Keeping up to date with news and other related information is becoming more difficult every day. The increasing amount of information and the shorter life cycle of the news make it difficult to follow the pace in all subjects that could be potentially interesting. This problem is even more important for elderly users that have difficulties to get access to certain type of information (i.e. on-line information) and are in general less expectant due to their different life style. In this situation it is easy to get disconnected from the news and lose track of the general evolution of the society. In this context automatic information searching and summarizing technologies can be a great aid to obtain the information desired effortlessly and efficiently. The Personal Newspaper application creates a daily virtual newspaper containing only information the system considers could be interesting for a specific user. The information is presented in a graphical layout similar to that found in a real newspaper. Based on the information about the users preferences stored in the user profile, VITAS uses intelligent agent’s technologies to search for the desired information in the Web and databases. The results are summarized, formatted and presented inside the Personal Newspaper.

The newspaper will be accessible in multimedia format either from the TV or the mobile.

The first version of the application is a Web-server based implementation which can be accessed in a web browser. Furthermore, voice commands were added for multi-modal navigation within the application.





After choosing the Personal Newspaper application in the VITAS platform, the first page of the virtual newspaper is presented to the user. The user may then navigate in the application by using the remote control or by voice commands. The number of displayed articles per page is configurable.

In case of a longer article, the text is split into several parts. By uttering “read more”, the article can be scrolled and the next part is shown.

Integration with VITAS platform

The Personal Newspaper application is integrated into the UCH-based VITAS platform in a standard way, by specifying the necessary artifacts like socket descriptions, target adapters, UIPM parts for the UiTV. Additionally, the ODP system for managing dialogs is adapted for the personal newspaper application.


VITAS and the VITAL project were co-financed by the European Commission.