Augmented Reality as a New Media for Supporting Mobile-Learning

Augmented Reality as a New Media for Supporting Mobile-Learning

Mauro Figueiredo (University of Algarve, Portugal), José Gomes (University of Algarve, Portugal & Open University, Portugal), Cristina Maria Cardoso Gomes (University of Algarve, Portugal & Open University, Portugal), Rui Gaspar (University of Algarve, Portugal & Open University, Portugal) and João Madeira Lopes (University of Algarve, Portugal)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-9634-1.ch032
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Abstract

Combining mobile technologies with Augmented Reality (AR) has recently enabled the ubiquity of AR technologies in our everyday life. We believe that the use of augmented reality will change significantly the teaching activities by enabling the addition of supplementary information that is seen on a mobile device. This chapter presents the most popular augmented reality applications and we select AR eco-systems to be used in daily teaching activities which are user friendly, do not require programming skills and are free. Different augmented reality technologies are explored in this chapter. It is presented the creation of two novel augmented reality books. One developed with teachers and students. Another book that was developed for increasing the interest of reading for children that is being used by storytellers. Several examples are also presented that are used in educational activities, from kindergarten, elementary, secondary schools and university, to improve reading, comprehension, learning of music and better understand the drawing of orthographic views.
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Augmented Reality

Augmented Reality applications display information that is synthetized in order to help us better understand the real world. The real images are displayed together with 2D or 3D computer generated images in real time and interactively. In this way, the user interaction is improved and more natural enhancing its perception of reality.

Virtual and real worlds systems can be combined in different ways. Based on the Virtuality Continuum taxonomy scheme concept developed by Paul Milgram and Fumio Kishino (1994), Augmented Reality applications are closer to the real world.

A commonly accepted definition for Augmented Reality is the one proposed by Ronald Azuma (1997) that identifies three features that must be accomplished by an AR system:

  • 1.

    Combine real and virtual;

  • 2.

    Interactive in real time;

  • 3.

    Registered in 3D.

We can identify two categories of Augmented Reality systems: geo-base and computer vision based. Geo-based applications use the mobile’s GPS, accelerometer, gyroscope, and other technology to determine the location, heading, and direction of the mobile device. In the direction in which the user is looking, the augmented computer-generated images are displayed together with the real images. Some problems and research questions are to be solved. One of them is the lack of precision in the GPS coordinates obtained with the mobile devices that makes it hard the presentation of overlay data.

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