LinkedTV has been active this week in Berlin in the context of the Internationale Funk Ausstellung (IFA) – Europe’s answer to CES – and the parallel International Conference on Consumer Electronics (ICCE).
European households who purchase a new SmartTV will most likely have HbbTV capability, the European standard for hybrid broadcast-broadband content delivery. HbbTV has established itself today as a replacement for the old Teletext/Videotext that was once delivered within analog TV. It also provides access to online Mediatheken, the broadcasters TV archives. However, LinkedTV considers this only the beginning of what HbbTV is capable of offering viewers. HbbTV lets TV viewers access additional applications via the red button, however programme-specific applications are still limited. Combined with LinkedTV technology, a HbbTV capable SmartTV or Set Top Box could offer LinkedTV enrichments during supported TV programmes, accessed via the red button and then either displayed as overlays on the TV screen or pushed to a companion device such as the viewers tablet or laptop.
A proof of concept of LinkedTV over HbbTV has been shown this week at the IFA, courtesy of our partner Rundfunk Berlin Brandenburg (RBB)
Meanwhile, our scientific coordinator Dr Lyndon Nixon of MODUL University presented the Linked Television vision, implementation and HbbTV prototype at the ICCE conference.
Finally, LinkedTV reiterated its commitment to the HbbTV 2.0 specification which is not yet launched in Consumer Electronics devices. Several key functionalities such as the ability to discover and connect to another screen or synchronize Internet content to broadcast TV are currently missing in HbbTV for LinkedTV to become a living room reality. Our prototype demonstrates the feasibility of the approach and we look forward to the next generation HbbTV devices that can support it!
A position paper on HbbTV 2.0 and LinkedTV considers this in more detail:
LinkedTV is pleased to be giving public demos of the Linked Television experience this month at both IFA Berlin and IBC Amsterdam!
During IFA, visit our partner Rundfunk Berlin Brandenburg (RBB) which is part of the German public broadcasters area in Hall 2.2. From the 5 to 10 September in the “Digitales Wohnzimmer” (digital living room) LinkedTV provides the demo of Interactive News – discover background information to the news you watch direct and interactive on your smart TV using LinkedTV innovation built on top of HbbTV technology!
Shortly after, the leading broadcasters exhibition IBC (12-16 September) will feature a dedicated LinkedTV living room set up in the FutureZone, Hall 8 Stand F42. Relax on the sofa with a tablet and discover watching TV while getting background and complementary information on your local screen providing you with a deeper understanding of both news and cultural heritage programmes, even across linguistic barriers!
LinkedTV can invite you with a free entry code for the IBC exhibition, just contact us with your name and company!
See you in September!
In the LinkedTV project, researchers are connecting TV content with the internet, so audiences can benefit from an more informative and personalised viewing experience.
Visitors to IBC’s Future Zone can see for themselves in a living room simulation. While watching a TV programme they can explore more information and content about concepts and topics via a companion app. The technology that makes this programme enhancement possible is targeted at broadcasters and OTT content providers.
“We will show this for two genres where further information exploration is a typical interest of viewers: a newscast by Rundfunk Berlin-Brandenburg and a documentary series of the Dutch TV station AVRO,” explained scientific co-ordinator Lyndon Nixon. “We think that viewer interest is sometimes lost or frustrated because it is not possible to easily find everything we see on TV: how do I Google for the painting I just saw on the wall behind the presenter when I don’t know the name of the artwork nor the artist?”
The institute is working with eleven partners from seven countries on LinkedTV. Software scans the contents of a show prior to its broadcast via speech analysis and image processing for topic-related content from the web.
“We want to seamlessly combine TV and the internet so that viewers can directly access background information about the current programme during the show, without having to spend a lot of time and effort themselves in searching for it,” said project manager Heike Horstmann.
Since the software provides a great number of unfiltered hits and semantic links, the researchers have developed methods to narrow down the results according to certain criteria.
“For example, content will be displayed only if it complies with laws for the protection of minors and for which the copyright is no problem,” Horstmann added. The editorial team adds the final touches, checking suggested content for relevance and eliminating any duplication from the hit list.
Parallel to the broadcast, the viewer then finds information sorted according to topic for each chapter of a TV programme. If desired, they can specify filter criteria that determine which content is displayed – defining topics of particular interest or hiding results for specific content. The software is also capable of learning and adjusts the offer of information to the user’s behaviour.
“If the viewer repeatedly accesses the weather report or information on a particular topic, for instance, this content will be displayed in a prioritised fashion,” said Horstmann. The viewer can view both broadcast and additional content directly on the screen of a connected TV or on another device with web access, such as a tablet or laptop.
The best approach would be to use two screens that are synchronised with each other in parallel. Generally, the show then runs on the television, while further content is displayed on the second screen.
A book titled “Semantic Multimedia Analysis and Processing” was published by CRC Press in June 2014, containing a LinkedTV chapter on “When TV Meets the Web: Towards Personalised Digital Media”.
The book, edited by E. Spyrou, D. Iakovidis and Ph. Mylonas, provides a complete reference of techniques, algorithms, and solutions for the design and the implementation of contemporary multimedia systems. The “When TV Meets the Web: Towards Personalised Digital Media” chapter of it focuses on personalized content delivery in the networked media domain.
The chapter presents a comprehensive overview of research in the field of capturing and representing user preferences and context, and an overview of relevant digital media-specific personalized recommendation techniques. Subsequently, it describes the vision and first personalization approach adopted within the LinkedTV project, for profiling and contextualizing users, and providing targeted information and content in a linked media environment.
This book chapter is the joint work of LinkedTV partners CERTH, Univ. Mons, UEP and MODUL Univ. Vienna.
LinkedTV partner CERTH (Thessaloniki, Greece) just publicly released version 1.2 of its software for the automatic temporal segmentation of videos. This extends the previous versions by integrating algorithms for video scene segmentation and keyframe selection (up to 5 most representative keyframes of each scene are identified), on top of the segmentation to shots that is also performed by the released software. The new algorithmic additions do not affect the processing speed, which remains at least 2-3 times faster than real-time processing (depending on the processing capability of the graphics card) for the entire video analysis chain (i.e., shot segmentation, scene segmentation and keyframe selection).
The development and release of this software was supported by EU research projects LinkedTV and MediaMixer (http://www.mediamixer.eu/). Read more about research on hypervideo analysis in LinkedTV as well as check out several video analysis demonstrators.
The software is available for download at http://mklab.iti.gr/project/video-shot-segm
Related technical papers:
- E. Apostolidis, V. Mezaris, “Fast Shot Segmentation Combining Global and Local Visual Descriptors”, Proc. IEEE Int. Conf. on Acoustics, Speech and Signal Processing (ICASSP), Florence, Italy, May 2014. (available at http://www.iti.gr/~bmezaris/publications/icassp14_preprint.pdf)
- P. Sidiropoulos, V. Mezaris, I. Kompatsiaris, H. Meinedo, M. Bugalho, I. Trancoso, “Temporal video segmentation to scenes using high-level audiovisual features”, IEEE Transactions on Circuits and Systems for Video Technology, vol. 21, no. 8, pp. 1163-1177, August 2011. (available athttp://www.iti.gr/~bmezaris/publications/csvt11_preprint.pdf)
LinkedTV is pleased to announce an opportunity in October to learn about the semantic technologies for multimedia annotation and re-use which are being used in the project to implement Linked Television.
During the International Semantic Web Conference 2014 (ISWC2014) this October 2014, LinkedTV will deliver a half day tutorial entitled “Remixing media on the (semantic) Web”. This tutorial will look at tools and services to semantically annotate online media and use those annotations for online retrieval and re-use based on a number of emerging web specifications and technologies. We will focus on means to annotate spatial and temporal fragments of media assets with Linked Data concepts, how to use those annotations to discover types of relevancy between distinct media assets and development of applications using discovered links between annotated media to provide enhanced user services.
We welcome all Linked Data and Semantic Web researchers and practitioners who are interested in how semantic approaches may be applied to non-textual media on the Web.
ISWC registration is open – find out more about the tutorial schedule and speakers at http://www.linkedtv.eu/event/tutorial/
Project coordinator Fraunhofer IAIS has published an article about LinkedTV in their latest newsletter edition – “Research News” (July 2014) which came out on July 1st. Immediately afterwards some German and also international press has reported about the project. The article reports on how researchers are seamlessly connecting TV offerings with the Internet and how audiences will benefit from an informative and personalized viewing experience through the LinkedTV project.
You can find the article in German and English here: