Matching Information and Ambient Media

Albrecht Schmidt, Hans-W. Gellersen, and Michael Beigl

TecO, University of Karlsruhe, Germany


Ambient media have recently been introduced as a means to present information in our surrounding space in subtle and unmonopolizing ways, promoting peripheral awareness. This paper explores the issue of matching virtual information to ambient media, investigating ambient counterparts as natural matches and ambient links as user controlled matches. Ambient counterparts are media in our surroundings that have an intuitive and strong relationship with the virtual information they present, and we report on an application of such counterparts for comparative web site awareness employed for group motivation in their workplace. Ambient links are relation between ambient media and events in the virtual world actively assigned by the user for ambient notification. We describe two tools for creating ambient links, the first one for marking web pages for ambient notification much in the style of bookmarking, and the second one extending an email filter to create ambient links for email events. Finally we effects of our experiments in the workplace.


ambient media, calm technology, world-wide web, linking virtual and physical world, ubiquitous computing


Proceedings of CoBuild'99. Second International Workshop on Cooperative Buildings, Pittsburgh. LNCS 1670. Springer: Heidelberg 1999.
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