customers can now easily rely on technology by setting up their own virtual fitting room.

AR has also successfully achieved several milestones when it comes to Fashion Industry. In the great interest for customer’s comfortability one can try new outfits on Timberland App without actually stepping into the trial room. It sounds convenient, isn’t?

Similarly, you can also test cosmetics through virtual makeup before purchasing it. The brand Sephora has launched numerous make-up screens to their departmental stores across the globe. All these features endorse customer’s confidence and trust while shopping. Thus, enhancing business growth and creating new market strategies. You can check more about it in: 7 Innovative and inspiring example of AR in marketing.

augmentedImage courtesy by IKEA

That’s fascinating, isn’t? Hold on! Don’t just get carry away from the work-perks of the AR’s applications. After all, science is a boon and bane. It looks so harmless and advantageous but unfortunately there are some limitations too.

“Nothing in life is to be feared. It is only to be understood. Now is now time to understand more, so that we may fear less.”― Marie Curie

There had been drastic consequences with the implementation of nifty AR technology into the actual surroundings. This constructive layout is life peril through its interference with reality. There is concern that AR will risk people’s lives if left unsupervised. There could be no better example than Pokemon GO with a couple death and numerous casualties. See Deaths by Pokemon GO. AR is an informative camouflage masking the reality at the verge of risking people’s lives. Yet again, science has taught us a lesson and question upon our negligence.

Improper use of AR application can cause breach to the public privacy. There are potential juristic concerns over secretive matters. With this advance 3D virtualisation there is an ease in access of people’s identity through features like facial recognition. There is a sense of fear that one could attain all the confidential intellect like:

  • Social networking IDs

  • Criminal records

  • Personal background

  • Sexual preferences

  • Age

  • Marital status

All of these data can be misused against oneself for personal greed. Furthermore, out of curiosity who may know people will start continuous video-recording causing discomfort to individuals. The excessive use of AR can cause a significant impact on people’s mental health as well. It can also lead to copyrighting or violating social security services. Just imagine the chaos!

augmented imageImage courtesy by Sky News

As for now AR has been a novelty to the world. It’s like a shooting star making all our dreams are achieved. The advancement in AR has allowed users to retrieve the use of its applications for the social interactions and entertainment. The most prevailing applications of AR Headsets such as Microsoft’s HoloLens and Facebook’s Oculus Virtual reality allows users to interact with holograms, play games and watch 3D movies. One can take a whole new experience to travel around the globe virtually by sitting in a couch!

Engineers can also provide the most use of augmented techs in developing sector. The engineering environment demands constant field work and determination. Mechanical engineers and technicians have to collaborate instructions and synchronise it with engineering performances to meet their target. This is something hard to get. It’s when AR Google Glass take its toll! With time the Google X brand has proved itself productive and helped million engineers with their projects. It helped several reputed companies such as Boeing, GE, Volkswagen and many other automaker industries to improve quality performances and customer services. These can lead to an increment in company’s productivity and efficiency. Google Glass is easy to use and super-convenient. Who may know one day computer monitor would fade away?

The most thanksgiving benefits of AR technology are in terms of Medical Science. Through augmented technology students, doctors or dentists can now practice surgery in a most orderly way without risking the patient’s life. They can explore human anatomy in three dimensions without feeling the necessity to practice on a deceased person. Neurosurgery is most benefited by this technology as it’s very complicated to access most parts of our brain. AR has been advantageous for surgeons and nurses as they can experience genuine medical settings. Today our young scientists are still inventing new applications with AR technology in medical stream. Just imagine the possibility of success rate of operations and good healthcare facilities to mankind!

augmentedpicPhoto Courtesy by Western University

The subject AR is an interesting and fascinating topic but don’t forget to count its cons. There is no doubt when new immersive gadget launch in the market, people go crazy! Especially, it’s very hard to cope with youngsters. Nowadays, the upcoming generation is becoming over-possessive and addicted to gaming. It can affect their health both mentally and physically. Being captivated into a virtual world for long hours can result in solitude and cutting off from the edge of reality. Temple treasure Hunt, Sharks in the park or Zombie GO are some examples of AR gaming.

This negligence equally implies on adults as well. For example, who would try to escape from a luxury villa? To feel peace and satisfaction one would definitely try to stay as long as possible into the fake virtuality. Such programs can make people submissive and can lead them to avoid human interactions at all. They can become dissociate of reality. This can prove to be very dangerous to the entire community. Thus, it is recommended that one must be very careful with the mirage of augmented realities.

In military, it is very vital to make data run successfully across the wearer’s range of full vision to avoid confusion or mislead any information. Henceforth, AR technology demands for a very strong Internet connection to carry out its process. Let us understand in this way, imagine a soldier fighting in the battlefield wearing AR glasses. We all know war zones are chaotic and there is no time to think. Soldiers are required to respond in a very short period of time and take quick actions. Any slight interruption in the signal can cause switching shooting targets or who may know one can shoot his own man in the battlefield. So does it go with Spy and other secret services. Innocent lives are at stake if augmented specs are malfunctioned or mishandled.

Furthermore, another possibility of mishandling highly augmented technology in the hands of a terrorist organisation can cause a large scale of terrorist planning. Thereby, it is highly necessary to secure the proper use of these augmented technologies. Read more about:

PROS:

https://www.techradar.com/sg/news/death-becomes-ar-how-the-military-is-using-augmented-reality

CONS:

https://arinmed.com/the-limitations-of-ar-in-surgery/

augmentedreality

Image courtesy by Josh LeCappelain/US Department of Defense

Naturally, another important drawback is in its performances and specifications. Let’s say, the battery life which consumed lots of energy and run only for a short period of time. This further results in delaying respective projects causing a drawdown to the associated industry. The battery life must be taken into consideration in the smooth functioning of the augmented devices. Another issue is the hardware configuration. AR doesn’t support every handset materialistically for functioning of real-time data. Therefore, it leads to purchase a specific brand to achieve high quality standards and to respond to the requirements. Top of everything to make this augmented gadgets to work on mainstream it is extremely important to make it cost effective.

The most exciting part about augmenting technology is its role in the future. First comes, in the scope of visual art. It will be tremendous if we approach AR applications to meet cultural experience. The respective organisation can make it available to a larger audience through broadcast in Museums or Galleries. It can be cheap while confronting a large number of the crowd. Also, it will be engaging through its unique animated features. People will need to know the different prospects of vivid cultures across the world. AR visual art forms can help the government to sustain peace and unity in the multi-cultural countries. This method is approachable and will be useful to prevent discrimination based on caste, creed, gender or colour of the skin in the society. It can provide the essence of togetherness and create bonding of friendship amongst individuals.

The Vizix Blade AR glass is one of the most powerful Android processors bringing the AR technology together with the voice activation platform. The unique Alexa integration in the device makes it possible to issue voice commands and run programs on the screen. It will be functional while your hands are engaged and all you need is voice command to read your emails or send a text message.

Read more about in: https://www.digitalbodies.net/augmented-reality/vuzix-to-offer-ar-smart-glasses-with-alexa-integration/

In the end, it’s upon you to decide whether Augmented Reality is a boon or a curse to humanity. Howsoever, one thing is for sure nobody can resist the upfront lead of AR technologies in terms of marketing, engineering or domestic use. It lies ahead of us to make the use of such inventions with care and try to bring the best out of our innovative technologies.

 

About the Author

Ruchi Acharya is an Indian writer and the founder of the writing community, Wingless Dreamer. Her website winglessdreamer.com has 15,000 monthly visitors and more than 200 international contributors. She is an Oxford University summer graduate in English Literature. Her poem, “Long distant call” was the winner of the featuring contest of Poetry world.org in 2019. she has been a contributor to multiple writing platforms such as The Pangolin Review (Mauritius), fairytalez.com (Denmark), and BCM Touring (India). Her literary works include fairy tales, romantic short stories and poems. She has never eaten a dragon-fruit.

 

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