Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft is the largest organization for applied research in Europe. Fraunhofer’s research efforts are geared entirely to people’s needs: health, security, communication, energy and the environment. The society includes more than 80 research units, including 60 Fraunhofer Institutes, at different locations in Germany. Fraunhofer FIT, as one of the institutes, has a staff of about 110 researchers from Computer Science, the Social Sciences, Psychology, Business Administration, Economics and Engineering. They are organized in four departments and cooperate closely with Prof. Jarke's Information Systems group at RWTH Aachen University.
Effective networking and collaboration in virtual enterprises requires flexible support well attuned to emerging tasks and processes. Communities must be assisted in sharing experience and knowledge. For over 25 years FIT has successfully designed, implemented, and operated cooperation systems. The Mixed and Augmented Reality Solutions (MARS) working group develops and provides custom-tailored Augmented (AR), Virtual (VR) and Mixed Reality (MR) systems and assembles installations, exhibits or pervasive augmented reality games, e. g. for trade fairs or events. Novel services are fully functional miniature models of AR installations and wide-range laser scans of buildings and plants.
The main work regarding this project will be carried out by the Mixed and Augmented Reality Solutions (MARS) department. The department has comprehensive experience in the development and integration of Mixed and Virtual Reality solutions. It has been partner in numerous national and international projects; more recent science learning related involvement include the projects CONNECT, EXPLOAR and SCeTGo. The department is also heavily involved in research and development of mobile and mixed reality games and presence research.
MARS belongs to the Computer Supported Collaborative Work (CSCW) division. The division is focusing on communities and cooperation, social computing and cooperation awareness and has expertise in the development of community platforms in the e-learning domain. Several EC-funded research projects have been coordinated within CSCW. The division has developed the BSCW Shared Workspace System.
Involvement in PATHWAY
FIT is providing the infrastructure for the Community Support Platform, underlying community system and functionality. The Community Support Platform is mainly based on the BSCW.
Moreover, FIT offers the Inquiry Based Learning Platform Science Center To Go as a medium for Inquiry Based Learning, which is being trained to participating teachers and presented at various PATHWAY venues.
- Hagen Buchholz
Fraunhofer’s project responsible offering technical support and training on the BSCW and Science Center To Go. Fraunhofer research fellow on experimental hands-on learning environments.
- Constantin Brosda
Researcher on Mixed and Augmented Reality and Tangible User Interfaces. He offers technical support and training on the BSCW and Science Center To Go.