Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Computer scientists help Indian villagers share stories across the digital divide

04.06.2007
Computer scientists at Swansea University are working on a collaborative project that is using new mobile phone technologies to help villagers in India record and share their stories and experiences.

And it is believed that the technology could be adapted to provide consumers in the UK with new ways of creating and editing videos, music and pictures to share with other users.

The StoryBank project is providing people in the Indian village of Budikote, 100km from Bangalore, with mobile devices that allow them to make videos, record sound and take photographs, and then edit the material into short films or “stories”.

Although Budikote does have access to PCs, the Internet and mobile phones, access is limited and technology is not as central to the life of the village as it is to communities in the UK.

Dr Matt Jones, who manages the project at Swansea University, said: “The people of Budikote have a strong tradition of visual and oral history, so we were interested in how we could develop digital technology to enable them to communicate their stories in new ways.”

The team placed a touch screen in a covered public area of the village. The StoryBank digital library presents a collage of pictures representing the stories that villagers have created. Touching the screen and using a radio tuner-style knob allows users to cycle through the stories and to choose which they want to see and listen to.

Stories created by the villagers can be “gifted” to the StoryBank by using wireless connections from their mobile devices and uploading videos and pictures to the system. In the same way, users can download stories from the StoryBank to their mobiles.

“The mobile phone digital story authoring application we have developed is giving members of this isolated Indian community a new, lasting record of individual stories, shared experiences and history. The digital library will have a wide reach and should be a useful resource for the whole community,” said Dr Jones, who is based in the Future Interaction Technology Laboratory at Swansea University’s Department of Computer Science.

The project is the result of an Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) initiative to bring together scientists, sociologists and other academics with an interest in finding new ways of narrowing the global digital divide.

Digital technologies are impacting on society as never before, but many communities and around the world – in the UK and Europe as well as in India and Africa – are not benefiting fully from the opportunities that the technologies offer. The EPSRC initiative aims to enable everyone to make full use of digital technology and services.

The project partners include Surrey University, Loughborough University, Queen Mary University London and Nottingham Trent University, as well as a researcher employed on a full time basis in India.

Dr Jones added: “This technology is potentially very interesting to organisations such as YouTube, the online video sharing community, and Nokia as it provides consumers with everything they need to capture and edit videos, pictures and music on their mobile devices.

“The videos can be sent to other devices, computers and websites, giving consumers immense flexibility with how they make their stories available to other people.

“We have been lucky in that we have a strong storytelling and technology base in Wales, notably through BBC Wales, which we believe is a leading player in the digital story movement in Europe.

“We hope that we will be able to make good use of the technology developed by this project to enable communities in Wales and further afield to capture and share their stories more effectively.”

The 18-month, EPSRC-funded project, worth over £400,000, ends in February 2008. For further details about the project, please visit http://www.cs.swansea.ac.uk/storybank/

Bethan Evans | alfa
Further information:
http://www.swansea.ac.uk

More articles from Information Technology:

nachricht Terahertz spectroscopy goes nano
20.10.2017 | Brown University

nachricht New software speeds origami structure designs
12.10.2017 | Georgia Institute of Technology

All articles from Information Technology >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Neutron star merger directly observed for the first time

University of Maryland researchers contribute to historic detection of gravitational waves and light created by event

On August 17, 2017, at 12:41:04 UTC, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars--the dense, collapsed cores that remain...

Im Focus: Breaking: the first light from two neutron stars merging

Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.

Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....

Im Focus: Smart sensors for efficient processes

Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).

When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...

Im Focus: Cold molecules on collision course

Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.

How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...

Im Focus: Shrinking the proton again!

Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.

It was one of the breakthroughs of the year 2010: Laser spectroscopy of muonic hydrogen resulted in a value for the proton charge radius that was significantly...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ASEAN Member States discuss the future role of renewable energy

17.10.2017 | Event News

World Health Summit 2017: International experts set the course for the future of Global Health

10.10.2017 | Event News

Climate Engineering Conference 2017 Opens in Berlin

10.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Terahertz spectroscopy goes nano

20.10.2017 | Information Technology

Strange but true: Turning a material upside down can sometimes make it softer

20.10.2017 | Materials Sciences

NRL clarifies valley polarization for electronic and optoelectronic technologies

20.10.2017 | Interdisciplinary Research

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>