Outdoor navigation is widely available nowadays, and helps people to find a place while driving or walking or using public transport. This type of navigation is usually based on coordinates provided by GPS. Inside buildings, however, a navigation system has to cope with more complex routes using floors, elevators and staircases in the lack of GPS signals. The current solutions usually require special and expensive hardware for positioning. Thus, opposed to the outdoor scenario, there is no single, accepted basic methodology for navigation. The authors work on an inexpensive and simple indoor navigation solution, that can be adopted by large buildings even with low budget (such as universities). For this, we would like to exploit the possibilities of Linked Data and SPARQL for building flexible APIs providing location and routing information. The main use case is supporting students at a university in finding their next lecture (although this use case is quite similar to doing shopping in a mall or checking in at an airport).

The objective of our ontology is to support the publishing of indoor location and navigation data as Linked Open Datasets and to support the development of applications using them. The ontology facilitates locations description and links to relevant data. It can also describe how two places are connected including distance or constraints (e.g. wheelchairs cannot pass). The goal was to create a generic and extendable ontology, which can be applied to any public building. Examples include (but are not limited to) university buildings, major shopping malls, airports or railway stations, government buildings. Our requirements also include the low cost of implementation of such a dataset, as well as the support of a very broad usage (e.g. a solution should not require any special device to consume and leverage the data).

The following is a diagram of the iLOC classes and properties:

Download ontology in Turtle format

Semantics 2016 Poster Semantics 2016 Poster

Semantics 2016 slides


Szász, B., Fleiner, R., Micsik, A. (2016) iLOC - Building In-door Navigation Services using Linked Data - Semantics 2016 Conference, Leipzig

Fleiner, R., Szász, B., Piros, P. (2016) Indoor Navigation Linked Data at Obuda University - 11th IEEE International Symposium on Applied Computational Intelligence and Informatics, Timisoara, Romania

Fleiner, R., Simon-Nagy, G., Szász, B. (2016) Accessible Indoor Navigation based on Linked Data in Hospitals - 2016 IEEE International Conference on Systems, Man, and Cybernetics, Budapest

1.1. Simple navigation based on the building structure