ICT lab researcher will be presenting our work “Portal to knowledge: A Virtual Library Using Markerless Augmented Reality System for Mobile Device” at SPIE AR|VR|MR 2020. The work is co-authored by Yashas Joshi and Charalambos Poullis.
Since exceedingly efficient hand-held devices became readily available to the world, while not being a relatively recent topic, Augmented Reality (AR) has rapidly become one of the most prominent research subjects. These robust devices could compute copious amounts of data in a mere blink of an eye. Making it feasible to overlap computer generated, interactive, graphics over the real world images in real-time to enhance the comprehensive immersive experience of the user. In this paper, we present a novel mobile application which allows the users to explore and interact with a virtual library in their physical space using marker-less AR. Digital versions of books are represented by 3D book objects on bookcases similar to an actual library. Using an in-app gaze controller, the user’s gaze is tracked and mapped into the virtual library. This allows the users to select (via gaze) a digital version of any book and download it for their perusal. To complement the immersive user experience, a continuity is maintained using the concept of Portals while making any transition from AR to immersive VR or vice-versa, corresponding to transitioning from a “physical” to a virtual space. The use of portals makes these transitions simple and seamless for the user. The presented application was implemented using Google AR Core SDK and Unity 3D, and will serve as a handy tool to spawn a virtual library anytime and anywhere, giving the user an imminent mixed sense of being in an actual traditional library while having the digital version of any book on the go.