SOLUTION: IT 441 Saudi Electronic University Field of Multimedia System Development Discussion

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Table of Content:
Contents
Chapter 1……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 3
Chapter 2…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 17
Chapter 3…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 33
Chapter 4…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 67
Chapter 5…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 86
Chapter 6…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 103
Chapter 7…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 133
Chapter 8…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 148
Chapter 9…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 164
Chapter 10 …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 178
Chapter 11 …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 189
Chapter 12 …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 201
Appendix A ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 217
Appendix B…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 219
Appendix C ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 221
Appendix D ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 227
Glossary…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 231
Chapter 1
The Multimedia Revolution
Topics you will explore include:
Multimedia Revolution
Multimedia Defined
Forms of Multimedia
Noninteractive
Interactivey
Basic
Hypermedia
Adaptive
Immersive
Visionaries of Multimedia Computing
Vannevar Bush
Alan Turing
Douglas Engelbart
Theodore Nelson
Alan Kay
Steve Jobs
Tim Berners-Lee
Potential of Digital Media
“Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.”
Arthur C. Clarke
Multimedia computing has produced a revolution. We shop, study, research, play, and communicate differently
because of it. Like other advanced technologies, multimedia is, as Clarke would say, magical.
How else should we describe a little box that gets smaller but more powerful each year, and that pours forth an endless
stream of words and sounds of pictures and movies? The multimedia computer captures all manner of worldly
experience and even presents us with worlds of its own.
As dramatic as the impact of multimedia has been, its story is far from finished. We have good reason to anticipate
ever more powerful multimedia systems. Multimedia is not only advanced; it is advancing. The revolution will
continue.
Revolutions displace traditional beliefs and practices. They also create entirely new activities and products. The
Industrial Revolution displaced traditional craftsmanship; goods that had been produced by hand in small shops were
now made in factories by machines. It also produced new materials and products—steel, plastic, automobiles, and
airplanes—that radically changed the ways in which people conducted their lives. The multimedia revolution is also
displacing tradition and ushering in new products and activities. In this chapter we explore the nature of
contemporary multimedia as well as the innovations of the pioneers whose visions shaped its evolution.
After completing this chapter, you should understand:
The defining elements of modern multimedia, including its different forms
Noninteractive
Interactive
Basic
Hypermedia
Adaptive
Immersive
Key contributions to the development of multimedia by
Vannevar Bush
Alan Turing
Douglas Engelbart
Theodore Nelson
Alan Kay
Steve Jobs
Tim Berners-Lee
The nature and potential of modern multimedia
1.1 Multimedia Defined
Contemporary multimedia is defined as the development, integration, and delivery of any combination of text,
graphics, animation, sound, or video through a digital processing device.
The key phrase in this definition is “digital processing device.” It was the digital computer and its many variants such
as tablets, smartphones, and PDAs that transformed tradition and produced “new media.” The computer displaced
traditional techniques for creating and editing all forms of media. Word processing displaced the typewriter, the CD
transformed sound and music production, and digital cameras and editing software have replaced film and the
darkroom. The reason for this transformation is simple: computers can now create media that rival the quality of
traditional products and they can do so more efficiently and more economically. Analog media, like traditional
craftsmanship, will continue to exist, but their dominance in the marketplace is at an end. Media professionals are
building their careers with digital technology.
The term computer derives from the human calculators who performed complex mathematical operations before these
functions were completely automated. For many years, most people thought computers would only be used for
calculation and sorting data.
The multimedia revolution is not just about performing traditional tasks in new ways. It is also about creating new
approaches to communication, commerce, education, and entertainment. Cell phones become text messengers,
cameras, and video displays. E-commerce gives shoppers instant access to countless products and services complete
with pictures, demos, reviews, and price comparisons. Classrooms lose their walls as digital media—graphics,
animation, sound, and video—stream through electronic networks. New forms of entertainment, such as podcasts,
video games, online poker tournaments, and interactive film, have transformed that industry as well. In these cases,
and in many more, digital multimedia is changing the world by making it possible for users to interact with
information in new ways.
So important are these new forms of interactivity that multimedia applications are often differentiated based on the
degree and quality of interaction they support. Some applications are designed to allow little or no interactivity; others
encourage as much interaction as possible.
In noninteractive multimedia, the user has no control over the flow of information. The developer establishes a
sequence of media elements and determines the manner in which they will be presented. An information kiosk at a
museum might regularly repeat a series of slides describing the day’s events. Such applications are often a simple and
effective way to draw attention to announcements, products, or services without requiring any action of the part of the
viewer. Digitally animated films, such as Toy Story or Shrek, are much more sophisticated and are engaging examples
of noninteractive multimedia. The greatest promise and power of multimedia, however, lies in its ability to transform
passive recipients of information into active agents.
In interactive multimedia, users are able to control the flow of information. There are several types of interactive
multimedia. The first provides basic interactivity. Basic interactions include menu selections, buttons to advance
screens, VCR-like controls, clickable objects, links, and text boxes for questions or responses. Hypermediais a more
advanced form of interactive media in which the developer provides a structure of related information and the means
for a user to access that information. An online anatomy tutorial, for example, organizes information based on
physiological relationships and may enhance a user’s understanding through hyperlinks to related text, drawings,
animations, or video.
Still more advanced forms of interactive multimedia adapt the presentatio n of information to the needs or interests of
users. Such applications range from relatively simple merchandizing programs that offer suggestions for purchases
based on past interactions to advanced tutorials that adjust lessons based on student performanc e. These applications
embody aspects of intelligence and decision making and are described as adaptive multimedia or intellimedia.
The range of these forms of multimedia is likely to expand significantly with continued development in another major
area of computer research—artificial intelligence.
Another powerful form of multimedia interactivity is found in advanced simulations and games that create their
own virtual reality. Virtual realities are not simply responsive to users; they are immersive. An immersive
multimedia application draws its users into an alternate world, engaging them intellectually, emotionally, and even
viscerally. Advanced flight simulators so thoroughly immerse pilots in a world of virtual flight that they routinely serve
as substitutes for training in actual aircraft. Video games can draw players into other worlds for hours or even days on
end.
Multimedia will continue to shape our world, and each of us can benefit from knowing more about what it is, where it
came from, how it works, and where it is likely to go. Individual involvement in the creation of multimedia will vary
widely. For some, multimedia production may mean little more than attaching photos to email. Others will create
presentations or build their own websites. Yet others will become specialists in one of the many areas of professional
multimedia development. All will find that advancing digital technology continually puts more power in their hands—
power to shape media to their own purposes.
Using this power effectively requires an understanding of the basic concepts that underlie multimedia hardware and
software. It also requires a basic knowledge of the practices and principles of a wide range of media. Multimedia is,
first and foremost, interdisciplinary. By definition, it draws on the multiple traditions, talents, and perspectives of text,
graphics, sound, video, and animation. To use these varied resources effectively, multimedia developers need an
awareness of the traditions and best practices of each. In chapters to come, we will explore each of these topics.
Taking advantage of the power of multimedia also means looking to the future and actively considering the new
possibilities of digital technology. To try to envision the future, it helps to revisit the visionar ies of the past. These were
the pioneering theorists who glimpsed the promise of multimedia long before there were multimedia computers. Their
stories will help us understand the reasons for many of the features of multimedia computers—hyperlinks, mice,
windows, graphical user interfaces—and also the reasons to expect more innovations in the future.
1.2 Origins of Multimedia
In a sense, multimedia can be traced to the beginnings of civilization. Early humans had a clear appreciation of the
value of reinforcing their messages with different kinds of sensations. Cave paintings at Lascaux in southern France
were given an air of mystery through the psychological and sensory effects of the passageways—deep, dark, andcold—
that led the visitor away from an ordinary world to an otherworldly realm (Packer and Jordan 2001, xx–xxi).
Early theatrical performances greatly extended this interest in multisensory experience. Ancient Greek actors
performed to the accompaniment of music and the chanting and singing of a chorus. Elaborately painted stage
scenery, apparently with convincing three-dimensional effects, and stage props (furniture, weapons, even chariots)
formed a backdrop for performances. The Greeks also made use of various machines to heighten the intensity of the
dramatic performance. One (the keraunoskopeion) simulated lightening; another (the bronteion) produced the
rumble of thunder.
Multimedia further evolved as new technologies arose to represent various forms of sensory experience. By the early
20th century, it was possible to add sound to previously silent films, and movies became multimedia. As new
capabilities were added later in the century (including color, stereo, and surround sound), and as filmmakers learned
to exploit the potential of their tools (close-ups, fades, flashbacks, cut-aways, and special effects), the movie developed
a formidable expressive power.
By the mid-1900s, the pace of technological development increased dramatically. A very different kind of machine
emerged, and a few individuals began to glimpse the possibility of using it to dramatically extend the scope of
multimedia.
Vannevar Bush and the Memex Machines
Few men were as well poised as Vannevar Bush (1890–1974) to understand the revolutionary potential of the
emerging technologies. Bush was the director of the U.S. Office of Scientific Research and Development during World
War II and oversaw the work of some six thousand scientists on projects ranging from radar to the atomic bomb. He
was also an experienced and talented scientist in his own right, having developed, among other things, the Differential
Analyzer, a massive electromechanical analog computer for solving differential equations.
In 1945, Bush wrote “As We May Think.” In this now-classic article, he proposed the creation of a new kind of machine
to make the work of scientists more efficient and to make more effective use of the huge and “growing mountain of
research.” The machine would accomplish this by overcoming human weaknesses and building on human strengths.
Bush’s hypothetical machine was called Memex and multimedia was central to its design.
Memex I
One important human limitation is memory. We are limited in how much we can remember and our memories are
neither completely reliable nor permanent. In Bush’s first vision, Memex (or “memory extender”) would solve these
problems with microfilm. He envisioned a complete Encyclopedia Britannica stored in the space of a matchbox. Many
other texts, photos, and handwritten notes would readily fit in the space of his desk -like machine. The capacity of
Memex would be huge—one could add five thousand pages a day and it would still take hundreds of years to fill the
machine. The contents of the Memex would be completely accurate and they would last forever.
Fi gure 1.1 Sketch of Cy clops Camera.
Another human limitation is data recording. This is often a slow and laborious process. Bush proposed several
multimedia devices to aid in collecting and recording data for the Memex. These included a “vocoder,” which would
produce written input from the spoken word, and a “Cyclops Camera” to be worn on the forehead and controlled by a
wire running to a hand (Figure 1.1). The camera would allow a researcher to immediately photograph anything of
interest. Pictures would be rapidly developed using a dry -photography technique and could also be connected to the
written record in the machine.
Time-consuming repetitive thought processes, such as arithmetical calculations, also limit human intellectual
productivity. Bush’s machine would take over these tasks by automatically performing mathematical calculations and
carrying out simple forms of logical reasoning. Memex I would not be capable of “mature thought”; however, by
freeing its user of the burdens of calculations and simple inferences, it could make more time available for creative,
original thinking.
In a number of ways, then, Bush believed that his machine could compensate fo r the limitations of human intellect.
Memex could also revolutionize the way information was stored and accessed by taking advantage of one of the
strengths of the human mind.
The human mind, he argued, operates by association: “With one item in its grasp, it snaps instantly to the next that is
suggested by the association of thoughts, in accordance with some intricate web of trails carried by the cells of the
brain” (Bush, in Nyce and Kahn 1991, 101). Traditional systems of organizing information rely on alphabetical or
numerical lists. These have nothing to do with the way information is generated or used in the mind. As a result, it is
often difficult to find related facts and beliefs. Bush’s Memex, in contrast, would organize its information based on
associations, or as we actually think.
To form an association between two items of knowledge (facts, beliefs, theories, etc.), the Memex user would simply
display them together and tap a key. The items would then be joined. Repeating this process with other items would
produce a “trail” of associations that could then be preserved, copied, shared, modified, and linked to other trails. The
next time a particular item was accessed, all of its connections to related information would also be available. The
pattern of associations Bush had in mind would be vast and complex. In fact, he described Memex as “an enlarged
intimate supplement” to its user’s memory, one that “stores all his books, records, and communications, and which is
mechanized so that it may be consulted with exceeding speed and flexibility” (Bush, in Nyce and Kahn 1991, 102)
(Figure 1.2).
Fi gure 1.2 Visionary sketch of Mem ex (note mechanical details).
“As We May Think” also covered some of the operational details of the Memex —levers to advance pages, keys to return
to the first page, the ability to annotate sources, the advantages of vacuum tubes over mechanical switches, and so on.
In general, however, his article was a kind of “imagineering” in which new conceptual possibilities rather
than blueprints for actual machines were his concern. He had ignored, as he said, all sorts of “technical difficulties” but
he insisted that he also had ignored “means as yet unknown” that would dramatically accelerate progress toward the
actual construction of a Memex. Between 1945 and 1959, a number of such advances did occur and these occasioned
another article by Bush called “Memex II.”
Memex II
Memex II was very similar to the original Memex. Bush still emphasized the importance of association as a means of
indexing knowledge, and he still thought of his machine as a device to assist individuals in accessing and manipulating
different forms of information. Technical developments suggested, however, that the original dream was much closer
to realization and that it could be extended in various ways. Many innovations had impressed Bush, but the most
significant were magnetic tape, the transistor, and the digital computer.
Magnetic tape was a more suitable storage medium than the dry photography of Memex I. It could be written to, or
erased, almost instantaneously and it could hold more information. …
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