Digital Project Draft: Augmented Reality Poster Set

Since proposing to create an Augmented Reality (AR) experience to accompany a poster set produced by the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, I’ve done a lot of thinking about what the medium of AR is uniquely positioned to accomplish. I’ve also been inspired by our class discussion about accessibility and inclusive design.

One key aspect of inclusive design is providing access to content in a variety of languages. The State of Deception poster set, which focuses on Nazi propaganda, is already available in 10 languages. Because AR allows you to layer labels (or other media) on top of existing content, I wanted to investigate how digital text translations in Spanish might be layered on top of printed English posters.

I used the browser-based HP Reveal Studio to create Spanish-language “overlays” for each printed English poster. Through image recognition, the HP Reveal phone app (available for Android and IOS) layers digital “overlays” onto an image. This video shows the results of that effort:

This video is a screen recording of my phone screen as I used the HP Reveal app to scan printed posters and overlay digital Spanish-language labels.

My original plan was to design an English-language AR extension for the existing poster set. To that end, I’ve also created a few examples showing how AR can be used to deliver additional digital content beyond what is already printed on a poster. Because Nazi propaganda is central to the poster set, I thought it would be interesting to pair digital images of propaganda posters with a relevant printed poster from the poster set, and contextualize those digital images with on-screen explanations of the techniques that Nazi propagandists used to communicate their message.

I have adapted content from online resources that USHMM has made available to classroom educators, as well as from the State of Deception online exhibition. The objective of this AR content is to provide broader context for how the Nazi regime used propaganda, and to encourage users to think critically about what propaganda is and how certain, common techniques are used to communicate propaganda messages. I also wanted to offer a different type of content that users would not otherwise access if they were only viewing the posters. Here’s a video of the 5 AR interactions I’ve created so far:

This video is a screen recording of my phone screen as I used the HP Reveal app to scan printed posters and overlay digital images and English-language captions.

You can download this file to examine each screen of AR content more closely:

What’s Next:

I’ve identified at least 5 additional pairings of printed posters + digital propaganda images, so I plan to create at least 5 more AR interactions.

I like the simplicity of the interactions and graphics I’ve already created, so I plan to continue refining the current visual style and functionality.

Because I’d like to complete a formative evaluation with Museum audiences for both the Spanish language AR experience and the English language AR extension, I will also create a testing plan and draft survey instrument as part of the final version of my project.

One Reply to “Digital Project Draft: Augmented Reality Poster Set”

  1. Wow! This is really impressive work. The videos do a really great job at illustrating how this AR technology works. Using AR to layer multiple languages over these poster sets is really smart. It’s amazing that the demo you show in the video works so well.

    The examples of interactions you’ve developed all show well and illustrate some distinct and interesting different possible directions for how this technology can work. Both providing additional narrative interpretive material and presenting additional digital copies of primary sources.

    Overall, this is great work. If you wanted to do some user testing with these and record some of the results of that testing I think you could have a compelling paper for a conference like Museums and the Web.

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