Research and Teaching Interests
I work in the fields of multimedia and hypermedia. I am involved in four projects.
- Media Construction Formalism.
This is joint work with Marc Nanard and Jocelyne Nanard at LIRMM Montpellier. We thare investigating how several of the general-purpose design principles from the area of large-scale software development and maintenance can be applied to the design of multimedia artefacts. We have developed the Media Construction Formalism, MCF system, an interactive tool for multimedia design. MCF uses the metaphor of roles, players and actors to provide generic design descriptions of multimedia scenarios, and encompasses a powerful temporal and reactive model.
- Formal methods for multimedia description
This work is joint with Simon Thompson (Kent, UK), and in part with Helen Cameron (Manitoba) and Howard Bowman (Kent). We have two projects under this heading. First, we make use of an interval temporal logic, Mexitl, in multimedia modelling and authoring. Second, we use the functional language Haskell together with FRAN , an embedded language for interactive animations, for multimedia document specification. The Haskell/Fran approach is a particularly useful tool to represent reactive relationships between components. We have performed a comparative study of the Haskell/Fran approach just described, the MCF approach described earlier, and the language SMIL promulgated by the World Wide Web Consortium
- Functional and declarative extensions to SMIL
This is more recent work, and is joint with Patrick Schmitz and Simon Thompson. SMIL lacks a number of useful features to be found in a functional approach to multimedia modelling such as our Haskell/Fran work. At the same time, SMIL is easier to implement than Haskell/Fran, and adheres to the World Wide Web Consortium’s requirement that SMIL be an XML application. Our work is to consider how much of the functional and declarative component of Haskell/Fran could be suitably included in an extended version of SMIL.
- Digital Libraries and OPALES
In cooperation with a group working within ARC at LIRMM Montpellier, especially Marc Nanard and Jocelyne Nanard, we designed and developed an open digital library framework. Our approach supports collaborative activity for building and sharing metadata structures and knowledge within archives. The OPALES framework has been used to develop a video archive digital library, which permits users to build and to share new services for accessing archives according to the needs of user interest groups.