The Argon Research Project

The Argon research project started 2009 in the Augmented Environments Lab at the Georgia Institute of Technology. The project is exploring the software architectures and interaction metaphors needed to support users running multiple independently-authored AR applications at the same time, across different platforms (from mobile phones to head-worn displays). On one hand, we are developing the programming constructs and metaphors programmers need to author applications that are not tied to a particular AR platform, and are able to run in parallel with other applications. On the other hand, we are exploring the user interfaces and interaction metaphors needed to allow users to effectively use multiple AR applications at the same time, in the same physical space. To support this work, a long term goal of the project is to create an open, standards-based ecosystem for mobile augmented and mixed reality experiences that integrates smoothly with existing web infrastructures.

The argon.js framework and associated Argon AR-enabled web browser support creating fully-registered AR applications that leverage 3D graphics, geo-spatial-positioning, computer-vision tracking (using Qualcomm’s Vuforia library), and multiple kinds of “reality” backgrounds (currently including panoramas and live video). Our hope is to drive adoption of augmented reality by making it possible for as many people as possible to explore and experiment with the technology. We also hope that by using familiar web-programming concepts, the technology will be accessible to as many designers and developers as possible. We are working to support existing users, keep Argon robust and bug-free, add new features, and port to new platforms.

If you are interested in supporting the Argon browser, the easiest way is through a charitable donation to the project at Georgia Tech, or through research contracts with our team. If your project is going to rely on Argon, we would be happy to discuss with you possibilities for paid support.

Argon is made possible by support from Alcatel-Lucent, Qualcomm, AT&T, Motorola, and HTC. The project has also benefited from collaboration with, and support by, other groups at Georgia Tech, including IMTCRNOC, IPAT, and GVU. Please contact the Argon project leader, Blair MacIntyre, to discuss support or research and development opportunities.

Get the Argon Application

Argon version 4.0 for iOS lets you view AR-enabled websites.

Argon is currently designed for the iOS; an Android version is in progress.

Version 4.0 for iOSAvailable now!

The goal of Argon is to make AR accessible to the widest possible group of experience designers and their users through a web-centric platform model. Until AR technologies are widely available in off-the-shelf web browsers, the Argon app allows web-based AR applications developed with the argon.js framework to be used on (currently, iOS-based) mobile phones and tablets. The Argon app is a web browser with AR technology, that allows users to view AR content through a browser-like interface. Web designers create AR experiences using the argon.js framework and other familiar web technologies, including HTML, CSS3, and popular javascript frameworks, mixing traditional web media content (images, audio, video) with 3D content rendered via WebGL. This strategy allows designers to leverage their existing web and graphics skills and assets. Because Argon leverages the web, AR experiences can be hosted on any web server; there are no proprietary servers or royalty or access fees. Any Argon experience you create is available to any user with the Argon browser and Internet access.

Develop with Argon

If you want to develop AR-enabled websites using argon.js, or contribute to the Argon project itself, visit our developer site at argonjs.io.

The Argon Project invites development at two levels: experience designers and project contributors.

1. Web developers and designers can use argon.js to create AR experiences, using a mix of 2D and 3D content. 3D graphics are supporting through bindings to the popular javascript framework three.js, although argon.js itself does not require the use of this or any other 3D library. argonjs.io provides examples and tutorials to help developers get started.

2. The argon.js framework and Argon app are open-source projects, and we hope to create a community of AR developers interested in extending the project to support the AR features needed by the community.  As new capabilities are available in commodity (or specialized) web browsers, we hope to extend argon.js to support these new platforms.  Until AR capabilities are available in web-browsers on all platforms, we are interested in working to port the Argon application itself to new platforms.  We also welcome contributions of tutorials and samples to help others learn to create AR experiences using argon.js.

Send us a message

If you are interested in the Argon project and would like to talk, or just want to let us know what you think, send us an e-mail and we will get back to you as soon as we can.


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