Yet another birthday I learned (sorry, remembered!) through bluemountain.com. I love the site - it has come a long way since its inception when users sent images around. Now, almost every creation is animated. But it's time to take it to the next level with augmented reality. I came across this post in Oddcast's latest e-newsletter. The company, known for its talking heads and avatars, is demoing augmented reality. They are meshing live video with animated characters. You can try it for yourself: Go here to see an example. If you have a Webcam ready, you can interact with the animated guitar player at oddcast.com/augmented. All you have to do is to turn on your camera, print a badge from here, hold it up to your Webcam and magically, a cartoonish guitar player pops up on your face. The badge becomes his stage. You can move your hands towards him to see if he'll fall off the stage. He'll jump and keep on rocking.
Now, wouldn't it be fun to record a personal video message for a friend and plug in a three-dimensional, animated character to jazz it up. Your friend could then interact with the animated character while he/she listened to your message.
Imagine what this could do for brands and fans. You could finally dance on the same stage with Michael Jackson, have cans of Coke and wear your favorite designer's clothes from the comfort of your desk. Brands could provide the tools on a micro-site to fans and let them create their own clips, mixing video with animation.