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  1. Technology
September 8, 2015

5 augmented reality apps to alter your world

Learn more about Dazzle It, Streetmuseum, Skyview, Blippar and Colorblind Fix.

By Alexander Sword

Ever wanted to see the world around you in a different way? These apps will transform your phone into a portal to a world of altered perceptions.

1. Dazzle It

This app, commissioned by 14-18 NOW: the First World War Centenary Art Commissions and supported by Bloomberg Philanthropies, is inspired by dazzle camouflage, which involved decking ships out in complex, intersecting patterns to make it difficult to gauge a vessel’s distance.

Sir Peter Blake, most famous for the Beatles’ iconic Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band cover, dazzled the Mersey Ferry Snowdrop in Liverpool; artists can use this app to apply his Everybody Razzle Dazzle to their own 3D models, then use the camera to view them in a real-world environment.

2. Streetmuseum

This app from the Museum of London allows the user to view existing London locations as they were in the past. After you select a destination from the map or use the GPS to find a nearby image, you can hold your camera up to the present day scene to see a window through time.

The app also comes with historical information, accessible by tapping the screen. The Streetmuseum app is available on both iOS and Android.

3. Skyview

Perfect for the city-dwelling astronomer, this application from Terminal Eleven allows you to see through the light pollution and clouds to the star constellations beyond. Downloaded over 9 million times, the app is available in both a free version and a paid-for full version including an Apple Watch app.

The application includes the capability to view the sky at different dates and times as well as set reminders for celestial events.

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4. Blippar

Blippar wants to boost your interactions with the world around you, allowing you to access relevant information about the world around you by looking at it through the app.

As well as providing information about objects, Blippar also provides direct mobile shopping links to allow you to easily buy objects you like the look of, with new blippable objects regularly being added to the platform.

5. Colorblind Fix

This app showcases a potentially revolutionary use of augmented reality – curing colour-blindness. Available only on iOS, Colorblind Fix displays a remixed version of video from the camera (among other sources) which helps the colour-blind to differentiate between colours more easily.

Costing $2.99, the app requires iOS 4.3 or later and is compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.

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