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8B_1_A map to hear - use of sound in enhancing the map use experience
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8B_1_A map to hear - use of sound in enhancing the map use experience

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Session 8B, Paper 1

Session 8B, Paper 1

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  • Here is the outline of my presentation: I will first introduce you the background and motivation of the work. In this presentation I will tell you about two experimental applications we have built, The first one being a soundscape map and the second one is a sonic map for VIP And finally few words about the conclusion derived from these studies
  • The background of this work lays in two projects ongoing in the department of Geoinformatics and Cartography Menomap: funded by Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation research partner Aalto School of Design + companies and organisations Those of you who were on the ICA workshop on Tuesday already have heard about the HaptiMAp The HaptiMap is the EC in the 7th Framework Programme project coordinated by the Lund University/ Department of Design Sciences 13 partners: Navteq, Siemens, BMT Group, CEA, ONCE, FGI, University of Glasgow, OFFIS, Queen’s University, Fundacion Robotiker, Kreis Soest, and Lunds municipality In both projects task of our institute is to implement an use case for hikers
  • Printed graphic maps, newspapers, web, mobile phones etc. all together constitute an interface to information on nature. The aim is to develop this (meta) user interface so that hikers would be provided by an easy-to-use, useful, challenging and entertaining user experience. In the project a Web Map service was established + mobile devices + printed maps all from the same content
  • accessible also by special user groups such as visually impaired, locomotion restricted or elderly people
  • We wanted to study Can the use of sound enhance the map use experience? Can the sound in maps communicate spatial information which can not be revealed visually There has been quite a many studies dealing with sound and geographic information but still very few practical applications.
  • We wanted to study Can the use of sound enhance the map use experience? Can the sound in maps communicate spatial information which can not be revealed visually There has been quite a many studies dealing with sound and geographic information but still very few practical applications.
  • The primary use of the presented soundscape map applications is to serve stationary users when planning a hike or users who are unable to visit the actual place. An example of such a user group is people who have restricted locomotion ability.
  • The buttons are realized in the MenoMaps project in the web-map service here an Adobe Flash application. I will show you a demonstration in the end of my presentation I now want to move on to the other application we have done within the HaptiMap project...
  • This application has been made within the HaptiMap project. The target group is visually impaired people, but also children might benefit. As well as the soundscape map this map is targeted to stationary use visually impaired users can familiarise themselves with the area in advance and find sonic landmarks in order to obtain help in recognising places when later visiting, e.g. a national park.
  • Visually impaired people may, with certain limits, utilise visual maps, especially when displayed on large lighted screens; At our institute we have a multitouch wall which can be used as a interface to this map. This realization was completed using Adobe Flash CS3 software. The various areas and separate objects of the map were integrated into invisible buttons. Thereafter, the sound files were attached to the buttons, and after that the sounds could be listened through a mouse-over function. The user may explore the map with mouse (or other pointer) and in different locations hear a sound related to the object
  • The primary use of the presented soundscape map applications is to serve stationary users when planning a hike or users who are unable to visit the actual place. An example of such a user group is people who have restricted locomotion ability.

8B_1_A map to hear - use of sound in enhancing the map use experience 8B_1_A map to hear - use of sound in enhancing the map use experience Presentation Transcript

  • A Map to Hear - Use of sound in enhancing the map use experience Mari Laakso and L. Tiina Sarjakoski
  • Outline
    • Background and motivation
    • What is a soundscape map?
    • A sonic map for visually impaired people (VIP)
    • Conclusions
  • Background
    • MenoMaps project:
    • Multi-publishing in supporting outdoor leisure activities
      • Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation (Tekes)
    • HaptiMap project:
    • Haptic, Audio and Visual Interfaces for Maps
    • and Location Based Services
      • the EC in the 7th Framework Programme
    • A use case for hikers
  • MenoMaps - goals
    • Printed graphic maps, newspapers, web, mobile phones all together constitute an interface to information on nature
    • The goal is to develop this (meta) UI so that a hiker would be provided with an easy-to-use, useful, challenging and entertaining user experience
    • G ood cartographic communication in focus
  • HaptiMap aims
    • To develop multimodal location-based services (LBS) that are accessible also by special user groups and support their use of spatial information
    • www.haptimap.org
    Näkövammaisten keskusliiton kuvapankki
  • Motivation
    • Paper maps are ‘mute’, but with digital devices maps can be enlivened with sound and other multimedia.
    • Sound can facilitate and assist in communicating geographic information
    • Additional information about the environment can be communicated with a sonified map to the map user.
  • Previous work
    • Krygier (1994) presented a variety of sound forms
    • D.R. Fraser Taylor: Cypercartography
      • The potential of soundscapes in cartography has been discussed by Théberge (2005). He recognised the figure-ground relationship in environmental sound and its possibilities in maps.
      • The use of soundscapes in enriching our multisensorial reading of space is discussed by Caquard et al. (2008) as well as the role of sound in cartography more widely.
      • Brauen and Taylor (2007) discussed the motivation for introducing multisensory information into mapping projects. They presented a framework for the incorporation of sound into visual maps with a realised example of an atlas project.  
    • Rice et al. (2005) faced the design of map interfaces in a context of visually impaired users with a project ‘Haptic Soundscapes’.
    • Sarjakoski et al. (2009b) discussed about the importance of sound maps for use experience.
    • A soundscape map of Tampere http://www.aamulehti.fi/aanimaisema/
  • What is a soundscape?
    • The concept of soundscape was introduced by Schafer in his book: The Soundscape: Our Sonic Environment and the Tuning of the World. (1977, 1994). (p. 274):
    • “ Technically, any portion of the sonic environment regarded as a field for study. The term may refer to actual environments, or to be abstract constructions such as musical compositions and tape montages, particularly when considered as an environment.”
    • In this application we consider soundscape as a photograph like audio shot of the surroundings.
  • What is a soundscape map?
  • Design and implementation of the soundscape map
    • Recordings in the field have been made in
    • the Nuuksio National Park with an Olympus
    • LS-10 linear PCM recorder.
    • Audio files were embedded into hiking maps.
    • User can listen the soundscape files by pressing
    • the play/stop –buttons on the map.
    • The aim is to mediate location’ s authentic
    • ambiance of the instant.
    • To the users who are familiarizing themselves
    • to the environment beforehand or to the users
    • unable to visit to the place.
  • What is a sonic map?
  • Design and implementation of the sonic map for visually impaired
    • People who are visually impaired but not totally blind could benefit from a map with embedded sound effects, primarily designed for the visually impaired
    • Visualisation steps:
      • the visual appearance radically generalised,
      • the colours enhanced and
      • contrast increased.
    • Sonification
    • The visual map textures get analogous sound textures with characteristic or representative sounds
  • The sonic map for visually impaired
  • Conclusions
    • For users unable to go on a hike, the real world
    • sounds from the forest embedded in the map communicate a
    • true ambiance providing a kind of access to the nature.
    • Sound in maps can serve all kinds of map users by
    • providing additional information.
    • Sonic maps including real world sounds and other aural means are potential for further research.
    • Next step: user testing with various user groups.
    • Thank you
    • [email_address]