Forum Virium Helsinki has been exploring how digital services can open up the city, its history and even the city construction plans for the citizens. In fall 2014, pilots were run to test how augmented reality can be utilized in the urban planning of an old neighbourhood as well as in wayfinding services for the residents and tourists.
The pilots in Helsinki are a part of international Street Smart project, run in 2014. The project was funded by EIT ICT Labs, partnering Nokia, Deutsche Telekom, Telekom Italia, Aalto University, INRIA, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Politecnico di Milano, TU-Berlin, VTT and Forum Virium Helsinki.
Technological adventure game for youngsters
In the spring 2014, a technological adventure game was created for the Millenium-event. A lost laboratory of Professor Millenium invited youth to explore technology. Several schools from the capital area participated in the game and City of Helsinki employees were assisting at the checkpoints. The game was produced and organised by EIT ICT Labs, Forum Virium Helsinki, Nokia HIIT, VTT and TAF.
Exploring future plans of the neighbourhood
Forum Virium Helsinki, VTT and Helsinki City Planning department piloted a new mobile application to visualize construction plans for the citizens. Through VTT’s augmented reality application people got to know the future construction plans for the Koskela hospital area. The application showed how the new buildings would look like in their real environment.
Bitsign shows the way
Just before Christmas, new heart-shaped signs, Bitsigns, appeared in the Kamppi shopping centre. They offered a new way of navigating in the Christmas rush with the help of a mobile phone.
The Bitsign technology is based on augmented reality and developed in the European Institute of Innovation and Technology. The Kamppi pilot was part of EIT Digital’s Street Smart project run by HIIT, Aalto University, Nokia, Robustnorth, Vincint and Forum Virium Helsinki.
A dive into the urban history
In December 2014, Forum Virium Helsinki and VTT tested a new wayfinding concept linking the past and present when strolling the streets of Helsinki. The demo application took the user out on a historic tour, showing how the places used to look like hundred years ago. The photos were fetched from the Helsinki City Museum’s archives.
The original article was published in the Forum Virium Helsinki’s website.