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Digital life stories: Semi-automatic (auto)biographies within lifelog collections

Byrne, Daragh (2012) Digital life stories: Semi-automatic (auto)biographies within lifelog collections. PhD thesis, Dublin City University.

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Abstract

Our life stories enable us to reflect upon and share our personal histories. Through emerging digital technologies the possibility of collecting life experiences digitally is increasingly feasible; consequently so is the potential to create a digital counterpart to our personal narratives. In this work, lifelogging tools are used to collect digital artifacts continuously and passively throughout our day. These include images, documents, emails and webpages accessed; texts messages and mobile activity. This range of data when brought together is known as a lifelog. Given the complexity, volume and multimodal nature of such collections, it is clear that there are significant challenges to be addressed in order to achieve coherent and meaningful digital narratives of our events from our life histories. This work investigates the construction of personal digital narratives from lifelog collections. It examines the underlying questions, issues and challenges relating to construction of personal digital narratives from lifelogs. Fundamentally, it addresses how to organize and transform data sampled from an individual’s day-to-day activities into a coherent narrative account. This enquiry is enabled by three 20-month long-term lifelogs collected by participants and produces a narrative system which enables the semi-automatic construction of digital stories from lifelog content. Inspired by probative studies conducted into current practices of curation, from which a set of fundamental requirements are established, this solution employs a 2-dimensional spatial framework for storytelling. It delivers integrated support for the structuring of lifelog content and its distillation into storyform through information retrieval approaches. We describe and contribute flexible algorithmic approaches to achieve both. Finally, this research inquiry yields qualitative and quantitative insights into such digital narratives and their generation, composition and construction. The opportunities for such personal narrative accounts to enable recollection, reminiscence and reflection with the collection owners are established and its benefit in sharing past personal experience experiences is outlined. Finally, in a novel investigation with motivated third parties we demonstrate the opportunities such narrative accounts may have beyond the scope of the collection owner in: personal, societal and cultural explorations, artistic endeavours and as a generational heirloom.

Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Date of Award:March 2012
Refereed:No
Supervisor(s):Jones, Gareth J. F.
Subjects:Computer Science > Lifelog
Computer Science > Interactive computer systems
Computer Science > Information storage and retrieval systems
Computer Science > Information retrieval
DCU Faculties and Centres:DCU Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Engineering and Computing > School of Computing
Use License:This item is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License. View License
Funders:IRCSET Embark, SFI
ID Code:16803
Deposited On:05 Apr 2012 12:15 by Gareth Jones. Last Modified 08 Oct 2013 11:02

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