Interactions By Ashley Roberts

Projection Mapping

Also known as 'spatial augmented reality' and 'video mapping' projection mapping is the use of a common projector, to place a 3D environment onto a 2D object. By using specialised software, which mimics and records the environment it is going to project on, an object can be mapped and projected onto this space. One of the very first examples of projection mapping was in Disney's Haunted mansion. The projection mapping used here created realistic 3D ghost images and projected them into many rooms of the mansion.

As well as being used in rides projection mapping has had many more usages. With updates in technology more complicated pieces of projection mapping has been created. It has been used in advertising, marketing and even night shows.

Previous to this workshop I had very little experience with projection mapping. I have witnessed it before at a light show and on a ride at Alton Towers but have never created a piece myself.

I found the technology really fun and easy to use. I managed to create a nice looking piece of many images and managed to project them onto the ceiling of the room. I really enjoyed the freedom of projection mapping. As this technology will allow you to project anything onto any surface, this flexibility can be very creative and was really fun to use.

A photo of the projection mapping I created.

Me using the app to create the images

An example of the another persons use of the technology.

In this day and age projection mapping will become more and more important. This is because it offers companies a new and interesting way at which they can sell their products. This use of technology will allow more immersive adverts to be created and allow companies to advertise anywhere, whether this is good or bad it is up to the persons own ideas. additionally though this technology can help solve many issues to do with the environment. As this technology will allow virtual billboards to be created which will reduce the usage of paper. Also as it can recreate anything a person wants their will be less of a need to physically produce items such as clocks, electronic notice boards or any screen at all. As projection mapping can re-create all of this digitally it will reduce the amount of resources needed to create these items, thus reducing mining which damages the environment greatly.

This next video will emphasis my point on how projection mapping can replace screens. With this replacement we will no longer need to use the precious materials needed to create these devices, thus freeing them up to be used in more important aspects such as medical usage..

Augmented and Virtual Reality

Virtual technology (VR) and augmented reality (AR) has been round since the late 1960’s when Ivan Sutherland created a head mounted display which demonstrated simple wire-frame drawings with the aid of a computer generated graphics. Since its creation VR and Ar have advanced leap and bounds. It is suggested that this technology is going to be the origin of future computers, which will bring the virtual and real world together into one 'super world.' This technology can literally turn the environment you are in, into something completely different.

Their are three different versions of augmented reality, Augmented reality 3D viewers allows the placement of life size 3D objects in your environment with the use of trackers. The second type is Augmented Reality browsers which allows people to look back through time of any historical building by using the camera on their smartphone. The final version is the usage of Augmented reality in video games. This version of Ar is seen in games such as Pokemon Go, which allows people to walk around their real environment and catch video game characters through the use of their phones.

An example of a VR video turning a person into a T-Rex.

My Experience

Before this workshop I had not experienced virtual reality at all, but I have experienced augmented reality. My first experience of augmented reality was with Universal studios interactive DVD covers. These special edition covers brought the main characters of the film to life. An example of this is shown below.

This video shows me using the augment reality app in the workshop. I managed to scan an image of a drinks can and created an avatar which reacts when the can is on show. I found augment reality really fun to play with however unlike projection mapping you are limited by the software. As you cannot create the animation yourself, you have to select what animation you would like to react with certain objects. Apart from this I really enjoyed using this technology.

As this was the first time using VR I was really taken away with it. I had a go on the Oculus Rift and the HTC Vive. I was mos impressed by the Vive as this technology fully immersed me into a virtual environment. I really enjoyed walking around this virtual space and manipulating it to what I wanted to do.

Me using the Oculus and the drone simulation

HTC Vive set up

The snowman I was playing around with while using the Vive

The Future

VR and AR can be used in many different ways in the real world. AR could be used in conjunction with projection mapping, as both of these technologies together could become very powerful. Their main usage could be in the development of medicine. As the projection mapping can project the human body, while the AR will allow the user to interact with this projection to scan the body of diseases or broken bones. In turn this technology could revolutionize the medical field as it would allow doctors to detect problems within any person very quickly and help create a treatment for them alot faster than in traditional means.

The future of VR is almost endless. This technology will push the boundaries between the real and virtual world. It could replace many household items such as books. As this technology would allow the user to live inside the world of the book and become apart of it. It could also be used in other recreational areas as well. This technology in the future could expand and become a Holodeck, a futuristic entertainment and scientific technology shown in the series Star Trek. A holodeck would allow people to recreated any factual or fictional environment and allow the person to live inside it, just as we do in the real world.

This video shows examples of the future of VR and AR by

A video showing how VR is pushing towards a Star trek style Holodeck


A microcontroller is a essential a very small computer. They are usually embedded into other technologies in order to control the actions of that technology. Micro-controllers are prominently used to handle small tasks, such as controlling displays on LED screens, as they do not poses much processing power.

Micro-Controllers are widely used in technologies of today. One example would be in the use of gaming and the wireless controllers people play with. As video game controllers have many different buttons and commands, micro controllers are needed to be placed inside this device so the home console understands what commands are being sent to it. Without this technology gaming would be near impossible as the controllers would have to be very basic.

Inside an Xbox One controller, showing the many micro-controllers inside of it

Due to the small size of micro controllers they are very beneficial in all technologies. As they are able to take over simple tasks of bigger technologies. It makes the technology easier to use as the audience don't need to have a understanding of wires or programming to use a machine.

My Experience

Before the workshop I didn't have much experience with micro-controllers. I was unaware of the many usages it could have. They can be used to control cars, doorbells, clocks, fans and many more things!

I found that using LittleBits was a lot more fun than using the circuitry, This was because with LittleBits I was able to create anything I wanted. At first I created a countdown timer connected to a fan. Even though this was practically useless it was really fun. I then moved on and created a working car. It was really fun to be able to create anything I wanted, even if the pieces were really flimsy and kept falling apart. This piece of kit was very easy to use and I never knew how easy it was to create working pieces of technology before this workshop.

With the circuitry on the other hand I found it just too tedious. We used a technology called Arduino. This technology was easy to use and understand however I just didn't enjoy it as much as LittleBits. The fact that items have to be placed in a exact position or the device wont work really limits what you can make. However it was fun to see how things are wired up and the fact that you can make the LED screen display anything was really fun and interesting.

The Future

In the future I think that LittleBits can go really far. As it allows you to create anything a person wants at a very low cost the only limit is a persons imagination. With this kit you can create alarms for your house which will alert you if someone is trying t break in. But this concept could be taken even further. This kit could be directly connected to the police or any other emergency service system. This means that the police can be diretly notified if someone is trying to break into your house. As well as this though if you connect a heat or smoke detector to this kit it could alert the emergency services to a fire asoon as it starts. This could potentially save lives as the emergency services would be able to arrive quicker due to the quicker alert message.

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