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Using learning games to raise cultural awareness

: Kretschmer, U.; Holz, T.; Krenzel, R.; Orozco Ochoa, M.S.; Holweg, D.

First Research Workshop on Augmented Virtual Reality, AVIR 2003. Proceedings : Workshop Notes
Genf, Schweiz, 2003
Research Workshop on Augmented Virtual Reality (AVIR) <1, 2003, Genf>
Fraunhofer IGD ()
cultural heritage; rendering; Mobile GIS; augmented reality

Mobile devices today are commonly used. In museums information about exhibits can often be accessed through location-sensitive portable audio devices. A more innovative alternative to these devices is a PDA (Personal Digital Assistant), not only because of its multi-medial capacities, but also due to the possibility to personalize the offered information. Given that a PDA is not limited to infrared techniques to locate a person (in contrast to most audio devices), a much more widespread application area becomes available. A GPS (Global Positioning System) card, for example, can easily be connected to the device, so limitation to or preparation of a specific area is no longer necessary. This allows the additional selection of Location Based Services (LBS), which, in a foreign city, can offer the user on-site information about nearby restaurants, bus stops, or the location of friends one is meeting. Additional service can be provided by a connection to a GIS (Geographic Information System).
For the field of cultural heritage these services offer the option of a guided tour as they can present information about ancient buildings related to the position of the user and other additional information. The use of AR techniques would take this concept one step further.
This paper describes the project GEIST, which integrates a learning game in a historical information system that supports AR techniques. The game takes part in the Old Town of Heidelberg in Germany. Whenever the user enters specially prepared sites he can use the display to see ghosts and historical reconstructions. A story guides the user through the town and transmits facts about life in the 17th century.