'Nearest Tube' Augmented Reality iPhone App

Nearest Tube is an augmented reality iPhone application by UK developer acrossair. Owners of the iPhone 3Gs in London can use it to find the nearest "tube" - subway - station entrance.

Take a look at this video of the Nearest Tube application.


(Nearest Tube iPhone app video)

As you can see, the Nearest Tube application superimposes directional cues and signage on the iPhone's live picture image. Held flat, the screen actually shows the train lines underground; held vertically, you can see signposts with train station names. The functionality depends on the iPhone 3Gs GPS to determine your location, and to present appropriate images.

Although the term "augmented reality" appears to have been coined in the early 1990's by Boeing aircraft engineers, I think that The California Voodoo Game, a 1992 novel by Larry Niven and Steve Barnes, mentions DreamTime scleral contact lenses which, if I remember correctly, do actually superimpose graphic information on the scene in front of the user, making it an augmented reality display.

Science fiction authors have also been popularizing the idea and developing ideas for specific applications. For example, Charles Stross writes about overlay specs in his 2007 novel Halting State. These were used by police officers to present information gleaned from copspace, a virtual evidence warehouse, and then superimposed on the real world.

Vernor Vinge wrote about the idea at great length in his 2006 novel Rainbows End; everyone uses smart contacts (which Vinge introduced in an earlier story) to see images superimposed on the real world. In the novel, augmented reality was universal; no one had to look at plain, unvarnished reality.

You'd need to go back at least as far as Philip K. Dick's retinal vid-screen, from his 1954 story Sales Pitch to see the earliest mention of having something that projected information directly into your visual field. However, Dick was just suggesting that you could see news feeds; I don't think he suggests that you could see location-specific images superimposed on your field of vision.

From acrossair via Gizmodo. Also, see a video of Wikitude augmented reality software for Google android smartphones developed last fall.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 7/18/2009)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 3 )

Related News Stories - (" Computer ")

Kelly Clarkson Show Like Black Mirror '15 Million Merits'
'These people are pieces of software called avatars.' Neal Stephenson, 1992.

Neuralink Will Land A Chip In Your Brain
'What are you talking about? Do you mean a neural lace?' - Iain M. Banks, 2010.

100 Terabyte Exadrive SSD Also Has Biggest Price
'A man could carry AIs or complete planetary dataspheres in a Schrön loop.' - Dan Simmons, 1989.

Google Now Expects Chips To Design Themselves
'What lay down there? Energy, tubes and pipes, wiring, transformers, self-contained machinery...' - Philip K. Dick, 1960.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

Looking Glass Display Good Enough For Science Fiction, Fantasy
'The figure seemed to be swimming toward the surface.'

Do You Need The Entire Fembot? Maybe Just The Hand
'...Men don't want real women anymore. You and I are behind the times...'

3D Printing With Sunlight And Sand
'We made a crude, small cell and were delighted...'

Samsung Gets Transparent Smartphone Patent
The Transparency of Things to Come

Monkey Gets A Bigger Brain, Thanks To Human Gene
'It's a madhouse! a madhouse!'

Solar Power Beamed From Space Studied By Brit Boffins
'Our beams feed these worlds energy drawn from... the Sun.'

Pandemic Entrepreneurs! Consider Robo Esso Robot Barista
'... the perpetual beam carved in the robot face of the bartender, the classic Irish grin.'

Shape-Shifting Robot From MIT
'... the structure of that shape is retained down to the molecules.'

Tesla's 20,000 Superchargers
'To recharge the batteries, which can be done in almost every town and village...'

Smallest Rogue Planet Discovered In Milky Way
'...a swarm of rogue planets chanced by.'

New Technology For Interplanetary Communication
'... sweating, heat-blistered engineers at every interplanetary radiograph station on three planets, stood by their generators.'

First Lunar Water, Then... Monolith?
'It looks brand new, doesn't it?'

Flying Robot Inspired By Hawks
'The dark birdforms dotted the mountaintops...'

Jet-Powered Flying Suits Tested By Navy
'With his motor in operation, he moves like a diver, head foremost...'

Pub Installs Electrified Fence Around Bar
'I start twelve immensely strong wires--naked, not insulated --from a big dynamo...'

What Does A Tesla Full Self-Driving Car See?
'All objects within my panoramic gaze trembled and vibrated like quick motion pictures...'

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.