Media Lab Helsinki


Semantic AudiovisuaL Entertainment Reusable Objects (SALERO)

For Crucible Studio’s first SALERO research production demo ‘Full House’ – please see the site: The second and third phase Experimental Productions – Turing Machine Opera,Turing Enigma Bot, Turing Impact, Alan01 and AlanOnline – are described on the Turing Machine page.

Ever since the idea of convergence was floated, the media industry has been talking about cross-platform exploitation as a way of producing more exciting content more cost-effectively. But while technology has helped to produce better quality sounds and images, the costs continue to rise. It is virtually impossible to re-use items from previous productions (regardless of issues of copyright) in different contexts, as the majority of sounds and images only work in the context and media type for which they were originally made.

The Digital Media process is fragmented, ad hoc and highly skills-based. There is no clear typology of assets that allows them to be treated as semantically aware. Assets (whether 2D imagery, 3D CGI, characters, decors, or sounds) are produced largely independently of each other with no unifying framework. The lack of standardised file formats, data handling and processing methods and prevalence of stand-alone processes are barriers to re-use. It is currently almost impossible to transfer digital assets from a film to a game, or re-use them in a new production.

SALERO’s goal is to define and develop ‘intelligent content’ objects with context-aware behaviours for self-adaptive use and delivery across different platforms, building on and extending research in media technologies, web semantics, and context based image retrieval, to reverse the trend toward ever-increasing cost of creating media.

The main objectives of SALERO are:

1. Research into methodologies for describing, creating and finding intelligent content,

2. Toolsets to create, manage, edit, retrieve and deliver content objects, addressing characters, objects, sounds, language sets, and behaviours,

3. Verifying the concept of intelligent content by experimental productions and promoting the take-up of intelligent content technologies,

The project is addressing the following RTD activities:

  • Understanding the relations between media types, genres, workflows and styles,
  • Metadata, Media Semantics and Ontologies for semantically aware content objects,
  • Practical methods of context-based information retrieval of characters, sounds, images, movements or behaviours,
  • Procedures for manipulating the appearance, sound, movement and behaviour of semantically aware characters and objects,
  • Improved methods and tools for script translation and speech synthesis,
  • Software toolkits, systems, plug-ins and interfaces for control of appearances, sounds, semantic behaviour and properties of intelligent content objects.

SALERO will guide, validate and evaluate the R&D through experimental productions across a range of important media genre, based on scenarios defined by artists and creative media professionals. It will also reinforce the European skills base by developing training structures for professionals and researchers and prepare the market launch of technologies through a series of Demonstration Testbeds for media professionals.

The RTD programme includes long-term research and medium-term work designed to result in novel products and services at the component and system level by the end of the project.

The Consortium of Salero

SALERO is an industrially based sectoral Consortium, built from Europe’s leading players in the Intelligent Media arena. The Consortium consists of a highly complementary mixture of a software tool developer, media creators (and developers) and research groups spanning six countries. The members of the Consortium have been selected for their complementary abilities to fulfil all the RTD, Innovation, Demonstration, Training and Dissemination activities, and to bring the project results successfully to market.

All together 11 partners both from industrial side like TVCN (Catalan TV in Spain), Cinesite, Bliz and Pepper’s Ghost Production (UK), and from research side like Fundació Barcelona Media Universitat Pompeu Fabra (Spain) the Dublin Institute of Technology (Ireland), The University of Glasgow (UK) and University of Art and Design Helsinki (Finland). The project is coordinated by JOANNEUM RESEARCH Austria’s second largest research organisation. The project will last for four years and the total budget is almost 14 mill. Euros of which the European Commission funds 9 mill. Euros.

The efforts of the University of Art and Design Helsinki (TaiK) include basic research activities, collaborative applied research activities, and experimental production or ‘creative pull’ research. TaiK is leader of WP4 Media Forms, Programme Styles & Structures.