Elpub buttonEP Topic News: 1st May 2003

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Contents
 
MUVEE - science, museums and education
Games studies and social interaction
IBM MPEG-7 Annotation Tool
zetoc User Evaluation
Freedom of the media
PDF to SVG conversion
Simple site - positive experience
Cultural Heritage Technology reports
Euromap Newsletter April
New URLs at Internetwriter
RSS aggregation
Acrobat 6.0
ITU Interactive TV standard
Topologi Collaborative Markup Editor
100m Bluetooth transmission
Privacy of information on WHOIS
Next WLAN standard info
Post-synch breakthrough
XML.com resources
Online Journalism Review
The Economics of E-Commerce
AACE Digital Library
D-Lib Magazine April 2003
Right-sizing content management
Wireless technology futures
 
Events news and resources
 

MUVEE - science, museums and education

MUVEES are an engaging way to improve educational outcomes using museum-related multimedia and virtual environments for teaching and learning science. Groups of children interact in a virtual environment of the past, based on museum information, to solve collaboratively scientific problems. Professor Chris Dede of the Harvard Graduate School of Education gave an interview recently on the project he is running, and the site contains links describing MUVEES and experiments with them.

URL: http://www.gse.harvard.edu/news/features/dede03012003.html

Games studies and social interaction

Game Studies is a cross-disciplinary journal dedicated to games research, web-published several times a year. The latest edition has an interesting article by researchers from Loyola University Chicago, examining the changes in social relationships resulting from the expansion of new 3D gaming technology employed in one genre of games, the multiplayer, first-person "shooter" (FPS) games. The study finds that social interaction amongst players is much more complex than it seems at first sight. "Players learn rules of social comportment that reproduce codes of behavior and established standards of conduct, while also safely experimenting with the violation of these codes."

URL: http://www.gamestudies.org/

IBM MPEG-7 Annotation Tool

The IBM MPEG-7 Annotation Tool assists in annotating video sequences with MPEG-7 metadata. Each shot in the video sequence can be annotated with static scene descriptions, key object descriptions, event descriptions, and other lexicon sets. The annotated descriptions are associated with each video shot and are put out and stored as MPEG-7 descriptions in an XML file.

URL: http://www.alphaWorks.ibm.com/tech/videoannex?Open&ca=daw-flut-042403

zetoc User Evaluation

zetoc provides access to the British Library Electronic Table of Contents (ETOC) database, a vast research resource of nearly 20 million journal articles and conference papers. The database comprises the 20,000 journals that are most requested from the British Library by the global research community, as well as a unique collection of 160,000 conference proceedings. It includes an email alerting facility, allowing users to keep up-to-date with the latest developments in their field of research.

Last year the zetoc Support Office undertook an evaluation, designed to let them know what users thought about the service, how they use it and how they would like the service to be improved. The office received over 650 responses to this survey, providing them with a good understanding of users' opinions and preferences. They are now undertaking a short follow-up survey, to check whether the developments that have made have been successful and are requesting El.pub readers to complete a brief follow-up online questionnaire.

URL: zetoc home page http://zetoc.mimas.ac.uk
URL: questionnaire http://horizon.lboro.ac.uk/ma/zetoc.asp

Freedom of the media

The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) has published a booklet entitled: "From Quill to Cursor: Freedom of the Media in the Digital Era". It comprises of papers submitted for a one-day workshop on freedom of the media and the Internet held in Vienna in November, 2002. The papers explore topics such as universal access to Cyberspace, constitutional rights in the Internet age, the importance of the public domain, and censorship and intellectual property rights.

URL: http://www.osce.org/documents/rfm/2003/04/41_en.pdf

PDF to SVG conversion

FreeSVG, is a free web-based service from Texterity which provides conversion of PDF into Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) format. The converted files can be viewed using SVG viewers such as: Adobe SVG Viewer 3.0, Bitflash Mobile SVG Player 2.0 and Apache Batik.

URL: http://www.texterity.com

Simple site - positive experience

Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox for April 21, 2003 considers web site complexity versus user reaction and concludes that "fancy media on web sites typically fails user testing". The report suggests that "simple text and clear photos not only communicate better with users, they also enhance users' feeling of control and thus support the web's mission as an instant gratification environment".

URL: http://www.useit.com/alertbox/20030421.html

Cultural Heritage Technology reports

Technology Watch Report 1 ("New Technologies for the Cultural and Scientific Heritage Sector"), published online, identifies and describes technologies that are either not currently used in the heritage sector or are under-utilised by it. The Report provides "accessible descriptions of new technologies, suggests how these might be employed, and indicates the implications and risks". Technologies examined in Report 1 include:

• Customer Relationship Management
• Digital Asset Management Systems
• Smart Labels and Smart Tags
• Virtual Reality and Display Technologies
• Human Interfaces
• Games Technologies

The report is downloadable in PDF format in either a low or high resolution version.

The Technology Watch Reports are published by the DigiCULT project and during its initial thirty-month lifetime, the project plans to release three such Reports, each examining six core technologies.

The project also publishes Technology Watch Briefings, the latest of which, "The XML Family of Technologies", is online. Comments and suggestions to be implemented in the final draft are being invited from readers.

DigiCULT also publishes a periodic newsletter which includes articles about services, studies, technologies, and activities, linked to a web site providing downloads of project generated resources.

URL: Technology Watch Report Low-Res (2,56 MB) http://www.digicult.info/downloads/twr2003_01_low.pdf
URL: Technology Watch Report High-Res (4,74 MB) http://www.digicult.info/downloads/twr2003_01_high.pdf
URL: Technology Watch Briefing http://www.digicult.info/pages/twb.php
URL: DigiCULT http://www.digicult.info

Euromap Newsletter April

The Euromap Language Technologies monthly newsletter for April 2003 has been published online. The newsletter attempts to pull together all the latest developments in the field of Human Language Technologies from Europe providing news on upcoming events, EC Research calls and other useful information.

URL: Euromap newsletter http://www.hltcentral.org/newsletter
URL: Euromap home http://www.hltcentral.org/euromap

New URLs at Internetwriter

Jane Dorner, author of "The Internet: A Writer’s Guide" (2nd Edition, A & C Black), posts periodic links to useful resources for Internet writers on he web site internetwriter.co.uk. A selection of the latest additions include:

• Digital Literature Institute, formerly Mystic Ink - community areas for e-writers

URL: http://www.digitallit.org/

• Digital Storytelling Association, a new international group - membership by subscription

URL: http://www.dsaweb.org/

• Digital Storytelling Center - experimental e-literature

URL: http://www.storycenter.org/links.html

• Tekka - subscription-based magazine of new media writing

URL: http://www.tekka.net/

• Web Style Guide, formerly Yale Style Manual

URL: http://www.styleguide.com/

You can subscribe to the periodic email link update service.

URL: http://www.internetwriter.co.uk

RSS aggregation

News Desk is an RSS headline reader which can aggregate RSS news feeds from a wide range of sources enabling users to search for headlines with keyword searches. Full details, in the form of a number of tutorials, explain the key capabilities of the application which runs on Windows 95 and higher. (Source: The Scout Report)

URL: http://www.wildgrape.net/

Acrobat 6.0

Adobe is expecting to release Acrobat 6.0, the latest versions of its PDF-based creation and processing applications towards the end of May 2003. The release of software will include:

• Acrobat 6.0 Professional, a product aimed primarily at professionals wishing to recreate PDF versions of files for pre-publication proofing and widespread distribution;
• Acrobat 6.0 Standard aimed at providing workgroups across enterprises with an "inexpensive license" for using Adobe PDF creation tools;
• Adobe Reader 6.0 software, an upgrade and re-naming of the widely distributed, free Acrobat Reader.

Information about the availability of other language versions of Acrobat 6.0 Professional, as well as further details on pricing, upgrade and support policies, is available online via the link below.

URL: http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobatpro
URL: http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobat

ITU Interactive TV standard

The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) has approved a new standard that it is hoping will allow content providers to provide value-added interactive TV (iTV) services to any network without modification. Dr Richard Green, CEO, CableLabs, and chairman ITU-T Study Group 9 - the standard's parent body: "ITU is the only organization with the international scope necessary to bring these other standards makers - DVB (Digital Video Broadcasting), ARIB (Association of Radio Industries and Businesses), ATSC (Advanced Television Systems Committee), OCAP (Open Cable Applications Platform) together. It will greatly reduce the need for re-authoring of iTV content and enable economies of scale to be achieved by the manufacturing industry."

The standard (Recommendation ITU-T J.202) defines the interfaces that designers use to produce content (Application Programming Interfaces - API) and gives guidelines for their use. According to the ITU, the standard has the backing of the broadcast industry as well as key manufacturers of TV equipment and set-top boxes.

URL: http://www.itu.int/

Topologi Collaborative Markup Editor

Version 1.1.3 of the Topologi Collaborative Markup Editor has been released for Windows, Linux, and Mac. The editor is available for individual users for US$ 60. A 30-day free evaluation copy can be downloaded. A special free license is available for charities and training. Related Topologi products include: Preview-to-PDF for Advent 3B2, Preview-to-PDF for Adobe FrameMaker, and Web Relayer for peer access over HTTP.

URL: http://www.topologi.com

100m Bluetooth transmission

Mitsumi is planning to introduce a Class 1 Bluetooth Adaptor, the WML-C51APR, to the market in coming days. According to the company this can transmit up to 100 metres, in accordance with international norms for Bluetooth specifications, "so that connection problems are eliminated, even in large offices or when transmitting through walls". The latest product complements the pre-existing Class 2 Adaptor, which has been available for purchase for several months and can transmit up to 10 metres. The Class 2 Adaptor above all intended for users who wish, for example, to connect the keyboard, mouse, or printer without cables to their computer.

Both adaptors are connected to the computer and powered via the USB port and will run under all current, USB-capable versions of Windows, eg. Windows 98 SE, Millennium Edition, 2000 and XP. The WML-C51APR Class 1 Adaptor is available immediately, costing 59 Euros; and the WML-C52APR Class 2 Adaptor, is available for 49 Euros.

URL: Mitsumi http://www.mitsumi.de

Privacy of information on WHOIS

EPIC Alert, published by the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) in Washington, D.C., USA reports on concerns relating to the failure of ICANN to establish adequate WHOIS privacy standards. The WHOIS database was originally intended to allow network administrators to access domain name registrants' information in order to easily find and fix problems and maintain the stability of the Internet.

As EPIC reports, "currently, it also exposes that personally identifiable information to spammers, stalkers, criminal investigators, and copyright enforcers". Whilst the WHOIS Task Force of the Generic Names Supporting Organization posted its "Final Report on WHOIS Accuracy and Bulk Access" EPIC reports that these policies have been criticised as being deficient because they fail to establish adequate privacy safeguards. EPIC has prepared a privacy issues report on behalf of the non-commercial constituency recommending that a new task force be formed to evaluate WHOIS policies and practices in respect to widely adopted OECD guidelines to privacy of information.

URL: WHOIS Task Force's policies http://www.icann.org/gnso/whois-tf/report-19feb03.htm#I
URL: EPIC's WHOIS Privacy Issues Report http://www.epic.org/privacy/whois/privacy_issues_report.pdf
URL: more information on WHOIS (EPIC) http://www.epic.org/privacy/whois/
URL: EPIC Alert http://www.epic.org/alert/EPIC_Alert_10.07.html

Next WLAN standard info

IEEE 802.11b is the standard that is used for the wireless LANs that are filling homes and offices. The next level standard is 802.11g that is likely to become mainstream for WLANs. It offers compatibility with the current standard but improved performance. A white paper has been published online by Broadcom discussing the market, the standard and its current implementations.

URL: http://www.54g.org/downloads/802.11g-WP102-RDCS.pdf

Post-synch breakthrough

A Canadian start-up, Ryshco Media, has announced the availability of DubStudio, PC software to overcome the problems of post-synch and dubbing of films. The sound tracks of films are added after the original shoots and involve a complicated manual process of transcribing the original sound track for re-recording by the actors who see the original film plus a "film" of the transcription. The system is expected to revolutionise the processes involved which are estimated to require an hour of post-synch work for every minute of film under the old system.

URL: English http://www.quebecshootingguide.com/?article=8b38c005-8fe5-497d-95e5-ed2bf1ad8744
URL: French http://www.directioninformatique.com/index.asp?theaction=61&lid=1&sid=51430
URL: http://www.ryshcomedia.com

XML.com resources

XML.com has published:

• a case study on how to create online magazines using Apache Cocoon. The author shows how to draw together local and remote HTML, along with RSS feeds, to create a "no-coding-required" online magazine.

URL: http://www.xml.com/pub/a/2003/04/23/cocoon-magazine.html

• a review, "At Microsoft's Mercy", which considers the "XML community" reaction to the news that Microsoft Office's new XML features will be available only in "Professional" and higher versions of its suite.

URL: http://www.xml.com/pub/a/2003/04/23/deviant.html

Online Journalism Review

The Scout Report includes a resource item describing the Online Journalism Review which was launched in 1998 with the intention of "evaluating the emerging field of online journalism, providing readers commentary, monthly features, and Web resource databases." The Review reports on a wide range of topics relating to online journalism. (Source: The Scout Report)

URL: http://www.ojr.org/ojr/page_one/index.php

The Economics of E-Commerce

Princeton University Press have published: "The Economics of E-Commerce - A Strategic Guide to Understanding and Designing the Online Marketplace" (ISBN: 0-691-08906-X) by Nir Vulkan. From the abstract:

"Despite the recent misfortunes of many dotcoms, e-commerce will have major and lasting effects on economic activity. But the rise and fall in the valuations of the first wave of e-commerce companies show that vague promises of distant profits are insufficient. Only business models based on sound economic propositions will survive. This book provides professionals, investors, and MBA students the tools they need to evaluate the wide range of actual and potential e-commerce businesses at the microeconomic level. It demonstrates how these tools can be used to assess a variety of existing applications".

A sample chapter is available online via the link below.

URL: http://pup.princeton.edu/titles/7523.html

AACE Digital Library

The AACE Digital Library is an online resource of peer-reviewed and published international journal articles and proceedings papers on the latest research, developments, and applications related to all aspects of Educational Technology and E-Learning. Sponsored by the Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE) the Digital Library enables users to:

• Fully search and access abstracts (free service) for 1,000s of AACE journal articles and conference proceedings. Full-text article access requires a subscription to either the journal (for that journal's articles) or the Digital Library (for ALL journals & proceedings).

• Access 10 academic journals covering at least the past 6 years.

- International Journal on E-Learning
(Corporate, Government, Healthcare, & Higher Education) (IJEL)
- International Journal of Educational Telecommunications (IJET)
- Information Technology in Childhood Education Annual (ITCE)
- Journal of Computers in Mathematics and Science Teaching (JCMST)
- Journal of Educational Multimedia and Hypermedia (JEMH)
- Journal of Interactive Learning Research (JILR)
- Journal of Technology and Teacher Education (JTATE)
- WebNet Journal: Internet Technologies, Applications & Issues (WebNet)
- Contemporary Issues in Technology & Teacher Education (CITE)
- Educational Technology Review (ETR)

URL: http://www.aace.org/DL/ArchivedJournals

• Access international conference proceedings covering at least the past 5 years.

URL: http://www.aace.org/DL/ArchivedProceedings

Users also may use the Digital Library to: conduct scholarly research, keep current on the latest research and publications in their fields, access and fully search publications in an easy, searchable, and efficient manner, maintain your academic interests in the area of information technology in education, receive Table of Contents Alerts prior to journal publication.

Subscribing: Current AACE members may add the Digital Library to their subscription/membership. Non-members may join AACE and select one print journal (included with membership) and subscribe to the Digital Library.

URL: http://www.aace.org/DL/Subscribe
URL: AACE Digital Library http://www.aace.org/DL

D-Lib Magazine April 2003

The April 2003 issue of D-Lib Magazine is available and includes the following articles:

• "Trends in the Evolution of the Public Web: 1998 - 2002";
• "The Fedora Project: An Open-source Digital Object Repository Management System";
• "State of the Dublin Core Metadata Initiative, April 2003";
• "Preservation Metadata: Pragmatic First Steps at the National Library of New Zealand".

There is also a review of the book: "Encoded Archival Description on the Internet".

URL: http://www.dlib.org

Right-sizing content management

Ektron, a developer of web content management software has published a white paper entitled: "Right-sizing content management" , on Bitpipe and its 80 syndication partners such as InformationWeek, PC Magazine and eWEEK. The paper discusses web content management (WCM), outlines criteria for implementing productive WCM systems and assesses ROI and "build vs. buy" analysis.

URL: white paper http://www.bitpipe.com/data/detail?id=1050424090_109&type=RES&x=141169775
URL: Ektron http://www.ektron.com
URL: Bitpipe http://www.bitpipe.com

Wireless technology futures

Wired online (Wired.com) considers the next significant developments in wireless technology. The five key developments discussed are: ultrawideband, mesh networks, software-defined radio, wireless personal area networks, and adaptive radio.

URL: http://www.wired.com/wired/archive/11.05/unwired/futurewifi.html


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