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SMOKING MIRROR: Red Bull RFP Radical Packaging Campaign Winner
       
     
        SMOKING MIRROR | RESEARCH BREAKDOWN    ABSTRACT    MECHANICS OF INFRARED PHOTOGRAPHY    INDUSTRY STANDARDS FOR SMARTPHONE CAMERAS    SMARTPHONE CAMERA MARKET LANDSCAPE    AHEAD OF CURVE HARDWARE DEVELOPMENTS    THE 10 LEADING SMARTPHONES + IR SPECS    POTENTIAL MATERIALS FOR ACHIEVING SMOKING MIRROR EFFECT             ABSTRACT       The disclosed technology, Smoking Mirror, proposes an unprecedented method for native augmented reality using digital image capture devices and the physics of light and photonics. The sections outlined in the research breakout prove the underlying scientific and technological principles of the disclosed technology, but are not prescriptive. With hands on prototyping and experimentation, the discussed resources, technology, and materials   may   be used in combination with smartphone market foresight to create Smoking Mirror.           The unprecedented nature of the disclosed technology   may also   necessitate adjustments to existing resources, technology, and material, as well as custom proprietary versions. The avenues of research discussed in the following sections represent the first areas of inquiry for developing the disclosed technology.                MECHANICS OF INFRARED PHOTOGRAPHY          In support of Smoking Mirror native augmented reality using only infrared materials and a smartphone camera.       The   INFRARED (IR) SPECTRUM   is the spectrum of light energy from electromagnetic radiation, characterized by wavelengths longer than the human eye can detect by itself. Devices with   CCD/CMOS Sensors   take infrared wavelengths from the invisible spectrum and convert them to the human eye’s visible range.       CMOS Sensors   are the built in mechanism in smartphones and other image capturing devices that sense both visible and invisible light in a scene. CMOS sensors can synthesize the visible and invisible spectrums by displaying any invisible infrared wavelengths within a visible scene.              INDUSTRY STANDARDS FOR SMARTPHONE CAMERAS       A review of the current state of smartphone hardware for mobile photography and light sensing to understand the feasibility of Smoking Mirror today.       Current and past generation smartphone built in cameras can detect infrared light with the iSight and FaceTime (and non-Apple equivalent) camera features. The CMOS sensors in the camera control the device’s ability to detect infrared light using only its native hardware.    The iSight (and non-Apple equivalent) camera in new generation smartphones features an infrared filter within the CMOS sensor structure, removing its ability to detect infrared light out of the box. The FaceTime (and non-Apple equivalent) camera in new generation smartphones does not have the infrared filter,   which means that the newest smartphones can detect infrared light out of the box with the front-facing camera hardware.       Backside Illumination CMOS (BSI) sensors are the current industry standard for smartphone cameras.          (IMVeurope)            BSI CMOS sensors prevalent in smartphones have higher spectral responsivity than the human eye, improving picture quality and making it possible to see what the human eye cannot.     (IMVeurope)       BSI CMOS sensors can detect and display infrared wavelengths unless an infrared filter has been incorporated into the camera hardware of the device.    (IMVeurope)                SMARTPHONE CAMERA MARKET LANDSCAPE       Important considerations for innovating in the realm of smartphone photography: market predictions, developments,   and technology that Smoking Mirror can leverage in the near future.        Smartphone cameras are predicted to go beyond autofocus and implement real zoom cameras as well as add-on lenses for wide angle, telephoto, and IR capabilities. These advancements suggest that smartphones will eventually match the features of point and shoot cameras.           (Extreme Tech)       MIT’s smartphone division is developing a component for advanced post-processing photography effects in real time. Google and HTC are predicted to follow suit in the interest of keeping Nexus competitive and relevant.           (Extreme Tech)       The CCD sensors found in high quality digital cameras and video recorders are predicted to appear in smartphone cameras as an alternative to CMOS. CMOS sensor capability has improved, narrowing the performance gap between the two and making significant improvements on smartphone camera hardware completely possible.    (“What is the Difference”)          Until recently, image sensor advancements did not target consumers. Now there is significant market activity in the realm of consumer-oriented personal imagers like thermal imaging smartphone add-ons and applications.    (IMVeurope)                AHEAD OF CURVE HARDWARE DEVELOPMENTS       First in class examples of innovation in smartphone cameras that will set the bar for hardware and product features in next generation smartphones, and improve feasibility of Smoking Mirror.        The HTC One M8 launched in March 2014 features the IR Blaster, a built in infrared light source. Intended to work as a TV remote, this technology can lend itself to wider applications. The IR Blaster can trigger the activation of materials like upconverting infrared ink and reveal visible fluorescence.           (HTC Product Site)       In August 2014 Microsoft Research provided a proof of concept for modifying the camera hardware of a Galaxy Nexus to perform the complex functions of a Kinect caliber depth camera on mobile.          (Slash Gear)       Eigen Imaging has started to sell pre-adapted Google Nexus 5, iPhone 5s, and Galaxy Nexus smartphones for multi-spectral imaging applications  and visible-to-near-infrared capability, indicating existing consumer interest in this type of functionality on mobile.        In addition to visible-to-near-infrared wavelength detection, these adapted smartphones are able to detect near infrared fluorescent security and anti-counterfeit materials like ink and barcodes.          (Eigen Imaging)            Infrared detection capabilities can be used on both image capture mode and live video mode.          (Eigen Imaging)       The company also offers FluoroVu, a smartphone attachment lens for capturing ultraviolet fluorescent images of certain materials.    (Eigen Imaging)                   THE 10 LEADING SMARTPHONES + IR SPECS          An abbreviated review of the infrared capabilities of the top consumer rated smartphones as of November, 2014.    (Tech Radar)       #1 HTC One M8:     IR Blaster, an IR light emitter in the phone intended to give the smartphone remote control functionality     Built in IR light source could be used for alternative purposes like triggering fluorescence in IR upconverting and excitation ink    Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor       #2 Iphone 6:    Hybrid IR filter on standard rear facing camera to keep out IR light for traditional photography purposes    Front-facing FaceTime camera is built without a Hybrid IR filter and is able to display IR light    Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor        #3 LG G3:    IR Blaster  , an IR light emitter in the phone intended to give the smartphone remote control functionality    Built in IR light source could be used for alternative purposes like triggering fluorescence in IR upconverting and excitation ink    Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor        #4 Samsung Galaxy Note 4:    IR Blaster  , an IR light emitter in the phone intended to give the smartphone remote control functionality    Built in IR light source could be used for alternative purposes like triggering fluorescence in IR upconverting and excitation ink    Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor             #5 iPhone 6 Plus    Hybrid IR filter on standard rear facing camera to keep out IR light for traditional photography purposes    Front-facing FaceTime camera is built without a Hybrid IR filter and is able to display IR light    Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor              #6 Sony Xperia Z3 Compact    No built in IR filter, allowing front and rear facing camera features to display IR light    Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor        #7 Nexus 6:    IR Blaster  , an IR light emitter in the phone intended to give the smartphone remote control functionality    Built in IR light source could be used for alternative purposes like triggering fluorescence in IR upconverting and excitation ink    Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor             #8 Sony Xperia Z3    No built in IR filter, allowing front and rear facing camera features to display IR light    Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor             #9 Moto X (2014)    No built in IR filter, allowing both camera features to display IR light    Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor             #10 OnePlus One    Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor                POTENTIAL MATERIALS FOR ACHIEVING SMOKING MIRROR EFFECT       New formulas of the following materials may be necessary to achieve the unprecedented Smoking Mirror effect. Available information about the following materials indicates that they could be used in Smoking Mirror.   Because of difficulty communicating with suppliers of these materials, product samples must be acquired and tested to determine for certain their visual effects and compatibility with aluminum’s pasteurization processes.        Infrared Excitation Ink:    Predominantly used for anti-forgery and security purposes, this clear ink responds to an infrared light source (e.g. the increasingly common IR Blaster feature on current generation smartphones), in a process called upconversion. Once it is triggered, the ink in its excited state fluoresces a bright light wherever the ink has been applied. The ink comes in variations of clear-to-red, clear-to-green, and clear-to-blue.    (Smarol, MaxMax).     A similar product is referred to as Infrared-Active Absorption Ink in a successful recent study proving that an iPhone 4 can display markings of this material on a poker card.    (“Invisible Mark Detection…”)       Polarizing Ink    Also known as color flop ink, polarizing ink uses cholesteric liquid crystal polymers to make the ink appear to change color. The outcome effect, known as color travel, results from subtle changes in viewing angle. Many custom formulas for this material are available, including formulas that combine infrared and UV ink with visible ink, resulting in a more extreme visual effect that appears as if the design emerged from nowhere. It is also possible to control the speed and intensity of the color change.     (Chelix Novel Pigment Approaches, Chelix Pigment Technology)        SUBSTRATE INFORMATION:             Precise information on substrate and printing instructions could not be obtained from the suppliers due to communication barriers and no formal purchase order. However, most printing inks must be mixed with a binder base such as polyethylene terephthalate resin (PET) after purchasing, indicating that it is possible to adjust the formula in-house to meet Smoking Mirror production requirements.    (“Invisible Mark Detection…”)    Based on general information listed on supplier product sites, the majority of inks are printable by standard techniques such as offset, UV offset, protrude, UV flexographic, screen printing, and UV screen printing.    (Anti-Forgery Ink)                                                                                                                                    REFERENCES       Anti-Forgery Ink, (http://www.anti-forgery-ink.com/).       Chelix, Pigment Technology. (http://www.chelix.com/products_pigment.html).       Chelix, “Novel Pigment Approaches…” (http://www.chelix.com/pdfs/Novel_Pigment_Approaches.pdf).       Eigen Imaging, “Smartphones NIR”.    (http://www.eigenimaging.com/Galaxy-Nexus-MSI).       Extreme Tech, “Beyond Megapixels: the Future Evolution of Smartphone Cameras”.     (http://www.extremetech.com/extreme/151334-beyond-megapixels-the-future-evolution-of-smartphone-cameras/2).       HTC Product Site, “HTC One M8”.    (http://www.htc.com/us/smartphones/htc-one-m8/).       IMVeurope, “Image Sensors: the Smartphone Generation”.     (http://www.imveurope.com/features/feature.php?feature_id=252).       “Invisible Mark Detection…” (http://www.pubfacts.com/detail/24529777/Invisible-ink-mark-detection-in-the-visible-spectrum-using-absorption-difference).       MaxMax, “IR Inks”.    (https://www.maxmax.com/aIRInks.htm).       Slash Gear, “The Irony: Microsoft Makes Depth Tracking Phone…”.         (http://www.slashgear.com/the-irony-microsoft-makes-depth-tracking-phone-while-ignoring-kinect-12340829/).       Smarol, “Infrared Excitation Ink”.    (http://www.smarol.com/Infrared-Excitation-Pigment.html).       Tech Radar, “10 Best Smartphones in the US”.    (http://www.techradar.com/us/news/phone-and-communications/mobile-phones/20-best-mobile-phones-in-the-world-today-645440).       “What is the Difference Between a CCD & CMOS Video Camera?”.    (http://www.ebay.com/gds/What-Is-the-Difference-Between-a-CCD-and-CMOS-Video-Camera-/10000000177630865/g.html).       Wiki, “Back-Illuminated Sensor”.    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Back-illuminated_sensor)
       
     
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SMOKING MIRROR: Red Bull RFP Radical Packaging Campaign Winner
       
     
SMOKING MIRROR: Red Bull RFP Radical Packaging Campaign Winner

2014-2016

Concept
Experience Design
Research + Development
Prototyping
Packaging + Product Design
Advertising
AR


RED BULL X SMOKING MIRROR: a new method to merge augmented reality with Red Bull packaging in a way that transfers power from the smartphone to the packaging material itself.

Our goal is to open the user to an experience driven by incidental discovery instead of the traditional path of “scanning for a surprise” or deliberately downloading an application. In Smoking Mirror augmented reality first takes the shape of infrared ink— invisible to the naked eye— that forms a hidden design on the classic Red Bull can. The design can only be rendered on the lens of the built-in camera application of current generation smartphones.

 

“Top of Feed” as Consumer Ownership
- Users implicitly feel a sense of ownership of their unexpected discovery
- They are entitled to manage the implications of their discovery:
• Appreciate the nested discoveries within the Red Bull package and demonstrate allegiance to the concept by letting others discover it themselves
• Opt to cash in on the social credit of being the first to know and share the link to the augmented reality app, populating Smoking Mirror with their friends New Rebels and Surprising People Who Have Seen It All
• New Rebels have the potential to influence the buying decisions of their peers by expressing their own support for a brand based on critical thinking and modern ethics
• Smoking Mirror offers New Rebels a tailored connection with the brand, breeding a sense of respect and understanding of a company they may have otherwise written off as “The Man”
• The layered and mysterious nature of our concept satisfies the craving for a surprise in an era where we can know about anything
• The user’s chance discovery adds a frictionless element, widely regarded as a preferred element of product design

Occasions for Discovery
A can of Red Bull is an emblem of the Gen-X commitment to life experiences and stimulation. In combination with our inclination to document all things digitally (and popular apps that leverage smartphone hardware-- Instagram, Snapchat), we believe that the user flows for incidental discovery are exponential.
• The infrared design easily reveals itself in the foreground of a photo of a group of friends at a party
• Somewhere a student is taking a Snapchat of his sad studying set up when he happens to catch the can on camera

Innovation Context and Research
We researched several pathways to lift the mechanism for augmented reality from the smartphone to the packaging. The guiding principle for our research was that our method must only incorporate the built-in camera application of the phone thereby aligning with the goal of surprising users and generate intrigue. The first compelling option we identified for rendering a hidden design exclusively on a smartphone camera required no infrared ink-- instead using a thin-film transistor of electrically tunable photonic crystals to fully modulate color and maintain a high optical quality through communication with the smartphone’s built in CMOS active pixel sensor. Existing research indicates that this technology is paving the way to generation of a novel display, which we imagined could translate well to Smoking Mirror’s hidden design. This option was overtaken by printing a hidden design from participating artists on the cans (or other packaging) in infrared ink. This approach is the most practical to implement on the large scale rollout intended for Smoking Mirror. Aluminum cans are simple to make and the addition of infrared ink requires only one more step estimated to be low cost. Current generation smartphones come equipped with built-in infrared sensitivity, so infrared ink emerged as a desirable avenue to surprise the user with the hidden design-- in the presence of a can of Red Bull and their smartphone, the user has everything they need to render the pattern and reveal the greater concept behind Smoking Mirror. This yields an exclusive experience playing on the user’s interest in feeling connected to the minority in the know.

The Underlying Augmented Reality
The hidden design in infrared ink features a link to www.smokingmirror.com, creating a doubly veiled inner circle for access to the creative augmented reality app. The app uses a camera to recognize the grid formation within the Red Bull can design and turns the identified surface into a screen for visualizations and creativity. The Smoking Mirror web platform introduces a submission or posting system for user-generated designs for augmented reality concepts. All user-generated designs would live online in a feed or gallery, allowing users to try out appealing designs from their kindred contemporaries.

        SMOKING MIRROR | RESEARCH BREAKDOWN    ABSTRACT    MECHANICS OF INFRARED PHOTOGRAPHY    INDUSTRY STANDARDS FOR SMARTPHONE CAMERAS    SMARTPHONE CAMERA MARKET LANDSCAPE    AHEAD OF CURVE HARDWARE DEVELOPMENTS    THE 10 LEADING SMARTPHONES + IR SPECS    POTENTIAL MATERIALS FOR ACHIEVING SMOKING MIRROR EFFECT             ABSTRACT       The disclosed technology, Smoking Mirror, proposes an unprecedented method for native augmented reality using digital image capture devices and the physics of light and photonics. The sections outlined in the research breakout prove the underlying scientific and technological principles of the disclosed technology, but are not prescriptive. With hands on prototyping and experimentation, the discussed resources, technology, and materials   may   be used in combination with smartphone market foresight to create Smoking Mirror.           The unprecedented nature of the disclosed technology   may also   necessitate adjustments to existing resources, technology, and material, as well as custom proprietary versions. The avenues of research discussed in the following sections represent the first areas of inquiry for developing the disclosed technology.                MECHANICS OF INFRARED PHOTOGRAPHY          In support of Smoking Mirror native augmented reality using only infrared materials and a smartphone camera.       The   INFRARED (IR) SPECTRUM   is the spectrum of light energy from electromagnetic radiation, characterized by wavelengths longer than the human eye can detect by itself. Devices with   CCD/CMOS Sensors   take infrared wavelengths from the invisible spectrum and convert them to the human eye’s visible range.       CMOS Sensors   are the built in mechanism in smartphones and other image capturing devices that sense both visible and invisible light in a scene. CMOS sensors can synthesize the visible and invisible spectrums by displaying any invisible infrared wavelengths within a visible scene.              INDUSTRY STANDARDS FOR SMARTPHONE CAMERAS       A review of the current state of smartphone hardware for mobile photography and light sensing to understand the feasibility of Smoking Mirror today.       Current and past generation smartphone built in cameras can detect infrared light with the iSight and FaceTime (and non-Apple equivalent) camera features. The CMOS sensors in the camera control the device’s ability to detect infrared light using only its native hardware.    The iSight (and non-Apple equivalent) camera in new generation smartphones features an infrared filter within the CMOS sensor structure, removing its ability to detect infrared light out of the box. The FaceTime (and non-Apple equivalent) camera in new generation smartphones does not have the infrared filter,   which means that the newest smartphones can detect infrared light out of the box with the front-facing camera hardware.       Backside Illumination CMOS (BSI) sensors are the current industry standard for smartphone cameras.          (IMVeurope)            BSI CMOS sensors prevalent in smartphones have higher spectral responsivity than the human eye, improving picture quality and making it possible to see what the human eye cannot.     (IMVeurope)       BSI CMOS sensors can detect and display infrared wavelengths unless an infrared filter has been incorporated into the camera hardware of the device.    (IMVeurope)                SMARTPHONE CAMERA MARKET LANDSCAPE       Important considerations for innovating in the realm of smartphone photography: market predictions, developments,   and technology that Smoking Mirror can leverage in the near future.        Smartphone cameras are predicted to go beyond autofocus and implement real zoom cameras as well as add-on lenses for wide angle, telephoto, and IR capabilities. These advancements suggest that smartphones will eventually match the features of point and shoot cameras.           (Extreme Tech)       MIT’s smartphone division is developing a component for advanced post-processing photography effects in real time. Google and HTC are predicted to follow suit in the interest of keeping Nexus competitive and relevant.           (Extreme Tech)       The CCD sensors found in high quality digital cameras and video recorders are predicted to appear in smartphone cameras as an alternative to CMOS. CMOS sensor capability has improved, narrowing the performance gap between the two and making significant improvements on smartphone camera hardware completely possible.    (“What is the Difference”)          Until recently, image sensor advancements did not target consumers. Now there is significant market activity in the realm of consumer-oriented personal imagers like thermal imaging smartphone add-ons and applications.    (IMVeurope)                AHEAD OF CURVE HARDWARE DEVELOPMENTS       First in class examples of innovation in smartphone cameras that will set the bar for hardware and product features in next generation smartphones, and improve feasibility of Smoking Mirror.        The HTC One M8 launched in March 2014 features the IR Blaster, a built in infrared light source. Intended to work as a TV remote, this technology can lend itself to wider applications. The IR Blaster can trigger the activation of materials like upconverting infrared ink and reveal visible fluorescence.           (HTC Product Site)       In August 2014 Microsoft Research provided a proof of concept for modifying the camera hardware of a Galaxy Nexus to perform the complex functions of a Kinect caliber depth camera on mobile.          (Slash Gear)       Eigen Imaging has started to sell pre-adapted Google Nexus 5, iPhone 5s, and Galaxy Nexus smartphones for multi-spectral imaging applications  and visible-to-near-infrared capability, indicating existing consumer interest in this type of functionality on mobile.        In addition to visible-to-near-infrared wavelength detection, these adapted smartphones are able to detect near infrared fluorescent security and anti-counterfeit materials like ink and barcodes.          (Eigen Imaging)            Infrared detection capabilities can be used on both image capture mode and live video mode.          (Eigen Imaging)       The company also offers FluoroVu, a smartphone attachment lens for capturing ultraviolet fluorescent images of certain materials.    (Eigen Imaging)                   THE 10 LEADING SMARTPHONES + IR SPECS          An abbreviated review of the infrared capabilities of the top consumer rated smartphones as of November, 2014.    (Tech Radar)       #1 HTC One M8:     IR Blaster, an IR light emitter in the phone intended to give the smartphone remote control functionality     Built in IR light source could be used for alternative purposes like triggering fluorescence in IR upconverting and excitation ink    Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor       #2 Iphone 6:    Hybrid IR filter on standard rear facing camera to keep out IR light for traditional photography purposes    Front-facing FaceTime camera is built without a Hybrid IR filter and is able to display IR light    Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor        #3 LG G3:    IR Blaster  , an IR light emitter in the phone intended to give the smartphone remote control functionality    Built in IR light source could be used for alternative purposes like triggering fluorescence in IR upconverting and excitation ink    Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor        #4 Samsung Galaxy Note 4:    IR Blaster  , an IR light emitter in the phone intended to give the smartphone remote control functionality    Built in IR light source could be used for alternative purposes like triggering fluorescence in IR upconverting and excitation ink    Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor             #5 iPhone 6 Plus    Hybrid IR filter on standard rear facing camera to keep out IR light for traditional photography purposes    Front-facing FaceTime camera is built without a Hybrid IR filter and is able to display IR light    Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor              #6 Sony Xperia Z3 Compact    No built in IR filter, allowing front and rear facing camera features to display IR light    Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor        #7 Nexus 6:    IR Blaster  , an IR light emitter in the phone intended to give the smartphone remote control functionality    Built in IR light source could be used for alternative purposes like triggering fluorescence in IR upconverting and excitation ink    Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor             #8 Sony Xperia Z3    No built in IR filter, allowing front and rear facing camera features to display IR light    Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor             #9 Moto X (2014)    No built in IR filter, allowing both camera features to display IR light    Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor             #10 OnePlus One    Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor                POTENTIAL MATERIALS FOR ACHIEVING SMOKING MIRROR EFFECT       New formulas of the following materials may be necessary to achieve the unprecedented Smoking Mirror effect. Available information about the following materials indicates that they could be used in Smoking Mirror.   Because of difficulty communicating with suppliers of these materials, product samples must be acquired and tested to determine for certain their visual effects and compatibility with aluminum’s pasteurization processes.        Infrared Excitation Ink:    Predominantly used for anti-forgery and security purposes, this clear ink responds to an infrared light source (e.g. the increasingly common IR Blaster feature on current generation smartphones), in a process called upconversion. Once it is triggered, the ink in its excited state fluoresces a bright light wherever the ink has been applied. The ink comes in variations of clear-to-red, clear-to-green, and clear-to-blue.    (Smarol, MaxMax).     A similar product is referred to as Infrared-Active Absorption Ink in a successful recent study proving that an iPhone 4 can display markings of this material on a poker card.    (“Invisible Mark Detection…”)       Polarizing Ink    Also known as color flop ink, polarizing ink uses cholesteric liquid crystal polymers to make the ink appear to change color. The outcome effect, known as color travel, results from subtle changes in viewing angle. Many custom formulas for this material are available, including formulas that combine infrared and UV ink with visible ink, resulting in a more extreme visual effect that appears as if the design emerged from nowhere. It is also possible to control the speed and intensity of the color change.     (Chelix Novel Pigment Approaches, Chelix Pigment Technology)        SUBSTRATE INFORMATION:             Precise information on substrate and printing instructions could not be obtained from the suppliers due to communication barriers and no formal purchase order. However, most printing inks must be mixed with a binder base such as polyethylene terephthalate resin (PET) after purchasing, indicating that it is possible to adjust the formula in-house to meet Smoking Mirror production requirements.    (“Invisible Mark Detection…”)    Based on general information listed on supplier product sites, the majority of inks are printable by standard techniques such as offset, UV offset, protrude, UV flexographic, screen printing, and UV screen printing.    (Anti-Forgery Ink)                                                                                                                                    REFERENCES       Anti-Forgery Ink, (http://www.anti-forgery-ink.com/).       Chelix, Pigment Technology. (http://www.chelix.com/products_pigment.html).       Chelix, “Novel Pigment Approaches…” (http://www.chelix.com/pdfs/Novel_Pigment_Approaches.pdf).       Eigen Imaging, “Smartphones NIR”.    (http://www.eigenimaging.com/Galaxy-Nexus-MSI).       Extreme Tech, “Beyond Megapixels: the Future Evolution of Smartphone Cameras”.     (http://www.extremetech.com/extreme/151334-beyond-megapixels-the-future-evolution-of-smartphone-cameras/2).       HTC Product Site, “HTC One M8”.    (http://www.htc.com/us/smartphones/htc-one-m8/).       IMVeurope, “Image Sensors: the Smartphone Generation”.     (http://www.imveurope.com/features/feature.php?feature_id=252).       “Invisible Mark Detection…” (http://www.pubfacts.com/detail/24529777/Invisible-ink-mark-detection-in-the-visible-spectrum-using-absorption-difference).       MaxMax, “IR Inks”.    (https://www.maxmax.com/aIRInks.htm).       Slash Gear, “The Irony: Microsoft Makes Depth Tracking Phone…”.         (http://www.slashgear.com/the-irony-microsoft-makes-depth-tracking-phone-while-ignoring-kinect-12340829/).       Smarol, “Infrared Excitation Ink”.    (http://www.smarol.com/Infrared-Excitation-Pigment.html).       Tech Radar, “10 Best Smartphones in the US”.    (http://www.techradar.com/us/news/phone-and-communications/mobile-phones/20-best-mobile-phones-in-the-world-today-645440).       “What is the Difference Between a CCD & CMOS Video Camera?”.    (http://www.ebay.com/gds/What-Is-the-Difference-Between-a-CCD-and-CMOS-Video-Camera-/10000000177630865/g.html).       Wiki, “Back-Illuminated Sensor”.    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Back-illuminated_sensor)
       
     

 

 

SMOKING MIRROR | RESEARCH BREAKDOWN

ABSTRACT

MECHANICS OF INFRARED PHOTOGRAPHY

INDUSTRY STANDARDS FOR SMARTPHONE CAMERAS

SMARTPHONE CAMERA MARKET LANDSCAPE

AHEAD OF CURVE HARDWARE DEVELOPMENTS

THE 10 LEADING SMARTPHONES + IR SPECS

POTENTIAL MATERIALS FOR ACHIEVING SMOKING MIRROR EFFECT

 

 

 

ABSTRACT

 

The disclosed technology, Smoking Mirror, proposes an unprecedented method for native augmented reality using digital image capture devices and the physics of light and photonics. The sections outlined in the research breakout prove the underlying scientific and technological principles of the disclosed technology, but are not prescriptive. With hands on prototyping and experimentation, the discussed resources, technology, and materials may be used in combination with smartphone market foresight to create Smoking Mirror.

    The unprecedented nature of the disclosed technology may also necessitate adjustments to existing resources, technology, and material, as well as custom proprietary versions. The avenues of research discussed in the following sections represent the first areas of inquiry for developing the disclosed technology.   

 

 

 

MECHANICS OF INFRARED PHOTOGRAPHY

 

In support of Smoking Mirror native augmented reality using only infrared materials and a smartphone camera.

 

The INFRARED (IR) SPECTRUM is the spectrum of light energy from electromagnetic radiation, characterized by wavelengths longer than the human eye can detect by itself. Devices with CCD/CMOS Sensors take infrared wavelengths from the invisible spectrum and convert them to the human eye’s visible range.

 

CMOS Sensors are the built in mechanism in smartphones and other image capturing devices that sense both visible and invisible light in a scene. CMOS sensors can synthesize the visible and invisible spectrums by displaying any invisible infrared wavelengths within a visible scene.

 

 

 

INDUSTRY STANDARDS FOR SMARTPHONE CAMERAS

 

A review of the current state of smartphone hardware for mobile photography and light sensing to understand the feasibility of Smoking Mirror today.

 

Current and past generation smartphone built in cameras can detect infrared light with the iSight and FaceTime (and non-Apple equivalent) camera features. The CMOS sensors in the camera control the device’s ability to detect infrared light using only its native hardware.

The iSight (and non-Apple equivalent) camera in new generation smartphones features an infrared filter within the CMOS sensor structure, removing its ability to detect infrared light out of the box. The FaceTime (and non-Apple equivalent) camera in new generation smartphones does not have the infrared filter, which means that the newest smartphones can detect infrared light out of the box with the front-facing camera hardware.

 

Backside Illumination CMOS (BSI) sensors are the current industry standard for smartphone cameras.

    (IMVeurope)

   

BSI CMOS sensors prevalent in smartphones have higher spectral responsivity than the human eye, improving picture quality and making it possible to see what the human eye cannot.

(IMVeurope)

 

BSI CMOS sensors can detect and display infrared wavelengths unless an infrared filter has been incorporated into the camera hardware of the device.

(IMVeurope)

 

 

 

 

SMARTPHONE CAMERA MARKET LANDSCAPE

 

Important considerations for innovating in the realm of smartphone photography: market predictions, developments, and technology that Smoking Mirror can leverage in the near future.

 

Smartphone cameras are predicted to go beyond autofocus and implement real zoom cameras as well as add-on lenses for wide angle, telephoto, and IR capabilities. These advancements suggest that smartphones will eventually match the features of point and shoot cameras.

    (Extreme Tech)

 

MIT’s smartphone division is developing a component for advanced post-processing photography effects in real time. Google and HTC are predicted to follow suit in the interest of keeping Nexus competitive and relevant.

    (Extreme Tech)

 

The CCD sensors found in high quality digital cameras and video recorders are predicted to appear in smartphone cameras as an alternative to CMOS. CMOS sensor capability has improved, narrowing the performance gap between the two and making significant improvements on smartphone camera hardware completely possible.

(“What is the Difference”)

 

Until recently, image sensor advancements did not target consumers. Now there is significant market activity in the realm of consumer-oriented personal imagers like thermal imaging smartphone add-ons and applications.

(IMVeurope)

 

 

 

 

AHEAD OF CURVE HARDWARE DEVELOPMENTS

 

First in class examples of innovation in smartphone cameras that will set the bar for hardware and product features in next generation smartphones, and improve feasibility of Smoking Mirror.

 

The HTC One M8 launched in March 2014 features the IR Blaster, a built in infrared light source. Intended to work as a TV remote, this technology can lend itself to wider applications. The IR Blaster can trigger the activation of materials like upconverting infrared ink and reveal visible fluorescence.

    (HTC Product Site)

 

In August 2014 Microsoft Research provided a proof of concept for modifying the camera hardware of a Galaxy Nexus to perform the complex functions of a Kinect caliber depth camera on mobile.

    (Slash Gear)

 

Eigen Imaging has started to sell pre-adapted Google Nexus 5, iPhone 5s, and Galaxy Nexus smartphones for multi-spectral imaging applications  and visible-to-near-infrared capability, indicating existing consumer interest in this type of functionality on mobile.

 

In addition to visible-to-near-infrared wavelength detection, these adapted smartphones are able to detect near infrared fluorescent security and anti-counterfeit materials like ink and barcodes.

    (Eigen Imaging)

   

Infrared detection capabilities can be used on both image capture mode and live video mode.

    (Eigen Imaging)

 

The company also offers FluoroVu, a smartphone attachment lens for capturing ultraviolet fluorescent images of certain materials.

(Eigen Imaging)

 

 

 

 

THE 10 LEADING SMARTPHONES + IR SPECS

 

An abbreviated review of the infrared capabilities of the top consumer rated smartphones as of November, 2014.

(Tech Radar)

 

#1 HTC One M8:

IR Blaster, an IR light emitter in the phone intended to give the smartphone remote control functionality

Built in IR light source could be used for alternative purposes like triggering fluorescence in IR upconverting and excitation ink

Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor

 

#2 Iphone 6:

Hybrid IR filter on standard rear facing camera to keep out IR light for traditional photography purposes

Front-facing FaceTime camera is built without a Hybrid IR filter and is able to display IR light

Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor

 

#3 LG G3:

IR Blaster, an IR light emitter in the phone intended to give the smartphone remote control functionality

Built in IR light source could be used for alternative purposes like triggering fluorescence in IR upconverting and excitation ink

Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor

 

#4 Samsung Galaxy Note 4:

IR Blaster, an IR light emitter in the phone intended to give the smartphone remote control functionality

Built in IR light source could be used for alternative purposes like triggering fluorescence in IR upconverting and excitation ink

Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor

 

    #5 iPhone 6 Plus

Hybrid IR filter on standard rear facing camera to keep out IR light for traditional photography purposes

Front-facing FaceTime camera is built without a Hybrid IR filter and is able to display IR light

Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor

 

    #6 Sony Xperia Z3 Compact

No built in IR filter, allowing front and rear facing camera features to display IR light

Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor

 

#7 Nexus 6:

IR Blaster, an IR light emitter in the phone intended to give the smartphone remote control functionality

Built in IR light source could be used for alternative purposes like triggering fluorescence in IR upconverting and excitation ink

Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor

 

    #8 Sony Xperia Z3

No built in IR filter, allowing front and rear facing camera features to display IR light

Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor

 

    #9 Moto X (2014)

No built in IR filter, allowing both camera features to display IR light

Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor

 

    #10 OnePlus One

Backside Illumination (BSI) CMOS Sensor

 

 

 

 

POTENTIAL MATERIALS FOR ACHIEVING SMOKING MIRROR EFFECT

 

New formulas of the following materials may be necessary to achieve the unprecedented Smoking Mirror effect. Available information about the following materials indicates that they could be used in Smoking Mirror. Because of difficulty communicating with suppliers of these materials, product samples must be acquired and tested to determine for certain their visual effects and compatibility with aluminum’s pasteurization processes.

 

Infrared Excitation Ink:

Predominantly used for anti-forgery and security purposes, this clear ink responds to an infrared light source (e.g. the increasingly common IR Blaster feature on current generation smartphones), in a process called upconversion. Once it is triggered, the ink in its excited state fluoresces a bright light wherever the ink has been applied. The ink comes in variations of clear-to-red, clear-to-green, and clear-to-blue.

(Smarol, MaxMax).

A similar product is referred to as Infrared-Active Absorption Ink in a successful recent study proving that an iPhone 4 can display markings of this material on a poker card.

(“Invisible Mark Detection…”)

 

Polarizing Ink

Also known as color flop ink, polarizing ink uses cholesteric liquid crystal polymers to make the ink appear to change color. The outcome effect, known as color travel, results from subtle changes in viewing angle. Many custom formulas for this material are available, including formulas that combine infrared and UV ink with visible ink, resulting in a more extreme visual effect that appears as if the design emerged from nowhere. It is also possible to control the speed and intensity of the color change.

(Chelix Novel Pigment Approaches, Chelix Pigment Technology)


 

SUBSTRATE INFORMATION:

 

    Precise information on substrate and printing instructions could not be obtained from the suppliers due to communication barriers and no formal purchase order. However, most printing inks must be mixed with a binder base such as polyethylene terephthalate resin (PET) after purchasing, indicating that it is possible to adjust the formula in-house to meet Smoking Mirror production requirements.

(“Invisible Mark Detection…”)

Based on general information listed on supplier product sites, the majority of inks are printable by standard techniques such as offset, UV offset, protrude, UV flexographic, screen printing, and UV screen printing.

(Anti-Forgery Ink)                    

           

               

                   








 

REFERENCES

 

Anti-Forgery Ink, (http://www.anti-forgery-ink.com/).

 

Chelix, Pigment Technology. (http://www.chelix.com/products_pigment.html).

 

Chelix, “Novel Pigment Approaches…” (http://www.chelix.com/pdfs/Novel_Pigment_Approaches.pdf).

 

Eigen Imaging, “Smartphones NIR”.

(http://www.eigenimaging.com/Galaxy-Nexus-MSI).

 

Extreme Tech, “Beyond Megapixels: the Future Evolution of Smartphone Cameras”.

(http://www.extremetech.com/extreme/151334-beyond-megapixels-the-future-evolution-of-smartphone-cameras/2).

 

HTC Product Site, “HTC One M8”.

(http://www.htc.com/us/smartphones/htc-one-m8/).

 

IMVeurope, “Image Sensors: the Smartphone Generation”.

(http://www.imveurope.com/features/feature.php?feature_id=252).

 

“Invisible Mark Detection…” (http://www.pubfacts.com/detail/24529777/Invisible-ink-mark-detection-in-the-visible-spectrum-using-absorption-difference).

 

MaxMax, “IR Inks”.

(https://www.maxmax.com/aIRInks.htm).

 

Slash Gear, “The Irony: Microsoft Makes Depth Tracking Phone…”.     (http://www.slashgear.com/the-irony-microsoft-makes-depth-tracking-phone-while-ignoring-kinect-12340829/).

 

Smarol, “Infrared Excitation Ink”.

(http://www.smarol.com/Infrared-Excitation-Pigment.html).

 

Tech Radar, “10 Best Smartphones in the US”.

(http://www.techradar.com/us/news/phone-and-communications/mobile-phones/20-best-mobile-phones-in-the-world-today-645440).

 

“What is the Difference Between a CCD & CMOS Video Camera?”.

(http://www.ebay.com/gds/What-Is-the-Difference-Between-a-CCD-and-CMOS-Video-Camera-/10000000177630865/g.html).

 

Wiki, “Back-Illuminated Sensor”.

(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Back-illuminated_sensor)

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