It appears the DPRK is moving into augmented reality ed tech—however is their newest contraption a replica?

North Korea has unveiled a “new intelligent playground equipment for children” that appears to be an AR sandbox, in line with a video out final week from the state-run TV news broadcaster, NK Information reports. As an example, the field allows you to create projections of volcanoes or lakes by digging up sand.

“It is an entertainment equipment that enables a player to understand nature by showing a picture realistically followed by the player’s hand gesture,” mentioned a DPRK Right now anchor, in line with NK Information—an impartial journalism outlet masking North Korea.

The system, known as “Sand Play,” seems to have a sandbox, contact display, projector and movement and depth sensors that simulate pure phenomenon. NK Information studies it accommodates 11 packages, together with a “map of Korea, insect collection, volcanic eruption, finding photos, finding minerals, digging out clams, observing nature, catching sparrows.”

From DPRK Right now:

“Youngsters can effectively purchase information of pure geographical traits of our our nation – which is surrounded by water on three sides – inside a short while by digging the sand within the form of the Korean map.

… As you play the sport of water stream, [the player] can intuitively see and perceive the precept that water flows from a high to low place by way of the method of digging sand.”

These sandboxes may present the nation’s kids with a uncommon alternative to entry computer expertise. Solely round three of its 25 million residents personal cell devices at this time, The Economist reports. And as few as 20,000 might need entry to the web, ABC Information reported in 2014.

North Korea additionally confirmed an curiosity in virtual reality last year once they announced a brand new “Virtual Reality Science Lab.”

However North Korea isn’t the primary to debut AR sandboxes for studying. UC Davis demonstrated five years ago how the expertise may improve geology training. Different corporations, comparable to iSandBOX and South Korea’s Cellbig, are promoting mainly the identical devices for leisure and training.

And in an interview with NK Information, Cellbig, which sells their AR sandboxes for almost $1,200 every, accused their neighbor of stealing their tech. Cellbig director Jung Byong-gyun claims North Korea’s “Sand Play” piggybacked off their 2015 recreation “Sandcraft.”

“Because there are certain resemblances in terms of graphic style, the motion of icons, font, and presentment,” Byong-gyun advised NK Information.

You’ll be able to watch the video from DPRK Right now beneath and determine for your self.

Picture Credit score: DPRK Right now / NK Information

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