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Professor develops new Taiwan heritage mobile app for tourists

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- National Cheng Kung University (NCKU) professor Chong-Ming Huang has developed a mobile application that guides tourists when they explore historical sites around Taiwan, according to the university's press release.

Either by Internet login or downloading the free app on phones, people can navigate themselves based on where they are, said Huang.

The mobile application, called Demodulating and Encoding Heritage (DEH) and developed by Huang, from the Department of Computer Science and Information Engineering, is linked to the Chunghwa Telecom hicloud CaaS.

It has thus far accumulated more than 6,000 stories about the historical sites in the database, and is continually increasing.

“DEH combines Netcom with cultural and historical areas,” said Huang.

“It applies a digitization program to organize the appropriate humanities contents into the information database. It uses Netcom information technology to develop cultural and historical stories, to be utilized in the Taiwan tourism industry and other innovative wireless mobile Internet applications and service industries,” he said

The project began in 2008, and is the product of the combined efforts of seven universities and more than 12 teachers in the field of information, another five teachers from four universities in the field of cultural history, and one teacher from a university specializing in the field of industrial design.

According to Huang, the education system puts great emphasis on interdisciplinary integration, but it is difficult to span the gulf between engineering and history.

What's more, the database is continually growing. All one has to do to access the information is to search for “Demodulating and Encoding Heritage” on the Internet, or simply type in http://deh.csie.ncku.edu.tw/trip to visit the website, according to representatives of NCKU.

For smartphones, one would need to download the “DEH Mini (文史脈流)” app from Google Play, and you're set to go.

Huang explained, using the Small West Gate (小西門) remains on the NCKU campus as an example, that once people have traveled to the Small West Gate, they just need to log in and utilize GPS positioning, and will be able to see photos and a detailed history of the Small West Gate, as well as search for nearby attractions.

The app allows people to plan a full itinerary beforehand, simply by logging in before setting out, noted Huang, and in the future, it can also be expected that the app will add a personal blog platform in order to share personal travel stories.

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