Personal and Ubiquitous Computing

, Volume 11, Issue 6, pp 429–437 | Cite as

Exploiting real world knowledge in ubiquitous applications

Original Article


Electronic tourist guide systems typically recommend locations and sometimes provide navigation information. However, previously such systems were rather naive about what constituted information close to and thus relevant for the user. In this paper we show how to exploit knowledge about features in the real world to compute whether an information resource concerns something that the user can probably see. At run-time, we can take a set of foci, that is 2D polygons to which data is attached, and then filter away those foci that are invisible because they are occluded by nearby buildings. This is performed with the awareness of the inconsistencies and lack of accuracy in both mapping technology and GPS positioning in urban spaces. We have also developed tools to upload geotagged photos and mark foci polygons on a map. Using visibility-filtered information, less cluttered maps can be provided, and the user experience enhanced through removal of irrelevant information.



This work was supported by the UK projects, EQUATOR Interdisciplinary Research Collaboration (EPSRC Grant GR/N15986/01) and Advanced Grid Interfaces for Environmental e-science in the Lab and in the Field (EPSRC Grant GR/R81985/01). The vector data used was supplied by the UK Ordnance Survey.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Limited 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Computer ScienceUniversity College LondonLondonUK

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