Ad blocking, Paid content

With all the ado about Google Glasses, it seems that wearable augmented reality is fashionable again — despite previous attempts having failed to take roots.

But suppose that the technology does take roots. A lot of ink is flowing about how it would revolutionize advertisement, by allowing on-the-fly personalized ads that integrate with the user daily experience. The concept has even been parodied.

But suppose the opposite happens. Just like ad-blocking is gaining momentum on our browsers, couldn’t the concept work for real life ? Two days ago I’ve sent an e-mail to a friend, who studies architecture and urban design :

Subject : One crazy idea

You know those glasses of Google that created so much buzz last year ? And those ad-blocking browser add-ons ? How about combining the two : a virtual urban intervention — virtual augmented glasses that take ads from outdoor panels, subway panels, electronic panels and exchange them for fine art paintings or beautiful nature scenery.

What I didn’t know is that Ad-Block+ themselves had already imagined the concept, as an April Fools joke.

But must the idea be confined to realm of jokes ? I don’t know about the SoA of image registration in augmented reality, but the image recognition portion seems to me completely feasible.

Would some Computer Graphics geek like to work with me on a prototype ? (Or would we be targeting ourselves to be killed by mobs of contemporary Mad People).

* * *

Craziest idea : a new World Wide Web where instead of giving up your private data and drowning in ads, you pay for both the services and the content. At a cost high enough to let you demand that your data remains yours, that your privacy remains unviolated, and that your eyes remain spared of any ads.

(Okay, no need to lock me up in the funny farm.  Forget I said anything.)

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