Research Project
1999 to 2005
Keio University and NTT Docomo


This research project explores potential applications of location-based information services over wireless networks. The near-term objective has been to design and prototype an “environmental media” system for linking virtual environments to the physical world, and that enables a mobile user to browse a spatially correspondent multimedia information database about a specific location as it changes over time.

A specific goal of this project is to develop comprehensive 3D representations of specific locations derived from both mobile and static real-time wireless sensing devices, and methods for capture, organization, and visualization of real-time, site-specific environmental information for users who are both remote and local to the site. Recent developments enable a user to:

  • Post location-specific information in an open system architecture using a variety of technology platforms.
  • Access interpretive annotations posted by domain experts.
  • Authoring Tools for Mobile Media

Currently, the approach to developing content for such applications has been limited to the use of standard graphics authoring tools to generate a range of media types that are in turn embedded into a software process that has been custom developed for each application scenario. In order to make a more flexible and intuitive authoring environment, the objective of this research effort is to develop an infrastructure system that can accommodate content published to it from a browser-based desktop authoring system as well as from location-specific data collection and authoring systems. In each scenario, the intent is to develop an open system approach so that anyone can author contents for a specific location.

Concept & Scenario Development

To date, location-specific applications developed for mobile platforms have been focused primarily on commercial informational services. But as networking and platform technologies rapidly improve and are coupled with the development of more advanced authoring and annotation systems, the need to create compelling educational and entertainment experiences will become the primary driving factor for adaptation and further development of this technology. The objective of this research area is to identify and prototype potential new applications of mobile media for location-specific activities.