Intelligent spatio-temporal integration of environmental, cultural and touristic routes

One of the most powerful advantages that Greece has as a travel destination is the unique way in which it combines its natural environment and cultural heritage. On one hand, lakes, rivers, caves, gorges, mountains, forests, national parks and parks, ecosystems, beaches, archaeological sites, monuments, historical sites, museums, synthesize a rich and diverse network of sites and points of interest. Many cultural events (e.g. festivals, exhibitions, concerts, performances and other artistic events, sport events, etc.) should be added to these attractions, which, on a consistent basis and throughout the year take place almost in every corner of the country. This impressive ensemble can fuel and enrich the content of large or small tourist routes and tours throughout the Greek territory and, by extension, enhance the domestic touristic product. To support, promote and highlight sites and events of environmental, cultural and touristic interest, various digital applications (either on-line or mobile) have been on the rise. In view of the above, the present proposal aims at designing and developing a system that, exploiting innovative spatial interconnection technologies for multiple sites and events of environmental, cultural and touristic interest, will discover and consolidate semantic information from multiple sources, providing the end user with the ability to organize and implement integrated touristic routes.

The proposed system (together with its subsystems) will use innovative methods and techniques such as (a) the (semi-) automated search and extraction of real-time knowledge from online resources, social networks, open data and sensors; b) automated discovery points of interest, events and traffic, c) semantic integration, classification and sorting of information from different sources, d) spatial content representation, e) personalized user experience, f) augmented reality for the interconnection of the digital environment with the natural environment. In the framework of the system implementation, a complex online platform and applications for smart mobile devices (smartphones, tablets, smartglasses) will be developed so that the end user, regardless of the means at his / her disposal, can manage and acquire route information in an optimal way. The e-ΧΝΗΛΑΤΗΣ platform will be an open architecture tool that, with the appropriate space-time constraints, will be able to create content and applications for similar environments (e.g. creating an integrated platform for neighboring islands where there is a communications network, integration of information on known railway routes in Greece and abroad). A typical example is Egnatia Odos, where the system platform will be implemented and tested.