Augmented Reality for Enterprise Alliance

Key AR terms

Area Glossary

Augmented Reality has been the subject of scientific and engineering research for decades but has only recently been brought to the attention of wider audiences. As the concept is broad, it is easily confused with other new and emerging technologies with which it shares attributes.

The AREA has compiled the following list of key AR terms and their definitions to help enterprises understand what distinguishes AR from other technologies and to provide a helpful reference when reading about AR-specific tools and concepts.

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A marker is a two-dimensional or three-dimensional image or model used to identify the real-life object that will be augmented.

Milgram’s Continuum

Augmented Reality is often confused with another technology that relies on software, hardware and content but without the physical world: Virtual Reality. Augmented Reality always involves adding digital information in a manner that’s tightly synchronized with the physical world. In contrast, Virtual Reality is 100% imaginary or “synthetic.”

In 1994 Paul Milgram and Fumio Kishino defined a mixed reality continuum. On one end is the physical world without any digital enhancements and, on the other, the purely digital world (Virtual Reality). Augmented Reality is a form of mixed reality that is closer to the physical world than the purely digital world.

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