The location-based mobile application solution developed by the team at the Centre for Media Research, is known as History Space: Downhill Demesne, and is available for free, from both the Apple and Android app stores.
This History Space smartphone application transposes the traditional formatted archival modes associated with displays of information in museum and visitor centre spaces with dynamic and exciting content that exploits the technologies provided by mobile smartphones.
History Space app uses a range of technology features including augmented reality, gamification methods, and gesture recognition applications. The technological features of the mobile application give the visitor onsite location specific information; entertainment applications; reconstructions of site specific geology, geography, history and myth; augmentation of objects to the real scene; multimedia information; accuracy position tracking; and personalised tours of the sites. The visitor is thus able to tailor the content to their own needs and interests, discover and explore the site at their own pace and communicate and interact with other visitors.
The aim of the new creative work is to leverage the existing technology (i.e. GPS/ Augmented Reality Navigation system) created for the architecture that supports the History Space smartphone application, and further develop the system’s architecture to enable commercial validations to be undertaken and benefits of the technologies to key markets proven.
The History Space location-based technology solution and its implementation of augmented reality applications has had a significant impact on both tourism stakeholders and creative media industries seeking to apply technology-led solutions to interpretation methods.
The team at the university in creating the History Space application as a means of digital interpretation, deliberately used emerging methods and cutting-edge technologies rather than proven models, and has thus expanded the body of knowledge relating to the experience of the visitor through location-based augmented reality interactive strategies.
In leveraging the potential of the existing architecture to support a viable commercial solution in smartphone applications, the new creative work is anticipated to provide an innovative exploitation of GPS data and AR methods, and have a significant impact in stimulating wider exploitation of GPS data.
The project will therefore explore new applications in these niche market sectors and potential business models in the application domain.
The History Space application developed using the native application frameworks for both iPhone and Android platforms, leverages in-device GPS for location-based mapping integration with the camera functions to provide an augmented reality and location-relevant interpretive experience.The success and impact of the History Space mobile application is therefore in its delivery of an offline-compliant, responsive, and robust augmented reality and location-based technology solution.
In its current form, the existing architecture for History Space is specific to the Mussenden site, and accessible only through a locational experience of this site. Therefore it is difficult to reveal the novelty and innovation in the application to these wider audiences.
The application of the use of GPS data in the project has a clear potential in the field of space data as related to earth. Satellite navigation provides continuous, real-time, reliable, accurate and globally available position, velocity and time. Approaches to geomedia through content design and delivery through GPS methods reveals the potential of integrating earth-relevant space-based data into products and/or services that in turn have the potential to create societal changes.
In leveraging the potential of the existing architecture to support a viable commercial solution in smartphone applications, the new project is anticipated to provide an innovative exploitation of space data and have a significant impact in stimulating wider exploitation of space data.
School of Media, Film & Journalism
University of Ulster