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Mobile Spatial Interaction and Mediated Social Navigation

Mobile Spatial Interaction and Mediated Social Navigation
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Author(s): Mark Bilandzic (Technische Universität München, Germany) and Marcus Foth (Queensland University of Technology, Australia)
Copyright: 2009
Pages: 5
Source title: Encyclopedia of Information Science and Technology, Second Edition
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Mehdi Khosrow-Pour, D.B.A. (Information Resources Management Association, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-026-4.ch415

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Abstract

The increasing ubiquity of location and context-aware mobile devices and applications, geographic information systems (GIS) and sophisticated 3D representations of the physical world accessible by lay users is enabling more people to use and manipulate information relevant to their current surroundings (Scharl & Tochtermann, 2007). The relationship between users, their current geographic location and their devices are summarised by the term “mobile spatial interaction” (MSI), and stands for the emerging opportunities and affordances that location sensitive and Internet capable devices provide to its users. The first major academic event which coined the term in its current usage was a workshop on MSI (see http://msi.ftw.at/) at the CHI 2007 (Fröhlich et al., 2007). Mobile spatial interaction is grounded in a number of technologies that recently started to converge. First, the development of mobile networks and mobile Internet technologies enables people to request and exchange specific information from anywhere at anytime. Using their handheld devices people can, for example, check the latest news, request recent stock exchange values or communicate via mobile instant messaging. The second enabler is global positioning technology. Mobile devices with integrated Global Positioning System (GPS) receivers—soon to be joined by the Russian Global Navigation Satellite System (GLONASS) and the European Galileo system—are aware of their current latitude and longitude coordinates and can use this data as value added information for context-aware services, that is, mobile applications that refer to information relevant to the current location of the user. A possible use scenario for such an information request would be, for example, “find all clubs and pubs in a radius of 500 meters from my current position.” The focus of this work is to enrich the opportunities given by such location aware services with selected Web 2.0 design paradigms (Beer & Burrows, 2007; Kolbitsch & Maurer, 2006) toward mobile social networking services that are bound to specific physical places. User participation, folksonomy and geotagging are three design methods that have become popular in Web 2.0 community-platforms and proven to be effective information management tools for various domains (Casey & Savastinuk, 2007; Courtney, 2007; Macgregor & McCulloch, 2006). Applying such a design approach for a mobile information system creates a new experience of collaboration between mobile users, a step toward what Jaokar refers to as the Mobile Web 2.0 (Jaokar & Fish, 2006), that is, a chance for mediated social navigation in physical spaces.

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