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Making Rich Media Accessible for Generations


MARIAGE: Making Rich Media Accessible for Generations

This is the public web page of the MARIAGE project ("Making rich media accessible for generations", Norges forskingsrådet project 181819).

Contact: The project leader is Knut Holmqvist. Inquiries welcome!

Project lifespan: 01.01.2007 - 31.12.2009

Status: running

Project description

The MARIAGE project aims at the development of principles, frameworks and demonstrators for life-time media albums. Media types of interest are photographs, videos, music and software-based media such as web pages, flash films, and computer games. MARIAGE focuses on the “prosumer” type of user, a person who is producing and consuming media objects. MARIAGE deals with long-term availability of execution environments, with media format availability in a life-time perspective, with metadata management, and with interoperability between the media album platforms that prosumers use.

In the MARIAGE project we research how to make personal, digital memories accessible for generations. Two principal methods for preserving content exist, migration and emulation. Migration adapts or transcodes content so it can be played by new devices. Issues in MARIAGE range from long-term usability of the media formats, the handling of metadata up to security topics, e.g. dealing with DRM in a long-time perspective and the preservation of privacy in shared media objects with metadata.

The pre-web Internet had many features: Email, News-groups, Archives (Archie), File Servers (FTP), Finger and so on. Users formed communities where they shared information, discussed common issues and posted and read news. With the introduction of the Web, Internet in addition became a support and trading place. Users can download manuals and software upgrades. Users can buy or book almost anything, books, hotel rooms and clothing.

Although the Web has been commercialized, pre-web type services and applications did not disappear. On the contrary, they prospered in web communities, blogs and resource sharing. This type of services and applications are generally referred to as Web 2.0. Whereas the pre-web Internet was almost totally text based, Web 2.0 is to a high degree dominated by rich media, which however is not well-defined. In the project MARIAGE, we primarily address rich media made by non-professionals ("prosumers") but we also consider bought media. As a matter of facts, the idea started out with a question of how young people of today could play their bought music 25-30-50 years from now. How to find and play a music file you bought decades ago?

Project results

The MARIAGE project works in three main research areas: Virtualization, security & privacy, and media formats.
Virtualization Security & Privacy Media Formats
To ensure the usability of personal media like computer games, multimedial applications and other unusual media objects, we research into the possibilities to build a "time machine" that virtualizes the current computer, its player software and all its data into virtual machines that are stored in a personal archive. These virtual machines could be loaded and run on a contemporary computer to access the old digital content. Various issues in the areas of information security and privacy are relevant for long-term use of personal media objects. Copy protection, media encryption, integrity protection and the management of personal data contained in the meta data are examples such areas. In MARIAGE, we analyze these areas with the aim of providing a best-practice-framework for the treatment of these issues from the life-time perspective. We research the implications of media object encoding, meta data management and format conversion in the life-time perspective. We explore the possibility to use the MPEG-21 family of formats to manage personal media.



  • artiklen (på Norsk): En datanøkkel til fortida, Arnfinn Christensen, Journalist, Mandag 19. november 2007. Abstract: Hvordan skal framtidas datamaskiner kunne vise filer fra fortida med tekst, bilder, lyd eller annet verdifullt innhold? Knut Holmqvist og kollegene ved Norsk Regnesentral vil sette nøkkelen i døra i framtidas virtuelle "spøkelsesmaskiner".



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