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PDA map system created by university
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East China Normal University's Software Engineering Institute has developed a new software, which combines Global Positioning System and Geographic Information System data to aid travelers at tourist spots, school officials said yesterday.

The software has been designed by four students of the Software Engineering Institute. It took them a year of research and development to create the system.

To use the program, tourists or visitors need a personal digital assistant (PDA) with the new software installed.

In a trial run, students uploaded detailed information about two city parks - Changfeng Park in Putuo District and Century Park in Pudong New Area - with the help of the school's Geographic Information Department.

The new software combines the GPS and GIS data. This helps users trace detailed routes, find pathways and the best scenic spots at a park.

The system also gives the location of stores, toilets and exit points. The information comes in the form of pictures, audio and video.

The system even alerts users if they have taken a detour or gone the wrong way. Real-time information such as activities at the park or discounts at nearby shops can also be transmitted to the user's PDA.

Designer Wu Chunyuan, a senior student of the school, said that the new software is supported by a storage card providing map information for different spots.

Automatic sensors allow for touch-screen technology.

Tourist-site officials will also be able to use the software to provide updated, real-time information to visitors about exhibitions and promotions, researchers said.

(Shanghai Daily November 17, 2008)

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