A Model for Intelligent Tourism Guide System
This study presents a proposed framework model for intelligent tourism guiding system as a knowledge-based system. The model based on the philosophical view of the human behavior as tourism guide. The proposed model mimic the human tourism guide, through building relationships between knowledge based-system with the role of tourist-guide, as a means to provide a professional service for any visitor which best meet his needs and desire of gaining sufficient information and objective understanding of the places visited together with better value and satisfaction of his tour. The proposed model consists of five modules, which are user interface, inference engine, knowledge base, dynamic database and the facilities of GIS and XRM application. These modules are complementary in their intended functions of the local, regional and international guides. The proposed intelligent tourism guiding system can be used by most of the mobile telephone companies as a service available for their customers.
Received: August 13, 2010;
Accepted: October 25, 2010;
Published: November 16, 2010
For the past 10 years tourism achieved considerable growth and its role in
the world economy has increased. Its often called economic and social
phenomenon of 20th century in the scientific and popular literature. However,
The world tourism organization defines as the activities of persons traveling
to and staying in places outside their usual environment for not more than one
consecutive year for leisure, business and other purposes not related to the
exercise of an activity remunerated from within the place visited (Risi,
2010). This definition leads us to examine the importance of the tourist-guide
as they act as a representative of their country and plays a decisive role in
the tourists experience of a tour. In this context, World Federation of
Tourist Guide Association WFTGA has defines Tourist guide as: A person who guides
visitors in the language of their choice and interprets the cultural and natural
heritage of an area which person normally possesses an area-specific qualification
usually issued and/or recognized by the appropriate authority (Yenen,
2005). Apparently, the tourist guider's main role is to escort groups or
individual visitors from abroad or from the guider's own country around monuments,
sites and museums of a city or region interpreting in a clear and entertaining
way to inform the visitor about the cultural and national heritage and environment.
Furthermore, The tourist guide must be qualified in various ways: particularly
in linguist competence and in terms of a wide general knowledge with specific
reference to the history, geography, art, architecture, economics, politics,
religion and sociology of the area of qualification.
Being a tour guide is not easy task these days: tourists are often experienced
travelers and are becoming more and more demanding. As new origin and destination
areas are opening up, the task of the Tour Guide in building bridges between
cultures is assuming more importance every day (Alhroot
and Al-Alak, 2009). However, these raise the essentialist of creating and
improving intelligent guiding-tourism system, which focuses on the quality of
the visitor's experience them when using the system and to overcome many of
the limitations of the traditional information and navigation tools available
to city visitors. For instance, group-based tours are inherently inflexible
with fixed starting times and fixed durations and (like most guidebooks) are
constrained by the need to satisfy the interests of the majority rather than
the specific interests of individuals. Scenarios of human behavior are used
in order to illustrate the normal running of the system, although it can also
be useful to develop some scenarios that indicate what is expected to happen
when something goes wrong. As scenarios are developed, it becomes evident where
there is a need for information from the environment (i.e. percepts) and where
actions are required. Also, as scenarios are developed, it is common to identify
additional goals that are needed (Padgham and Winikoff,
2002). Cheverst et al. (2000) they said it
should be possible, in the near future, to enable visitors to download software
onto their own device (with built-in Bluetooth support) in order to enable access
to context-aware information and services.
Werthner (2004) said that travel and tourism is the
leading application field in the b2c e-commerce, it represents nearly 50% of
the total b2c turnover.
But usually the travelers need access to information whenever and wherever
they want, making tourism a perfect application field for mobile computing.
Latest generations of mobile devices and wireless networks offer new opportunities,
but mobile devices still suffer from restrictions compared to web based systems.
So many researchers have been concentrating in the development of system and
(Parajuli et al., 2005) they said Intelligent
Tourist Aid (iAiD) is an innovative idea that acts as an intelligent guide to
a tourist wherever he may go. A tourist will bear a handheld device (his own
cell phone or a PDA) which will communicate with strategically placed intelligent
agents, which in turn will provide the tourist with information relevant to
his location and his area of interest. Therefore, the use of centralized server
communicates with all the distributed agents and controls the overall operation
of the system through the implementation of intelligent guide system.
The field Geographical Information System (GIS) is rapidly expanding specially
in the development of applications that manage and use geographic information
in combination with other media (Fajuyigbe et al.,
2007). Therefore, it is very important in the tourism industry to gat digital
basic map, digital files for analyzing and mapping, digital files for mobile
mapping and modeling, digital multimedia (Jovanovic and
THE CATEGORIES OF TOUR GUIDES
It is essential, before mentioning the categories of tour guides to differentiate
between some concepts, since the titles are different in term of definitions
and roles, but they are often wrongly used interchangeably. The European Committee
for Standardization (ECN) (CEN, 2009) defines Tour Manager
as A Person who manages an itinerary on behalf of the tour operator ensuring
the program is carried out as described in the tour operator's literature and
sold to the traveler/consumer and who gives local practical information. There
are three main categories of Tour-Guides and the titles are different, these
Those who work at a particular site
Those who work in a region
Those who work nationally
The internet now makes it possible for the public to schedule their trips.
While there are still many travel agents, incentives once offered by airlines,
hotels and car rental companies make the occupation less profitable? Today's
travel agents often book long or complicated trips, while the weekend getaway
or quick business travel is scheduled individually on-line. Tourist's guides
are often the only group at a destination with whom tourists interact for a
considerable amount of time (Salazar, 2005). They must
be aware about their long-term impact of the tour they led and the destination
they present, instead of providing short-term enjoyment. Since through their
narratives, presentation and interpretation they create sense of place and strengthen
or weaken a destination's image. Wang et al. (2004)
and John and Wong (2001) agreed that the success of the
tourism industry very much depends on the performance of tour guides in each
destination. In addition, they asserted that the tour guides are one of the
key front-line players in tourism industry, who have the ability to transform
the tourists' visit from a tour into an experience and, who provide the moment
of truth for tourists (Kiper and Arslan, 2007). Therefore,
the proposed system will be as tour manager and also covers all the functions
of the three types of guides mentioned above concentrating on the functions
of local guide.
SCENARIOS OF HUMAN BEHAVIOR
Most of the tourism organizations are employed people as tour's guide and as mentions in the previous section there are three types of tourism guides, but the most importance tour's guide is the local guide. Therefore, the scenario of human behavior as a local tour's guide can be extracted from his characteristics. This type of guide usually employed from the region and has the following characteristics:
the loyalty and love the region and his job as guide and some time dont
care to work volunteer
well knows the historical region
time knows many languages either spoken or body languages
many stories related with the region
and has good common sense
||Respective person in the region
Therefore, in order to implement the proposed intelligent tourism guide, it is necessary to gather the knowledge from such peoples, so the most important phase is the knowledge acquisition and elicitation of knowledge. There are many methods used for knowledge acquisition and elicitation but the most importance and suitable one for this system is the interviewing. In order to get good knowledge and adequate, those local tour's guides should be given support.
ARCHITECTURE OF INTELLIGENT TOURISM GUIDE SYSTEM
Most people know the term artificial intelligence concerning about how to build
intelligent machine. This machine should have certain capabilities such as:
behaves like a human being, smart, problem solver of unstructured and complex
problems as human does, understands languages, learner and able to reason and
analyze data and information and so on. Therefore, must design a machine behaves
as human beings; this means that the machine must do all the activities that
human does during his life, such as expert system where a trial is made to embody
experts knowledge in certain domain in a computer program for carrying out some
task, vision for dealing with three dimensions world represented together with
the intend and the expectation in the scene, speech to replace the keyboards
for dealing with computerized Natural Language Processing System (either written
or spooking), perception, recognition, analysis, deduction, induction and so
on (Jackson, 1999). This machine is smart; this term usually
has many meanings in the English language; so, the meaning is concerned with
Intelligent Machine to be smart, psychologically, smart means everything gives
pleasure and happiness to humans, through the facilities available in all sort
of multimedia equipments. Also, this machine is problem solver of unstructured
and complex problems; in this context human usually solve algorithmic and non
algorithmic problems and most problems are non algorithmic, therefore must be
consider methodologies for representing the non algorithmic problems in a form
that enable people to develop a problem solving methods. This capability is
the most important and most of the pioneers of AI, are concentrating on them
(Barr et al., 1990; Winston,
1992; Boden, 1996; Luger, 1999).
So, the architecture of intelligent tourism guides system, as shown in Fig.
1, is a mimic of the functional model of human system, which has been presented
by Owaied and Mahmoud (2007).
User interface: The user interface simulates the communications facilities available to be used for interaction with the proposed intelligent tourism guide system. This means an information processing system of one of (vision, speech, hearing, touching, tasting) or specified protocol many be used to connect the proposed system to another computerized system.
of intelligent tourism guiding system
Usually the chosen method or methods to interact with the system will be based
on format used for the representation of knowledge base in the knowledge base
system. So, the formats used in the proposed system will be a hybrid scheme
of rule base and case base (Owaied and Qasem, 2008).
Knowledge base: The knowledge base represents the repository of knowledge
for specific and narrow domain for the knowledge based system. The design and
implementation of any knowledge base system usually depend on the representation
forms used for the knowledge. There are many forms used for knowledge representation
by human and usually combination of them, but the already used are limited such
as rule base, semantic nets, frame, logic forms and case base. So, the most
important part of knowledge based system is the knowledge base and the power
of any knowledge based system and expert system inherently in the adequate and
integration of knowledge representation forms used for the particular domain
(Chan et al., 2000). In this sense, the most
important phase in building knowledge based system is building the knowledge
base; this process is part of knowledge engineering which is an important field
at present century. In reality, human experts have common sense, deduction and
analogical reasoning facilities. These three facilities are not included in
one knowledge representation scheme, since the logical deduction in the rule
base, analogical reasoning in the case base and the common sense can be applied
using blackboard. Therefore, the proposed scheme is the mixing of the rule-base
and the Case-based forms using blackboard in order to include the three facilities
in one scheme (Owaied and Qasem, 2010). This Scheme
will be facilitate applying more than one problem solving methods and search
techniques during the design of inference engine for the proposed intelligent
tourism guide. This view is based on the philosophy of human memory organization
and utilizing for solving problems.
layout of a rule in the table
Since, human represent his knowledge in more than one form in order to be more
efficient to solving a problem, also its found that for any domain the
knowledge cant be in one form (Owaied et al.,
The relational database has been used to represent the rule as table. The rules
will be stored in a table format with the maximum of number of column are k,
for example if k = 6, then (Col-1, Col-2
Col-6), as shown in Table
1. The first column represents the left-hand-side of the rule, which is
the conclusion of a rule usually called action (A) and from column-2 to column-6
are used to represent the conditions of the rule (C1, C2
C5), so this
rule will be as Horn clause presented as:
In this view assume that any rule has maximum conditions are 5, but if a rule has more conditions, then the sixth column will be sub-action which has the reset of the conditions and so on. In this case the representation of knowledge is procedural representation not declarative representation.
Facilities of GIS and XRM application: GIS is used to display and analyses spatial data which are linked to databases. This connection between spatial data and databases is the driving force behind the working of a GIS. Therefore, any map may be drawn from the database and the data can be referenced from the map. So, when the database is updated, the associated map also gets updated.
In the case of application of GIS in tourism, the GIS database includes a wide
variety of information including geographic, social, political, environmental
and demographic data. The use of GIS will provide the intelligent tourism guiding
system the following facilities (Turk and Gumusay, 2010).
of important and necessary places for tourism
of historical and tourist places
of the best suitable hotel
of the optimum plan for sightseeing places
of the shortest distance between the selected places
Also, Jovanovic and Njegus (2008) said that GIS provide:
digital map base for printed maps
files for Internet mapping
files for mobile mapping
with interactive mapping
The XRM, eXtended Relationship Management or Anything Relationship Management,
is a strategy that takes Customer Relationship Management (CRM) one step further,
focusing on managing all relationships-not just those with customers. The X
in XRM stands for All. XRM provide a comprehensive, unified system for all aspects
of business. The XRM encompasses applications and business practices that go
beyond traditional CRM functionality. The X stands for a variety of applications
that are tightly integrated and are used to manage internal and external transactional
relationships. Therefore, the XRM is a strategically an approach to understanding
what makes a business thrive, what information needs to be tracked, by whom
and how it needs to be displayed and leveraged to facilitate better decisions
making. Using the XRM do not have to make important trade-offs between buying
packaged or building specialized line-of-business applications, because XRM
offers an end-to-end, line-of-business applications development platform that
combines the best of both worlds. In this context we believe that the XRM enables
organizations to build any number of end-to-end line-of-business applications
rapidly and cost-effectively. The XRM allows organizations to build many applications
on a single platform with shared resources and infrastructure through the platform
capabilities which allowed the organizations requirements quickly deliver multiple
customized line-of-business applications while taking advantage of shared infrastructure
and resources (Why XRM, 2010).
Dynamic database: This part usually is empty at the first but during
the execution of the system this will be a collection of the assertions and
data. The assertions are generated from the processes of the cooperation between
the knowledge base and the interaction between the users with the system. The
data provided by the facilities of GIS through the XRM application in order
to be used by the problem solving method which is part of the inference engine.
Therefore, the dynamic database can be regarded as working memory. Since, the
GIS technology is a computer based data collection, storage and analysis tool
that combines previously unrelated information into easily understood
maps according to the user requirements. The GIS can perform complicated analytical
functions and present the results visually as maps, tables or graphs, allowing
the inference engine to visually see all these types of media before processing
them and then select the best course of action according to the user requirements.
Inference engine: The inference engine was playing the most important
role in the construction of functional model of human system as mentioned by
Owaied and Mahmoud (2007). But its implementation depends
on the format of knowledge in the knowledge base of the knowledge-based system.
Therefore, the implementation of the inference engine will be regarded as a
combination of problem solving method, reasoning agent and search technique.
Unfortunately, it is difficult to implement general problem solving method
for any field, or a general search technique for any field also. The reasoning
agent is responsible to accept sophisticated queries concerning general knowledge
to deduct specific knowledge in order to use by the problem solving method and
the searching technique. The power of the solver reasoning agent can be increased
by implementing a larger number of solvers and by enhancing their capabilities
to solve complex tasks. The use of case base format will be facilitates the
analogical reasoning and the use of rule base format will facilitates the deduction
during the process of solving a problem. The uses of dynamic memory together
with analogical reasoning will a simulation of the common sense of human beings.
Therefore, the inference engine is a simulation of human behavior for solving
a problem using the activities of deduction, analogical reasoning and common
sense (Owaied and Qasem, 2010). The dynamic database
will be used by the heuristic search technique in the inference engine as heuristic
information to retrieve the appropriate knowledge from the knowledge base, which
is either case or rule. If it is case the action of the case will be taken,
but if it is rule then the rule will be apply and finally a conclusion will
be given. The problem solving method used in this project is the problem reduction
method and solves the problem using one of the ten facilities provided by the
GIS and XRM accordingly.
Since, the use of knowledge-based systems and expert systems are dedicated in certain fields of application such as, Medical, Engineering, Control, Robots and Manufacturing. In this study, conclude that, the cooperation between the knowledge-based system with the facilities provided by the application of GIS and XRM. This integration will enhance the use of information technology in many fields, such as Tourism, Business, Media Art and other fields.
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