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Ubiquitous Intermodal Mobility Assistance

Thesis type PhD
Year 2019
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Global trends like urbanization, digitization, and climate change enforce and accelerate the change of personal mobility. New mobility services and growing transportation networks give travelers more choices. Combining traditional mobility services, like trains, with emerging services, like electric carsharing, enables fast, low-priced and environmental friendly journeys. Because of the high complexity of such intermodal itineraries compared to traditional travel, planning and conducting these requires assistance.In this work we describe how an information system providing the required information for intermodal traveling can be constructed. To do so, a revised distributed system architecture and interfaces between the components are required as well as strategies to combine public transportation and sharing services into intermodal itineraries. Based on these findings we show how to give personalized, intermodal route recommendations to travelers to simplify travel planning. Using a combination of content-based and context-aware recommender algorithms we sort a set of intermodal itinerary provided by intermodal travel information systems based on the travelers preferences. The evaluation showed that a personalized travel planning is preferred over a traditional departure timebased travel itinerary sorting. Furthermore, we concluded that a short self-assessment can replace a lengthy training of the recommendation model, to give personalized recommendations to new users. A deep learning recommender rendered a lower recommendation quality compared to a plain recommender model.An intermodal journeys usually includes multiple transfers between diverse mobility services, rendering the journey complex. To assist the traveler while on his or her way, we introduce the intermodal mobility assistance, applying the principle of cascading information. The cascading information principle denotes that only currently relevant information should be conveyed to the user, and by that, simplifying the information processing. This is especially helpful in situations where the traveler is distracted by, e.g., walking. Intermodal implies that not only various public transportation systems are covered but also walking directions and modern mobility schemes like carsharing. The traveler is assisted on the respective device he or she is using at a specific moment. This could be a smartphone during a bus travel, a wearable device while walking, or even a car while using a carsharing service. Evaluations of the respective prototypes show that the approach indeed simplifies traveling and therefore is feasible. In addition we show how to effectively support the traveler in situations when the initial plan cannot be continued because of delays or disruptions in the travel chain. Furthermore, we discuss on how to design and evaluate mobile travel information systems in meaningful ways.

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published online

Completed at

RWTH Aachen University , DE.

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