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10: Augmented Reality in Medical Education With Brad Waid

15MWTH - Augmented Reality
In this episode, we talk to Brad Waid, a school teacher turned Augmented Reality expert. He is rated the top 14th influencer for AR in the world. Today, he shares his insights with using AR in medical education. Learn from his experience working on Anatomy 4D, how to develop an effective user interface, and his thoughts on the future of AR.

What you will learn in this episode:

– How Brad discovered augmented reality
– The use of AR in medical education
– The UX considerations of AR
– What to do if you have an idea for AR in the medical industry
– The future of AR in the medical education space

How Brad discovered augmented reality

A school teacher for 10 years, Brad was at a conference in 2013 where a speaker was explaining new technology. When they introduced augmented reality, he thought it was the most amazing thing he had seen. He began researching and found a medical experience in AR. He brought this into the classroom and saw the opportunities it created for deep engagement with his students. Following this, he began to work with companies to create educational AR experiences.

I felt it was my duty to learn everything I could about augmented reality in every industry and bring it into education as best I could.

The use of AR in medical education

A company called Daqri based in LA was commissioned by a U.S. Medical School to create an experience where students could train and work on the human body outside of the lab. The result is an app called Anatomy 4D. Students had a 3-foot vinyl mat, they would scan it and all of a sudden they had a life size human body laying on their workspace. They could rotate it, go in and isolate all the different body systems. The human body AR was so successful that the University asked Daqri to follow it up with an AR version of the human heart.

Daqri’s research verified that when people are using AR to learn, it’s more efficient, more engaging, and they retain the information longer. The traditional way to learn anatomy is by dissection, but students are usually limited to a couple of hours per week in the lab. The benefit of AR is that you can access it at whatever time you want. It also allows you to have the visual component right in front of you, while your hands are free to manipulate your environment. It’s multi-sensory learning using the power of technology to multiply the resources. Brad worked with Daqri for 2.5 years where he assisted in the design and user experience of their AR products.

The UX considerations of AR

There are three main considerations for user experience in the augmented reality space. Firstly, it has to be simple – Users need to pick it up and use it easily. Secondly, whatever is being built needs to be an improved method or experience in comparison to what is currently available – It might be something that’s never been built. Lastly, you must make sure that there’s no lag in the experience. Make sure you have the processing power behind it and that the target is robust enough to hold the experience. It’s better to have a simpler application with no lag than a very deep application where you have to wait – It’s what customers demand.

What to do if you have an idea for AR in the medical industry

Run your idea by a trusted person and get their feedback. Once you have that and you really believe in your idea, start building it and you never look back.

Release a basic version or a minimally viable product. Test it with users and then iterate from there onwards. The costs for creating basic models can vary greatly. Some people do it with just their blood, sweat and tears. Otherwise, it can cost anywhere from $25,000 to $100,000.

If you have an idea in AR, now is a great time to get started.

The future of AR in the medical education space

Brad believes AR in medical education will become commonplace and many institutions are already using it on a complex level.

With big data and cloud computing, this will become second nature in medical education.

New students will expect to be using AR. The feedback in AR is immediate and the detail allows for much better interactivity then a text book.

It’s going to be the next natural fit in the medical community, on the patient side, student side, and every side

Find out more

For all things augmented reality and emerging tech, brad has a new website: www.bradwaid.com

Twitter: @techbradwaid

You can find out more about Anatomy 4D at http://anatomy4d.daqri.com/

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