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Engagement Competition

maurice groenhart November 11, 2009

Do you have a great idea for an engaging layer?

What are we looking for?

We are looking for great and innovative ideas for engaging layers that will connect customer with for example brands by “engaging” them in a dialogue and two-way, cooperative interaction.

For example:

The Dutch Heart Foundation will launch a layer on Valentine day which makes it possible to post 3D hearts with a message on different positions. This results in people looking at street with Layar and seeing all the 3D hearts in front of house. You really see the love out there! This layer will connect customers and the brand in a positive way, by using valentine messages which customers can post and send to each other within the layer. Next to that the layer creates a dialog between these customer and between the costumers and the brand. The users of this layer will create a positive association with the Heart Foundation.

Other examples could be treasure hunts (find the secret…, explore the city in a unique way), storytelling (including historical stories - what happened here), visualizations (how did/ should it look like), 3D art etc.

Anything which creates an engaging experience, making people to want to come back and to ‘dive’ into the layer. Think out-of-the-box and feel free to add new features in your idea which we currently don’t support in Layar

Which criteria will be used to evaluate my idea?

We will use the following criteria to evaluate your idea.

  • Creativity

  • Feasibility

  • Added value for user or brands

How can I enter the competition?


What’s in it for me?

We will reward the best idea with an Android phone. With Layar of course ; )


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Jens de Smit developed a PHP-based POI server

maurice groenhart November 11, 2009

Jens de Smit developed a PHP-based POI server for Layar which is called PorPOISe, the Portable Point-of-Interest Server for Layar. Jens is currently working at SURFnet in the Netherlands.

jensCould you tell us something about your first introduction to Layar?

As part of my job I’m always looking for new technologies which can be useful for our company and our users. We came across Layar and the technology looked very promising to us, so we decided to build our own layer for the eduroam project. The eduroam layer allows users to find eduroam hotspots, which allow students and staff of participating institutions to connect to wireless networks all over the Netherlands.

Why did you create the PorPOISe server for Layar?

Layar provides an interface specification for the client but no reference server. It was my intention to determine how much effort was required for interested parties to get started using Layar. I estimated that a working solution could be realised with only a few hours work, so I simply started from scratch. The end result looked like it could be quickly adapted into a piece of reusable software so I decided to do that and thus PorPOISe emerged.

Why did you share the code and documentation?

SURFnet is not-for-profit but all about stimulating innovation. We try to spread technical knowledge so sharing code and documentation comes very natural to us. As I said, there was no server for Layar openly available so I decided to release mine to the public. I hope this will also help the less experienced developers among us to create their own layers.

Did you expect that many reactions on your PorPOISe server?

I wasn’t aware of the involvement of the developers on the Google Groups when I made PorPOISe public, so I was a little bit surprised at first. I received a lot of positive reactions on my post. The one from James Morley was really nice: it only took him 30 minutes to have a layer up and running after getting PorPOISe.

It’s great to see that there are some very active developers within the community so we can all work on great things and share our knowledge.

Any plans for the future?

We are currently working on a web interface that will make it possible to create your own layers without coding. With this tool, anyone will be able to create and manage a layer.

We would like to thank Jens for his time and of course for sharing the code.


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