Have you, or any of your friends or family, gone Pokémon Go crazy? Are you trekking the streets and countryside hoping for strange pastel-coloured figures to pop up on your Smartphone screens? It seems that the world has woken up to ‘augmented reality’ and is getting very excited.
I won’t be getting excited.
That’s because I have been excited by the possibilities for years now! The reason being that back in 2013 I worked with a company called Apeartome Ltd (now tomee.com) on a project that didn’t involve just augmented reality, but ultra-reality! This wasn’t just cartoon figures appearing on your Smartphone, but people! And they would talk to you!
The figures in question were historic people (both actual and imagined) who would tell you something interesting about the City of York. A Roman soldier, a Victorian businessman, Guy Fawkes and Richard Plantagenet were just some of the characters that would pop up at various locations around the city to enhance the tourist experience for tourist. You could even have your photograph taken with them!
Writing the scripts for some of these was tremendous fun, I particularly enjoyed penning the home-sick legionnaire, but more exciting still was getting an insight into just how powerful the technology was and could be. As somebody who was involved in the early days of the ‘multi-media explosion’ it was fascinating to see some of the predictions coming into actuality. As a fantasy writer it’s a bit a little bit of fantasy come true!