The work table model
Scientists ask questions. They are always on the lookout for new knowledge, continuously verifying theories or exchanging them for new theories or better models. To test their knowledge, a model, or a hypothesis, scientists need much, preferably complex but relevant data. The scientists participating in MultimediaN are no exception. The MultimediaN projects distinguish themselves by looking out for the right problem owner for the test, an organization that has a question, a need, and much (complex) input data. As soon as that problem owner is found, MultimediaN invites this partner to take a seat at one of the MultimediaN worktables, because close interaction is a prerequisite for the best knowledge- and question exchange.
At the worktables, scientists from universities, institutes, and knowledge institutions are sitting across from (or rather next to) the problem owner. Together they look for the specific information needs of this first user. What type of information is the center point? Which are the distinguishing features of this information? How does a user perform a search? How does he operate?
The scientist or assistant in training - sometimes a post doc - tries to fathom the user’s problem. At the end of the process one side of the table aims to have solved the problem coming from the other side.
The power of the MultimediaN worktable model lies in the fact that science looks for a solution in continual concurrence with the party that has articulated the problem.
This gives a guaranteed social value to scientific research. It does not mean that every problem can be solved within the given time frame. It is possible that we lack the proper knowledge and technology to find the solution . But at least it brings the solution closer, and that in itself alone is a social gain.
Quarterly and annual reporting
Every quarter and each year, the project leaders report the results booked at the different worktables to the management. This happens on the basis of milestones, deliverables, quality measures, industrial contacts, and project budgets.
Communication and dissemination
MultimediaN considers knowledge dissemination equally important to society as knowledge development. The strategy of MultimediaN departs from three ways to transfer knowledge: through people, information, and software. Participation in projects is the most effective way to transfer knowledge. Therefore, most knowledge dissemination takes place at the MultimediaN worktables. Following knowledge dissemination goes through scientific publications and free publicity in more general media, but especially through (open source) software and demonstrators. Potentially interested groups will be reached in workshops, tutorials and other events.