An open framework for prototyping the delivery of multimedia-rich virtual learning experiences through the Internet

Stavroula Zoi, John Melas, Panagiotis Kalliaras, and Nikolas Mitrou
National Technical University of Athens
Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering
Heroon Polytechniou 9
GR 15773, Athens
e-mail: http://


Keywords: Virtual learning environment, guided tour, live guide, VRML, JAVA, virtual monuments, multimedia


Incorporating interactive multimedia, VRML, and real-time video and audio conferencing into a multi-user, object-oriented framework to create a collaborative virtual learning environment is one scenario for killer applications towards emerging telecommunication infrastructures, such as the Internet 2 or the current Internet enhanced with QoS mechanisms. In this paper such an open framework for enabling rapid prototyping and delivery of virtual learning experiences through the Internet is presented. Towards this end cultural heritage content is exploited.  VRML and Java are the key technologies. Based on this framework, the Enigma application is presented which enables groups of users to monitor multimedia-rich virtual guided tour sessions inside 3D representations of archaeological sites. A live guide controls these sessions so that all users have the same view of the content. Directions for further research based on the conducted work are presented.