By Tom Leddo, Vice President
A couple of years ago I attended a SIG event (Special Interest Group) focusing on augmented reality (AR) that was hosted by EvoNexus, a San Diego based, non-profit, technology incubator that helps accelerate the growth of entrepreneurial companies in the southern California area. They also provide excellent networking opportunities in the San Diego tech community.
As an ole wireless, real estate guy with no technology experience, I lacked the vision at that time to see the practical implications of AR and couldn’t understand how it would play out in the market place. I believed it had value, but I wasn’t able to grasp it.
Personally, the only application of AR I had experienced was the yellow, computer generated line that appears on television as the first-down indicator for a college or pro (American) football game. Now my vision is beginning to expand. The most obvious, well known example is Pokémon Go, the augmented reality game that uses the GPS on your iOS and Android smartphones to capture and even battle virtual creatures overlaid on real images through your smartphone camera.
Pokémon creatures are everywhere and everyone is either playing Pokémon Go or making fun of people who do. The Md7 offices in both the USA and Europe and the Md7 team members are no exception. The first documented capture of a #Md7Pokemon was made by Lynn Whitcher, Md7 General Counsel, in our headquarters in San Diego. As she walked down our hallways, Lynn was surprised to find a round, fuzzy, purple Venonat peering around the corner at her. She captured the creature (once on camera, and again with a Pokéball) and an addiction was born!
Lynn has even begun to become friendly with a few. Since the initial capture by Lynn and her subsequent befriending of the creatures, other Md7 team members have been also become friendly with Pokémon within Md7. Captures have been made from San Diego, to Seattle and all the way our Maastricht office in The Netherlands. The entire collection of photos can be found on Instagram via @md7llc and #Md7Pokemon.
For those of us who are not into Pokémon Go but are interested in other examples of AR technology, checkout this recent article in USA Today that features “five more cool AR apps” – Yelp, Blippar, Google Translate, Crayola Color Alive and Star Walk 2. While I may not have fully appreciated the market value of augmented reality when I first heard about it at the EvoNexus, SIG event a couple of years ago, I see it now. And I also expect we will see a lot more of it in the near future.