Crayons? Check. Coloring book? Got it. Software to turn your book into digitized pop-up art? You bet.
“Researchers at Disney have created a tablet app that allows children to colour in characters that pop out of their books in real-time,” reports the BBC.
According to Disney researcher Bob Sumner, “the app tracks coordinates on the drawing and uses them to fix the colours of pixels in the graphic.”
“To convert 2D drawings into 3D models the colours are mapped on to parts of the characters hidden on the page,” Sumner continues. “It’s more than just a toy. It focuses on an area we call augmented creativity where we use augmented reality to enhance creative play.”
Sumner likens it to adding a “magical overlay” on top of the traditional activity of coloring. He notes that this will have applications well beyond playtime, as uses in technology and education are being actively explored.
It looks pretty cool (check out the video in the BBC article), although we do hope that children continue to get time to create in a wholly unplugged environment. The true magic is in a child’s imagination, pure and unaugmented.