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System and method for augmenting the information content of physical documents Disclosure Number: IPCOM000016265D
Original Publication Date: 2002-Sep-25
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2003-Jun-21
Document File: 6 page(s) / 192K

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System and method for augmenting the information content of physical documents

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System and method for augmenting the information content of physical


A system and a method is disclosed for augmented reality presenting the real world of a newspaper page or a paper map, for instance, with virtual information like hyperlinks marks or service locations, added as an overlay.

    The disclosed system and method enables to take a picture of a physical document with a camera and to augment the information on this picture with related information retrieved from a network (e.g., from the World Wide Web).

    For automatically associating data retrieved from a network to digital images, the system disclosed comprises a network device (e.g., a PDA) which receives a network address and retrieves data from this network address. A camera connected to the network device captures an image, receives the data retrieved from the network device and displays the data overlaid to the captured image, for associating the captured image and the data for forming a labeled image.

    On a preferred embodiment a method and a system is disclosed for enabling a user to take a digital picture of a physical object (e.g., of a printed document, or a paper map), access and retrieve through a wireless network a plurality of hyperlinks related with portions of said physical object (e.g., related to words printed on said document, with locations of services on the area represented on said paper map), display on the digital picture hyperlink symbols overlaid to the corresponding hyperlinked portions
(e.g., as bright lines underlining words shown on document picture, as bright spots representing locations of services on map picture), and trigger anyone of said hyperlinks by pointing the user to the corresponding hyperlink symbol highlighted on the digital picture; thus enabling the user to identify hyperlinked portions of the physical object, and select and access electronic multimedia information or services related with said hyperlinked portions directly from the digital picture of the physical object.

The disclosed method comprises the steps of:

Selecting a physical document having a URL associated with it. Taking a digital picture of a selected page of said physical document (e.g., using a built-in digital camera on a PDA or cell phone) From a browser accessing through a network to the document URL, then:

- identifying the selected document's page or map number, and

- identifying the type of information requested (e.g., hospitals).

Accessing and retrieving from the network the information requested (e.g., all hospitals locations) and displaying this information as an overlay to the digital picture of physical document.

Selecting an hyperlinked item displayed overlaid to the digital picture of physical document (e.g., an hospital location). Retrieving from the network and displaying to the user the information of the selected item (e.g., of selected hospital). Optionally, from the "approximate" location shown on the digital picture, identifying and...