WHY is it importaint
An improvement in the quality of current multimedia conferencing facilities
is urgently needed to fill the gap between existing quality, and required quality.
Newly available methods
of human-machine and improved
human-human communication, such as voice recognition technology, and 3D
spatial audio, have the potential
to increase the effectiveness of distance learning.
Multimedia mobile access networks are currently being designed in industry,
but integration with existing low-
cost multimedia networks, such as the Mbone, must be investigated in the
near-term if the impacts are to be
taken into consideration by industry.
The facilities are being developed for a range of
heterogenous multi-tasking operating systems (especially PCs), with no extra
hardware. This premise means that the systems can be used by the masses, and
revenue generation is far greater.
This research is extremely timely, given industries drive towards multimedia
multimedia mobile access.
The research plans to improve the quality of
multimedia conferencing facilities,
while investigating the resulting network and terminal impacts. Newly
emerging developments in user interface communication methods will be
integrated into existing multimedia conferencing facilities. Multi-way
mobile access over the Internet will also be implemented.
This research is
very user-focused, which is pertinent
at the present time, because it directly addresses the multimedia networking
and terminal issues relating to the
provision of a real service, and therefore can influence the workstation and
networking development decisions
currently being made. The existence of a user group is extremely important
for this research, because low-cost
solutions rely on the exploitation of human perception characteristics.
The results of this project will not only provide HE institutions with
low-cost distance learning, and remote
language teaching solutions, but provide improvements for use in many other
applications. The potential
applications identified so far as part of projects MICE and MERCI (piloting
multimedia conferencing facilities)
include medics (demonstrations of novel surgery techniques to a world-wide
audience of other surgeons, and
students), the research community (conferences are regularly broadcast over
the Mbone), and industry (training,
teleworking and Computer Supported Collaborative Working).