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FairsNet - On-line Solutions for Trade Fairs

Exploitable results

Running the trade fair event itself is only one part of the tasks of a trade fair organizer. This most visible activity is preceded by a variety of fair preparation activities like exhibitor acquisition and stand booking and followed by a business evaluation and marketing analysis phase. A Web-based IT system supporting all these trade fair business activities requires the flexible and effective integration of a variety of functionalities like content management, cooperation mechanisms, retrieval support, data. The EU-funded Take Up Action project FairsNet aims at refining, customizing, and validating a Web-based IT solution for the trade fair business domain. FairsNet builds upon the rich experience gained from the R&D project FAIRWIS previously conducted by the same project consortium and on the Web-based IT solution, the FAIRWIS system, which has been developed in the predecessor project. In system design and development FairsNet follows a two-fold objective: - With respect to system functionality the FairsNet project flexibly supports trade fair organizers in managing their entire business cycle of planning, organizing, and running exhibitions and related on-line events; - With respect to system quality the project transfers leading edge technology into a real product application. analysis, etc. The results from the FAIRWIS system evaluation and an extensive trade fair business process analysis drive the system re-design and refinement process. The resulting FairsNet system exhibits three important characteristics: - IPSI's flexible system authoring tool suite, that is based on a taxonomy-driven (knowledge-based), user-centered system design approach, enables the trade fair organizer to setup, customize, and dynamically adapt the trade fair system; - Intuitive information visualization metaphors, which smoothly combine 2D and 3D visualization approaches, support various business steps like stand planning, catalogue browsing, and fair visit planning. Information visualization is empowered by the generic IVIS visualization framework developed at IPSI; - Relying on standards, like XML, RDF, XForms, SOAP, ODBC, etc. for information exchange and component interaction the FairsNet system architecture is extensible and open for the integration of back office systems and third party components providing additional services. The FairsNet system is being validated and evaluated under real business conditions in a series of trials supporting a number of real trade fair events.