Cloud Computing: Amazon Patents Have Designs On Augmented-Reality Living Rooms

Grazed from InformationWeek. Author: Larry Loeb.

During its history, Amazon has managed to conquer the book market, traditional retail, and, through Amazon Web Services, cloud computing. Now, thanks to two patents it was awarded on Dec. 1, it seems the company has more plans for your living room than just its Echo voice-controlled device.

The US Patent and Trademark Office granted the Seattle company a patent for technologies that can project an augmented reality representation into a room (#9,204,121) and another patent that provides a way to navigate that world (#9,201,499). The patents were submitted by Rawles LLC of Wilmington, Del., in February 2013 and officially assigned to Amazon this week...

One of the patents issued on Dec. 1 concentrates on determining the depth of an object in a scene. It describes a system that includes a single light source with an attached shutter, and ellipsoidal reflection, and a camera. The light source is directed to the scene and toward the reflector. The camera captures the first source light as well as the reflected light. Comparison of both light beams will yield a determination of the depth of an object within the scene. It discusses at some detail how an augmented reality functional node (ARFN) can be used to generate and augmented reality environment. There may be multiple ARFNs within the environment, which can interact...

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