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Title: Capturing navigation landmarks with in-car mobile games
Author: Oliver, Keith John
ISNI:       0000 0004 2743 8010
Awarding Body: University of Nottingham
Current Institution: University of Nottingham
Date of Award: 2012
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The augmentation of navigation systems with landmarks has been proposed as a method of improving the effectiveness of the technology, and facilitating drivers' engagement with the environment. As a consequence, benefits are predicted both in increased spatial learning and reduced driver distraction. Good navigational landmarks are however both laborious to collect and difficult to define. Collecting useful data as a by-product of mobile applications or games has received growing research interest. It has been suggested as a way of collecting location based data, which may be reused in navigation systems or other applications. Previous research games, with the aim of collecting landmarks, have encountered problems with producing a game concept which encourages the collection of good navigational landmarks. Past research has also concentrated on pedestrian applications. Since the majority of navigation applications are used in cars, exploring the potential of capturing data in the context of a car journey makes a novel and valuable contribution. This research aimed to devise a game concept, which could be played by passengers in cars and would collect useful landmark data as a by-product. The thesis describes how a virtual graffiti concept was generated, and how it was evaluated in both simulated and real world journeys. Design studies, using video journeys, were performed to gather information and to inform the development of a high level concept. An in-car trial of a prototype, which embodied a virtual graffiti game mechanic, was carried out, and 38 participants took part. The data collected in this trial was then evaluated by means of a survey, in which 100 respondents assessed the quality of the landmarks collected and their potential for reuse in navigation applications. Players of the virtual graffiti prototype displayed a consensus in where to place their graffiti tags. In ten out of twelve locations, over 30% of the players chose the same object to tag. Furthermore, a significant correlation was found between how highly landmarks were rated in the survey and how frequently they were tagged in the car trial. This work demonstrates a method for evaluating a crowdsourcing application for car journeys, and proposes an effective strategy of designing games with by-products, which is to relate the role of the objects used in the game to the purpose of the by-products. In the case of a virtual graffiti game the two are related by environmental salience. Objects were chosen by the graffiti taggers because of features such as size, visibility, ease of description and semantic salience, and these factors are also defining characteristics of good navigational landmarks. The studies described in this thesis provide evidence that crowdsourcing to collect landmarks will not require large numbers of people, or extensive coverage of an area, to produce candidate landmarks for navigation. The thesis also presents some practical ideas for the use of the by-products of landmark capturing games in navigation systems, and some implications for the design of car-based, virtual graffiti games and car-based crowdsourcing in general.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available