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The role of adaptive hypermedia in a context-aware tourist GUIDE


47 The GUIDE project [4, 6] has been developed to provide city visitors with up-to-date and context-aware hypermedia information while they explore the city of Lan-caster in England. Visitors view this information via a handheld GUIDE unit based on the Fujitsu TeamPad 7600 tablet PC, which measures 213x153x15mm, weighs 850g, and is powered by a Pentium 166MHz processor. In GUIDE, the adaptive hypermedia presented to visitors is tailored to both environmental context (the major attractions in the city) and the visitor's personal context. Examples of the personal context used to drive the adaptation process include the visitor's current location , the visitor's profile (that is, the visitor's interests), and the set of attractions already visited. This latter piece of context enables pages of information to reflect those attractions the visitor has already seen. For example, if visitors make a return visit to Lancaster Castle, they are welcomed back. Oberlander [8] uses the term " coherence " to describe the tailoring of information in this way. A field trial-based evaluation of the GUIDE system [4] found the response of visitors to such anthropomorphic behavior [9] to be reasonably positive, with some visitors expressing that they felt " reassured " Adaptive Hypermedia Context-Aware Tourist GUIDE the role of in a W W here to go and what to do, in the limited amount of time available , are common problems encountered by tourists when visiting a city for the first time. In effect, cities are large information spaces, and in order to navigate these spaces visitors often require numerous guidebooks and maps. However, because guidebooks are general-purpose references, they tend to contain a significant amount of information of little relevance to the interests of a particular individual. When considering the design of a hypermedia system for supporting the information needs of city visitors, the use of " adaptive hypermedia " appears the obvious choice for tailoring the information to the interests of the visitor. However, to meet the requirements of this particular application domain, the traditional approach of using a user model as the sole means for driving adaptation is not sufficient. Indeed, GUIDE represents an example of a visible application stream in adaptive hypermedia research, one in which applications are context-aware [3, 10] and able to use context, such as the user's current location, to adapt the presentation of hyperme-dia. Examples of other applications in this stream include [5] and [7].

DOI: 10.1145/506218.506244

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