Alice Springs visited by Virtual Dinosaurs

This week, Alice Springs residents and visitors may have noticed large dinosaur footprints around the town as they walk to work or visit local attractions.

It's all part of an exciting Science Week project that demonstrates the potential application of augmented reality technologies.

If you’ve never heard of ‘augmented reality’ before, it’s a type of technology which combines the real with the virtual. Unlike virtual reality which replaces the real world with a simulated one, augmented reality gives us a view of reality which has been tweaked, enhanced or augmented.

This year, a range of virtual dinosaurs have been installed across the town at the following locations:

  • Olive Pink Botanical Garden
  • Strehlow Research Centre
  • Desert Knowledge Precinct
  • Alice Springs Telegraph Station
  • Todd Mall
  • Alice Springs Town Council Lawns
  • CDU/ Centralian College

To view the dinosaurs, you need smart phone (such as iPhone or Android), and an application called “layar”. This will enable you see the dinosaurs on a small GPS radar – and you can even pose for a very interesting picture!

A full list of dinosaur locations and more information about the project is located at

For more information about other National Science Week events, please visit

There are two competitions associated with Science Week's Augmented Reality Dinosaurs:

  • A nation-wide competition for the best photo.
  • A local Alice Springs competition for the best idea about how this technology could be applied in a local context.

See for more information.

To speak with representatives from local organisations that are trialling the augmented reality technology, please contact:
Mike Cawthorn, The Director, Strehlow Research Centre, T: 08 8951 1111, E:

Rebecca Farrell, Communications and PR Officer, Desert Knowledge Australia T: 08 8959 6022 E:

For more information about ‘Jurassic Science Week’, Scitech and the technology behind the project, please contact: Swee Au-Yong, Senior Communications Officer, IINET T: 08 6252 4485 E:

For more information relating to the local context of the project and the local competition, please contact: Edan Baxter, EcoFair Committee Member, T: 0402 029 968 E: