Category Archives: Pilots

Bitsign App in Kamppi

New wayfinding application is being piloted in Kamppi shopping centre! Test the App in Kamppi.

In the beginning of December, heart-shaped Bitsign markers have appeared on Kamppi shopping centre. With a Bitsign application attached, they offer a new way of navigating in the Christmas rush of the Kamppi shopping centre.

Photo: EIT Digital

Using Bitsign is very simple: choose what you are looking for and scan the heart shaped markers on your smartphone. Arrows will appear on the screen and tell you where to go.

 

The markers will be in Kamppi shopping centre until the end of January 2015.

Simple digital solution for wayfinding indoors

Bitsign provides a new digital dimension to navigation. The application is based on augmented reality and you do not need internet connection, censors, or 3D modelling.

“The technologies behind Bitsign are already existing but the combination is completely unique,” says the head of the pilot Kai Kuikkaniemi.

With Bitsign, you can easily create new navigation experiences and make shopping more gamelike. The open data which is used in the application makes it even more versatile.

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Bitsign was created in European Institution of Innovation and Technology (EIT). EIT supports the development and marketing of Bitsign. The Kamppi pilot is part of EIT ICT Labs` Street Smart project run by HIIT, Aalto University, Nokia, Robustnorth, Vincint and Forum Virium Helsinki.

Test the App in Kamppi! Download the free navigation app on kamppi.fi/kurkkaa. At this point the application is available for Android and iPhone users.

More on the Street Smart project on: https://www.forumvirium.fi/en/project-areas/smart-city/street-smart

 

New ways to explore the future plans for the neighbourhood

Street Smart pilot / Urban Augmentation

In October 2014, a new way to present construction plans for the citizens was tested in collaboration with Helsinki City Planning department, VTT and Forum Virium Helsinki. Through VTT’s augmented reality application, people in Koskela neighbourhood got to know the future construction plans for the Koskela hospital area. The application showed people how the new buildings would look like in their real environment. This pilot is part of the EIT ICT Street Smart project.

Four different construction plans have been made for the Koskela hospital and laundromat site. The plans were evaluated on a chilly walking tour around the Koskela area, and in a group discussion that followed the walk. Anyone interested in the topic was able to join these events.

img_4580Picture: Suvi Kukkonen

Augmented reality illustrating the future plans

There were about 20 people participating in the walking tour arranged by the designers for Helsinki City Planning Department. All the participants on the walking tour explored also the plans with the augmented reality application.

The application illustrates the plans in their real environment and it is used with a tablet or other smart devices with camera. Most of the users perceived the application easy to use. The feedback was positive, the application functioned well technically and many thought that the urban augmentation helped them to visualize the plans on the site. The application added a new dimension to the traditional ways of visualizing, but some of the users felt that the traditional pictures would have been enough.

img_4547Picture: Suvi Kukkonen

Some users wished for more accurate and detailed designs for the application. For now the designs were too rough to evaluate. The application illustrated a good overall view of the area and helped the users to visualize the use of the space, location of the buildings and the height differences between the buildings. Users also hoped that the application could be used on a bigger screen or that they could download the application for their smartphones so that anyone interested could explore the plans on their own.

“The augmented reality helped to visualize the used space and proportions of the city space. The application has its limitations and it is not meant for every situation. For example the trees around Koskela area limited the use of the application in this pilot”, says Antti Varkemaa, project manager from the Helsinki City Planning Department.

The four different plans as a starting point for planning were considered as a good idea. All in all people felt that this kind of event was a good way of getting people involved in city planning and urban augmentation brought a new dimension to visualizing the plans.

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More information:

Kaisa Spilling, email kaisa.spilling(at)forumvirium.fi
Charles Woodward, email charles.woodward(at)vtt.fi

The original article published in the Forum Virium Helsinki’s website.