Scientific research findings, historical sound documents, images of sculptures, films and sheet music – these scientific and educational resources are currently vastly underused in education. Professor Michael Granitzer, who holds the Chair of Media Informatics at the University of Passau and coordinates the project, explains the rationale for the project: "On the World Wide Web, it is difficult to find specific cultural knowledge, such as that provided by museums, libraries and other scientific and academic institutions, in the plethora of – usually commercial – websites. One way to change this is by using the full spectrum of possibilities opened up by Web 2.0, in order to get digital cultural goods and digitally accessible knowledge to the end user. And this is an important aspect: we have to deliver this media content to the users, not the other way round."
Under Professor Granitzer's supervision, ten partner institutions from Germany, Austria, Switzerland, France and the UK are working hard to enrich existing web and social media content, such as pictures, film clips, information charts, statistics and texts with cultural and scientific content using person- and context-related recommendation technologies. The focus is on so-called 'Long Tail' content, which describes relevant specialist content of a high quality. "Scientists, scholars, students, school pupils and the general public will then have instant access to high-quality recommendations, whatever they are working on and in line with their existing level of knowledge," he adds.
Within the EEXCESS project, the University of Passau is primarily concerned with analysing users and user behaviour while retaining their privacy, as well as the presentation of specialist content and its integration into the World Wide Web. This project receives EU funding under the Seventh Framework Programme for Research and Technological Development. The European research consortium is coordinated by the University of Passau.
This includes the following partner institutions: JOANNEUM RESEARCH Forschungsgesellschaft mbH (Austria); Kanton Basel Landschaft (Switzerland); bit media e-Learning solution GmbH & Co KG (Austria); Collections Trust LBG (UK); Institut National des Sciences Appliquées de Lyon (INSA) (France); Know-Center GmbH (Austria); Mendeley Ltd. (UK); inmediaONE GmbH (Germany) and ZBW – Leibniz-Informationszentrum Wirtschaft (Germany). The planned duration of the project is 42 months.