Friday, 29 November 2013

Augmented Reality with Aurasma Part One

We are always looking at making use of different technologies to improve the experiences of our children and the online presence of the school.
A friend of ours, who works in private industry, recommended Aurasma some time ago after using it when setting up exhibitions. After registering with the company, the account lay dormant for some time, in part because we were intimidated by our expectations of how complicated it would be to create what is known as an aura.
Aurasma, through their apps (which are available on both iOS and Android devices), allows users to add a layer of a photo or video over an image. Then, when the image is scanned, the app superimposes the video or photo over it allowing you to insert information into the original image. As part of registering as a developer, you are provided with access to their online studio with all the tools necessary for developing your own augmented reality including a detailed, but simple tutorial.
It was with a high-level of sheepishness that our first aura was completed. The tutorial is excellent and quickly and simply takes you through all the steps needed to create an aura. By following these instructions we were able to make our first aura in a matter of minutes.
The first aura we created linked a trailer for a Shakespeare film we made with the children to an image that went on the back of the DVD covers that the children made. Now, when you scan the image with the app, the trailer for the film appears. Subsequent auras include linking photos of the school to the school logo and an image linking some class artwork to a welcome sign.
It is remarkably easy to create the auras. They can be made public or private depending on need and allows the school to provide more information to Aurasma users about the school. 

Download the app, follow this link and scan the image below in order to see a simple example of what it can do.

The next step is to use Aurasma to provide a more information rich environment for children especially during project-based learning. We have used an image of a Henry VIII to link to a film about him and an image on a display to link to a film on how to do an addition calculation.

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