Now more than ever, screens are competing for our attention in daily life. The distinctions between desktop PC, laptop PC, mobile, etc… are being replaced by the simple abundance and omnipresence of digital screens conveying information and mediating interaction. As LCD newsfeeds, airport terminal displays, set-top video box menus, billboards, advertisements, multi-touch screens, and augmented mobile devices, data and content are everywhere. All of it requires a lightweight and dynamic graphic layer in which to render content. Dynamic render plugins like Flash and Silverlight are very well engineered to address the requirements of these displays but it should be understood that much of the technology represents a shift away from the 2D ad/interactive paradigm primarily addressed by the Flash runtime.
Mobile augmented reality solutions require heads-up-display, alpha-channel rendering of text and graphics. Dynamic data visualization requires strong integration with back-end databases as well as messaging protocols like JSON, SOAP, and SMS. To enable rendering large datastreams in plugin runtimes like Flash & Silverlight, companies should aggressively pursue runtime adoption across mobile devices and smart phones, while defining prototypes for active camera overlays. They should optimize rendering and expand into all rich-content displays (set-top, automotive, kiosks, smart objects, and embedded systems built on the Android/Linux platform). They should optimize for dynamic rendering of large data streams, like the Nasdaq AIR application. The runtimes should be increasingly exposed to SEO and analytics retrieval so that secondary services and agents can easily be built on user workflows and data collection. And they should not neglect the 3D gaming market, but should consider how it can play a role in immersive worlds as a dynamic data layer (eg billboard adverts that can be remotely updated).
Competitive landscape: Adobe Flash (dominant market share, full turn-key solution), Microsoft (Silverlight remains the strongest competitor to Flash though it continues to play catch-up with our tech), Java (JavaFX just released but has little traction and is too late to the party), W3C (HTML5 has perhaps the largest share of hearts but is also the slowest to move), Google (might be cutting around Flash & Silverlight by pushing its interests into HTML5, Mozilla, and through Android & Chrome).
Related: Augmented reality solutions will require semantic architecture and image recognition
algorithms (identification, recognition, relation).