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Thursday, 9 February 2012

Augmented Reality and SketchUp

I am in SketchUp mode right now, as we are working with the program in our 8th grade lessons. The students have been given a special task. They are to create a room based on a descriptive piece they wrote in English lessons, entitled a Character's Mind as a  Room.

It's the second time we have done this project in two years the culminating activity for which,  is to create a SketchUp video of the models. Yesterday the plans changed a bit something new and exciting appeared on the horizon. I came across a slide share presentation posted by Martin Burrett on augmented reality. The presentation lead me to AR-Media's cool plugin for Google SketchUp. I needed to check this out, one because I have never really investigated augmented reality (except for the time I tried to get it to work in Zooburst, failed and gave up...[Note to self: go back and try this again]), but more importantly because it would be an exciting activity to do with our kids when they complete the unit. They could even screencast themselves manipulating their models.

All anyone needs to do is to download the free plugin from AR-Media then build or open an existing  model. A working webcam is a must, most computers come with built in cameras today, as is a print  off the marker from the AR-media folder in your computer library.

To get a better idea, watch the very short inexpert video demonstration I put together. There are plenty more of these peruse, including one produced by In Globe Technologies, which demonstrates layers management, real time sections and more.

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