Understanding Augmented Reality addresses the elements that are required to create augmented reality experiences. The technology that supports augmented reality will come and go, evolve and change. The underlying principles for creating exciting, useful augmented reality experiences are timeless.

Augmented reality designed from a purely technological perspective will lead to an AR experience that is novel and fun for one-time consumption - but is no more than a toy. Imagine a filmmaking book that discussed cameras and special effects software, but ignored cinematography and storytelling!  In order to create compelling augmented reality experiences that stand the test of time and cause the participant in the AR experience to focus on the content of the experience - rather than the technology - one must consider how to maximally exploit the affordances of the medium.

Understanding Augmented Reality addresses core conceptual issues regarding the medium of augmented reality as well as the technology required to support compelling augmented reality. By addressing AR as a medium at the conceptual level in addition to the technological level, the reader will learn to conceive of AR applications that are not limited by today’s technology. At the same time, ample examples are provided that show what is possible with current technology.

Key Features

    • Explore the different techniques, technologies and approaches used in developing AR applications
    • Learn from the author's deep experience in virtual reality and augmented reality applications to succeed right off the bat, and avoid many of the traps that catch new developers and users of augmented reality experiences
    • Some AR examples can be experienced from within the book using downloadable software


    Primary: College students and faculty in the fields of Engineering, Computer Science, Digital Media.  Developers, Human-Computer Interaction Professor, Graphic Designers, Research Director, Technology Director, New Media Director, Digital Artist, Game Developers, Mobile App Developers, Programmers.

    Secondary: Advertising, Marketing, Entertainment fields.

    Level: Beginner 

    Table of Contents

    • Dedication
    • Foreword to Alan B. Craig’s Understanding Augmented Reality
    • Preface
    • About this Book
    • How this Book Came to Be
    • Intended Audience
    • Relationship of this Book with Understanding Virtual Reality and Developing Virtual Reality Applications
    • Special Features of this Book
    • Supplemental Materials
    • About the Author
    • Acknowledgments
    • Chapter 1. What Is Augmented Reality?
      • Introduction
      • Where Did Augmented Reality Come from?
      • Augmented Reality
      • The Relationship between Augmented Reality and Other Technologies
      • Summary of Related Technologies
      • Summary
    • Chapter 2. Augmented Reality Concepts
      • Introduction
      • How Does Augmented Reality Work?
      • Concepts Related to Augmented Reality
      • Ingredients of an Augmented Reality Experience
      • Summary
    • Chapter 3. Augmented Reality Hardware
      • Introduction
      • Major Hardware Components for Augmented Reality Systems
      • Summary
    • Chapter 4. Augmented Reality Software
      • Introduction
      • Major Software Components for Augmented Reality Systems
      • Software Used to Create Content for the Augmented Reality Application
      • Summary
    • Chapter 5. Content Is Key!— Augmented Reality Content
      • Introduction
      • What Is Content?
      • Creating Visual Content
      • Creating Audio Content
      • Creating Content for Other Senses (Touch, Taste, Smell)
      • Representation and Perceptual Issues
      • Summary
    • Chapter 6. Interaction in Augmented Reality
      • Introduction
      • What Is Interaction?
      • Summary
    • Chapter 7. Mobile Augmented Reality
      • Introduction
      • What is Mobile Augmented Reality?
      • Advantag


    No. of pages:
    © 2013
    Morgan Kaufmann
    Print ISBN:
    Electronic ISBN:


    "…Craig, an expert on data visualization, supercomputing, and augmented and virtual reality, offers a work intended for AR users, scholars, and developers. The introductory chapter discusses the history of AR and provides a detailed description of how the technology allows the user to interact with the (augmented) world. The rest of the book covers topics of interest to both users and developers…"--Reference & Research Book News, December 2013
    "This book offers great support for courses on human-computer interaction, interaction design, usability, and video game design, and could serve as a fundamental textbook for augmented reality courses. It will also be a valuable reference for augmented reality researchers and practitioners.", September 30, 2013