Japan's Red Cross uses Augmented Reality to get geeks to donate blood (video)


This is one of the reasons why I live in Japan and nowhere else: In order to get more people to donate blood, the Japanese Red Cross Society decided to skip juice and cookies and to go high-tech by using augmented reality-powered digital signage systems [JP] and cute anime characters.

In cooperation with Japan’s Digital Signage Consortium, several digital signage systems made by NEC were set up around Akihabara station (where else?) from December 17-19. Every time passers-by appeared on the screen, they would see their heads and bodies superimposed with the hair of mega-popular virtual idol Miku Hatsune and a sexy nurse outfit.

I’m not really sure if that’s the way to go to actually get people to donate blood, but the whole thing was designed to be a special PR campaign. And it did get a lot of coverage on Japanese otaku blogs over the weekend (too bad I myself couldn’t go).

But here are two videos that show the digital signage systems in action at Akihabara station:

Via Asiajin