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Novel Technologies for Learning and Knowledge Engineering

The research work of the team of Prof. Dr. Christoph Meinel in this field aims to make the vision of a Web-University reality. It is focused on the design and implementation of user centric learning environments, like openHPI or the tele-TASK portal, by

  • studying and explorating Internet- and IT-technologies to establish novel virtual learning environments e.g. for massive open online courses, (so-called MOOC), and to enhance university teaching,
  • continuously developing and improving powerful tools for producing knowledge content like the mobile tele-TASK-system for recording and broadcasting lecture videos,
  • designing and implementating lecture browsers like the tele-TASK Lecture Browser, which assist learners in screeing, searching, navigating, visualizing, and personalizing knowledge content like lecture videos.

The team of the chair

  • explores semantic web technologies for automatic generation of metadata for lecture recordings,
  • designs strategies for automatic indexation of (tele-TASK) lecture videos based on speech recognition,
  • enables annotating and scripting of (tele-TASK) lecture videos with private or open annotations,
  • designs and explores virtual lab environments that provide practical learning experiences in the field of IT security,
  • develops tools for mining and analyzing the usage of the huge (tele-TASK) lecture archives, and
  • eveluates the potential of linguistic technologies for natural language interaction with learners.

Ongoing Projects

Designing a Teaching Environment for Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs)

MOOCs provide a very recent format of online learning events, that combine video lectures, interactive self tests, homeworks with a social learning forum. With openHPI, we are developing a platform for the delivery of MOOCs based on a service-oriented architecture that allows flexible integration with content production workflows, learning tools and virtual laboratories, personal learning environments, and social networks. openHPI’s first generation has been successfully launched in September 2012. Ten thousands of learners have participated in its first three courses on



Live and On-Demand Teleteaching with Tele-TASK

The tele-TASK system - Teleteaching Anywhere Solution Kit - realizes a new, drastically simplified entrance technology for online lectures. From his/her home or office, each PC user with a suitable Internet connection can follow online lessons comfortably. tele-TASK simultaneously records both video and audio of the lecturer as well as his/her presentation desktop which is presented to the students in the lecture room through either a smartboard or a video beamer. Various navigation bars allow fast navigation through the recorded lecture. Tele-TASK supports all usual platforms, different net bandwidths, arbitrary presentation programs, and needs no special software installations or configurations at side of the end-users. High access numbers are expression of the perfectly problem-free and easy possibilities of using.

  • tele-TASK.de - the e-learning online archive
    www.tele-task.de is our online archive for high quality e-learning content. The project aims at the creation and mainainance of this archive where we store our tele-TASK recordings of lectures, presentation, conference talks and symposia. The content of the archive is available for free for every web user.
  • tele-TASK Podcasts
    The tele-TASK Podcast Project develops methods to automatically create iPod ready video clips out of tele-TASK lectures. The aim is to provide learners with content containing complete tele-TASK recordings - the presenter's video/audio plus the desktop video - which can be played back on mobile devices independently from internet connection and desktop PC. [more]

The School Cloud

A modern learning and teaching environment is crucial to make the digital transformation in the education sector a success. Children should be introduced to digital media already in school to prepare them for a increasingly digitized society. For this reason Hasso-Plattner-Insitute launched a project in cooperation with the Federal Ministry of Education and Research and the Network of Excellency of STEM schools (MINT EC) called "School Cloud". HPI developed a cloud infrastructure which will help students, teachers and parents to gain easy access to learning and teaching materials for everybody, everytime and everywhere. This initiates a revolution in in the German education system. [more]


The aim of this project is to determine the benefit of using short video sequences in education. "teachingkids.eu" is a platform where students and teachers can freely watch visual learning objects, rate / tag them and upload their own videos, e.g. modified versions of existing ones. The objective is twofold: first, students are motivated to produce good presentations which respect the quality requirements of "teachingkids.eu". Secondly, students explain items or issues to other students in their own words and gestures. This helps them to set "landmarks" and to better memorize and understand the topic.

e-Librarian Service

Our E-Librarian Service is able to retrieve multimedia resources from a knowledge base in a more efficient way than by browsing through an index, or by using a simple keyword search. In our E-Librarian Service, the user can enter his question in a very simple and human way; in natural language (NL). The returned results are then logical consequences of an inference rather than of keyword matchings.
Our E-Librarian Service was implemented prototypically in three different educational tools. A first prototype is CHESt (Computer History Expert System); it has a knowledge base with 300 multimedia clips that cover the main events in computer history. A second prototype is MatES (Mathematics Expert System); it has a knowledge base with 115 clips that cover the topic of fractions in mathematics for secondary school w.r.t. the official school programme. All clips were recorded mainly by pupils. The third and most advanced prototype is the Lecture Butler's E-Librarain Service; it has a Web service interface to respect a service oriented architecture (SOA).


TASK_Moniminer deals with the analysis of the students learning interest from usage data in web-based learning environments. To discover learning interests semantic technologies are used.

Development and maintenance of a Research Portal Web Site : BDD-Portal.org

Former research interests of the chair of PRof. Dr. Christoph Meinel included research on Binary Decision Diagrams for application in Computer Aided Design of VLSI circuits. The team designed the BDD-Portal to serve as a central attraction point that links researchers, conferences, and workshops in the field of BDD-based data structures (BDD- Binary Decision Diagrams), and provides access to tools and benchmarks. The site aims to be an one-stop portal, that provides all information that is relevant for that field, and a environment for online evaluations of BDD-based tools: Heuristics online - OHO.


Development of the STACS Electronic Submission Service

After STACS'97 (Lübeck) and STACS'98 (Paris), STACS'99 was taking place in Trier and used the Electronic Submission Service, too, which receives the submissions via email and puts them at the organisators' disposal. Again, the range of applications of the software developed is not at all limited to the example chosen (STACS).


Publication of the web pages of the GI special interest group "Komplexität"

The web pages of the special interest group consist mainly of a collection of current announcements - calls for papers, conference programs, open positions, links etc. - from the field of complexity theory.


  • Team leader: Prof. Dr. Christoph Meinel
  • Team members:
    • Dipl.-Inf. Christian Willems
    • Diplom-Inf. Matthias Bauer
    • Dr. Haojin Yang
    • Dr. Harald Sack
    • Jan Renz, Dipl. Inf (FH)
    • Stud. Inf. Sebastian Voigt
    • Thomas Staubitz, MSc.
    • Xiaoyin Che, MSc.

  • Former co-workers

    • Dipl. Inf. Genadij Umanskij
    • Dipl. Inf. Mathias Kutzner
    • Dipl. Inf. Tonbo Chen
    • Dipl. Inf. Volker Klotz
    • Dipl. Inf. Volker Schillings
    • Dipl. Math. Jochen Bern
    • Dipl. Wirt.-Inf. Dirk Cordel
    • Dipl.Inf. Andreas Groß
    • Dipl.Inf. Arno Wagner
    • Dipl.Inf. Maria Siebert
    • Dipl.-Inf. Elnaz Mazandarani, MSc.
    • Dr. Michael Totschnig
    • Dr. Naouel Karam
    • Dr. Serge Linckels
    • Dr. Long Wang
    • Franka Gründewald, MSc.
    • Katrin Krieger, M.A.
    • MSc. Xiaobin Wei
    • PD Dr. Carsten Damm
    • StR. Dr. Stefan Repp

  • Former students and international summer interns:
    • Christoph Herold
    • Herbert Kwasi Twumasi (Ghana)
    • Maja Milicic (Yugoslavia)
    • Marietta Sander
    • Steve Wang Kee Poon (Hong Kong)
    • Stud. Inf. Rico Richter
    • Suchada Wachirapraditporn (Thailand)


    • Our Handbook on WWW was published by Springer in 2004. A multimedia book presentation can be found here.
    • Our conference papers on electronic publishing are listed within this list
    • Our journal papers can be found here
    • Our technical reports


    • Our archive of various tele-lectures, e.g. the tele-lectures of Christoph Meinel
    • The Electronic Colloquium on Computational Complexity ECCC
    • WWW-site of SIG Komplexität of the German Gesellschaft für Informatik GI
    • The portal site for the community of reserachers on ordered binary decision diagrams and related research - www.bdd-portal.org
    • The portal site of the tele-teaching project Internet-Bridge Potsdam-Beijing between University of Trier and Beijing University of Technology.

    Further Activities / Projects / Coops:

    • tele-TASK - Teleteaching Anywhere Solution Kid - our system for teleteaching projects and cooperations
    • Internet-Bridge Trier-Beijing - our teleteaching and research cooperation with the technical university of Beijing
    • Center for Electronic Publishing (Zentrum fuer Wissenschaftliches Elektronisches Publizieren -WEP) at the University of Trier
    • Reserach group Institute for Telematics
    • Symposium on Electronic Publishing (Trierer Symposium Elektronisches Publizieren am 25./26. März 1999)
    • Virtuelle Hochschule: LCMS

Other Links

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... and to our Annual Reports.