Natures secrets are just about to become a little less secret. Armed with a modern mobile phone, outdoor-lovers will soon be able to roam Europes national parks and find their favourite animals and plants with ease. Getting lost there could also be a thing of the past.
The technology behind these services - including mobile telephony and personal digital assistants (PDAs) - is not new. What is innovative is the way they are combined to offer personalised location-based services. In the IST project WebPark, a consortium of partners from five countries has spent almost three years developing and testing a system that will enhance peoples recreational experience in coastal, rural and mountainous areas.
"Users of our system see all available information tree about their surroundings displayed on their mobile phone or PDA," says Debbrah Phan, project coordinator, from the Dutch company Geodan. "Visitors can access text, pictures and video about the park, its tourism facilities, and local fauna and flora, with their boots in the mud." Additional features enable users to trace their location on a digital map or to see how far they have walked.
Tara Morris | IST Results
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