When Google introduced its wearable computer glasses, called Google Glass, last year, it opened many people's eyes (pardon the pun) to the power of augmented reality (AR)—where a person's view of the physical world is overlaid with a computer-generated sensory input, such as graphics or data.
Of course, AR has been around for years, and many tablet computer and smartphone apps utilize the technology, mostly for entertainment and gaming purposes.
But Sydney, Australia-based architect Rana Abboud sees far more potential for the technology, particularly in the design and construction industry, according to an article by DesignBuild Source. Abboud says that by superimposing computer-generated images, such as BIM files, over a real-world view of a construction site, AEC firms can greatly improve design visualization, the construction process, and even building maintenance and operations.
This photo from Bentley demonstrates the power of augmented reality using a tablet.
As part of a $10,000 scholarship from the National Association of Women in Construction, Abboud will investigate and test AR technology in design and construction and present her findings in a white paper.