Hidden Figures – a film about the untold achievements of three black female mathematicians whose work helped launch humans into space in the 1960s – was released in the US this month. To help promote the movie, IBM and the New York Times have partnered to create Outthink Hidden, an augmented reality (AR) experience that highlights the achievements of scientists with marginalised backgrounds.
At 150 geo-locations across 10 US cities – including science-focused tourist attractions like the Nasa Kennedy Space Center and educational institutions like California Polytech and Princeton University – Outthink Hidden surfaces individuals who are not prominently celebrated in the canon of science history. Using The New York Times' new T Brand Studio AR app, visitors at the geo-fenced locations can access 3D-rendered imagery, text, video and soundbites to learn more about lesser-known thought leaders across STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) disciplines.
The depth and variety of content from The New York Times is an intriguing exploration of the amount of information an AR spot can carry. Additionally, the project points to exciting opportunities around event-jacking by demonstrating how the virtually layered content can be tailored around niche or underrepresented interests.
For more on event-jacking and niche engagement, check out our video Pop Culture Year in Review: 10 Trends for 2017 and our Media & Marketing Look Ahead 2017. For more on AR applications, see Innovation & Emerging Technologies: EmTech 2016 and Retail: Digitising Luxury, 2017.