The I-SENSE Group was participated with a stand at the European Researcher Night Event organized by the National and Technical University of Athens at the emblematic Averof building at the Patission historic complex, on Friday 28 September 2018. The I-SENSE Group area was constantly full of people -the room had a capacity of approx. 100 persons and it was full too- including numerous curious students eager to learn and experience. The numerous visitors had the opportunity to play with two Augmented Reality applications developed within the framework of two different European Research project, Scent (https://scent-project.eu/) and Pluggy (https://www.pluggy-project.eu/) and more about the importance of their contribution to the protection of the environment and the promotion of cultural heritage. The overall aim of the Group’s demonstrations was to increase citizens’ participation in two areas of vital interest: the monitoring the changes taking place in our environment and the promotion of cultural heritage, respectively.
The augmented reality application of the project PLUGGY (Pluggable Social Platform for Heritage Awareness and Participation) is one of the four tools, which will be developed by the consortium to enable users to “liven” their stories through the usage of their smartphone camera and screen. The main objective of the project is the creation of a social networking platform for promoting cultural heritage through the active participation of the European Citizens. Besides the social platform PLUGGY will provide a series of pluggable applications aiming to facilitate a continuing process of creating, modifying and safeguarding heritage, where European citizens will be consumers, creators and maintainers of cultural activities. PLUGGY platform and applications will enable users to share their local knowledge and everyday experience with others, together with the contribution of cultural institutions, building extensive networks around a common area interest, connecting the past, the present and the future. PLUGGY has received the EYCH2018 label, as it is actively contributes to the objectives of European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018, as described in article 2, decision 2017/864 of the European Parliament and the Council of the European Union.
The “Scent Explore” application is one of the four applications developed by the Scent European project partners, for the monitoring of the Land Use and Land Cover changes in the local environment and the collection of valuable data from the citizens. The data collected by citizens, using the Scent applications, are considered more accurate and dynamic, as they will record real-time information and are expected to help scientist across Europe in the prevention of floods and the management of related risks at a more efficient way.‘ Scent Explore’ is a fun and simple to use AR game, available for free download in Google Play and the App Store. The user downloads the application in his/her smart phone or tablet, find the Scent creatures’ hidden in his/her locality and gain points. By “capturing” a Scent creature the user is actually taking a picture of it. The creatures have been placed in specific locations of environmental interest so that images can be gathered and changes in land cover and land use can be monitored in that exact location. The pictures and data collected by citizens with the volunteer use of low-cost equipment, will improve the accuracy of existing Land Cover / Use maps and flood models and thus prevent related to flood risks in a more efficient way.
Visitors had also the chance to play with another fun and simple to use Scent application, “Scent Measure“. Scent Measure is an innovative application developed by ISENSE Group to measure changes in soil conditions. Scent Measure is also available for free download at Google Play and is triggered from Scent Explore app. When playing Scent Explore, the user will be prompted to take a measurement at an important point of interest for scientists and researchers, and thereby contribute to monitoring and analysing of the environment.conditions. The app uses portable sensors to measure and report the soil moisture and air temperature to your smartphone or tablet. Scent Measure is easy to use – the user simply inserts the portable sensor into the soil, select whether to measure temperature or moisture, and receive the measures directly to his/her screen.
Scent has already formed Citizen Observatories of volunteers for Flood Monitoring & Management in two different locations where pilot campaigns are currently taking place, in the Kifisos River Basin, in Attica Grece and at the Danube Delta in Romania. The campaigns will run from August 2018 to July 2019 where everyone is welcome to join. For expressing your interest, please contact Mr. Valantis Tsiakos firstname.lastname@example.org
One of the highlights of the evening was our participation in the European Researcher Night treasure hunt organized for our little friends. It felt amazing to watch children’s reaction at the time they discovered the hidden old silver pistol from the Silversmith Museum of the Piraeus Bank Group Cultural Foundation (PIOP) inside the Pluggy Augmented Reality app in the tablet screen! It had also fun to help them chase funny little creatures hidden inside the room and capture them using the “Scent Explore” application, and finally, take measurements of temperature of the soil we have placed in little pots by using the “Scent Measure” application and its sensors.
Looking forward for next year’s event!