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Business - Written by on Monday, August 25, 2008 15:08 - 0 Comments

Jeff DeChambeau
When a phone is a bridge between worlds

I’ve been looking into new ways that people can use mobile devices. Both Google and Apple have offered big prizes for people who develop applications for their Android and iPhone platforms. There are lots of location-aware applications that offer immediate access to information that’s relevant to wherever you happen to be, but they’re all pretty drab in their execution. Except for Enkin.

Enkin is a mapping system that bridges the digital and real worlds. Typical mapping applications show a bird’s eye view whatever location is being investigated. What Enkin does is something called “Live Mode”, which provides an overlay of rich digital information that you use when you look at anything. That probably isn’t very clear, so check out the movie. Skip to about 2:40 for the really cool stuff:

Using the camera and screen, with labels injected, the Android powered mobile device becomes something of a magical lense that can be used to provide us with digital information about the world, overlayed on the world itself, as intermediated by the device. So far the Enkin guys have set this up to work with locations that have been tagged in their map view, but imagine the possibilities if it could integrate with all of the Geodata that’s tagged in Google Earth. You could also integrate this with social mobility services, and set your name to public, then strangers on the street could take a look at you through their phone and see your name floating above your head like in a videogame. Businesses could also geotag deals that they are running, and you’d set your Enkin-enabled device in “deal hunter live mode” where you’d see overlays on businesses including distance and deal. The list goes on and the possibilities are great.

What kinds of overlays of the digital onto the real would you like to see?

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