Like many of us know, augmented reality is kind of a big deal these days. As I don’t consider myself to be a tech-head, I don’t necessarily get the most excited about new technology as such. The thrill of it all seeps into my brain once I come across new type of content that the technology enables. It turns out I’m not alone with my affection towards shiny new things that make my brain go “Wheee-eee-eee!”. For this reason, Augumenta asked us to create content to showcase their new Infinite Touch technology that is compatible with HoloLens. It was a challenge we were happy to take on.
First things first, Peter, Augumenta’s CTO and co-founder told us what is unique with their Infinite Touch and what new features it brings into the realm of HoloLens. With Infinite Touch it is possible to interact with AR items by simply pointing at them with your finger. Sounds simple, right? Truly great innovations often are. So why and how did LudoCraft come into play in this? Augumenta wanted content that reflects how easy-to-use their new technology is while also giving users an interface that is quick to understand, intuitive to control and makes people want to jump right in. Sounds a lot like games, and that’s where we step in to do our thing.
This time our thing was airplanes. Cool airplanes. Dogfight airplanes. We would not pay enough respect to our roots if we did not want to bring multiplayer even to HoloLens. (We’ve done something similar before.) In addition to the multiplayer option to dogfight with other people, we did a single player version where we taught AI to fly a plane. We call the game affectionately HoloPlane.
The idea of the game is quite simple – and that’s why it works – you put on your HoloLens, start up the game and start flying. You pilot the plane by moving your finger to any which way you want your plane to fly. The plane comes to your fingertip meticulously and without any need to “reactivate” the flying mode. Simple, intuitive interaction. That’s why Augumenta call their technology Infinite Touch – the movement stays intact. If you have a device, go install it by following these instructions from here and have fun.
Augumenta wanted to take their new technology and showcase it to industry leaders at Augmented World Expo in Munchen. Because expos are always a bustling scene with people looking for the latest cool thing, top-of-the-line technology utilized in an interactive game is a winning combination. Even better when you get to play the game together with someone. That’s why the dogfight concept of HoloPlane works so well; instead of flying around pointlessly you get to to embark on an epic adventure where you must take down your enemies. It elevates the already genius and functional technology to an emotional level where you care about the outcome of your actions on a deeper level. Especially if you are even a tiny bit competitive at heart.
But don’t take just my word for it, take Peter’s: “We have proven that we can take Microsoft HoloLens sensor data and turn it into human usable interaction using our algorithms. These same algorithms are now also available for other platforms. For example, a customer of ours uses PmdTech’s Pico Flexx 3D sensing ToF camera to provide the same finger detection for Android based SmartGlasses today. We love good challenges and we love to provide solutions that are easy to integrate and use. Working with LudoCraft ensures that we get innovative ideas and present our technology in a fun and friendly way that speaks to people!”
Anne Ryynänen handles sales and marketing at LudoCraft. She has yet to win any of the HoloPlane dogfights she’s entered. To alleviate the pain of losing, she resorts to writing about the matter. In her spare time Anne goes tobogganing.