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Prix 1987 - 2007

ORF Oberösterreich

Augmented Reality Fiction
Isabella Bordoni, Roberto Paci Dalò , Stefan Schemat

arf (Augmented Reality Fiction) or the Construction of a Medium

Our arf technology is used to create a new narrative medium. arf makes it possible to represent the stories connected with a certain place directly on location. In this way the story of the released prisoner Franz Biberkopf in Döblin’s Berlin Alexanderplatz can be experienced in Rosenthal, on the outskirts of the city, at the location where it took place in the novel.

However, our medium not only works with a direct reference to actual places, it also takes the physiology of the users into account. This means that the energy and speed of movement are registered and thus interactively control the acoustic event, which becomes more hectic or calmer accordingly. This not only highlights the story, but also enables the participants to direct how it continues themselves. In other words, the arf-author must learn to write on the physiology of the human being.

Over the course of time, an extensive cinematic language has been developed to transport plots, characters and moods beyond the screen. If one considers that arf works alongside the actually existing world as a backdrop with acoustic stimulations (e.g. music, sounds, dialogues), while taking the energy of the movements and thus also the emotional state of the user into account as well, then it may become somewhat clearer, how complex this kind of “cinematic language” must be.

The auditive narrative means that arf can make use of are mobile and static sounds and 3D sounds, which are used for orientation and navigation. The Flat-Sounds can be used analogously to an off-voice in film, to represent the inner dialogue that is constantly taking place within each person. In this 3D environment, it is particularly the non-3D stream of consciousness sounds that develop a very peculiar effect.

When a participant then encounters a mobile 3D voice, it is like meeting a—solely audible—ghost. This virtual character may lead, startle or confuse the participant. These ghost-like voices are intuitively intelligible. This raises the anthropological question of why human beings invented ghosts.