FINAL REPORT

 

 

Acronym: EPS-INFO
Contract no: 20732
1997-1999

Contractors


SPIEGEL TV (SPTV)

British Film Institute (BFI)

German Research Network (DFN)

Computing Centre (URZ) University of Münster

Institute of Sociology (IFS) University of Münster

In 1998 SPIEGEL TV was replaced by

Westdeutscher Rundfunk (WDR)

TV Münster / Offener Kanal

Certain tasks out of the SPIEGEL TV contract were taken over by

company b, Babelsberg

SNT Mediaconcept, Münster

 

Workareas of the call which are covered

Keywords
Education / Training - Arts, culture, entertainment - Science information in the mass media (TV and Internet)

Workarea according to contract
"The project advances the dissemination of science information through educational multimedia-devices and commercial online-services in close relation with mass media ventures. The methods introduced in the project will improve access of local residents to services, through new public oriented pedagogical tools, develop human resources and significantly increase the competitiveness of less favoured groups as a result of sex, distance or age."

 









...more than 50 'deliverables'...

Objectives of the call

General objectives
These objectives were formulated in the original proposal:


"The production of conceptually and aesthetically innovative science videos for educational settings and the development of science online-services for Internet-user-groups based on these TV programs." - Results: The project has produced 9 science TV programs for broadcast and numerous online-presentations of science content (storyboards and interfaces).

"The use of such science videos in various educational settings, including ‘tele-universities’, privileged and deprived milieus etc." - Results: The project has tested and evaluated science TV programs and Internet offerings in various settings, mainly university teaching (IFS) and socially diversified milieus (BFI).

"The acceptance of science online-services designed to move from information to individualised expert counselling." - Results: The project has not been able to establish 'individualised expert counselling services' within a commercial online-service, due to the cessation of the SPTV partnership in 1998. Other online-offerings, though, have been developed and tested.

Objectives by contractors

SPIEGEL TV, Hamburg
SPTV had been expected to provide the mass media basis for our project. During the first year (1997) vigorous efforts were made to direct part of the formidable production facilities of SPTV into the project. The pre-production, production and broadcast of 3 science TV programs rendered valuable insights and tangible experience. Commercial considerations, though, prevented a truly experimental format. Such experiments, we learned, would have called for much higher and specific funding. The management of the SPIEGEL Verlag (mother of SPTV) terminated, for economic reasons, the contract in March 1998.

British Film Institute, London
The BFI, the largest European public service organisation promoting the development of film, television and video, has provided, as expected, through its Research Department, the facilities and expertise to evaluate international science TV programming and to conduct (within the funding limits) surveys and focus groups. This has led to extensive reports and evaluations which are unique in the field. In addition, the BFI archives have provided support in many cases.

German Research Network, Berlin
The German Research Network (DFN), which offers a value-added service based on the central institutions (relays and gateways) of the science network WIN etc., was expected to provide high speed accesses to the Internet for science TV programming by SPTV. This was facilitated, but - due to the production routines of SPTV - not actualised. In addition, the DFN offered support in the production of the various interfaces and 'shells' for TV and Internet presentation and, finally, took over the production of one demonstration TV program.

Computing Centre, University of Münster
The URZ was expected to and did provide local support in terms of value-added scientific communication technology, mainly in the field of Internet-TV related image 'grabbing' and on many levels of intra-university co-operation.

Institute of Sociology, U of Münster
The IFS, based on its activities in establishing the content side of electronic information and communication infrastructures at the University of Münster, co-ordinated the project as a whole, produced the majority of the 'content presenting' storyboards and interfaces, supervised the production of the SPTV, WDR and DFN programs and co-produced the TV Münster programs. In addition, the teaching activities at this institution (in the form of large seminars) provided the basis for surveys, evaluations, various student activities (i.e. campus TV) and ongoing applications of the results in adult education and telelearning. The IFS is also responsible for the publication and dissemination of the results of the EPS-project.

Westdeutscher Rundfunk, Cologne
The WDR came into the project as a sponsoring partner (non-funded) after SPTV left. Its well established science program 'Quarks&Co.' was to provide a platform for further experiments to interconnect science on the Internet and in TV. All efforts were concentrated on developing a 'working Internet interface for TV' to be used in the large live studio facilities of 'Quarks&Co.'. An intensive co-operation between 'company b', the WDR and the IFS ensued, resulting in a elaborate 3-D-interface solution that was used in one live program in late 1998. All this took place under 'pre-contract' conditions. Due to very late arrival of the amended contract from Brussels (April 1999) WDR was not able to make further plans for applications of the interface in 1999.

TV Münster / Offener Kanal, Münster
TV Münster became the other 'substitute' for SPTV as a funded contractor. This open / public channel produced 4 'European Popular Science'-TV programs which explored various formats suited for Campus or University TV productions. The idea was to merge 'grass roots efforts' and a fairly professional 'shell' (produced by company b and SNT Mediaconcept respectively) that could be re-used not only on a local, but also on a European level by universities etc.

company b, Babelsberg

This highly innovative company was part of the 'Europäisches Filmzentrum Babelsberg' and had been recommended to us by, among others, the ISPO project officer. company b entered a very fruitful co-operation with the IFS, the DFN, the BFI and the WDR discussing the feasibility of a powerful 3-D-Interface Internet-TV for TV and even movie productions. This project in some ways proved to be way ahead of the actual willingness of science TV producers to change their routines. company b developed an interface for 'Quarks&Co.' and had started other developments, when, in August 1999, it collapsed due to corporate re-arrangements at the 'Europäisches Filmzentrum'.

SNT Mediaconcept, Münster
SNT in September 1999 took over, with ISPO's consent, the remaining tasks of company b (in terms of assistance) and produced the re-usable 'shells' for the 4 programs by TV Münster. This local co-operation will prove helpful for future Campus TV activities based on the project.

Specific awareness objectives

Production of popular science videos for educational settings and development of science-online information
The original contention of our proposal that "content production has not kept pace with the advance of communication technologies" and that "educational institutions still find reason to hold back on adopting a multimedia approach" has proven to be prophetic. All the efforts of our project - which by ISPO itself was touted as "making science 'cool' for the new generation" - have only made a dent in the prevailing separation between so-called serious science and the young generation, which, "through mass media exposure, has been intellectually socialised by these seemingly ‘illegitimate’ forms of knowledge" (cf. original proposal). We feel that our concepts for TV production and our content production and presentation experiments for online-purposes came several years too early. They should be realised now. On the other hand, especially on a local and regional level (multimedia university learning, adult education in media competence, local public TV etc.) we have made satisfactory headway.

Evaluation of the educational impact of popular science videos and of online-science content
The methodological problems of reaching "individuals and groups - students and trainees - in educational settings undertaxed by the visual quality of their learning situation and overtaxed by the unresolved dilemmas of the educational system" (original proposal) were solved by concentrating on two populations, students at the University of Münster and focus groups in the UK, selected by the BFI. Due to the content production tasks of the project it was not possible to fund quantitative research, so qualitative forms of observation and evaluation were used, which have flowed into various reports and publications. In addition, our 'evaluated experience' has been directly converted into university teaching experiments, adult media competence training at the University of Münster, a telelearning project, student activities concerning campus TV etc.

 

Results of
the project

Production of  9 TV programs

The EPS-project produced three science TV programs with SPIEGEL TV: 'Der konservierte Mensch. Botschafter aus der Geschichte' ; 'Das Geheimnis der Affensprache' ; 'Die Erben des Sherlock Holmes. Wie Wissenschaftler Verbrechen aufklären'. One 'Quarks&Co.' TV program was produced with the WDR: 'Wie wir sterben', including a 3-D-Web-TV-studio interface. Four 'European Popular Science'-TV programs were produced with TV Münster: 'Tod und Sterben', 'Zur Hölle mit der Natur. Ewiges Leben durch moderne Technik?', 'Brainstorming. Aufbruch der Gehirnforschung', 'Phantastische Wissenschaft', introducing a re-usable 'shell' for campus TV productions. One science TV program was produced with the DFN: 'Sequences of the future', demonstrating the activities of the DFN and using a novel interface for merging Internet and TV. The nine productions use different formats exploring the feasibility of science presentation within the limits of the present mass media system.

 

Storyboards and interfaces for organising science content on the Internet and in television

The IFS, in collaboration with its partners, developed various methods of 'storyboarding' and 'interfacing', beginning with simple tools for research and pre-production and leading to online-versions of all the films produced - SPIEGEL-Online, WDR-Online, TV Münster-Online, DFN-Online. In addition, the IFS developed several special interfaces for science content presentation on the Internet: 'Peace in Westfalia - War in the World', 'Die grösste Show des Jahrtausends', 'Fantastic Science', 'Star Trek' etc. Interfaces for teleteaching, 'Telewissen', and multimedia university teaching, cf.seminar websites, were developed. A major contribution of the project are 'interfaces for television' produced for the WDR, TV Münster and DFN programs: an interface for live TV studio navigation in cyberspace, an interface or 'shell' for campus TV productions and an interface for general TV and Internet purposes.

Reports and evaluations of science in TV programming and on the Internet

The BFI conducted a survey of science TV programming in North America and in Europe, 'Programming audit - best practices', expanded on the possibilities of 'making science cool' within the existing framework of public and private science TV programming,'Initial results - making science cool', reported on Internet use in various educational setting in the UK, 'Web pages as a value added service', and on a focus group survey, 'TV website content and use'. The IFS installed a comprehensive 'science media directory' and produced reports and papers on various aspects of the project, among them reports for the INET99, 'Broadcasting the Web. Interfaces for science and the mass media', and for the German ISKO-conference 1999, 'Wissenschaftsvernetzung, Internet und Interface-Design für die Massenmedien', and a paper on 'pre-production technologies'.

Publications

Project members have drawn from their experience with the project in articles dealing with, for example, 'Net communities' (R. Rilling), 'Virtuality in the social sciences', 'Interface culture' (H.J.Krysmanski) and 'Media literacy' (C.MacCabe). Two book publications by members of the project team are in progress: 'Media Competence for Scientists. Results of the European Popular Science Information Project' and 'Fantastic Science: A Primer for the Media' ( both at Waxmann Verlag).

Dissemination of results and future plans

In conjunction with the University of Münster, the Deutsche Film- und Fernsehakademie Berlin (dffb) and the DFN, the IFS will conduct media competence training courses for scientists (for a national clientele, commencing May 1999), drawing from the contacts and expertise gained through the EPS-project. A telelearning program has reached its experimental stage, involving the University of Münster and possibly the Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung, Berlin. Further production of science campus TV programs will be promoted by the DFN, the University of Münster and TV Münster.

Conformity of work done with that described in the project workplan

The tasks outlined in the contract were completed.

On a more general level, though, the departure of SPIEGEL TV in early 1998 changed the whole texture of the original project in the sense that we were forced to 'diversify' and to explore side roads in order to pursue the project goals. This has led to the accumulation of a multitude of relevant and interesting aspects - as the following list of deliverables demonstrates.

 

Conclusions of project experiences

The resistance of the two cultures - (commercial) mass media and (academic / public) science institutions - against the digital revolution was underestimated. At the outset of the project SPIEGEL TV as well as the BFI were still almost exclusively using analogue technologies, although plans for 'digitalisation' had been touted at both places. In addition, the production routines and the time regimes at organisations like SPTV and the WDR on one hand and at our scientific partner institutions on the other did not mesh too well: hectic last minute activities vs. carefully planned inputs coming too late, for example. What has been missing here - and seems to be typical for the European situation - was a common 'digital and multimedia culture' as one would find in the USA.

Project management and co-ordination, which in spite of the disruptions went rather smoothly, would have been aided by an interactive software program for cooperation. So we would recommend that ISPO should try to provide projects of this type (spanning different production cultures) with some sort of a co-operative software (like www.thebrain.com) and even make the granting of funds dependent on the acceptance of such a system by all partners.

We also recommend to call for projects that develop common 'techno-cultural' ground, a common multimedia culture for institutions working with the Internet / digital multimedia on one hand and institutions of the traditional media (TV, book publishers etc.) on the other. Within our own project we came closest to this with our 'interfaces for television'.

Finally what we demonstrated is, that fairly elaborate multimedia products - be it videos or websites - can also be produced in a grass roots manner, as we have shown on a local level in Münster. Students, for example, have produced some remarkable Internet presentations within the project. And: with the help of a local open TV channel and the addition of a professional 'shell' it was possible, using amateur equipment, to produce campus TV programs of good quality that have been praised by the local scientific community. This kind of spreading a multimedia 'micro-culture' should be encouraged.

 

 

Feedback by target groups

There was intensive feedback coming from the students of our many mass seminars at the U of Münster. More than 200 students were included at one time or another in the activities of the project, as consumers of videos, as users of websites, as producers of websites and as producers of videos within the TV-Münster effort. Here, the project has left us with a bright and interested group, of which many are working their way into media professions. About 10 M.A. and Ph.D. theses are in the making.

Project members have attended a number of conferences and have presented first results, notably at the bi-annual congress of the German Education Association 'Medien - Generation', March 1998 in Hamburg, and at the conference of the German section of ISKO, September 1999 in Hamburg (we have been invited back for the next conference).

The TV programs of SPTV at Vox, of 'Quarks&Co.' at the WDR and of TV-Münster have resulted in some consumer feedback, which has been analysed in our reports. The same holds for the users of our online-presentations (SP-Online, WDR-Online, Die Zeit-online, publikom). The BFI reports 3 and 4 also contain such information.

We tried to provide a systematic view of the project's workarea and therefore we ourselves were dependent on the outlay of the results in the final report before 'spreading the word'. Due to this character of the project the main target groups - scientists interested in mass media activities and media producers interested in science content - are just beginning to be addressed.

 

Further use of the project’s results, ongoing and planned activities

In the scope of the contractors

Television

University of Münster and TV Münster are going to enter a cooperation for more campus TV productions using the 'shell' and the project experience.
The DFN will use the EPS-program 'Sequences of the future' as a basis for presenting its work in television (ARD, Einstein-Channel' etc.).

The WDR is still interested in the project (i.e. storyboard applications) and offers EPS team members the opportunity to contribute as science TV authors.

Educational activities

Commencing May 2000, the University of Münster in conjunction with the Deutsche Film- und Fernsehakademie Berlin (dffb) will conduct nationally advertised media competence seminars for scientists based on the EPS-project experience and its contacts (director: H. J. Krysmanski).
Based on the telelearning concept 'Telewissen' experimental multimedia teleteaching will commence at the Faculty of Education and Social Sciences, U of Münster, and, possibly, at the Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung, Berlin.
Other forms of multimedia teaching initiated by EPS, incorporating Internet and TV productions, will continue at the IFS.

Publications

Further writings by various members of the EPS team are planned on

Media competence for scientists
Content generation and science fiction
Interface culture and the windows-metaphor

For citizens

Adult education: The above activities also apply to groups outside of universities including media workers, professionals etc.
Telelearning: In case the Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung, Berlin, adopts the concept 'Telewissen', activities based on multimedia devices will move into the field of political education (politische Bildung) for a wide range of groups including youth and the handicapped.

By other projects

The DFN will assist in disseminating the results of the EPS-project within its own system of projects ('test beds'), promoting awareness for the cultural and aesthetic (not only technological) dimensions of science information.

List of deliverables

List of films

The following SPTV-programs are relevant and current in the sense that they are now being used as examples in our media competence training for scientists and that the experience is being reflected in our writings and in future projects. The pre-production and production of these programs was characterised by the confrontation between the two cultures of commercial mass media routines (SPTV) and of academic culture to which the EPS team and its scientific contacts belong. For research, scriptwriting and co-operation our storyboarding method was developed - which evolved into presentations for SPIEGEL-Online. The EPS team took part in shooting and editing of the films, but was able to only marginally influence the format, which was determined by commercial considerations. The same held true for the selection of the themes - mummies, apes, crime - which were completely mainstream.

'Der konservierte Mensch' (SPTV): The program, aired 5 December 1997 was commercially successful, with a market share of 3.5 % (well above Vox average). The BFI contributed footage. There was extensive Internet research, some Internet images were used. Various types of storyboards and online-presentations were produced and tested.
'Das Geheimnis der Affensprache' (SPTV): The program, aired 12 December 1997 had a market share of 1.7 %, which was disappointing to the management. As far as format and quality was concerned, it was the best of the three. It was the one first re-broadcast, in a slightly altered version, by Alexander Kluge in one of his dctp-shows. Research on the part of the IFS had been intensive. Footage by the BFI and the Institut für den Wissenschaftlichen Film, Göttingen, had been secured.
'Die Erben des Sherlock Holmes - Forensic' (SPTV): The program was aired 19 December 1997, market share 2.5 % (average). The EPS-project had provided extensive scripts, Internet material and qualified experts. The quality of the show was conventional, in spite of elaborate storyboards etc. Online presentation (SP-Online) was marred by the fact that copyright considerations (that could not be quickly resolved) prevented the use of images.

The following WDR-program is current and valid as a model for interface-solutions Internet-TV in large, live studio-settings:

'Wie wir sterben' (WDR): The program was aired 17 November 1998. It contained, on an experimental basis, a section where a 3-D-animated interface provided an access to the Internet, showing the presenter navigating via a large screen into 'cyberspace'. company b and the IFS had prepared various versions leading into visually interesting websites. The presenters decided on a visually toned down version because they felt that the theme did not justify 'technical fireworks'. Still, the other versions of the interface should still be available from the successors of company b. Aspects of the production process and its realisation are discussed elsewhere.

The following TV-Münster videos are current and valid as model solutions for campus TV programming using various resources, different levels of competence and formats. All programs are 'held together' by a professional 'science campus TV shell'. The four programs were aired repeatedly commencing 6 December 1999, to a potential audience of 150 000 households in the region. The programs were co-conceived and co-produced by the EPS-team and TV-Münster / Open channel. Katy Teubener and Nils Zurawski of the IFS, who had gained experience in the collaboration with SPTV and WDR, functioned as main authors, directors and editors, drawing from local (university) experts and situations. All programs were accompanied by complex online-information.

'Tod und Sterben' (TV Münster / SPTV): Here various dramaturgies were tested to explore the dimensions of one central theme. There was extended use of inserted images. The program was received very well locally and within the university.
'Zur Hölle mit der Natur - Nanotechnology' (TV Münster): Here the attempt was made to organise animations and other images around a lengthy interview with a renowned local expert on nanotechnology. The formal problem of 'talking heads', so common in science programs, was addressed. Some limits of non-professional camera-work and the existing editing equipment became evident. But the 'shell' held up and this program, too, was well received.
'Brainstorming - Aufbruch der Gehirnforschung' (TV Münster): This program constituted a special case since much of the video material was based on SPTV shooting for an EPS-program on brain research in the summer of 1997 (partly at the U of Münster). Rough cut original material (never broadcasted) of about 90 minutes was edited and finalised at TV Münster, based on a script by H.J.Krysmanski. One side idea was to reflect on the fact that TV channels (private and commercial) by now have much interesting material in their archives that could by re-used and re-combined under the aspect of science communication.
'Phantastische Wissenschaft - Magazin' (TV Münster): This program was done in magazine-format, deriving its title from the doings and musings at the Institute of Planetology at the U of Münster, which is one of the most mass media conscious institutes here. This piece and the others were conceived and directed by student groups with the help of the IFS and TV Münster. This video reflected a common situation of campus TV efforts: heterogeneous products from different sources. Here our idea of using a professional 'shell' proved to be particularly helpful. Good echoes on this program, too.

The final video, by DFN and IFS, is current and valid as a model for using interfaces to present science content and the work of scientific institutions in advanced forms of TV programming and especially in environments where TV and the Internet begin to merge.

'Sequences of the future' (DFN / IFS): This video was developed after it became clear that the second 'Quarks&Co.' program could not be produced in time. We also thought it helpful to realise our ideas of an interface Internet-TV without the restrictions of an existing science program format. Another aspect was that the DFN, in spite of all its powerful service functions to the German science community, has not projected its work into the mass media in an adequate way. The video will be used by the DFN as a starting point to develop working contacts with public and private television (i.e. the ARD and, notably, the new science 'Einstein channel' in Berlin).

List of storyboards / interfaces

The term 'storyboard' refers to forms of visual presentation of (scientific) content within the limits of Internet interfaces. Just as in the pre-production phase of filmmaking etc., the storyboard here develops a narrative structure suited for communication and co-operation between, for example, the various groups involved in producing TV programs. But the storyboard can also serve as an online-presentation of a TV program or it can stand completely on its own, as an 'Internet narration'. The most important aspect of Internet-TV convergence, though, seems to be the issue of interfaces, i.e. the design of 'portals' or complex 'window arrangements' suited to open up cyberspace for navigation (cf. Steven Johnson, Interface Culture. How New Technology Transforms the Way We Create and Communicate, HarperEdge 1997). The storyboards and interfaces listed here are documented on the EPS-website.

Storyboards related to film / video / TV productions

The following storyboard-examples are current and valid in the sense that most of them can still be retrieved by the users from various TV-websites and that they serve as examples for organising science content for (or after) TV production, in ongoing design and teaching projects:

'Mars Pathfinder mission' (SPTV / SP-Online-Forum): This link collection was organised as a research and treatment platform for a 1997 SPTV-program (Vox) on the mission. In addition, the EPS-project provided experts for a lengthy SP-Online-forum (which was one of the most successful in this early phase of SP-Online).
'Der konservierte Mensch - Mummies' (SPTV / SP-Online):This one and the next three demonstrate the development of a storyboard in various stages - from a pre-production tool to SP- / WDR-Online to EPS-website presentations.
'Ape Language' (SPTV / SP-Online): see above.
'Die Erben des Sherlock Holmes - Forensics' (SPTV / SP-Online): see above.
'Tod und Sterben' (WDR-Online): see above.
'Zahlen lügen nicht - On numbers and statistics' (WDR): This storyboard did organise extensive online-research into a treatment / script for WDR; the program was not realised.
'Geklontes Leben' (WDR-Online): This was a link collection organised as a storyboard for another 'Quarks&Co.' program.
'Tod und Sterben' (TV Münster / EPS / publikom): This storyboard and the next three, as they appear now, were designed to accompany and deepen the information and content of the TV-Münster programs. Behind them is a long line of 'working' storyboards and electronic 'treatments'. At the time of the airing of the programs these online-presentations were accessible via the public information homepage of the City of Münster (publikom).
'Brainstorming' (TV Münster / EPS / publikom): see above.
'Phantastische Wissenschaft' (TV Münster / EPS / publikom): see above.
'Zur Hölle mit der Natur - Nanotechnology' (TV Münster, EPS / publikom): see above.
Others: here we have assembled a few more storyboards in various stages of development and sophistication.

Interfaces for television

The following interface-examples are current and valid in the sense that they represent some of the central results of the EPS-project, namely various models and procedures ('shells') for 'packaging' science content for TV productions:

Studio-interface (company b / WDR / IFS): The function of this interface ('Wie wir sterben') was studio navigation of cyberspace in a realistic manner. Extensive research on the 'topology' of cyberspace and its representation was conducted. Some of the topologies ('Plumbdesign-Thesaurus', 'Smithonian') were used as sources of inspiration. But with the funds available it was not possible to merge the considerable 3-D-animation capabilities of company b and the exciting research and design being done on 'cyberspace topologies' elsewhere to the fullest extent. We think that projects addressing this field - studio navigation of cyberspace that is not just flashy and 'hype' but gives a true impression of the 'non-Euclidean' geometry of cyberspace - should be high on the agenda of information society promotion. Such projects would touch the core of the digital information process and they could have eminently practical application when the Internet and TV really merge.

Interface for campus TV (SNT MediaPartners / IFS / TV Münster): This interface or 'shell' was produced to provide a re-usable professional frame / packaging for semi-professional or amateur videos coming out of scientific institutions reflecting visually on their work etc. It was used in our TV-Münster programs. This effort therefore constitutes a model for starting campus TV efforts that require - in addition to acquiring this interface or 'shell' - little more than a local outlet (like an 'open channel') and local initiatives based on (digital) amateur equipment. In this sense, we are at present trying to interest the U of Münster in supporting further productions with TV Münster, using this 'shell'. The shell can also be adapted, at little cost, by other institutions and might, we suggest, even be promoted for use through ISPO.

Interface for general TV (DFN / IFS): This interface or shell was developed through the DFN ('Sequences of the future') with the specific intention of presenting science information through a 'window' equally well suited for Internet and TV presentation. With growing bandwidth much of what scientists are producing in the 'test beds' of the DFN can not only be presented impressively on the Internet, but should also find its way directly into TV presentations. The DFN, in this sense, will use this EPS-product to promote this idea within its own, technically oriented, clientele and with TV companies.

Storyboards / interfaces for the Internet

The following storyboard / interface-examples are current and valid in the sense of presenting various models of organising science / information content for the Internet:

Peace in Westphalia: An online presentation for the City of Münster website on occasion of the 350th anniversary of the Westphalian Peace Treaty, exploring ways of presenting peace research information on the Internet for a wider audience.
Fantastic science: An ongoing project to illustrate a special contention of the EPS-project, namely that science presentation in the mass media has to be linked to the science fiction tradition. This interface is still under development as a TV interface, an Internet version and also as background for a CD-ROM and book publication.
Windows - history of a metaphor: This elaborate storyboard (which for copyright reasons can only be shown with its introductory page) is in preparation of a CD-ROM and book publication (beyond the EPS-project) which will deal with the history of the interface ('window') in world culture, partly as a future resource for interface design.
Star Trek: This fan website by one of our students was developed into an interface for organising a mass seminar on science fiction and popular culture (1998/99). All proceedings, student papers etc. were integrated into the website, which has accompanied the EPS-project since, gaining a certain stature in Star Trek fandom.
Die grösste Show des Jahrtausends - Die Zeit-Online: This was an attempt, by Nils Zurawski, to tell a story consisting of a lengthy text and elements of 'hypertext storyboarding' for a younger audience. The online-presentation is accompanied by a reportage on the EPS-project.

Interfaces for teleteaching / teaching

The following interfaces are current and valid for follow-up projects in telelearning and university teaching projects:

'Telewissen' (U of Münster): A survey of telelearning and teleteaching projects in Germany was undertaken and a basic platform developed for what can be called process-oriented, interactive telelearning and / or science-oriented tele-discourse. This platform incorporates simple software solutions for interaction and visual exchanges. It will be, with assistance of the U of Münster, tested in the coming semesters within the Faculty of Education and the Social Sciences. In addition, the Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung, Berlin, has expressed interest to use the system for its political telelearning program.
Various seminar-websites: R. Rilling and H.J.Krysmanski have used various forms of seminar-websites as experimental platforms for what may be termed 'interfaces into special science content' developing in cyberspace.

List of reports, evaluations and assessments

The following reports etc. are current and valid in the sense that they are being used in a media competence training program for scientists, as sources for publications etc.:

Evaluation of science media (1997): This initial survey was installed on the EPS-website early in the project in order to evaluate the science content of selected media (newspapers, magazines, TV / radio, science institutions etc.).
Pre-production technologies (1998): This report reflects on the technical and organisational aspects of the pre-production process in the TV industry that would have to be considered if the goals of the EPS-project should really be implemented.
British Film Institute, report 1: An extensive survey of science TV programming in North America and Europe, 'Programming audit - best practices'.
British Film Institute, report 2: An analysis of the formats and aesthetics of science programming, 'Initial results - making science cool'.
British Film Institute, report 3: Results of surveys in various educational settings in the UK on web use ('Web pages as value added service').
British Film Institute, report 4: Results of a focus group survey in the UK ('TV websites content and use').
INET99 report: A report for the INET99 conference ('Broadcasting the Web: Interfaces for Science and the Mass Media').
ISKO99 report: A report for the German ISKO section conference in Sept. 99 in Hamburg ('Wissenschaftsvernetzung, Internet und Interface-Design für die Massenmedien').
Various user tests and assessments: This material, notably an extensive evaluation of science programs by students, is documented at the EPS-website and will be incorporated in the two major publications presenting our results still in progress.
Others: Several large seminars (i.e.
'New forms of scientific communication', 'Science and the mass media', 'Information society, internet and politics', 'Popular culture and science fiction', 'Campus TV' etc.) have yielded interesting student papers. In addition, several M.A. and PH.D. theses are in the making.

List of publications

Finished

Rilling: R. Rilling, one of the early EPS-team members, has published several articles drawing from the experience, i.e. 'Politik und Netz' (in: Ch. Maar, C. Leggewie: Internet & Politik. Bollmann: Köln 1998); 'Internet & Politik: eine vertrackte Angelegenheit mit Fragezeichen' (in: c`t 19/1998); 'Standing in the middle of nowhere - where do you want to go today? - Über das Verschwinden der flüchtigen Netzgesellschaften' (in: I. Lohmann, I. Gogolin, eds.: Die Kultivierung der Medien. Erziehungs- und sozialwissenschaftliche Beiträge. Leske+Budrich: Opladen 1999). He also maintains one of the most prestigious websites on Internet-policy in Germany ('Wissenschaft plus Politik').
Krysmanski: H.J. Krysmanski has accompanied the project with a number of publications for the social science community and general public: 'Weltsystem, neue Medien und soziologische Imagination' (in St. Hradil, ed.: Differenz und Integration. Campus Verlag: Frankfurt 1997), 'Virtuelle Welt, Computer und Gesellschaft' (in: Soziologische Revue, 1/99), 'Die Transformation der Massenmedien durch die Welt der vernetzten Computer - und was Wissenschaft damit zu tun hat' (in: I. Lohmann, I. Gogolin, eds.: Die Kultivierung der Medien. Erziehungs- und sozialwissenschaftliche Beiträge. Leske+Budrich: Opladen 1999), 'Windows in Art - Interface Culture' (Patek Philippe Magazine, April 2000).
MacCabe: Colin MacCabe, head of research of the BFI during the project, contributed a paper on occasion of the Congress of the German Education Association, where the EPS-project was featured at one of the sessions: 'The Geopolitical Aesthetic or How to educate through the media' (in: I. Gogolin, D. Lenzen, eds.: Medien-Generation. Leske+Budrich: Opladen 1999).
Zurawski: Nils Zurawski was senior researcher in the project: 'Gesellschaftsbilder in der Informationsgesellschaft' (in: H. Kubicek, R. Rilling et al, eds., Machtfragen der Informationsgesellschaft. BdWi-Verlag: Marburg 1999).

In progress

Publications on 'Media competence for scientists' and on 'Fantastic science: a primer for the media' (plus CD-ROMs) - in German and English - are being prepared, presenting results and consequences of the EPS-project in a form that will be helpful in promoting media competence of scientists and, respectively, will explore the relations between science presentation and science fiction, mapping possible themes and subjects for the mass media. These publications are being developed within a media competence program for scientists, conducted jointly by the University of Münster and the Deutsche Film- und Fernsehakademie, Berlin, commencing in May 2000.


A new book
by H.J. Krysmanski, Popular Science. Media, Science and Power (in German),
in part reflects on the EPS-project

Prof.Dr.H.J.Krysmanski, Co-ordinator
EPS copyright 23 February 2000