VICODI fact sheet

Project Objectives

The mission of VICODI is to enhance people's understanding of the digital content on the Internet. This is reached by introducing novel visualisation and contextualisation environment for digital content. The project will provide a novel set of contextualisation mechanisms which will be demonstrated as follows:
context sensitivity will be defined over topics, locations, and time,
· a context sensitive search engine operating on multilingual input and a language neutral ontology supported by multilingual lexicons will be developed,
· a context sensitive knowledge structuring engine will be developed,
· a graphical contextualisation interface based on Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) will be developed,
· showcases in the application area of European History will demonstrate the viability of such novel information structuring and visualisation devices.

The VICODI Contextualisation Environment addresses the management of search and retrieval as well as the management of information presentation, by:
1) creating a cumulative and open knowledge space that can be enhanced by its users;
2) providing an innovative user interface that employs SVG for the presentation of information that has been contextualised with respect to location, time, and subject.
Wurman describes contextualisation as a process that can be circumscribed by the forced acronym LATCH: (L)ocation - (A)lphabetical order - (T)ime - (C)ategory - (H)ierarchy .

In VICODI, we shall use ontological markup and knowledge authoring tools to cater for (C) and (H). We will use cartographic maps for location context (L), and we will use thesauri for historical information in order to explore temporal contextualisation (T), in the field of European History.

In VICODI, we shall:
1. Develop European History ontology to be used to validate the VICODI contextualisation system. 
2. Create Authoring Tools which will generate knowledge needed for the proposed visual contextualisation. These tools will involve:
a) knowledge harvesting tools for RDFS(plus extensions) databases
b) contextualisation authoring tool to add context to any part of an image (e.g. a country within a map, a person within a work of art relative to location and time),
c) multilingual lexicon translation tool to support a language-neutral ontology
3. Develop Contextualisation software to carry out visual contextualisation. The software will involve contextualisation engine and transformation engine, as well as provide multilingual support of contextualisation. 
4. Create a scalable Management system of Knowledge space (MSKS) that will host the above-mentioned features/mechanisms and provide means for successful visual contextualisation of knowledge.
5. Validate the proposed visual contextualisation using the field of European history. Test bed repositories of the 3 VICODI content providers will all together link up to 2000 documents to VICODI database. This will include:
a) selecting, gathering and integration of pertinent history data into the MSKS
b) connecting XML repositories of history content to MSKS
c) field-test and case study of the visual contextualisation system at users end.
6. Carry out dissemination and exploitation of VICODI results.

VICODI participants are developing using Java, and are hence platform independent. However, front-end components can be tied to a particular platform, but they will be portable/replaceable. Components will be distributed across different platforms using the web services technologies to communicate. 

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VICODI: Visual Contextualisation of Digital Content - 5FP, Information Society Technologies, RTD project 2002-2004