Augmented reality guru Bruce Sterling shared a fascinating video on his Wired.com blog Beyond the Beyond today that shows a developer building an AR application without any programming language in just shy of five minutes. Using the Mac-based visual design app Quartz Composer and few additional plugins, the developer (apparently a Russian named Vladmir, according to his YouTube account) quickly assembles the application using Quartz’s visual Yahoo Pipes-like interface.
The video embedded above is pretty easy to follow despite being a screencast of a complex design application. The developer simply drags and drops a few elements onto the screen to initialize the video input device, recognize a marker, and incorporate a 3D model of a teapot. After connecting a few dots and tweaking some settings, we see the teapot appearing on an AR marker via the developer’s webcam.
The experience itself is not the impressive thing – fans of AR have seen webcams place objects on black and white makers for a while now. What is interesting about this video is how quickly and easily the plugins for Quartz made what is normally a fairly complex process of programming an AR app.
This application is an innovative implementation of the ARToolKit, a free and open-source library for creating AR apps created in 1999. Just as SDKs for platforms like the iPhone make mobile app development much easier, these types of plugins for visual design tools will make the development of AR apps quick and easy. The easier (and cheaper) it is to develop AR applications, the faster the technology will grow and the more exposure it will receive in the public eye.