Augmented Reality and Ground Level GEOINT
I was fortunate to be able to attend my second GEOINT Symposium this year in Spatial Networks’ backyard of Tampa, FL. Besides getting to meet many people from around the industry who came to our booth, I also got the chance to walk around the showroom floor and see what other vendors brought to the table.
One of the common areas of interest this year was augmented reality for the war fighter. Specifically, some sort of heads-up display that relays relevant intelligence about the immediate surrounding area. Whether it was the use of the Oculus Rift, or a proprietary hardware system, there were several vendors who saw the importance of such a tool on the battlefield. What’s more interesting, however, is what wasn’t widely showcased as a product or service.
No matter how good the hardware or software is that the soldier is using, it will only ever be as useful as the intelligence data available to display. Many vendors offered satellite based raster data, or full-motion video solutions, but what makes augmented reality great is point based, high fidelity ground data. These could be locations of gas stations, ATMs, or any point of interest in a given area of operation.
Besides our own booth, I failed to notice a single vendor who proudly announced their capability to either collect this necessary sort of intelligence, or provide the tools and solutions necessary to “do it yourself”. This is where I believe Spatial Networks can provide an incredibly valuable service where many can not. Whether its using Fulcrum to collect the data you need on your own, or having us use our vast network to collect it for you, we can provide the data that makes the investment in augmented reality worth it.