Monday, December 10, 2007

EUROPRIX Multimedia Top Talent Award 2008 (3)

Category: Mobile Contents

The category of mobile contents deals with innovative contents and applications using the potential of compact, mobile and communication-intensive platforms focusing on new multimedia solutions. 26 entries have been entered from nine countries. The jury selected the following three nominations:
- Where to climb
- Consumer gadget
The entry Where to climb won the category award.

Title: Where To Climb
Producer: Luke McSorley (UK)
Where to climb is a community website which addresses climbers with personal and up-to-date advice on climbs all over Great Britain. Users can view practical guides and update them or even contribute to the collection and add new routes. Mountaineers are invited to discuss routes with fellow climbers, look for partners and see who is climbing what. Once the guide is downloaded onto a mobile phone climbers can conveniently take the information into the mountains and follow the combination of images and route descriptions. After the climb, users of mobiles are able to update their online logbooks, add on the website current climbing conditions and check for any other updates. Users can also exchange new climbs or crags and share their personal logbooks and grant their permissions.

Where to climb has considerable value due to the social sharing of information produced by users. In addition, it might save the lives of climbers who are in trouble. It will be the reality of the coming years that mobile phones will be used to improve the life of citizens, to diversify the ways to reach needed information and to create communities based on shared information. We consider Where to climb to be an exemplary project of strategic importance for the future of mobile services. It is fantastically well-implemented and really sets an example to its peers.

Title: Consumer Gadget
Producer: Wesa Aapro, Anu Aapro, Jaakko Vasankari, Karl Tuhkanen (Finland)
Consumer Gadget aims to be the ethical consumer's new best friend. Consumers make most of their buying decisions based on advertisements or on habit. Only a few have the time or patience to research a product's ecological footprint or the manufacturer’s working conditions. This is where Consumer Gadget intervenes. It presents ethical facts about consumer products. Just use the barcodes and you have the key to that information. The information model comprises undisputable facts and ethical information. Consumer have three possibilities at the cash register: the can scan the barcode using the mobile phone’s camera or the can searching the website online or on their mobile phone or send a short message text back with the EAN or UPC code. An affiliated organisation recruits volunteers to seek out additional products, gather their barcodes and ensure that the information researched and provided is accurate and reliable.

The idea of Consumer Gadget is a very clear and elegant one. Its use is not limited to ethical values associated with products, but can easily be extended to customer reviews in general, best-price-data, or dietary information. I am convinced that such an interface between the real world of products and Web 2.0 will be one of our everyday tools in a few years. While there are very similar projects going on in the commercial world (e.g. Project Aura from Microsoft Research), it is impressive to see how Aapro Wesa competes against the big guys on a tiny budget.

Title: CHEFi
Producer: Igor Ginzburg (Israel)
CHEFi is an interactive cooking instructor which aims to make an expert cook or ‘chef’ out of anyone. After downloading the software onto your mobile phone, a virtual chef will guide you through even quite complicated recipes using real time voice interaction. CHEFi uses text to voice technology which translates written recipes into easy to understand spoken orders for the gastronomically challenged. Step by step you are lead in your cooking. An accompanying website hosts social networking features that aim to create a young community that will upload and share recipes, make friends and help each other to learn how to cook. Popular searches, the recipe of the day as well as leading chefs are also highlighted online.

Cooking recipes have been a favourite topic on the Internet for years. But using a technological solution in the kitchen has never caught on, something CHEFi addresses in an innovative fashion. The concept is simple and effective and has more potential than electronic cookbook recipes which have to be shown on a monitor or be printed out. The project is professionally presented and is, at this stage, a very promising work-in-progress which could definitely have significant market impact.

Blog Posting Number: 946

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