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DigiCULT 41
T
HEME
2: C
ONTEXTUAL
C
ULTURAL
I
NFORMATION
I
n the information given on the consultation plat-
form, `contextual' was associated with `anywhere,
anytime' seamless use of heritage information
in dynamic contexts. This includes applications that
allow for meaningful, context-aware interaction with
information resources, involving context manage-
ment in terms of location as well as tasks and social
and physical situations. In a local Ambient Intelligence
environment, applications would involve (for exam-
ple) mobile technologies, location-based systems, and
embedded networks of sensors in heritage buildings,
sites or areas.
E
XPERTS
'
VIEWS
C
ontext' is an extremely broad and widely used
term. For example, Arts & Humanities schol-
ars may discuss `the historical context', i.e. the cir-
cumstances that surround the creation and use of a
cultural artefact, a historic event or situation. In infor-
mation search & retrieval & visualisation, the schol-
ars may want to find `contextualised' study material,
e.g. historically related documents or images that
may be spread over archives and libraries throughout
Europe and beyond.
75
Viewed from the perspective of
the provider of such an information system, the `user
context' to serve will be mainly academic histori-
cal research. A full-blown ambient intelligence (AmI)
environment for a historic city centre would need to
understand a multitude of user contexts as the needs
and wants of the visitor may change, for example,
from `historical information about this old building' to
`where can I find a souvenir shop'.
Fabrizio Cardinali, Fabrizio Giorgini and David
Fuschi (Giunti Labs, Italy) summarised their expec-
tations of what over the next 10-15 years might be
75
Such a novel visualisa-
tion and contextualisation
environment applied to
European history sources
has been developed in
the VICODI project,
http://www.vicodi.org; for
their prototype solution, see
http://www.eurohistory.net
DCTHI7_271104.indd 41
06.12.2004 8:37:53 Uhr