Blog

Swim With Dolphins, Play With Dinosaurs, Augment Reality

So you’re at the local shopping centre/mall, when you look up and your friend is patting a dinosaur. It’s not a toy or a child’s ride, so what, exactly, is going on here? Did you have hallucinogens for breakfast again? Hmm… No need to panic, it’s just some real-time augmented reality from National Geographic TV. The televisual arm of the National Geographic Society features such gems as Executing ’Satan’s Servants,’ The Witch Doctor Will See You Now, Full-Contact Jousting and some programs about animals and nature and stuff.

To showcase some of its content, they created this experiential installation, which lets shoppers interact with all kinds of natural phenomena—from lightning storms to wild beasts. This is, after all, the 21st century. We don’t want to just sit idly watching big cats and giant lizards on our TV screens; we want in on the action. And Appshaker have brought that extra level of interactivity to the National Geographic Channel with their live augmented reality TV bonanza. Finally, people wandering through a mall can immerse themselves in scenes from National Geographic: space landings, swimming with dolphins, crazy weather (but, sadly, no executing of Satan’s servants).

The results though are very impressive, and seem to delight and instill a sense of wonder in adults and kids alike. Shopping malls need more of this kind of stuff.