The rigidity of touch-screen based, menu-driven user interfaces for public systems prevents users from transacting tasks as fluently as when communicating with another person. The objective of the MASK project is to pave the way for more advanced public service applications by employing multimodal and multimedia input-output. The project will produce a demonstrator implemented in a real public service context (rail traveller services). The research and development of the demonstrator will provide developers of other public service systems with guidelines for better integrating multimodal-multimedia interface technology to meet the needs of users in their tasks.
The project will analyse technological requirements in the context of users and the tasks they perform, and will conduct simulation-based empirical studies to support these analyses. The project should make technological advances in three main areas: in the development of robust flexible user-computer dialogues, in the real-time interpretation of concurrent user data entries via multiple input modalities in realistic public service contexts, and in real-time integration of multimedia feedback to guide users in realistic public service transactions.
The design of the enhanced kiosk will be implemented and evaluated in the context of representative tasks and users, and improvements in effectiveness is expected over current systems. In addition, the results of research will be documented and disseminated in the public domain to enhance the state of development of public service systems in Europe.
The results of the work will be exploited within the project by the developer of the current service kiosks, who recognises a substantial market for such kiosks in Europe and beyond. It is expected that the advances made in the context of the demonstrator will be exploited by other system developers in other applications, thus increasing the general competitiveness of Europe in the world-wide market for public service systems.
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