The design lab at MIT has created an experimental augmented reality program that bridges the possibilities of real-time collaborating in 3D. The program is called T(ether) and the creators, Matthew Blackshaw, Dávid Lakatos, Hiroshi Ishii, and Ken Perlin, call it, “a tool for spatial expression” that “acts as a window affording users a perspective view of three-dimensional data through tracking of head position and orientation.” More simply this means, that two viewers can look through their individual iPads to reveal a shared virtual space that allows them to reach in simultaneously to create and manipulate 3D graphics.
While one hand is holding up the iPad as the viewing tool, the other hand of the user is outfitted with a special glove that interacts with the augmented reality system. The uses for this kind of technology are wide but initially the focus will be on the scientific community and 3D animation studios. T(ether) will also be benefital to architects and designers working in other 3D software such as CAD. For a better understanding of how this augmented reality technology works, check out this clip: