Magic Wand is an application for tourists, which makes exploring a foreign city easier. It enables the user to identify a sight without a tourist guide book, but by using the mobile phone. The tourist just has to hold the mobile phone in the direction of the sight to identify it. With a keystroke, the name of the sight is shown on the display.
To get this information, the position of the user is determined through GPS. To detect the direction in which the mobile phone is pointing, the application uses an internal digital compass. Combining these two mechanisms leads to very accurate results. This is the main advantage of Magic Wand, which sets it apart from navigation systems or other software that can be used to find information about sights. Those solutions only use GPS, so they provide information about every relevant point which is close to the user. There is no possibility to consider in which direction the user is looking. This can be quite confusing, especially in areas with many sights around.
The information about the user’s position and the pointing direction is sent to a server via a mobile internet connection. The server application was also developed as a part of the Magic Wand project. It calculates the area in which the sight is located, considering the direction information. Then it searches for so-called POIs (Points of Interest) in several databases. The results of this search are sent back to the user’s mobile phone and are shown on the display. If there is more than one POI in the area, the results are sorted by distance. In the current version of the Magic Wand software, the name and the category of a POI are displayed. The user is able to filter the results by category and to choose which information about the POI should be shown.
The application requires a Symbian S60 phone equipped with a digital compass (like the Nokia 6210 Navigator). To use Magic Wand, start the application "Magic Wand Server" first and select "Options → Start Server". After that, the actual Magic Wand application can be started.
To finally use the application, the server software also has to be started. This software can be downloaded and has to be installed and used as described in the server setup guide. After setting up the server software, enter the server’s IP address and port in the mobile application and you can start to use Magic Wand.
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