March 2004, Issue 66

Published by Sonaris Consulting, Felix Bopp, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
[formerly Music for New Media Newsletter]

You can find the online version at:


Scientific findings: The Robotics Institute
Recommended book: Interactive Television Production
For disabled
: Demor,
Interactive TV : Western European Interactive TV Forecast and Analysis, 2003-2007, Interactive Showcase: Enhanced TV, GoldPocket
Club of Amsterdam
Join Multimedia 2004

Conferences & events
Subscription & feedback

: Scientific findings

The Robotics Institute
Even when robotics technologies were relatively primitive, their potential role in boosting the productivity and competitiveness of the United States was foreseen in the evolving global marketplace. The Robotics Institute at Carnegie Mellon University was established in 1979 to conduct basic and applied research in robotics technologies relevant to industrial and societal tasks. Seeking to combine the practical and the theoretical, the Robotics Institute has diversified its efforts and approaches to robotics science while retaining its original goal of realizing the potential of the robotics field.

Some projects:

A Computational Model for Repeated Pattern Perception using Crystallographic Groups
We are developing a computational model for repeated pattern perception that is able to automatically classify a given pattern into one of the 7 frieze groups, one of the 17 wallpaper groups, or one of the 230 space groups.

Automated Turf Management
This project deals with automated management and mowing of large areas of turf, such as golf courses, sports fields, and parks

Autonomous Helicopter
Develop a vision-guided robot helicopter

Anatomically Correct Testbed (ACT) Hand
We are building a dynamic model of the human hand that is anatomically correct.

Activelets: Web-Based Planning and Scheduling Services
We are developing planning, scheduling and user interface components that enable real-time collaborative planning and scheduling by mobile decision agents.

: Recommended book

Interactive Television Production
by Mark Gawlinski
Interactive Television Production is essential reading for all broadcasting and new media professionals - whether in production, marketing, technology, business or management. It will also be of interest to media students and anyone looking to get an insight into the future of television production. It provides a practical, step-by-step guide to the processes and issues involved in taking an interactive television idea through to being an operational service - based on the knowledge and experience of leading interactive television producers.
This book can be used as a quick-and-easy reference guide, with each chapter containing a 'Chapter in 30 seconds' summary for easy reference, or read from cover to cover. Using accessible language, the author provides detailed descriptions of iTV software technologies (OpenTV, MHEG-5, TV Navigator), delivery technologies (cable, satellite and terrestrial) and production tools. There are also entire chapters devoted to key issues like the commercial side of iTV and the latest work on usability and design.


: For disabled

Demor is a location based 3D audio shooter. This highly innovative game was developed by a multi-disciplinary team of seven EMMA-students for the Bartimeus Institute for the Blind. Demor does not only focus on the entertainment aspect of computer gaming, but also attempts to contribute to the emancipation of the blind and visually impaired people in order to enhance their integration with the ‘sighted’ world. It is a proof of concept developed on the basis of theoretical and practical research.
"An audiogame is a game that consists (only) of sound. Its gamemechanics are usually based on the possibilites of sound as well. Usually (but not always) audiogames have only auditive (so no visual!) output. Audiogames are NOT specifically games for the blind! It is true that most audiogames around at the moment are developed by and for the blind community. But we think audiogames have the potentional to be a genre on its own due to the immense undiscovered possibilities of sound."


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: Interactive TV

Western European Interactive TV Forecast and Analysis, 2003-2007
Published by IDC
Jan. 6, 2004 - 15 Pages
In this study IDC forecasts the take-up and usage of interactive TV services by Western European households to 2007. The study provides an analysis of the applications households are using and assesses the outlook for each delivery system (digital cable, digital satellite, digital terrestrial, DSL) in the Western European region. Additional analysis is provided of key developments in digital and interactive TV technologies. "The role of interactive TV was severely questioned during 2002–2003, following the downturn in the overall digital TV sector. Pay TV network operators are focusing on cost reduction, resulting in a focus on low-end hardware that only supports simple interactive applications. In addition, the major launches of FTA services in the region indicate only a limited role for interactivity in this important emerging sector. Positive aspects have emerged from the downturn, with a consolidation in network ownership providing a strengthened outlook for the development of interactive services in selected markets. As the forecast period progresses, additional boosts will also result from renewed efforts by cable operators to switch over analog customers to digital services," said Jason Armitage, senior research analyst, EMEA Consumer Devices and Technologies.

Interactive Showcase: Enhanced TV
NDS has developed interactive applications for some of the industry's most successful TV operators and channels. To view the latest interactive deployments, select a genre then click the application link that matches your connection speed:

GoldPocket is a leading provider of advanced media television technologies for the entertainment industry. Often referred to as interactive television, advanced media television is one of the fastest growing markets in North America. With the growth in digital video recorders, broadband content, and peer-to-peer sharing technologies, media industry players - producers, programmers, advertisers - are embracing advanced media as an opportunity. Increasingly, programmers are engaging viewers interactively in game shows, sports, sitcoms, movies, and reality shows.
GoldPocket develops and sells products and services that create, manage, and deliver interactive and digital media. GoldPocket's products set the standard for high performance technologies in the interactive set-top, PC/TV convergence, and wireless markets.

: Club of Amsterdam

: MusicBrainz

MusicBrainz is a user maintained community music metadatabase. Music metadata is information such as the name of an artist, the name of an album and list of tracks that appear on an album. MusicBrainz collects this information about music and makes it available to the public so that music players can retrieve information about the music that is playing. For instance, an audio CD does not contain the name of the artist, album or a listing of the tracks. A music player can use the physical characteristics of an audio CD to lookup the correct metadata for the CD and show it to the user during playback.

MusicBrainz users can browse and search this catalog to examine what music bands have published and how artists relate to each other to discover new music. The music metadata and its ability to uniquely identify music will also enable non-ambiguous communication about music, and will allow the Internet community to discover new music without any of the bias introduced by marketing departments of the recording industry.

: Join Multimedia 2004

Join Multimedia 2004
Europe’ s students compete to produce the best multimedia show Registrations from 36 countries for Siemens’ student competition Join Multimedia 2004

More than 4,300 teams from 36 European countries are participating in this year’ s multimedia competition Join Multimedia 2004. The bulk of the registrations have come from Germany, followed by Russia, the Czech Republic, Poland, Serbia-Montenegro and Romania. The teams have until June 1, 2004 to submit their shows; prizes totaling more than €130,000 await the winners. A special Team Europe prize will be awarded for the best presentation by a team composed of students from schools in different countries. A special e-learning package is also being offered to the teachers supporting the Join Multimedia teams.

Students aged 12 to 21, in teams of four to eight participants, are now getting to grips with the challenging task of creating an informative and entertaining presentation for the PC. This includes researching the contents, drawing up a tree view, creating visual and audio media and converting the material for the PC. Criteria such as creativity, graphic design and the integration of text, images, language, music, animation and video will be used to evaluate the presentations. The shows must be submitted by June 1, 2004.

: Conferences & events

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: Subscription & feedback

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