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People have been printing for thousands of years. It has been a tough journey.

First, people used individual printing blocks to make imagery on cloth. In the 15th century, Johannes Gutenberg created the “modern” printing press. A steam-powered printing press was invented during the industrial revolution. Today, we have self-published blogs, books, 3D printing, electronic ink, and audiobooks. The printing press mass-produced knowledge. And with each iteration, information, stories, and knowledge became accessible to audiences around the world. Readers turned into commenters, reviewers, and book clubbers.

What does all of this have to do with 3D glasses?

In an earlier chapter, we read how Nora beamed a book into her hand. The book came to life with animals literally jumping off the page. AR glasses won’t make our need to read obsolete. Rather, they will change the way we consume books, view marketing banners, and digest information.

Once again, the printing industry will change. AR glasses will reshape the printing press industry. Instead of digital printing, AR glasses will bring digital elements out of the books. This is already happening today. When I bought Amanda Fox’s book, Markertown, it came with augmented reality pages. I downloaded the app Quiver and using my smartphone, my son and I watched the scenes pop up from the page. From there, my son could interact with the scenes through the app on my phone.

On Amazon Kindle, you can highlight sentences in a book. You can also see what other readers highlighted because they thought the passage was insightful, fun, or just a good quote. In these ways, reading is social, interactive, and a community through words - AR glasses will enhance these features even more. Maybe our kids today will grow up to be AR book illustrators. Maybe we’ll use generative AI to create augmented scenes that come to life. Or maybe our AR glasses will enhance what the passage was meant to convey through haptic responses.

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