New Tech Toys – Augmented Reality on the Droid

I’m posting from my new Motorola Droid. It’s frustratingly wonderful. Or wonderfully frustrating. The WordPress app seems to be working well; the keyboard is easier. Immersion seems to be the key. My typical typing speed is 125-150 words per minute, not as fast as sentences form in my head, but fast enough to prevent frustration. Blogging on Droid is painfully slow. It is helping me improve texting skills, though, as a latecomer to that game. The new iPhone commercials inspired me to give up the granny phone and enter the new century.

In particular, the ad for an augmented reality app caught my attention. You hold up your phone to a street sign, and it tells you where you are, what’s around you, and how to get where you’re going. Seemingly neat, but pointless; or, useful on my upcoming trip to Rome! Very useful! So far the new phone is quite fun, but I lack the experience to compare it to the iPhone or any other smartphone.

The whole concept of augmented reality, which is presumably one of the most significant developments on the web, brings us one step closer to virtual reality and the net as envisioned by Gibson and other SF/cyberpunk writers (we should call them theorists, right?). It’s quite exciting to see. I feel like my grandfather must have felt with the shift from horses to cars. OK, not quite.

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