This article explores ways in which virtual environments can be used for crowdsourcing and behavior mining for filling gaps within the information space of topical research. Behavior mining in this article refers to the act of harvesting the latent or instinctive behavior of participants, usually a crowd, and injecting the population behavior into a pre-set context, such as within a virtual environment so that the subjective behaviors and the contexts are merged. The experimental approach combines various modalities centered upon virtual environments so as to induce presence in order to bring participants into the context. This approach is new and not well studied, however, it has real potentials in research dealing with behaviors and culture in reconstructed virtual environments. Two virtual environments case studies at the 2012 and 2015 Royal Society Summer Science Exhibition were presented, which demonstrated that the unique crowdsourcing activity is able to fill up gaps within the information space so that answers to research questions can be more complete. Thus, by reconstructing and replicating a lost landscape, and by injecting harvested human behavior into the context of the landscape, we may be able to gather much more information than conventional methods will allow.
Crowd behaviour Mining at the Royal Society Summer Science Exhibition 2015
I represented the University of Nottingham Ningbo China at the very prestigious 2016 International Congress on ICT in Education and Innovative Achievement Exhibition of ICT in Education. The event is held from 22-24 June in Qingdao and is organised by UNESCO, Chinese National Commission for UNESCO, Education Management Information Centre from the MoE PRC, Shandong Provincial Education Department. The event is hosted by the Education Bureau of Qingdao and the Chinese Journal of ICT in Education. Last year, President Xi Jinping sent a congratulatory message to the conference, which was attended by high profile figures such as director-general of UNESCO Irina Bokova, Vice premier of PRC Liu Yan Dong, and other delegates.
VR demo with the Oculus Rift DK2
The purpose of the event was to expand international outlook, further explore the innovative model integrating ICT and education, and build a platform for cooperation and exchange in terms of ICT in education through showcasing global leading information technology and latest achievements and exemplary cases of ICT in education.
University of Nottingham Ningbo were 1 out of 9 selected universities to represent the event. The university considers this a highly important platform from which to showcase our world-class teaching, learning, and research-led teaching not only to high-profile visitors from within China, but also to international delegates, and via the media (CCTV, etc).
Together with my trusted colleagues, we showcased VR demos and pilot applications using our Oculus Rift DK2 and Samsung Gear VR with S6 Edge. The event was well attended and our booth seems to attract a lot of attention!
Chinas Ministry of Education Delegates Trying out our VR Demos!
I was invited for the second time to participate at the Royal Society Summer Science Exhibition 2015 held in London 30 June – 5 July. Our exhibit featured the Stonehenge Hidden Landscapes project, with the discovery of 17 monuments using remote sensing methods and VR visualisation. I developed a multitouch table system for acquiring human behaviour, described in an invited article “Crowd Behaviour Mining with Virtual Environments” published in PRESENCE: Teleoperators & Virtual Environments [pdf].