Virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) in libraries and museums

Publication Date02 July 2018
AuthorAdetoun A. Oyelude
SubjectLibrary & information science,Librarianship/library management,Library technology,Library & information services
Virtual reality (VR) and
augmented reality (AR) in
libraries and museums
Adetoun A. Oyelude
This edition of the column focuses on
augmented reality (AR) and virtual
reality (VR) in libraries and museums,
as seen from the internet cyber sphere
including blogs. It takes a look at the
first quarter of 2018 and analyzes the
trending issues within the period,
highlighting examples of some
institutions that make use of VR and
AR. The advantages of the use of VR,
AR and sometimes mixed reality are
also pointed out.
Virtual reality and augmented reality
in everyday use
Libraries, archives and museums are
increasingly using AR/VR technologies
in their service delivery because it is
trending. The year 2018 is expected to
be huge for VR technology. The use of
VR is projected to “nearly double in
monthly users annually bringing
estimates to 17 million monthly US
users by 2019”, said Janko Roetgers in a
post found at
2019-1202440211/. This may be because
of innovations in industries such as
gaming, social media and entertainment.
Facebook is the largest investor in AR
and VR, and because Facebook is also
extremely popular, many are opportune to
have a go at VR and AR through the use
of the Facebook social media platform.
VR “involves using 3D graphics and
advanced interactions to immerse a
real-world user in a simulated
environment”, by the description of the
University of Indiana University,
Bloomington’s Blogspot. AR stands for
extended reality and actually, in
technical terms, means a combination of
virtual and real reality (UWS, 2018).
Both VR and AR, 3D printing and other
technologies have altered how we live
and work. These technologies are used
on a daily basis to change the face of
work, formal and lifelong learning.
In a Google blog of January 2, 2018,
Reza Ali and Josh Carpenter wrote
about the crop of Android and iOS
devices that will soon be able to provide
AR experiences; that is, the user will be
able to look and place digital objects
where they look. Google is doing this in
a bid to bring AR to the Web platform.
To achieve this, a 3D model viewer is
used, and one can scroll to zoom or drag
to rotate the 3D model. It is reported
that the model comes alive with AR.
The article is loaded and the AR
experience can commence. More of the
technical stuff that powers this can be
found at
Eric Muskopf, in a blog post of
March 14, 2018, reported that Google
has designed through Resonance Audio,
a way of enhancing VR and AR. The
device, launched in 2017, “enables
Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented
Reality (AR) in libraries and
museums . . . ...............1
Is it time for libraries to take a closer
look at emoji? The data deluge
column ...................5
Through the looking glass
“Through the looking glass: envisioning
new library technologies” spending
time well – helping patrons take
control of their technology ......10
Feature article
Visualizing library data interactively:
two demonstrations using R
language . . . ..............14
Library Link
LIBRARY HITECH NEWS Number 5 2018, pp. 1-4, V
CEmerald Publishing Limited, 0741-9058, DOI 10.1108/LHTN-04-2018-0023 1

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