Pedestrian navigation is characterized by several specific features mainly related to the high level of mobility of human beings. Pedestrians move in very diverse surroundings ranging from open areas to narrow urban and indoor environments. They change direction and walking speed depending on traffic, hurry, interest, and mood (to name but a few). In known environments, route planning and optimization is decided by experience, topographic and topological knowledge.
Pedestrian navigation has been of major interest for the research team of the Institute since 1999. The main objective is the development of flexible navigation systems that may be used in all environments visited by pedestrians. Together with the company TeleConsult Austria GmbH, prototype development and investigations of commercial systems have been carried out.
Specific emphasis is placed on navigation systems for blind or visually impaired people ("electronic blind stick") requiring a high quality level of the navigation information.