topical media & game development
The notion of multimedia information system
sufficiently generic to allow for a variety of realizations.
Let's have a look at the issues involved.
- multimedia storage and retrieval -- homegrown, third-party and legacy sources
- information architecture -- common format, native format, hybrid
- media abstraction -- unified indexes, query relaxation
As concerns the database (that is the storage and rerieval
facilities), we may have to deal with homegrown solution,
commercial third party databases or (even) legacy sources.
To make things worse, we will usually want to deploy
a combination of these.
With respect to the information architecture, we may wish for
a common format (which unifies the various media types),
but in practice we will often have to work with the native formats
or be satisfied with a hybrid information architecture that
uses both media abstractions and native media types such
as images and video.
The notion of media abstraction, introduced in [MMDBMS],
allows for uniform indexes over the multimedia information stored,
and (as we will discuss in the next section) for query
relaxation by employing hierarchical and equivalence relations.
Summarizing, for content organisation (which basically is
the information architecture) we have the following options:
- autonomy -- index per media type
- uniformity -- unified index
- hybrid -- media indexes + unified index
In [MMDBMS], a clear preference is stated for a uniform approach,
as expressed in the Principle of Uniformity:
Principle of Uniformity
... from a semantical point of view the content of a multimedia source is independent of the source itself, so we may
use statements as meta data to provide a description
of media objects.
- from a semantical point of view the content of a multimedia source is independent of the source itself.
- use statements as meta data
- -- metadata associated with media object o
Naturally, there are some tradeoffs.
In summary, [MMDBMS] claims that:
metadata can be stored using standard relational and OO structures,
and that manipulating metadata is easy, and moreover that
feature extraction is straightforward.
- metadata can be stored using standard relational and OO structures
- manipulating metadata is easy
- feature extraction is (!) straightforward
Now consider, is feature extraction really so straightforward
as suggested here?
I would believe not.
Certainly, media types can be processed and analysis algorithms
can be executed.
But will this result in meaningful annotations?
Given the current state of the art, hardly so!
research directions -- the information retrieval cycle
When considering an information system,
we may proceed from a simple generic software
architecture, consisting of:
- a database of media object, supporting
- operations on media objects, and offering
- logical views on media objects
However, such a database-centered notion of
information system seems not to do justice
to the actual support and information system must
provide when considering the full information retrieval
information retrieval cycle
- specification of the user's information need
- translation into query operations
- search and retrieval of media objects
- ranking according to likelihood or relevance
- presentation of results and user feedback
- resulting in a possibly modified query
When we look at older day information retrieval applications
in libraries, we see more or less the automation of
card catalogs, with search functionality for keywords
Modern day versions of these systems, however,
offer graphical userinterfaces, electronic forms
and hypertext features.
When we look at the web and how it may support digital libraries,
we see some dramatic changes with respect to the card
catalogue type of applications.
We can now have access to a variety of sources of information,
at low cost, including geographically distributed resources,
due to improved networking.
And, everybody is free to make information available,
and what is worse, everybody seems to be doing so.
Hence, the web is a continuously growing repository
of information of a (very) heterogeneous kind.
Considering the web as an information retrieval system
we may observe, following [IR], that:
- despite high interactivity, access is difficult;
- quick response is and will remain important!
So, we need better (user-centered)
retrieval strategies to support the full information
Let me (again) mention someof the
relevant (research) topics:
user interfaces, information visualisation,
user-profiling and navigation.
You may not copy or print any of this material without explicit permission of the author or the publisher.
In case of other copyright issues, contact the author.