Interactive Media Systems, TU Vienna

SMIL and SVG in Teaching

By Horst Eidenberger

Abstract

This paper describes how the web standards Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language (SMIL) and Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) are used in teaching at the Vienna University of Technology. SMIL and SVG are used in courses on multimedia authoring. Didactically, the goal is to teach students how to use media objects and timing concepts to build interactive media applications. Additionally, SMIL is applied to generate multimedia content from a database using a content management system. The paper gives background information on the SMIL and SVG standards and sketches how teaching multimedia is organised at the Vienna University of Technology. Courses from the summer term 2003 are described and illustrated in two case studies. General design problems of SMIL-based presentations are modelled as patterns. Additionally, suggestions for improvement in the standards are given and shortcomings of existing user agents are summarised. Our conclusion is that SMIL and SVG are very well suited for teaching multimedia. Currently, the main problem is that all existing SMIL players lack some properties desired for teaching applications (stability, correctness, etc.).

Reference

H. Eidenberger: "SMIL and SVG in Teaching"; in: "SPIE Electronic Imaging Symposium", SPIE, 2003, ISBN: 0819448214.

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