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Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Augmented reality feature by Google brings dinosaurs to the 21st century

With the help of Google's augmented reality (AR) feature, one can travel back in time to see one's favourite reptiles, within the comfort of one's own home through a simple google search that won't take more than a minute. The life-like creatures can be viewed in 3D and will be sized to scale, thus representative of their actual size if the species were still alive.

If the world wasn’t already scary enough, Google has decided to bring dinosaurs into the mix. The tech giant’s latest search update includes augmented reality prehistoric monsters, but where are the feathers?

Google brings dinosaurs back to life

Google is expanding the augmented reality (AR) roster of creatures available in Google Search, allowing users to now bring dinosaurs directly into their homes via their mobile phones.

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Searching for things via Google Search and putting them in your home using AR has been possible since last year, but Google’s been making updates to its AR catalog in 2020. Google added anatomical, biological and NASA models in the spring, and 10 dinosaurs will be added to the mix as well.

From Tuesday onward, 10 of the world’s most-loved dinosaurs can be brought (back) to life, so to speak.

What will a user be able to see?

The list of these prehistoric creatures which made the cut include the king of all dinosaurs, Tyrannosaurus rex, as well as firm favorites such as the velociraptor, triceratops, spinosaurus, and the prickly stegosaurus.

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Available since last year, the AR feature has grown to encompass all manner of educational items from animals to cells to NASA models.

The depiction of dinosaurs in popular culture has been frequently met with fire from the scientific community. Upon the release of Jurassic World in 2015, paleontologists announced their disappointment in how the protagonists of their field were depicted on screen. Featherless and scaled, some commentators stated that the film was a “major step backward for accuracy.”

With Google’s AR dinos, the reason why the models are reminiscent of those popularized by the Jurassic Park series — and not covered in feathers as they are believed to have been — is because they are the result of a partnership with Universal, the studio behind the Jurassic franchise.

Also involved in the partnership is games developer Ludia, which is behind the Jurassic World Alive AR game — the source of the 10 dinosaur renderings.

The process of resurrecting dinosaurs 

To create the 3D dinosaurs, our concept artists first did preliminary research to discover information about each creature,” said Camilo Sanin of Ludia, the studio behind the Jurassic World Alive game.

“Not only did we draw research from various forms of literature, but our artists also worked with palaeontologists and the ‘Jurassic World’ team to make the assets as accurate and realistic as possible.

“Even the smallest details, such as irregularities of skin colour and patterns, are important.”

To resurrect the classic reptiles, all users need to do is search with their phone’s browser for one of the named species on Google, scroll down and tap on the ‘view in 3D’ option.

You can watch a T-Rex stomp around your garden and even cower under a mammoth Brachiosaurus. And you don’t even need to download any apps to do it. You can view the dinosaurs in 3D, rotating them and even zooming in to see them up close. It also lets you get a better idea of how big the dinosaurs would’ve been in relation to real-world objects.

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This will bring the dinosaur into your surroundings, where it can be placed within a photo or even within a video recording. Although stationary, the dinosaur is animated to act like the real deal, acting like the living breathing, roaring monsters seen in the film series.

This isn’t the only recent example of dinosaur-related AR news. In June, the UK’s Royal Mint released the Dinosauria Collection, a selection of 50p coins dedicated to dinosaurs that have the added feature of augmented reality — the first time AR has been used on a coin.

RT with additional input by GVS News Desk

How will you use the new feature? Share your view with us in the comments bar below.