A company called Autonomy, which has been selling image search technology, has launched an apparently freely available (open?) project called Aurasma. At the moment only available on iPhone 4, this allows you to “augment” the reality (that the mobile device sees) by adding video to overlay it.
In this article, a BBC reporter/commentator opines that this is a cute trick, but only that. I’m going to go out on a limb and predict that this assessment is short-sighted (albeit only if the technology expands to other platforms). Given that YouTube users are uploading 48 hours of video to the site every minute of the day, I suspect that the ability to create video graffiti, and “tag” it to any vista, location, or object, will be irresistable.
Apparently the company thinks this will be a platform that companies will use to create ads, to promote their products or shops at related locations. They probably will. However, myriad users will be creating other content, for the same images, and we will have SEO (Search Engine Optimization) battles that will make the malware and phishing sites we see now pale in comparison. The Tokyo Chamber of Commerce or tourism board may wish to overlay video over certain landscapes or landmarks, but how will they stand up against thousands of geeks who’ve all seen Godzilla?