Tsukuba field trials

This blog is dedicated to BigClouT field trial to be conducted on the behalf of Tsukuba City and NTTE.

Flag_of_Tsukuba_IbarakiNTT East

Tsukuba City is interested in using BigClouT platform for developing sightseeing.

* Use Case 1: Provide tourism, traffic and environmental information in real time to visitors


Tsukuba is famous as a scientific city, where many research institutes are located, as well as a sightseeing place. For this reason, there are a lot of Japanese and foreign tourists to Tsukuba. Anecdotal evidence informs us that some visitors are not satisfied with their visit e.g., cannot climb the Tsukuba mountain due to bad weather, lack of information about popular scenic spots etc. One main reason is poor planning.

Trial 1 Tourist App

In this trial, we aim at delivering timely information to visitors through different channels, such as smartphone apps, digital signage, etc. An overview of the trial technology framework is shown in the figure below. Data is collected from devices, passed through BigClouT cloud infrastructure and pushed to edge devices such as digital signage boards.

We exploit the smartphone app (HukuRepo) developed in the 1st year for Trial 2 by extending its functionality in such a way that it supports context-aware/location-based recommendation and multilingual use. We also install a digital display at Tsukuba Centre whereby we can deliver information to visitors. Visitors in Tsukuba can check a recommendation in the app and can also ask for a specific recommendation using the app.

Our goal is to improve the quality of the visit for participating visitors and to better understand needs of visitors.

* Use Case 2: Grasp status about foreign visitors to Tsukuba and provide concierge service to them


Tsukuba city is one of the most famous scientific cities in Japan with more than 100 research institutes and universities. For this reason, many domestic/international academic meetings, including international conferences, are held in Tsukuba. Additionally, Mt. Tsukuba is a famous sightseeing spot which receives many visitors from Japan and overseas each year.

According to city officials in Tsukuba, they do not have comprehensive information regarding foreign visitors, such as the number, gender, country, popular visiting places, etc. and they do not always know the problems experienced by foreign visitors.

Trial 2 Participatory Sensing App for Foreign Visitors

To cope with this problem, in this trial, we develop a participatory sensing system for foreign visitors using smartphones to collect problems experienced by the users during their stay in Tsukuba. The application which is called HukuRepo, allows users to submit a problem along with a photo and descriptive texts. In addition, for submitted problems, the system allows volunteers to offer real-time responses in terms of texts, which are considered to be useful for the visitors to solve the problem.

The following shows some screenshots of the developed smartphone app.

In the year 2, we have done a trial with English version HukuRepo app. Some useful problems were collected, but the number of posts was smaller than expected. Based on the results of the 1st trial, we are updating the app so that it supports not only English, but also Chinese, Korean, and Japanese, and not only Android but also iOS. We are also developing automatic response function using BigClouT components. Additional functions are being developed step by step and the 2nd trial will continue by the end of June 2019. Collected data will be analysed with BigClouT analysis tools.

Our goal is to grasp information about foreign visitors in Tsukuba, such as profile, age, gender, living country, visited places in Tsukuba, etc.

For more information, please see D4.2 and D4.3.