We are currently developing voice recognition feature for 3D Wayfinder. It will allow visitors to use wayfinding software without using touch-screens. Just say where you would like to go and wayfinder software will show you the way.
Voice recognition is becoming more popular and as the quality recognizing words is becoming better and mobile screens becoming smaller. It would be convenient to use voice orders instead of using touch-screens. Of course, there are privacy issues, as most of the voice recognition is done in servers. But for wayfinding software this is not an issue, as the wayfinding screens are public and nobody will make their private conversations near wayfinding screens.
How voice recognition for wayfinding works?
Let’s say you are looking for closest exit, toilet or just want to get a beer. So you just say “Exit”, “Closest toilet” or “Wayfinder, where can I get beer” and 3D Wayfinder can show you the route.
3D Wayfinder will use keywords and location names for voice recognition, the same way search functionality works. More keywords defined in wayfinder make the vocabulary larger. But definitely there will be AI implement in future. This will give much more possibilities. For example visitors canaska pint of Budweiser without “Budweiser” being entered as a keyword and still get to place where they can buy beer. Might be that the beer is not sold by pint. But at least they can get beer.
We can use languages for voice recognition, that are select in Wayfinder software. Languages can be add under settings in 3D Wayfinder administration panel. If possible, voice recognition can be active for all languages simultaniously. If not, we can use default language for voice recognition without selecting anything. After selecting prefered language wayfinder can switch also language for voice recognition. This depends capabilities of kiosk or touch-screen PC. Also, the challenge is to filter out background noise as wayfinder screens are usually in main entries and places where are more people around.
In future, voice recognition in wayfinding software will be available for all customers. It has to be turn on under settings and it would also require template that allows voice search. We will add this feature to our basic templates. So far, we can implement it in custom templates. So if you order custom template from us, we can also make search by voice available.
We have added CDN support in 3D Wayfinder. CDN makes loading 3D Wayfinder application faster especially outside Europe. Currently it is available only for custom projects, but soon it will be option for all 3D Wayfinder customers.
CDN or Content Delivery Network is a geographically distribute servers that cache content close to end users. A CDN allows for the quick transfer of files, media etc. It works best for static content. In 3D Wayfinder it is basically possible to load all wayfinding content including maps, location data, images, application files etc. CDN is widely used by sites with huge traffic like Facebook, Netflix, and Amazon.
CDN is currenlty available for 3D Wayfinder custom projects and we have to make manual changes to make it work. We would like to open it for all 3D Wayfinder users, but this will still need some development and testing.
CDN server network copies files to more than 200 locations over world and when the wayfinding application is load, the files will be served from closest server.
During the testings we got loading improvement more than 60%. Lodaing speed was around 6 seconds from CDN compare to 16 seconds from 3D Wayfinder server.
Delivering content over CDN needs static content. This means that the content from databases has to be cached first. For any live-data like positioning or statistics, CDN cannot use. As wayfinding maps don’t change that often, it is easy to make the location information and maps to be as static content. Just after every change in 3D Wayfinder administration panel, the content has to be submit to CDN network also.
If you are already 3D Wayfinder customer and like your wayfinding to be load over CDN, please contact our sales department or your contact person in 3D Wayfinder. We will keep you posted through our blog and let you know when CDN-option will be available for all users in administration panel.
ISE 2023 Expo is probably most important technology expo in Europe. This year it was biggest yet. ISE 2023 attracted 58,107 unique attendees from 155 countries, making 133,606 visits to the show floor. Especially busy was Multi-Technology hall. There we had most fun meeting companies too. Special thanks goes to for citizens of Barcelona. Even with limited English they left to us superb expression. We were pleased that the event was in city where people are kind and helpful for the first time visitors.
ISE 2023 Expo organization
ISE 2023 Expo experience is that was really well organized Expo. There were large halls and easy to access booths. The catering was also very well organized and managed. We saw some very unique solutions. Especially interesting was 4K LED screens with IR touch. Making it suitable to use in interactive digital signage and 2D or 3D wayfinding solutions.
In two days we when we visited expo, we got a lot of positive feedback for our software. Companies were most interested in our 3D maps that we have built for indoor navigation. Some of the companies we visited needs to be highlight also in our blog.
Nice meetings at the event
With representatives of Cisco we quickly found a common topic of conversation. We talked about smart rooms and today’s business environment. We understood in that moment how right our direction has been for years. Also especially happy to see that we have yet to offer more opportunities then international corporations like Cisco can do. This motivates us to keep working hard.
Highly interested meeting we had was with BrightSign. Their digital signage players were interesting that can be potentially used for our software. We talked about to give better hardware tools for our clients. Especially interested us plug and play solution. Also it may be solution for our clients, who have little experience with digital signage and players for interactive screens. If everything goes well then we will have also hardware for our clients that is reliable with good price range.
We also visited booths of Clebex and Telelogos. Both are big IT companies and with very interesting field. They are definitely worth to explore. We started of right a way with productive talks and of course our topic was about potential of 3D Wayfinding. 3D Wayfinder software gives additional tools build powerful business solutions for end-clients!
Interactive displays manufactures at ISE
We got new and interesting knowledge in Chinese display manufacturer HCTek. Interactive displays is what future holds. HCTec is large interactive display manufacturer providing OEM, ODM and OTM solutions. Many well known display brands get their interactive displays from that factory. For us it was important to know what future brings. Talking was very productive and we had good laughs and took picture!
Then we met LED manufacturer AOTO. In our talks we covered many aspects of today digital signage market directions. Also we both agreed that future will be LED. Especially in indoor and outdoor digital signage field. We were also invited to their 30th anniversary celebrations to Happy Hour.
3D Wayfinder gives you innovative 3D map platform where you can build best ski resort app. All needed functions are available: 3D maps, positioning, guidance, search, filtering ski tracks and much more.
Alpine skiing is fun and many people love it. It is more than just taking the lift up and skiing down to the ski lift entrance again. Skiing is active vacation with everything it should include: planning trips, taking meals, socializing etc. You can plan your ski-routes as the longest ski tracks can be more than 10 kilometers long in Alpine region. While skiing down the hills you can enjoy the sun, have a drink in cafeterias and enjoy the social life.
There has been worries that ski resorts have less snow and the season periods of the ski resorts (when the ski-tracks can be opened) is decreasing. Weather it is temporary phenomenon or climate change is a different topics, but what we know is that ski resorts have to use modern technologies too. This is for providing better experience for all the skiers and snowboarders and manage the communication with visitors.
3D maps can be very detailed because ski hill, ski tracks, lifts and objects like forests and buildings can be added. The picture shows complexity of creating 3D maps based on regular height-maps. Later there will be added ski trails, trees, houses and lifts as 3D models.
To estimate the work for modelling 3D maps of the ski tracks, please contact our sales.
3D Wayfinder for ski-resorts can be accessed in different ways. 3D Wayfinder can be used in touch-screen kiosks. These can be weatherproof screens near lifts or entrances, or simple information kiosks near hotel receptions. Interactive 3D maps are certainly more advanced way to browse ski tracks than 2D drawings, we have mostly seen. 3D Wayfinder can be integrated to the website or used as web-based app. Printed signs or labels can use QR-codes to open 3D Wayfinder with the 3D map of the mountain or ski resort.
3D Wayfinder uses Bluetooth beacons for indoor positioning as the GPS signal is weak inside the buildings. Positioning in ski resorts is much simpler as we can use regular GPS positioning. The mobile application (or web application) positions the user according to the GPS signal and will let user navigate from point A to point B. For alpine skiing, positioning allows user to see the the location so that he or she can see the tracks and find the nearest cafeterias or toilets or find the ski lift to another hill.
Application services in ski resort
3D Wayfinder offers several different options for creating a ski resort app. It is also possible to add several different services to the application. The system can be integrated with many other systems. In the application, it is possible to buy e-tickets using QR-code. In addition, you can mark the gathering places of groups anywhere on the mountain and sharing meeting point in messenger. It allow to plan your journey on mountain and select ski tracks based on your level and skills.
For large mountains there is possible to add help button. If in trouble or if user need of help from ski resort staff or emergency services. User just pushes one button and their location information with help signal is sent!
Also you can use the first person view solution, which is essentially a 3D replay from descending from ski mountain. To share on social media or keep as a memory.
3D Maps and First-Person-View
In ski resorts and mountains, it is important to use 3D maps. This is because you cannot see the other side of the mountain in 2D map, but in the ski hills it is important to see the other side of the mountain where you want to go as the tracks are usually not only in one side.
First-Person-View is the term from computer games. It means you will see the game through players’ eyes. By looking the route with First-Person-View, you see how it might feels to ski down the hills in real life. It is like simulation of the skiing, so why not to go through the planned tracks by looking route in 3D.
As the main land-marks on ski resorts can be modelled out in 3D, for ski lifts and tracks we can use vectors. This means that zooming out the map, will not reduce the size of the vectors. The same way you will see important roads on map applications.
It is obvious that the economy is currently in a downward trend. More and more questions rise in this regard. How can we save money and energy? Globally, more and more people are talking about saving energy. This is definitely one place where different service companies could save. In addition to energy savings, financial savings are also important. By using the 3D Wayfinder software, it is also possible to save money quite realistically.
Certainly, many shopping center managers notice that purchasing power is decreasing. The global economic recession is mainly to blame for this. When the economy is booming, people shop more and spend more money. When the economy is down, people think more carefully about where they spend their money. Might be that some people even deliberately distance themselves from shopping malls so as not to make reckless spending.
Save on labor costs
The biggest cost savings comes from labor costs. Have you thought that there is an employee in your company or institution whose work could be done by some software? For example, there are often information workers in various office buildings, shopping centers or airports. What role do the employees at the information desk mainly play? Most of the time they guide people. People use information boards to find a way to store or special room. By using the 3D Wayfinder, it would be possible to save on the salary costs of one or even several information/help workers. This is probably one big and thought-provoking place where you can cut costs with wayfinding software.
Save money by reducing printed signs
In public buildings one of the administrative expenses is certainly different signs. Business signs must be changed when someone moves out or joins. 3D Wayfinder can also help here. Using wayfinding software reduces needs for different signs and printed floorplans. Building directories and maps can be digital and can be changed without the need for printing and changing physical signs. It is even possible to install digital screens in elevators.
Using digital wayfinding also helps to save on administrative costs. In addition, it is easier for the administrative manager of the building to change tenant or rental information in one place digitally than replacing installed physical signs.
Less energy with sleep mode
One of the ways to save energy is forcing wayfinding kiosks to go to sleep mode. Sleep mode is a widely known term and probably everyone who uses a computer or smartphone is familiar with it. It is possible that many 3D wayfinder customers may not know that sleep mode can also be set for wayfinding kiosks. When there is no activity in the building and the doors are locked, the wayfinding kiosk can also be in sleep mode.
Sleep mode can also be used when the building is open. The kiosk can be set in such a way that the screen is completely dark or, for example, with the text “Click here for building map” etc. when no one is using the kiosk. When a person touches the screen, the screen becomes active and can be used.
Save with dark mode
How else would it be possible to save with wayfinder software? One of the ways to save energy could also be using dark mode. At wayfinding kiosks, it is possible to set the screen light to be brighter and darker. Darker screen use less energy.
The difference between the two images is quite large and can be startling when compared like this. In addition to saving energy, it is also better for the eyes. In any case, the customer receives the information in exactly the same way as if it were on a screen with full brightness.
3D Wayfinder offers the possibility to set the display of the kiosk in time. For example, it is possible to set the time when the screen goes into dark mode. It is also possible to set the screen based on the surrounding light. For example, if the lighting in the building is bright or the sun is shining, the screen will be brighter. If the lighting is darker, the screen will also automatically darken. Dark mode saving is easy way fot cut costs with wayfinding software.
There is also an option to use a different background color. You can choose the background colors for building maps in 3D Wayfinder. If you want to save energy, it would be wise to use a darker background. If the card has a darker background, it saves more energy because the screen doesn’t have to be so bright. Also, a darker background can sometimes work even better. On a darker background, it’s better to highlight some objects that don’t come out as smooth on a light background. This is an option that should be considered when starting to order a house manager or create one yourself.
Do you know that 3D Wayfinder indoor positioning software using smart wayfinding technology?
Smart wayfinding is easy. The person who makes 3D Wayfinder map can choose how they want the path to be guided. For example, it is possible to guide the way that elevators are avoided. Moving the elevators up and down is probably also a big administrative expense. However, if people are guided so that they are directed to the stairs, it is possible to regulate the use of elevators.
3D Wayfinder supports energy saving. We support saving people’s time by providing innovative wayfinding software. We are environmentally friendly and recommend it to all our customers. If you are already using 3D Wayfinder you can change settings for saving energy or ask help from our team. If you are not yet using wayfinding software, then please contact our sales department. We will definitely find the best solution for you and help you cut costs with wayfinding software.
Exclusive Buildings Need Premium Wayfinder Solutions
October 31, 2022
In the previous post, we introduced different styles of modeling and designing 3D Wayfinder maps. It is clear that exclusive buildings need a premium wayfinder solutions. In today’s post, we will talk about exclusive premium wayfinding solutions and special kiosk designs. Wayfinder kiosks do not always have to have a modest appearance and design.
Crystal chandelier hanging from the ceiling, marble floors and glass walls. Many shopping centers have this kind of interior design. Also, many commercial buildings or hotels have a more special and luxurious interior design. If the interior design of the building is characteristic of a high class, it is important that every detail fits together. Therefore, the kiosks must also have a luxurious and beautiful design.
Kiosk designs may vary. For example, it is possible to decorate the kiosk with crystals or golden details. There can also be different materials from which the kiosk is made.
In the pictures you see a close-up of the kiosk app. You see golden design and a complex map.
Kiosks in Lõunakeskus are made of wood. Kiosk is designed following shopping center interior and brand design. Finally, a beautiful wooden solution is ready, which fits with the interior and is user-friendly. Estonian National Museum kiosk is made of glass. Kiosk has a metal frame, that supports the 8 mm tempered glass and holds the touch screen and computer hardware. Also it has a special “window” for looking at kiosk´s “heart”.
Premium Wayfinder solutions
Small details make a 3D map especially luxurious. If you have a commercial building and want to impress your customers, we recommend ordering a particularly detailed map. The premium 3D map designs are suitable for buildings with a luxurious interior design. Detailed 3D maps are also suitable for expensive hotels or institutions visited by wealthier people. Detailed map of the building makes an impression in any case.
In the picture you see 3D relistic and detailed model of the Viru center. The flags, ornamental bushes and sculpture in front of the center have been drawn. For example, it is not possible to display such a sculpture realistically with a 2D map. Also, the exterior facade is as real as possible, and on closer inspection you can see transparent windows. This is premium detail. All exclusive buildings could have similar models.
It is also possible to create a First person view wayfinder solution. The post shows one of the shopping malls in Oman. A 3D map drawn in detail looks good and it is especially useful for showing path in camera view (First Person View known from computer games). Such models affect positively the customer experience. Especially if it is possible to find favorite stores and special offers in the shopping center with the help of 3D wayfinder. It imitates persons point of view. The first person view house manager solution is definitely one of the premium feature that a luxury building needs.
You can order a detailed and beautiful 3D map from us. In this case, our team of specialists will prepare you a gorgeous and detailed 3D map solution that will impress all your customers. Also, tell us all your wishes regarding the design of the kiosk and we will find the best solution together.
How to create DIY 3D wayfinding maps? It is not that hard as it may sound.
Following post will give you an overview on how to create 3D models for wayfinding software. In addition we will share you videos of the modeling process.
Here are some general guidelines to keep in mind:
Maintain a clean quad topology and keep poly count low, no need for edge beveling and subdivisions, when the situation does not require it.
The floor, outer walls, inner walls, details, locations, stairs, elevators, locations and greyed out areas must be separate objects, please do not combine them into one.
Its also recommended to group objects of the same kind and name them accordingly.
The following videos will show some tips and tricks to make your workflow faster.
The solidify modifier will help you create quick walls for your model. You can either first model the walls and then apply solidify or do it the other way around.
Using the Archimesh addon (comes with Blender) you can make great looking stars with just a couple of moves.
NB! When you are in the process of cleaning up your Blender file like shown above, sometimes the spare material doesn’t disappear after using the purge function. If that happens then just restart your Blender project.
We hope you got a better understanding of how to create 3D wayfinding maps.
As always we are pleased to help you for creating a wayfinding solution for you or your customer. If you like us to make the maps, please also look our floorplan campaign and don’t hesitate to contact us.
For the past few months we have been working on making content management system better and more user-friendly. There is a constant work on fixing bugs and but with this blog post we are ready to introduce you a few updates that make using our CMS easier.
1. Adding a new POI directly from editor.
Before it was necessary to add every POI under “Locations” section but with our latest update it is possible to do it directly in the map editor. Just choose the desired POI, click on “Edit” and from section opening on the right just click “Create new”. Simple as that!
2. Hiding/showing mesh
With some models it used to be quite a time-consuming work to get the nodes in their right positions. Sometimes node appeared on the mesh and therefore it was needed to move them downwards manually. With our latest updates it makes removing mesh easy and fast. Just select the mesh you would like hide and click on “Hide mesh”. No more manual work!
3. Connecting nodes on different floors
It used to be complicated to connect nodes on different floors due to different possibilities of stairs, escalators, elevators etc. Luckily we have removed that problem and added a pop-up box when the user tries to take the path from one floor to another.
There will be some more updates coming soon! We will let you know more on that in our next blog post.
Sometimes it’s the small things that make all the difference. New “Toggle top view” feature in 3D Wayfinders administration panels editor is a useful tool that will give needed help to our users.
Toggle top view shows all the maps straight from the top and it works with both 2D and 3D maps. While this feature is selected, the rotation is disabled. This is most useful when marking paths on the map. It could also be used if you want to set kiosk view straight from the top on 3D maps.
“Toggle top view” can be found on the top of the editor under “Settings“.
We have finished installation of approximately 250 iBeacons for mobile app positioning. Although the installation process is easy. There are some tricks and common practises to follow, when setting up iBeacon based indoor positioning.
iBeacons are cost effective indoor positioning devices, that are really easy to install. As each iBeacon has it’s own battery, that can last about a year, then there is no need for external power supply. Devices are very light, so it is possible to mount them by using double-sided tape.
Even though the installation of one iBeacon is a simple matter. Overall installation process can be quite long and somewhat physically exhausting due to the constant climbing up and down the ladder/platform.
At first glance it might seem that the device will disrupt the look of the building. But, as we can see from the image below, if you take into consideration the overall theme and look of the building during choosing of the device, it merges into the plethora of different sensors and equipment covering the ceiling.
Before installing devices. It is important to mark down the specifications for each iBeacon device. Each iBeacon has it’s parameters: unique ID, name and range.
It is also a good practice to mark the iBeacons. So that you know you’re installing the correct device to the correct location. For this we used a label printer.
Plan before iBeacons installing
It is good to have a plan before physical installation. We used the map of the building to first draw a layout of the placement of the devices and their coverage area. It is a common practice to have a minimum of 3 iBeacons covering any part of the mappable area for the navigation to work efficiently.
Configuring iBeacons in 3D Wayfinder is also easy. Just create a node with type “iBeacon” and enter iBeacon parameters (UUID, Name etc.). To manage all the devices from one place, open “Beacons” from the left-side menu. You can do this prior to the actual installation when you are confident that your layout will work.
It is highly recommended to install the iBeacons to a height unreachable for the visitors of the building, so no one could easily snatch them. We installed the devices onto the ceiling. For this we used a painters platform that had wheels on them so it is easy to move it around the building. We recommend setting the platform to a height so the person installing the devices could stand up straight and then reach the ceiling without having to stretch too much.
Good time to install iBeacons in a shopping mall is when there are not that many people.
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