The significance of the invention of a process that allowed people to preserve thoughts and ideas is incredible. The earliest form of printing was Woodblock printing. Earliest surviving woodblock prints were found in China dating back to the 220 A.D. The oldest fragment found was a woodblock print on silk depicting flowers in three different colors from the Han Dynasty. Printing was revolutionized by a German blacksmith and publisher Johannes Gutenberg around 1450 when he invented the printing press which made printing much cheaper and faster - meaning printed texts were now available to more people than ever before. At the time of the invention only about 30% of European adults could read and write. Gutenberg’s press made the literacy levels raise to 47% by 1641. Historians say, “the printing press was one of the key factors in the explosion of the Renaissance movement”. By the year 1500 printing shops had spread all over Europe and had produced more than 8 million books.
Thomas Edison invented the phonograph - a device that made sound recordings possible - in 1877. As a child Edison was a curious boy keen to gain answers, starting to experiment with chemicals at the age of 11. Some of his experiments were harmless, some, not so much, like when he burnt down the family barn. Thomas’ schooling ended after three months when the teacher thought he was inattentive and not very bright. After dropping out Edison’s career as an entrepreneur and an inventor began. Edison invented the phonograph as a result of working on two completely different inventions - the telegraph and the telephone. The first ever recorded words, uttered by Edison, are “Mary had a little lamb” from the famous nursery rhyme. Edison had imagined that the phonograph will be used for practical purposes by professionals like lawyers, court reporters and businessmen replacing stenography. Instead the phonograph, and later commercial radio, ‘created’ the recording industry.
Motion Pictures were invented in 1872 when a former governor of California wanted to find out whether all four of a horse’s legs are off the ground when it is galloping. He acquired the help of an Eadwear Muybridge a photographer of a Dutch descent. Muybridge, together with a railroad engineer, placed many cameras along the track that were triggered by a thread as the horse passed. He copied the images on an invention of his called a Zoopraxiscope - an early movie projector - and the first ever Motion Picture was born. First movies made around 1890 were about a minute long and recorded everyday events, like a train pulling into a station, angry babies quarreling or simply a cat falling. Narrative and editing techniques appeared in the 1900s. In this graph that shows the number of feature films produced in a year by region you can see, how much the movie industry has grown.
You can say radio was a group project - one scientist building on the research of another. A Scottish mathematical physicist predicted the invention, a German physicist made the first demonstration of transmission of radio waves, a Welsh-American scientist and musician made the same discovery around the same time. Experiments in this field were also undertaken by Thomas Edison. An Italian physicist, a French inventor, a Serbian-American engineer and a Bengali physicist contributed as well until a Russian built the first radio receiver in 1895. The idea of commercialization of wireless telegraphy system came around in 1894 by a clever, young Italian inventor turned businessman. Early radios were used to send messages between ships and land. Radio broadcasting commercially began in 1920. Radio can offer news to countries where Totalitarian regimes have banned free press. Like the project Radio Free Europe that was started during the Cold War. The first broadcast happened in 1950 from a studio in New York City to communist Czechoslovakia.
Though in very limited quantity, television sets first became commercially available in the 1920s. Early TV shows were based on radio programs, however, things that could be easily conveyed on radio cost a lot of money to produce for TV. Broadcasters turned to live transmissions of sporting and cultural events like concerts, lectures, stage plays and religious sermons. In the early years of TV Hollywood studios were not yet making profit with their TV divisions hence they didn’t not exploit the new medium as it is done today. Television had mostly been looked upon as cinema’s ‘simpleton’ brother lacking class and sophistication. Vanity Fair points out that since the emergence of such networks like HBO TV has evolved becoming “better than the movies made by a Hollywood system addicted to superhero movies and puerile comedies,”. Since the internet revolution TVs have become bigger and higher definition to fight small, portable devices that can also transmit TV programmes. Though the appearance of smart TVs confirms the saying that “If you can’t beat them, join them”.
Internet was introduced and BHOOOM! Instant connect and access to a world of information became available. The world was no longer big. Access to communicate was instant and immediate. No longer one has to know the answers to everything, you just have to know the right questions to ask and where to search for information. The internet revolution happened in the 1990s. Today more than two billion people use internet around the world. The highest number of users is in North America where 78.6% of the population are internet users, Australia and Europe follow close by with 67% and 63%. The internet revolution is ongoing with eight new people going online every second!
Here is a statistic for you, according to a United Nations report, more people in the world have mobile phones than access to a flush toilet. “Given that the water closet is several centuries old and the mobile phone really only about 30 years mature that’s a pretty stunning difference in the two technologies adoption,” points out Forbes. Long gone are the days of mobiles that were so large you could use them not only as devices for communication but also weapons for self defence. The smart phones of 21st century have better cameras than your actual photo camera, function as mobile offices and allow us to access any information, anywhere 24/7. Have a look, how mobiles influence family life
Augmented Reality adds digital content to the real world when looked at through a smartphone or a tablet. Unlike Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality does not completely replace the real world environment, it enhances it with an overlay of relevant information.
Augmented Reality, dubbed the next Mass Medium, is different from its predecessors – TV and even mobile -, platform of which it uses, in the type of advertising it offers. It is not the interruptive advertising of TV. Though, with the raise of Interactive Television, even TV ads are changing now, allowing advertising to be more targeted. And, unlike other mobile advertising, Augmented Reality wants people to turn away from their screens and interact with the real world as well. Because it naturally is connected to the environment around – it augments it, not replaces it. Augmented Reality does not take away from experiencing the real world. On the contrary, it encourages you to look around and notice, and once you have, it enhances the real life experience with relevant information, manipulating the real world imagery in a meaningful way. According to predictions, Augmented Reality market will be worth $1.06 Billion by 2018, so buckle up and enjoy the ride!
WOW Prints, created when any type of print is published with WOW app, is a way of experiencing Augmented Reality. We at WOW are in love with Augmented Reality. We always wanted WOW to be more than just a platform. WOW is a team, and we want to share our passion for AR and the possibilities it offers to companies and users, the possibilities in advertising, art, education, social awareness, medicine. Every WOW Print, made possible by the app, is a carefully crafted campaign made by us in our quest to make you head over heels crazy for Augmented Reality. When we create WOW Prints, we want to create a way of experiencing the world. A way that is different, surprising, useful and mesmerizing. Our brand story opens with a line that explains what our tagline See More means:
So what makes WOW Prints special? We would like to think it is us, everyone at WOW, who can have louder and more heated discussions about trends in Augmented Reality than we will ever have about any sports team.