SODAR: Google launches App to Visualize Social Distance

We are all transitioning to a modern way of life which is socially remote. Here is a recent Google resource ‘Sodar’ to help you imagine social distancing constraints using Virtual Reality ( AR). 

Sodar is the name of this modern scientific method, made use of by Google Experiments. Using your phone screen the tool uses WebXR to create a six-foot or two-metre-radius ring around you. 

The app, which Google calls ‘Sodar,’ actually only runs on computers running Google Chrome and Ios. The AR method won’t be entirely accurate but it will give you an idea of where to draw the line when mixing with others. Snapchat reportedly back in April did something similar. 

Sodar is accessible only to consumers on Android smartphones. Scan the QR code to go to your mobile site to get started. You can go to sodar with too, and it will launch on your computer. 

You just need to aim your phone camera downwards after you’ve done so, and turn it around to reach the ground. It is then that the measurement device will surface. 

There are specific guidelines for social distancing in various countries. The World Health Organisation claims a one meter gap is safe, although some policymakers recommend 1.5 or 1.8 meters. Great Britain has gone for two metres. 

Please note that AR-based technologies are not fool-proof in their evaluation of our real world , despite all the advances in technology, so treat the boundary suggested as a guideline rather than a measure of accuracy. In matters of health and community safety, it is better to steer clear of caution. Still, it’s a good tool to have to bolster the ideas of social distancing and just how much distance is required. 

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Nayab Khan

Nayab Khan is a freelance tech-writer whose specialty is absorbing the key data and articulating the most important points. She helps IT based organizations communicate their message clearly across multiple channels.

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