Elpub buttonEP Topic News: 10th October 2002

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Contents
 
Multimedia home platform standards
PROACTe News September 2002
XML features from XML.com
Create content for Palms
Dazzle MovieStar 5
Latest XML tools from Altova
Web development s/w upgrade
Xerox DocuShare 3.0
Agari Media Star 2.2
Internet Writers' Guide updated
Dynamic HTML reference
California to ban mobile spam
Musical signal processing CFP
Mobile data services software
Google and online news
World of VoiceXML web site
Spam filtering techniques
XHTML 2.0 discussed
Web Intelligence Newsletter
ICCM 2003 call for papers
Reputation in artificial societies
Computer game researchers assoc.
XML software from IBM
Jakob Nielsen on e-zines
Mobile Internet Studio
ACM Multimedia 2002

IEP Concertation Meeting

The second concertation meeting of the Interactive Electronic Publishing (IEP) sector will be held in Luxembourg on October 23-24, 2002. The closed concertation meeting for members of IEP projects will take place on the afternoon of October 23. The meeting, open to all members of current IEP projects, will feature presentations from new IEP projects, present administrative issues concerning projects and start discussions concerning the 6th Framework programme (FP6) and the DG INFSO reorganisation.

In parallel to this closed concertation meeting, an information day on FP6 matters will also be running on October 23-24, 2002 in Luxembourg (see item below), to which IEP project members are also welcome to attend.

A full agenda for the concertation meeting has been circulated to project coordinators and is also available from Pascal Jacques, Head of Sector Interactive Electronic Publishing. IEP Projects wishing to make a presentation at the closed concertation meeting should contact Pascal via the contact points below.

Contact: Pascal Jacques, European Commission DG INFSO/D1, Head of Sector Interactive Electronic Publishing, EUFO1195, 10, rue Robert Stumper, L-2557 Luxembourg
Tel : +352 4301 38034
Fax : +352 4301 38069
E-mail: pascal.jacques@cec.eu.int

IST within FP6 Information Day

The European Commission's Information Society Directorate General has announced an "Information Day on the early stages of implementation of the IST programme within FP6" in Luxembourg, 23-24 October 2002.

Discussions regarding the IST successor programme 2002-2006 are approaching completion. The first call for proposals is expected to be launched towards the end of the year. Following the successful FP6 workshop held on 15-16 May 2002, an Information Day is planned for 23-24 October next. The purpose of the Information Day is to provide participants with first-hand information on the likely scope and content of the calls for proposals that will be launched in the first year of operation of the new programme.

The Information Day will consist of two sessions, addressing RTD topics relating to Interface Technologies and Cognitive Systems on day 1, and Knowledge Technologies and Cross-media Digital Content on day 2.

Please note that the above sessions will be open to all interested parties on a 'first-come first-served' basis. This preliminary announcement is being sent to registered participants in the mid-May workshop, to organisations that submitted an expression of interest in response to the call launched in March last, and to coordinators of ongoing IST projects in the above areas.

Please book the above dates in your diary pending the final agenda and invitation, which will be circulated / published on a suitable web site in the second week of September. Early declaration of your intention to participate in this event can be sent to Joseph Kirsch (via the email below) specifying name, affiliation, email address and the Day / RTD topics you are most interested in. The preliminary agenda is as follows:

Interface Technologies and Cognitive Systems - 23 October, 2002

• Welcome and introduction
• IST within FP6, overview and state of play
• New instruments, administrative provisions governing cost-shared projects, call roadmap
• Q&A

Interface Technologies
- Intended scope and focus in 2003
- Partnerships and intended use of new instruments
- Hints and tips for prospective proposers
- Q&A

Cognitive Systems
- Intended scope and focus in 2003
- Partnerships and intended use of new instruments
- Hints and tips for prospective proposers
- Q&A

• Informal discussions

Knowledge Technologies and Cross-media Digital Content - 24 October, 2002

• Welcome and introduction
• IST within FP6, overview and state of play
• New instruments, administrative provisions governing cost-shared projects, call roadmap
• Q&A

Cross-media Digital Content
- Intended scope and focus in 2003
- Partnerships and intended use of new instruments
- Hints and tips for prospective proposers
- Q&A

Knowledge Technologies
- Intended scope and focus in 2003
- Partnerships and intended use of new instruments
- Hints and tips for prospective proposers
- Q&A

• Informal discussions

Email: Joseph Kirsch mailto:Joseph.Kirsch@cec.eu.int

Multimedia home platform standards

The Multimedia Home Platform (MHP) is described as an "open interactive broadcasting standard for the market for digital television and convergence services world-wide, which aims to facilitate convergence between broadcasting, telecommunication and computing technologies". It is hoped that MHP will act as a bridge between broadcast and Internet, offering a common application programming interface (API) which is open to anyone to develop, build on and apply. Its protagonists believe that ultimately the benefits fall to the consumer who, using a single MHP set-top-box or integrated digital TV, will be able to receive a wide range of multimedia and interactive applications (eg. electronic programming guides, information services based on "super teletext", applications synchronised to TV content, e-commerce and secure transactions).

The MHP standard was released in February 2000 and has been sanctioned by the DVB (Digital Video Broadcasting) Group. It is being supported by more than 300 member organisations from 51 countries world-wide. Members include research institutes, regulatory bodies and commercial organisations working in the areas of broadcasting, telecommunications, IT and consumer equipment manufacturing.

The European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) has started shipping the Test Suite for MHP implementers. once implementers have completed the test in the MHP Test Suite and informed ETSI, they may apply to the DVB Project Office to use the MHP logo on set top boxes and other consumer equipment using the specification. Such testing should ensure interoperability between consumer appliances bearing the MHP logo.

URL: MHP http://www.mhp.org/
URL: ETSI MHP test suite http://etsi.org/getastandard/home.htm

URL: DVB http://www.dvb.org/
URL: ETSI http://www.etsi.org/

PROACTe News September 2002

The September 2002 electronic newsletter from the PROACTe News Service has been published. Available online and as a free e-zine, the service aims to news clips of relevance to the Education and Training Technologies community.

URL: http://www.proacte.com/latestnews/news.asp

XML features from XML.com

For those readers of El.pub who wish to follow developments in XML technologies, XML.com is a resource not to be missed. The site runs weekly feature articles and also a news service on technical and product developments.

• There is articles which considers how to cope with the euro character in XML documents, covering the ramifications for XML and HTML, and the special cases for Windows character set encodings;

URL: http://www.xml.com/pub/a/2002/09/18/euroxml.html

• a new monthly column on using Python and XML together which this month provides a high-level view of the various XML processing tools available for Python.

URL: http://www.xml.com/pub/a/2002/09/18/py.html

The "Cover Pages" is a part of the site written by XML expert Robin Cover which provides news and links to the latest developments concerning XML and is particularly useful for keeping abreast of standardisation issues.

URL: XML.com http://www.xml.com/

Create content for Palms

HandStory, a developer of mobile software and services for the Palm OS platform, has released HandStory Suite 2.2 to support wireless updating of mobile web content. The suite includes:

• HandStory Browser which has an integrated Memo Pad, Doc Reader, Image Viewer, eBook Reader, and Web Clip Browser into one application with enhanced features.
• HandStory Converter for Windows which can be used to convert texts and images from PC or the Internet (including .txt, .bmp, .gif, .jpg and HTML files) for use on Palm devices.
• HandStory Clip Editor which can be to create a new Clip or customise downloaded HandStory Clips to best meet your needs.

The software is available for download.

URL: http://www.handstory.com/

Dazzle MovieStar 5

Dazzle MovieStar 5 from SCM Microsystems, the latest addition to its digital video software line, aims to combine an easy-to-use user interface with powerful editing features to provide home users with what they need to create their own professional looking movies.

"Most video editing software is designed with the professional in mind and so is very complex; but MovieStar 5 is targeted at average PC users who wants their video projects to look professional but be quick and easy to do," said Dirk Peters, Director of Marketing for SCM Microsystems. Available for Windows 98 SE, 2000, ME and XP operating systems, MovieStar 5 is priced at US$ 49.99.

URL: Dazzle Products http://www.dazzle.com/
URL: SCM Microsystems http://www.scmmicro.com/

Latest XML tools from Altova

Altova have announced that the latest releases of its XML software product line are available for free trial download. The revised product line consists of:

• XMLSPY 5 XML editor, builds on the previous version by adding XSLT debugging, WSDL editing, Java/C++ code generation, HTML Importing, Tamino Integration.
• Authentic 5 is an XML-based, browser enabled document editor.
• Stylevision 5 is a conversion utility for aiding in the migration of "traditional HTML web sites to true XML-based sites, consisting of XSLT stylesheets, XML Schema/DTD and XML content".

The features of these software modules are described in more detail on the Altova web site.

URL: Altova http://www.altova.com
URL: evaluation copy download http://www.altova.com/download

Web development s/w upgrade

Ektron, developers of "web content authoring, publishing and management technologies for non-technical end users", has released Ektron CMS100 version 2.0. In addition to supporting Microsoft ASP and Macromedia ColdFusion, the new release supports Microsoft ASP.NET and PHP platforms.

According to the company, "Ektron’s browser-based content management solution provides core content authoring and publishing capabilities". Retailing for US$ 499, the software offers a familiar word processor-like editing toolbar and an interface for content publishing designed for use by by non-technical users. Apparently, "web professionals can easily configure and customise the solution to maintain control over navigation, look and feel, and other site infrastructure".

URL: Ektron http://www.ektron.com/

Xerox DocuShare 3.0

Xerox Corporation has introduced DocuShare 3.0, its web-based document and content management software which is aimed at both small businesses and larger enterprises. Built in Java the the latest version of the software runs under Windows, Linux and Solaris and will be available from October 2002.

URL: http://www.xerox.com/docushare

Agari Media Star 2.2

Agari Media Star 2.2 is described by its developers as a suite which enables the integration of publishing applications, without the requirement to make changes to existing applications or content. Agari claim that the suite can be used to build an automated publishing business process chain enabling seamless content creation, transformation, management and distribution. Find out more from the company's web site.

URL: http://www.agari.com

Internet Writers' Guide updated

Internet writer, Jane Dorner, periodically publishes a useful list of links to sites of potential interest to those who write or publish on the Internet. Among the latest links are:

• Creative Web Writing
URL: http://www.editor.net/author/creative_web.html
• Ideas for Writers - free and subscription-based ideas and information
URL: http://www.ideas4writers.co.uk/
• Commercial Speech Recognition site
URL: http://www.speechxp.com/commercial/speech.htm

URL: http://www.internetwriter.co.uk
URL: Jane Dorner's site http://www.editor.net/

Dynamic HTML reference

O'Reilly have published the second edition of "Dynamic HTML: The Definitive Reference" which has been updated to cover the latest specifications, including HTML 4.01, XHTML, CSS Level 2, DOM Level 2, and JavaScript 1.5, as well as the latest browsers: Internet Explorer 6 (Windows), Internet Explorer 5.1 (Macintosh), Netscape Navigator 6 and 7, and Mozilla 1.0. Chapter 2, "Cross-Platform Compromises," is available free online.

URL: http://www.oreilly.com/catalog/dhtmlref2/
URL: Chapter 2 http://www.oreilly.com/catalog/dhtmlref2/chapter/index.html

California to ban mobile spam

According to a news item on instantmessagingplanet.com, a new state law in California intends to stop the spread of unsolicited messages (spam) to the mobiles before it gets to be a problem. (Source: ThinkMobile)

URL: http://www.thinkmobile.com/Content/Detail.asp?CTID=1&ID=5681

Musical signal processing CFP

EURASIP Journal on Applied Signal Processing is publishing a "Special Issue on Model-Based Sound Synthesis". Model-based sound synthesis has become one of the most active research areas in musical signal processing. The earliest attempts in generating musical sound with a physical model were made three decades ago. The first products were seen only some 20 years later. Recently, many refinements to previous signal processing algorithms and several new ones have been introduced.

The aim of this special issue is to present recent research in model-based sound synthesis. Prospective papers should be unpublished and present novel, fundamental research offering innovative contributions either from a methodological or an application perspective.

Topics of interest include (but are not limited to):

• efficient signal processing algorithms,
• control issues,
• modeling of string, wind, and percussion instruments,
• modeling of the singing voice,
• multidimensional musical systems,
• parameter estimation,
• perceptual issues,
• synthesis languages,
• real-time implementation.

Authors should follow the EURASIP JASP manuscript format described at the journal site. Manuscripts are due June 30, 2003 with a final publication date expected in 4th Quarter, 2004.

URL: http://asp.hindawi.com/

Mobile data services software

PocketThis has released its AMO (Active Mobile Object) Centre mobile data services software as widely available commercial software. The software has been used to provide mobile data services in the travel and classified sectors and quotes "over 150 content providers", which include Auto Trader (car trader magazine), Lastminute.com, Buzz (low cost airline) in the UK.

PocketThis is described as "an interactive Post-it note allowing subscribers to choose what information they want to save on their mobile phones such as from Internet-based travel sites, entertainment guides, print advertisements, classified listings or from desktop applications". The PocketThis AMO (Active Mobile Object) Centre software lets subscribers take the content they access daily (a restaurant name from an on-line guide, an email about a meeting location from a colleague, information from a movie poster or multimedia images), send it to their phones and act on it with a set of relevant one-touch actions. These actions include services, such as: "call to make reservations", "send the information to a friend", or "find the nearest theatre".

URL: http://www.pocketthis.com

Google and online news

A new "Stop The Presses!" column by Steve Outing has been posted on the Editor & Publisher Online web site: "Google News Could Change Online News Industry". As the preample states:

"Search engine Google's new entry to the news business is a significant one. Its fully automated news search functions create what looks like a human-powered news site, with story placement decisions made by a cast of thousands of news site editors. Here's why newspapers and online news operations should care, and how to take advantage of this 'gift from Google' if your site requires user registration".

URL: http://www.editorandpublisher.com/editorandpublisher/features_columns/article_display.jsp?vnu_content_id=1712373
URL: http://tinyurl.com/1n3z

World of VoiceXML web site

Ken Rehor's web site is a very large personal directory of information about VoiceXML. Definitely worth a visit if you've never been there.

URL: http://www.rehor.com/voicexml/

Spam filtering techniques

The amount of unsolicited e-mail has been increasing for years, but the solutions have finally started keeping pace with the problem.

In IBM developerworks, programmer and theoretician David Mertz discusses and compares several broad approaches to the automatic elimination of unwanted e-mail while introducing and testing some popular tools that follow these approaches.

URL: http://www-106.ibm.com/developerworks/library/l-spamf.html?n-l-9262

Webreference Update Newsletter (September 26, 2002) continues its series on spam solutions with a more in-depth look at what software is available, and some tips that you can use to reduce the deluge.

URL: http://webreference.com/new/020926.html

XHTML 2.0 discussed

XML.com reports that "it seems a while since we had a decent controversy in the XML world, but the recent publication of XHTML 2.0 may well be providing us one". According to a recent editorial, the XHTML working group declined to use XLink, the W3C linking specification, for linking purposes, and instead created their own, HLink. By way of explanation of this move XML.com has run:

• a column on the site, which provides an introduction to the HLink specification;

URL: http://www.xml.com/pub/a/2002/09/25/hlink.html

• a dialogue that investigates the rationale for HLink versus XLink;

URL: http://www.xml.com/pub/a/2002/09/25/linkoffering.html

Web Intelligence Newsletter

Issue 1 of the Web Intelligence Newsletter, dated September 2002, is available. It is the official electronic publication of the Web Intelligence Consortium (WIC) and includes news of interest to consortium members, conference announcements and journal call for papers. Subscribe free via the link below.

URL: http://wi-consortium.org/letter.html

ICCM 2003 call for papers

There is a call for papers open for ICCM 2003 - 5th International Conference on Cognitive Modeling scheduled for Bamberg, Germany, on April 10 - 12, 2003. The goal of ICCM-2003 is to bring researchers from diverse backgrounds (Information Science, Neurophysiology, Psychology, Psycholinguistics, Robotics) together, to:

• discuss theoretical models,
• learn more about the developments of different modeling approaches,
• compare different approaches,
• discuss evaluations of theoretical models using empirical data.

The conference should attract researchers from the whole scope of modeling approaches, including symbolic modeling, production system, connectionist and neuronal modeling, Bayesian models, Petri-nets, dynamic Systems, and various hybrid approaches. It should also have work presented from a wide variety of domains, ranging from low-level perception and attention to higher-level mental processes as thinking reasoning and learning and the integration of cognition, emotion and motivation in complex action regulation.

URL: http://iccm2003.ppp.uni-bamberg.de/

Reputation in artificial societies

Reputation in Artificial Societies - "Social Beliefs for Social Order" (ISBN 1-4020-7186-8) is the sixth volume in Kluwer Academic Publishers' book series: "Multiagent Systems, Artificial Societies, and Simulated Organisations". It discusses the role of reputation in the achievement of social order, and proposes that reputation is an agent property that results from transmission of beliefs about how the agents are evaluated with regard to a socially desirable conduct.

URL: http://www.wkap.nl/prod/b/1-4020-7186-8

Computer game researchers association

Following the "Playing with the Future" Conference in Manchester (April 2002) and "Computer Games and Digital Cultures" in Tampere (June 2002) an initiative has emerged to form an international association of computer game researchers. For readers of El.pub that are interested, you can join either digra-announce list to get occasional updates on the association’s progress, or the gamesnetwork list (the general agenda discussion list) to actively take part in the definition of the research field and its key issues.

Send message with either "subscribe digra-announce" or "subscribe gamesnetwork" to the listserv address below or visit the Association's web site.

Email: subscribe mailto:listserv@uta.fi
URL: http://www.digra.org/

XML software from IBM

XML Integrator (XI) is a tool for bi-directional data conversion between XML and structured data formats such as relational or LDAP data. This tool externalises the specification of the mapping between XML and relational databases, and it replaces the programming effort by the simpler effort of writing a script that describes the relationships between the XML constructs and the corresponding RDBMS constructs. XI can be used as a stand-alone utility, or it can be integrated as a library in other applications. To learn more and download a free trial version, visit the link below.

URL: http://www.alphaWorks.ibm.com/tech/XI?open&l=TS092302,t=awfl

Improvements to IBM's XML Parser for Java Version 4.0.5 include flexible, modular architecture added to the former stability and standards compliance. Version 4.0.5 is nearly a complete rewriting of Version 3.2.1.

URL: http://www.alphaWorks.ibm.com/tech/xml4j?open&l=LT092302,t=awfl

Jakob Nielsen on e-zines

Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox for September 30 is now online and considers the subject of electronic newsletters or e-zines. According to the essay summary:

"Users have highly emotional reactions to newsletters which feel much more personal than web sites. In usability testing, success rates were high for subscribe and unsubscribe tasks, but users were frustrated by newsletters that demanded too much of their time".

Read the full article online.

URL: http://www.useit.com/alertbox/20020930.html

Mobile Internet Studio

ALT Mobile has released a revamped line of its WAP developer tools which apparently incorporate XSL and XHTML. The Mobile Internet Studio should be of interest to content providers (publishers) wishing to build XSL-based web sites and applications.

URL: http://www.altMobile.com

ACM Multimedia 2002

ACM Multimedia 2002 Conference is scheduled to take place on the French Riviera (Juan les Pins, France) on December 1-6, 2002. Sponsored by ACM SIGMM, SIGGRAPH, and SIGCOMM, the conference, now in its 10th year, brings together leading researchers and practitioners in all areas of multimedia applications, computing, and networking.

The technical programme includes a broad range of the best research in multimedia technology, primarily in the areas of: multimedia processing and coding; multimedia systems support and networking; and multimedia tools, end-systems and applications. The programme includes 46 full papers, 41 short papers being presented as posters, 21 technical demonstrations, and 11 video demonstrations.

Three workshops have been organised to take place on Friday, December 6, following the end of the conference on:

• Workshop on Immersive Telepresence
URL: http://www.research.ibm.com/ITP2002

• Workshop on Multimedia and Security: Authentication, Secrecy, and Steganalysis
URL: http://www.ipsi.fhg.de/~dittmann/acm02

• Workshop on Multimedia Information Retrieval
URL: http://www.cs.rpi.edu/mir2002

Online registration is currently open on the conference web site.

URL: http://www1.acm.org/sigs/sigmm/mm2002/
URL: European mirror site http://mm02.eurecom.fr
URL: registration http://www.acm.org/sigmm/mm2002/registration.html


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