Abstract: The Greek School Network (GSN) has developed and put into production a number of e-learning services, including synchronous and asynchronous tele-education, electronic class management, blogs, video-on-demand, podcasts and multimedia libraries. These new services complement established and accepted e-learning services, such as teleconferencing, user wikis, forums, email, electronic publishing, and e-magazines. This report presents the most prominent digital e-learning services offered by GSN, with emphasis on the asynchronous tele-education service, which is presented in detail. Its implementation platform, the Moodle course management system, is compared against well-known asynchronous open source tele-education platforms such as COSE, Claroline, Fle3, ILIAS, Manhattan, KEWL, Comentor, e-Class and Eledge. The evaluation of the asynchronous tele-education platforms is based on detailed comparisons of their characteristics and of the methodology they adopt in order to deliver educational services. The comparison is based on evaluation criteria derived from the documented experiences of research institutes and educational bodies and also from the experience of GSN itself. The paper concludes with the presentation of an extension to Moodle for implementing communities of practice (CoPs) that facilitate the creation and delivery of electronic educational open content for teachers in a synergetic manner.
Abstract: Divisible load scenarios occur in modern media server applications since most multimedia applications typically require access to continuous and discrete data. A high performance Continuous Media (CM) server greatly depends on the ability of its disk IO subsystem to serve both types of workloads efficiently. Disk scheduling algorithms for mixed media workloads, although they play a central role in this task, have been overlooked by related research efforts. These algorithms must satisfy several stringent performance goals, such as achieving low response time and ensuring fairness, for the discrete-data workload, while at the same time guaranteeing the uninterrupted delivery of continuous data, for the continuous-data workload. The focus of this paper is on disk scheduling algorithms for mixed media workloads in a multimedia information server. We propose novel algorithms, present a taxonomy of relevant algorithms, and study their performance through experimentation. Our results show that our algorithms offer drastic improvements in discrete request average response times, are fair, serve continuous requests without interruptions, and that the disk technology trends are such that the expected performance benefits can be even greater in the future.
Abstract: Recommender Systems (RSs) have been extensively utilized as a means of reducing the information overload and offering travel recommendations to tourists. The emerging mobile RSs are tailored to mobile device users and promise to substantially enrich tourist experiences, recommending rich multimedia content, context-aware services, views/ratings of peer users, etc. New developments in mobile computing, wireless networking, web technologies and social networking leverage massive opportunities to provide highly accurate and effective tourist recommendations that respect personal preferences and capture usage, personal, social and environmental contextual parameters. This article follows a systematic approach in reviewing the state-of-the-art in the field, proposing a classification of mobile tourism RSs and providing insights on their offered services. It also highlights challenges and promising research directions with respect to mobile RSs employed in tourism.
Abstract: Advancements in both on-board and wireless communication technologies provide the necessary backbone for the deployment of a network between vehicles. Most of the envisioned applications for these networks would be greatly favored by multimedia support provisioning. However, there are several issues to be handled in order to provide multimedia services with reasonable quality. In this work, we analyze a specific multimedia service that can be used by several interesting applications: video broadcasting. Particularly, we throughly discuss and evaluate the role of redundancy in improving this service. We have verified that although redundancy does increase the effectiveness in video broadcasting, coding techniques do not improve redundancy's efficiency.