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Tele-Action Objects (TAO). Presented by Kingsley Adeoye April 3, 2008. Outline. Introduction Motivations TAO Basics Hypergraph Structure Knowledge Structure TAO Application and Management Active Management System Current Applications TAO for MICE Conclusion.

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Tele action objects tao

Tele-Action Objects (TAO)

Presented by

Kingsley Adeoye

April 3, 2008


  • Introduction

  • Motivations

  • TAO Basics

  • Hypergraph Structure

  • Knowledge Structure

  • TAO Application and Management

  • Active Management System

  • Current Applications

  • TAO for MICE

  • Conclusion

What is a tele action object
What is a Tele-Action Object

  • According to [1],

    • “A tele-action object is a multimedia object with an associated hypergraph structure and corresponding knowledge base structure”

Tele-Action Object






  • Many multimedia applications require

    • Effective presentation of objects

    • Efficient transfer of objects

  • TAO approach provides:

    • Effective presentation algorithms

    • Simple but efficient transfer protocols

    • Automatic response to events

Tao basics
TAO Basics

  • Hypergraph describes structure

  • Knowledge describes actions

  • Tele-Action Objects can be:

    • Simple piece of information or multimedia

    • Complex network of multimedia

  • Object-oriented design

Hypergraph structure
Hypergraph Structure

  • Node types

    • Simple or composite

  • Link types

    • Attachment Link: hierarchy

    • Annotation Link: commentary

    • Location Link: spatial distance

    • Synchronization: temporal distance

    • Reference Link: navigation

Hypergraph structure1
Hypergraph Structure

  • Media Types

    • Text is coded alphanumeric data.

    • Graphics is formatted picture data.

    • Image is pixel formatted picture data.

    • Moving-graphics also called animation, is the formatted data of a graphics sequence.

    • Moving-image is a sequence of image frames.

    • Audio is formatted sound data.

    • Video is a combination of synchronized moving-image and audio.

    • Form restricts user input, possibly with additional formula to generate the content automatically.

    • Live-demo is a program that can be run to provide an interactive demo.

    • Composition is the media type of a composite node in TAO.

Hypergraph structure2
Hypergraph Structure

  • Bundled Nodes

    • Simplifies presentation and communication of multimedia objects

    • Restricts partial access to bundled members maintaining integrity

    • Any bundled node must be fully referenced

      • For example, referencing to a bundled node containing text and audio will reference both sub-nodes

Hypergraph structure3
Hypergraph Structure

  • Hypergraph decoding algorithms

    • Must consider network traffic

    • Hardware capabilities

    • Best traversing sequence algorithm

    • Priority of multimedia application/file

    • Link types

    • Node resources

      • Memory

      • Execution time

Knowledge structure
Knowledge Structure

  • Four levels of knowledge

    • System

      • General actions for required by all TAOs; pre-fetch or decoding privileges

    • Environment

      • Actions relating to set of circumstances for a group of TAOs

    • Template

      • Provides predefined hypergraph/knowledge format for frequently used TAOs

    • Private

      • Important action information for a single TAO from user

Knowledge structure1
Knowledge Structure

  • In Object Oriented Design

    • Each level knowledge is implemented using inheritance and polymorphism

    • For example, system knowledge is the main class therefore every class inheriting this class will also have the same knowledge structure

    • Also, single TAOs can return different private knowledge when called using polymorphism

Knowledge structure2
Knowledge Structure

  • Knowledge structures transforms simple static hypergraph objects into dynamic objects

  • Actions are pre-emptive and user-configurable

Tao application and management2
TAO Application and Management

  • Some actions may be associated with the presentation

  • TAO Specific

    • Delete TAO after some time

    • Request responses from users

  • Environment Level

    • Require permission for some sub-TAOs

  • System Level

    • Enable pre-fetch of multimedia

Active management system
Active Management System

  • Translates, executes and maintains tele-action objects

  • Application domain allows users to develop and edit TAOs

  • System domain translates and executes these TAOs

Important ams components
Important AMS Components

  • Local Knowledge Base

    • Collection of ICs

      • Transition between states

      • Output messages to other ICs

      • Perform some specific action sequence

  • Application Handler & Knowledge Generator

    • Interface for TAO application tool

    • Formats Hypergraph and Knowledge data

Important ams components1
Important AMS Components

  • Interpretor

    • Receives formatted Knowledge data

    • Translates them into corresponding ICs

  • Event Filter

    • Retrieves important events from environment

  • Smart Engine

    • Maintains Active Index with current ICs

    • Event driven system responding to internal IC messages or external event filter messages

Current applications
Current Applications

  • Smart Multimedia Mail

    • Interface for email system

    • Create actions for events

      • Alarms, Statistics or even define template mail

Case tools for multimedia software engineering
CASE Tools for Multimedia Software Engineering

  • In traditional software engineering, involves formal well-defined steps

    • Requirements, Specifications, etc.

  • According to [3], multimedia applications cannot follow this traditional paradigm

    • Minimal requirements are initially available

    • Applications are constantly evolving

  • Multimedia IC Developer’s Environment (MICE) offers promising solutions to this problem

Mice application development
MICE Application Development



Visual Specification

SR Grammar

Specification tool








Prototyping tool


IC Manager

Working System


  • TAO-based multimedia systems offer many advantages in efficiency and operation

  • AMS allows user-friendly access to create, maintain and edit TAOs

  • Opportunities for optimizing presentation and communication algorithms will continue to make large network TAO-based systems realizable


[1] Hui-Jung Chang*, Tai-Yuan Hou+, Arding Hsu+, Shi-Kuo Chang, “Management and Applications of Tele-Action Objects”, Department of Computer Science, University of Pittsburgh, Siemens Corporate Research, Inc.

[2] H. J. Chang, T. Y. Hou, A. Hsu and S. K. Chang, "Tele-Action Objects for an Active Multimedia System", Proc. of the Second Int'l IEEE Conference on Multimedia Computing and Systems, May 1995, Washington D.C.

[3] Timothy Arndt, “The evolving role of software engineering in the production of multimedia applications”, Department of Computer and Information Science