Research Paper: "Ubiquitous Data Capture" & "Wellness Applications"

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Author - Thomas

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Actually I tried to find something about sports tracking to adept this system to a cultural heritage theme but I think the two articles I finally read may help us a little bit to see in which direction we could move with our project. Even though they are not really related to sports tracking or cultural heritage we probably could adept some of the ideas and practices for our project.

Ubiquitous Data Capture for Cultural Heritage Research

by Siddhartha Ghosh and Nick Ryan // University of Kent

The two authors mention that their project (1997-2000) started as Mobile Computing in a Fieldwork Environment. They wanted to investigate how mobile devices and context aware software might benefit the field activities of a variety of disciplines. When finishing this project they developed a simple infrastructure, called MobiComp, which is intended to support the development of context aware and ubiquitous applications. One of these applications is FieldMap, a handheld GIS (Geo-Information-System) and recording system written in Java. Data collection in any science can always be a little tricky and therefore mobile and ubiquitous technologies have much to offer in these areas. Particularly if they can help to improve the speed, efficiency and accuracy and to reduce errors in data capture. This are the two key functions of FieldMap:

  • "One of the key functions of FieldMap is to provide a single handheld source of all information relevant to the surveyor’s needs. The device and its associated GPS receiver can be carried in a pocket until needed. During preliminary survey, the user’s current location can be superimposed on vector or raster map layers, thereby aiding the relocation of previously known sites, and information about these sites can be displayed by tapping on their map symbols."
  • "The second key requirement is context-aware data collection. The aim here is to minimise the amount of information that must be entered manually by annotating collected notes with contextual information. As a minimum, this includes user identity, date, time and location. FieldMap allows existing notes to be edited and new ones to be created. These may be associated with a single point location, or attached to simple geometric shapes such as lines, circles and polygons. The shapes may be drawn manually on the displayed map, or collected automatically using the GPS data while the user walks over the area of interest."

Example for FieldMap application

User Interface - FieldMap application

Homepage of MobiComp - FieldMap

Wellness Applications – UI Design to Support Long-Term Usage Motivation

by Aino Ahtinen // Tampere University of Technology

Actually this article is about the user interaction, usability and motivational issues related to mobile Wellness Applications. Despite the health-content of the presented considerations and applications they can easily be applied into the context of cultural heritage.

Due to the high penetration rate of mobile phones today, they have the potential to provide accessible and easy-to-use applications that help people manage their health and be physically more active. The autor agrues that Wellness Technologies and Wellness Applications should be designed so that they motivate users to keep going with their targets. That's also a crucial point for a Cultural Heritage Tracker. She says that previous studies reveal several aspects, which can be exploited when designing applications in order to increase the motivation towards physical activity. Those include, for example, social sharing features, music, gaming experience and real-time feedback. The author further mentions a Wellness Diary Application, including a related Web Portal, which can also be adepted in cultural heritage context to make a diary of past tracking activities. For all this features a user-friendly and simple user interface should be provided. The user interface of a mobile Wellness Application could help, support and motivate users in both the initial and long-term use.

Studies have also been carried out with the Sports Tracker mobile application, to find out the motivating factors and barriers to track physical outdoor activities with a GPS-enabled mobile phone application. The results indicate that mobile phones would be a suitable platform for the Wellness Applications and that offering automatically collected data about the exercises (route, time, distance, speed etc.) motivates users to utilise the application.

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