Media Arts Scenario

University of Mons drives this scenario together with the NUMedia Institute for New Media Art Technology.

Scenario Implementation and Demo

To acquire proposals for LinkedTV media art scenarios, University of Mons organised a special session for LinkedTV during the INTETAIN 2013 conference, a leading event on intelligent technologies for interactive entertainment. At that event it launched the MEDIADROM competition to the gathered artists as well as distributing the call afterwards to the media art community. The competition called for proposals how LinkedTV could be applied in “artful post-TV” scenarios, i.e. thinking outside of the classical ‘broadcast television’ box. Four proposals were retained after review for further development within the LinkedTV project.

Next, the media artists presented their concepts at a special session during MMM2014 (January 2014) and on that basis concepts suitable for implementation with LinkedTV technology were selected:

1. Social Documentary

This concept is based around the use of multimodal and tangible interfaces for manipulating and searching multimedia content, focusing on the recent protests in the Gezi Park in Istanbul. We plan to process with LinkedTV large amounts of user generated content around the protests such as photographs, videos and tweets. We will explore how media linking can enable a new type of exploration of content around a social movement, combined with the usage of innovative interface modalities.

The visitors are invited to interact with the installation by choosing keywords through the manipulation of three cubes. Each cube represents a class of keywords (people, action, emotion). As the videos are cut into segments and tagged with the same keywords, the system will automatically choose the most relevant video according to the position of the cubes. A Kinect-based system allows us to track the two closest visitors’ faces and infer on their interest for the played video. The more the visitors are interested, the higher is the probability to display this video to the next visitors, like in recommendation system on video broadcast platforms. In this way, the installation evolves with its public. Some segments will emerge from the others as the “most popular”.

The below video presents the public exhibit which completed a one week workshop that took place in August 2014, at BüyükAyi atelier, Istanbul. This workshop has boosted up the physical realisation of the project. In one week, the interaction table has been rebuilt from a former one coming from a previous BüyükAyi project, all the equipment has been included in it and the software parts have been upgraded. For example, a lot of filtering has been added to avoid false marker detection or loss of people tracking in the Interest Tracker software. The public presentation brought about twenty people to the BüyükAyi place, most of them were from artists’ circles but we also welcomed some tourists intrigued by the event. In general, the installation intrigued the visitors and they spent a few minutes playing with it. Some of them came to us with ideas to improve it; the most recurrent idea was to take a better advantage of the second screen. We will work on this direction by incorporating multimedia content coming from LinkedTV enrichment services.

The artists would like to present this installation in other places in Istanbul, like art galleries or museums and in conferences on human-machine interaction but no date has been set yet. Nevertheless, this installation should be easy to reproduce and all the sources are freely available on github (github.com/Zarfab/SocialDocumentary). We hope other people will build their own and present other type of multimedia content.

2. Snoezeling

This concept proposes a multisensory environment (and their content authoring) in hospitals that merges different art forms: comic strips, video art etc.

There is a wealth of display interfaces that seem relevant to the concept of multisensory stimulation and the exploration of non-linear storytelling components.

The original idea has been brought by l’Art-chétype, an association of artists who are working with people from the medical field. Their main goal is to help the patients, and especially the children, to stand their stay in hospital. Snoezeling is close to this purpose, it is an installation in a geodesic dome in which a group of 6 to 10 people is invited to create content for and experience an immersive environment. The tour is divided in two parts: the creation of the content by a cadavre-exquis -like method, and then the visualization. The visual is not intended to tell a story, but rather to propose slowly moving pictures which can be contemplated. The music and vibrating mattresses should enhance the relaxing experience.

The resulting content will always be built on the same structure: a 360° video background on which we put one or two masks (2nd plan and foreground) of geometrical and natural forms pre-created by the artists with alpha channel (transparency) and a background sound track on which we add some sounds related to the video background.

The dome will be installed for the Mons 2015 Capital of Culture events: 6 weeks in the garden of the Museum of Modern Art of Mons, and 6 weeks in the hospital park.

Multisensory stimulation

2. TubePlot

It is a smartphone application that connects to Facebook user’s profile to semi-automatically create personalized stories taking the form of short video episodes. It is then possible to share the videos with Facebook friends and request them to answer three multiple choices questions about the user. Their responses further shape and personalize the scenario of the next episode.

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