Monday, March 20, 2006

MultiMatch: multilingual/multimedia access to cultural heritage

Our shared cultural heritage (CH) is an essential part of our European identity, transcending cultural and language barriers. The MultiMATCH project will enable users to explore and interact with online CH content, across media types and language boundaries, in ways that do justice to the multitude of existing perspectives.

The MultiMATCH search engine will:
  1. crawl the Internet to identify websites with CH information, locating relevant texts, images and videos, regardless of the source and target languages used to write queries and describe the results;
  2. automatically classify the results in a semantic-web compliant fashion, based on document content, its metadata, its context, and on the occurrence of relevant CH concepts in the document;
  3. automatically extract relevant information which will then be used to create cross-links between related material, such as the biography of an artist, exhibitions of his/her work, critical analyses, etc.;
  4. organize and further analyse the material crawled to serve focused queries generated from user-formulated information needs;
  5. interact with the user to obtain a more specific definition of initial information requirements; and finally organize and display search results in an integrated, user-friendly manner, allowing users to access and exploit the information retrieved regardless of language barriers.
MultiMATCH will combine the advantages of both generic and specialised search facilities: it will be automatically updated via regular focusedcrawling of relevant web sites, and does not involve costly maintenance for manual indexing, classification or annotation of data. The system will be designed to support diverse user classes but also to assist CH institutions to disseminate their content widely and raise their visibility. MultiMatch is an IST-2005-2.5.10 project (Access to and preservation of cultural and scientific resources) and involves 11 teams from around Europe. Within the Amsterdam team, the people involved are:
  • Jaap Kamps
  • Maarten de Rijke
  • PhD student
  • PhD student
  • Postdoc
Content will be provided by Johan Oomen, The Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision.

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