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Institute of Pervasive Computing
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Media informatics any-time any-where.

Funding BMBWK, Neue Medien in der Lehre    
Duration 2002-2004
Consortium Universität Klagenfurt, CS departments at JKU Linz, Technische Universität Wien, Universität Wien
Role Proposer, Coordinator, Project Leader, PI

Technological advances in information and communication systems like the convergence of wireless communication and mobile and handheld computers have challenged higher education worldwide to adopt the opportunities of networked knowledge acquisition and delivery — both from a methodological and a technological viewpoint. Among the recent technology trends, particularly the confluence of wire-less communication standards (like WiFi WLANs, providing data rates up to 11 and 54 Mbit/s) and a broad availability of small and miniaturized learning devices like notebook, handheld and pocket computers gives rise for a new landscape of learning as a networked, situated, contextual and life-long activity. In this landscape, learning is not confined to pre-specified times, places, learners or learning situations, but happens whenever (“any-time”), wherever (“any-place”), whoever (“personalized”) and in which situation ever (“situative”) there is demand to acquire knowledge, to gain insight and understanding, to share ideas or to address and solve a problem. Whole new views of learning and teaching processes are to be developed and supported, relating learning models, learning methods, didactics, team organization and situational behavior models with those new technologies. The project MobiLearn aims at the development of concepts, methods and tools implementing “Mobile Learning Technologies”, and to experiment with and gain experience from a mobile learning scenario to be created and established in the Austrian university-level education system.

A mobile learning framework will be developed in the context of Media Informatics as a reference, aiming at a modular and compositional system of computer science content frames, provided for plug-and-play use and situative access from arbitrary mobile learning devices — anytime, anywhere. As such, the framework will represent a methodologically and didactically well designed mobile learning platform, ready for immediate reuse in other content domains like medicine, engineering, humanities, economics, social science, etc. It will — above university-level education — serve as a reference implementation for the evolving contextual life-long learning systems. Wireless access technologies like WiFi WLANs are weaving into everyday environments like buildings and spaces on a property, city or regional scale, thus representing the communication infrastructure of the future mobile learning systems. The “Wireless Campus” project at the University of Linz and related initiatives at the University of Klagenfurt, the Technical University of Vienna and the University of Vienna are indicators for this development and will serve as the communication plat-form for this project.