Activities: Taking into account the requirements gathered from Obj.1 and relying on recently grown open-source technologies (e.g., WebGL, Game-engines, etc.), develop an authoring environment suitable for designing and implementing virtual labs. In this direction, exploit the outcome of projects like DigiArt 1 and RAGE 2 , which develop ecosystems of game designing tools, to incorporate the resulting assets into the authoring tool in order to accelerate the development process and commercialize the final product. The resulting authoring environment should integrate the shallow and deep analytics technologies developed in Obj.2 and Obj.3 respectively, in order to allow for designing improved virtual labs that fulfill the stakeholder requirements as these have been identified in Obj.1.
The authoring tool must operate within a friendly graphical user interface and require minimal programming skills by avoiding low-level commands, which will make it intractable to teachers/tutors uninitiated to technology. The work can be based on the “Story-making engine” for authoring virtual games for cultural sites that CERTH is already developing for the project DigiArt. Moreover, it should allow for designing enticing virtual labs that make users feel comfortable boosting the immersion factor by fading out the difference with real labs and by offering personalized learning services. Towards this end, the effective integration of the analytics tools into the authoring environment will be a success measure. Finally, compatibility with the RAGE ecosystem will be an important characteristic of the developed authoring tool for facilitating its exploitation.