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Using gamification to discover cultural heritage locations from geo-tagged photos


Many enchanting cultural heritage locations are hidden from tourists, especially when considering countries full of historic attractions. Tourists tend to consider only mainstream monuments and towns, neglecting wonderful little jewels along their travel itinerary. However, this is generally not their fault, as travelers cannot be aware of all the surrounding beauties when visiting a new region. To this aim, we discuss and analyze here PhotoTrip, an interactive tool able to autonomously recommend charming, even if not mainstream, cultural heritage locations along travel itineraries. PhotoTrip is able to identify these points of interest by gathering pictures and related information from Flickr and Wikipedia and then provide the user with suggestions and recommendations. An important technical challenge for this kind of services is the ability to provide only the most relevant pictures among the many available for any considered itinerary. To this aim, we have exploited social networks, crowdsourcing and gamification to involve users in the process of improving the response quality of our system.

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  1. The radial search requires only the start point and searches within a maximum radius.

  2. The system is equipped with some predefined categories, e.g., architecture (containing the keywords palace, building, villa, castle, etc), nature (containing nature, tree, mountain, etc), recent photos (simply selecting the newest photos), etc.

  3. These values for \(\delta\) have been stated after an analysis of images of the Flickr community.

  4. In the past we relied on WikiLocation, a service no longer available; see [18] for details.

  5. We discuss in Sect. 5 how to determine this number.



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The authors would like to thank Michele Torresin and Dario De Giovanni for their technical help during the development of the system and those who took part to the user tests. This work has been partially funded by the Universit degli Studi di Padova, through the Projects PRAT CPDA137314 and PRAT CPDA151221.

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Correspondence to Ombretta Gaggi.

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Bujari, A., Ciman, M., Gaggi, O. et al. Using gamification to discover cultural heritage locations from geo-tagged photos. Pers Ubiquit Comput 21, 235–252 (2017).

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  • Cultural heritage
  • Gamification
  • Geolocalization
  • Knowledge discovery