New Frontiers in Universal Multimedia Access

Universal Multimedia Access (UMA) refers to the ability to access by any user to the desired multimedia content(s) over any type of network with any device from anywhere and anytime. UMA is a key framework for multimedia content delivery service using metadata. This report consists of three parts. The first part of this report analyzes the state-of-the-art technologies in UMA, identifies the key issues and gives what are the new challenges that still remain to be resolved in UMA. The key issues in UMA include the adaptation of multimedia contents to bridge the gap between content creation and consuming, standardized metadata description that facilitates the adaptation (e.g. MPEG-7, MPEG-21 DIA, CC/PP), and UMA system designing considering its target application. The second part introduces our approach towards these challenges; how to jointly adapt multimedia contents including different modalities and balance their presentation in an optimal way. A scheme for adapting audiovisual contents and its metadata (text) to any screen is proposed to provide the best experience in browsing the desired content. The adaptation process is modeled as an optimization problem of the total value of the content provided to the user. The total content value is optimized by jointly controlling the balance between video and metadata presentation, the transformation of the video content, and the amount of the metadata to be presented. Experimental results show that the proposed adaptation scheme enables users to browse audiovisual contents with their metadata optimized to the screen size of their devices. The last part reports some potential UMA applications especially focusing on a universal access application to TV news archives as an example.

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