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MW2011: N. Di Blas +, A “Smart” Authoring and Delivery Tool for Multichannel Communication


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The recent proliferation of technologies and devices (including iPhone, iPad and alike) provides new perspectives for the use of multimedia applications for cultural heritage. Users are no more just sitting in front of their PC at home, but they also access multimedia information walking in the galleries or in archaeological parks, sitting in a cafeteria, driving a car, travelling on a train, etc.

In addition, and most important, all the different devices and technologies are important, and institutions can’t anymore decide which are preferable for their users, who are free to choose according to their (permanent or temporary) needs.

In relation to the above, this paper wants to raise two basic issues concerning: (1) effective authoring environments and (2) adaptation of content to different devices, technologies and situations of usage.

The current generation of authoring environment is quite unsatisfactory. Many authoring tools are officially aimed at specific technologies for specific situations (for example, an iPhone in a gallery). Other tools are apparently aimed at multiple devices/technologies and multiple situations of usage, but they are actually biased towards a limited set of choices, especially as far as situations of usage are concerned (e.g. try to listen to a mobile guide for a gallery, while sitting at home) and their structure (information architecture) cannot be easily bended to fit new needs.

a presentation from Museums and the Web 2011 (MW2011)

Published in: Technology, Education
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MW2011: N. Di Blas +, A “Smart” Authoring and Delivery Tool for Multichannel Communication

  1. 1. A “smart” authoring and delivery tool for multi-channel communication<br />Presenting: Nicoletta Di Blas and Paolo Paolini<br />P. Campione – Museo delle culture (Lugano, Switzerland)<br />N. Di Blas – Politecnico di Milano (Italy)<br />M. Franciolli – Museo d’Arte (Lugano, Switzerland)<br />M. Negrini – Università della Svizzera Italiana (Switzerland)<br />P. Paolini - Politecnico di Milano (Italy)<br />
  2. 2. Multi-channel or better: multi-version<br />“Same” application fitting:<br />Different purposes <br />(During a visit, Before, After)<br />Different “formats” <br />(catalogue, thematic tour, audio tour, relax and browse, ...)<br />Different technologies <br />(PC, Tablet, Mobile, Multi-touch, …)<br />Different “contexts”<br />Different user profiles<br />
  3. 3. Multi-version IS desirable - 1<br />Permanent collection -> guided tour (virtual – real)<br />Podcast-> audio-guide<br />Audio-guide -> post visit support<br />Exhibition -> part of a library (e.g. Artbabble)<br />->: could become…<br />
  4. 4. Example: National Gallery of Washington – a work of art from PC<br />From the permanentcollection…<br />
  5. 5. …to a virtual tour (the content is re-done from scratch)…<br />
  6. 6. The same MM fragment can be deliveredthroughdifferent CHANNELS<br />How is the CONTEXT preserved?<br />
  7. 7. Multi-version IS desirable - 2<br />A LOT of valuable content could survive in many forms<br />… where have all your exhibitions gone?<br />
  8. 8. Multi-version: implications<br />Multi-versionimplies:<br />Content re-use<br />Content adaptation<br />Multi-versionauthoring<br />
  9. 9. 1. Content re-use<br />Expanding the “offer” with low resources<br />The “same” content can be reused:<br />Across technologies<br />Across “formats”<br />Across “contexts”<br />…<br />
  10. 10. 2. Content adaptation<br />Tuning the content for the different usages<br /><ul><li>Content tuning is almost inevitably needed
  11. 11. It can be light or massive (expensive)
  12. 12. Adaptation must be taken into consideration from content creation</li></li></ul><li>3. Multi-versionauthoring<br />One authoring effort and several versions!<br /><ul><li>Not feasible 100%
  13. 13. It can be approximated
  14. 14. Quality of individual versions must be matched against the benefits of multi-versions</li></li></ul><li>Towards a possible SOLUTION<br />
  15. 15. Main ingredients<br />Content modelling<br />specifying semantics and roles of building blocks<br />Adaptation<br />defining guidelines “case””solution”<br />Authoring environment <br />Evolution of 1001stories, in order to make it fully multi-version<br />
  16. 16. Content modelling<br />Understanding the “role” of eachfragment<br />α-Alfa: a general cultural observation<br />e.g. “geometry is deeply rooted in Japanese artistic culture”<br />β-Beta: a general “factual” information<br />e.g. “albumen prints are obtained with eggs albumen and are easy to be painted over”<br />γ-Gamma: an interpretation of a factual information<br />e.g. “mountains’ profiles resemble triangles”<br />δ-Delta: a specific factual information about an exhibit<br />e.g. “there are mountains on a sequence of planes at different depths”<br />Additional practical information (π):<br />Identification (what are we talking about)<br />Context (why we are here)<br />“where to go”<br />…<br />
  17. 17. Content modelling -example<br />WEB <br />Thematic narrative:<br />α, ß<br />Catalogue:<br />γ, δ<br />Thematic n. and catalogue: interlinked<br />AUDIO-GUIDE<br />Linear sequence:<br />α, π, γ, δ, π, γ, δ, π, … <br />
  18. 18. Content adaptation<br />Developing guidelines<br />Carefully looking at artifacts (audio guides, interactive guides, web sites,..) created by others<br />Solving our own problems, case by case, and then generalizing the solution<br />
  19. 19. Authoringenvironment<br />1001stories<br />Fully redesigned inside<br />Easy authoring for each version<br />Supporting “transformations” to generate different versions<br />Supporting content adaptation<br />
  20. 20. A recent example<br /><br />4 different exhibitions (all related to Japanese culture)<br />Ancient erotic prints, Albumen photography, Gutai (a movement of the 50s), Araki (contemporary photography)<br />Fall-winter 2010, in Lugano<br />
  21. 21.
  22. 22. Conclusions<br />Needs are clear<br />We are moving towards some directions<br />We would like to compare our approach with others dealing with the same problem<br />
  23. 23. CONTACT:<br />We are looking for sharing and cooperation<br />