W3C and OGC Augmented Reality Pilot - an exciting adventure for W3C!

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W3C has partnered with the Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) to define an Augmented Reality (AR) Pilot Project -- to enable the seamless integration of real world, geospatial, and web data -- as part of the OGC Innovation Program. In this program, we expect to validate existing W3C Standards and to lay foundations for future standards work by gathering sponsors and participants to develop models, interfaces, and architecture descriptions. This preliminary work, helping to build prototypes and systems, should highlight the interoperability challenges that standards can address.

screenshot of Augmented Reality (AR) content encoded in ARML 2.0 displayed in Wikitude, Layar and Junaio browsers respectively

Augmented Reality (AR) content encoded in ARML 2.0 displayed in Wikitude, Layar and Junaio browsers respectively. (Image from Wikitude)

We've chosen Augmented Reality as our first project because the Open Web Platform already provides a set of critical technologies that enable augmented reality applications: JavaScript APIs give access to cameras, geographic coordinates, orientation data, and graphical capabilities that can build interactive 3D objects, which together provide enough building blocks to create and deploy basic augmented reality applications.

We have reached the first major step in this Pilot - a Call For Sponsors!  During this phase both W3C and OGC will identify Sponsors, work with them to craft a call for participants to build the technologies and prototypes to meet their use cases, and bring sponsors and participants together to build and document their technologies.

W3C is developing many components within the Open Web Platform that can be integrated to support AR, including some of our newest work on device and sensor access, and real-time communication, and WebAssembly. The work of the WebVR Community Group and discussions from the VR Authoring Workshop point out new opportunities for the immersive Web.

Another key objective in W3C's partnering with OGC in this pilot project is to explore ways to  provide additional benefits to our Membership. While it's not a requirement to be either a W3C or OGC Member to be a Sponsor we certainly encourage our Membership to consider Sponsorship.

The plan we are working towards closes the Sponsorship CFP by 7 February 2018. At that point we will finalize the scope of the project and issue a call for participation. In order to be a participant in the AR Pilot you will need to be either a W3C Member or an OGC Member. We will be selecting the participants in early May 2018 and starting the Pilot in late May - the current target date is 23 May 2018 with the Pilot being completed by the end of 2018.

I see this as an exciting opportunity for our Membership to help define the solutions that will drive the AR product architectures in the years to come and for W3C to determine what our own Testbed and Pilot Program might look like moving forward!

If this first project is fruitful, the W3C Team is evaluating several additional projects for CY2018 including a Testbed for Smart Cities, a Pilot Project around AR and Museums, a Pilot Project for the Entertainment Industry and a Pilot Project for Digital Publishing.   Stay tuned for updates as we get these defined and brought to you.

If you have any questions on the AR Pilot Project please don't hesitate to contact either myself or Dominique Hazaël-Massieux.  If you have any interest in the other potential projects just drop me a note.

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