Update, Jan. 14, 2018: Last year, we wrote about “Austin Remembers: MLK,” an app available for iOS and Android that uses augmented reality. The app this year is being re-released and more locations have been added, including The George Washington Carver Museum, Cultural and Genealogy Center, the Dr. Martin Luther King., Jr. statue at the University of Texas East Mall, and at a post-MLK march celebration at Huston-Tillotson University at the Google Fiber Tent. The Carver Museum augmented reality experience will be available Tuesday through Jan. 27 and free Wi-Fi is available on site. The others will be available on Monday. (End of update)
In advance of Monday’s celebrations of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., an Austin company has released an iOS and Android app, “Austin Remembers: MLK.” The app uses augmented reality technology (made popular last year by “Pokemon Go”) to give users a photo, video and audio tribute to the slain civil rights leader.
While the app can be used to view a virtual installation from anywhere, it’s meant to be used at the Texas State Capitol building where on the south steps, “Austin Remembers: MLK” expands to include four mini documentary videos from Six Square, photos from the LBJ Library’s archive and audio recordings from four young people, finalists in the 2016 MLK Oratory Competition.
I tried the app at the capitol building on Friday and while it’s limited to that content, the app is eye catching and worked as expected, at least in iOS. While wearing headphones, I listened to the tributes from the young readers by tapping on virtual landmarks while a rally for gun rights and a counter protest unfolded on the capitol steps. (Democracy!) The app requires creating a login using an email address or through Facebook.
Augzoo LLC, the company behind the app, specializes in location-based augmented reality, particularly geolocated technology.
Michael Mendoza, CEO of augzoo, said, “The ‘Austin Remembers: MLK’ app is a stepping stone to a larger landscape we are creating and almost more of a proof-of-concept and gift to the City of Austin.”
The app is sponsored in part by the City of Austin Cultural Arts Community Initiative Grant and with the cooperation of The Lyndon Baines Johnson Presidential Library, Six Square and the Austin Area Heritage Council.
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