par Patrick SAINT-JEAN
Arts et Création Industrielle, Ecole Normale Supérieure
Centre de Recherche sur L'image, Université de Paris I, Panthéon-Sorbonne

Third International Conference on Graphics Education
Sixth International Conference on Computational Graphics and Visualization Techniques
December 15-18, 1997
Vilamoura, Algarve, Portugal.

Edited by GRASP - Graphic Science Promotions & Publications. ISBN 972-8342-02-0.

61 Avenue du Président Wilson
94235 Cachan-Cedex
Tel : 33 1 47 40 24 39


Allowing the problematic of multimedia education by new technologies integrated in every discipline, the PolyAgogic CyberSpace is a "VOLUNTAry Textured and Integrated System" (PACS VOLUNTATIS) where the pupil, the students and the pupil-teachers, helped and animated by disciplinary teachers or professional workers, are successively spectators, spect-actors and actors in an amphitheater with immersive screen and simulators for designing the trans-disciplinary courses by an interactive multimedia product on immersive screens, on CD-ROM and on Web-server in intranet or internet connected with other laboratories, libraries and class rooms, in the globality of the information or the locality of there own culture. The relationships of the information are self-organized in an interactive and scriptable database to help and support the multimedia creation.

Key Words : Education, polyagogy, numerical virtual, amphitheater, immersive, interactive, visual, multimedia, simulation, spect-actor, Musearium, engineering of concepts, SGBDR, motion capture, teaching, learning, training, living, imaging.


The purpose of this research is to give the word to the image and the image to the word and both, with feedback, to its first human abilities : the imaginary as mental virtual in connection with the numerical Virtual and the imagination as engine of training by the creation. It is to tell :

Why polyagogy ?

In 1974-77, I have used the concept of polyagogy and the interactivity for the conception of the first interactive computer system for the musical and visual composition and creation on mini-computer (Saint-Jean P., 1977) using disciplines as mathematics, design, physics, architecture, geometry, acoustics and arts.

Fig. 1 : Polyagogy in the numerical unimedia virtual.

And then the Compositor I. Xenakis has given it the name of UPIC (Unité Polyagogique Informatique du CEMAMu, Polyagogic Computer Unit for the Center of Study on Musical Mathematics and Automatic). Few device were distribute in the world and more now in the new version on micro-computer.

Fig. 2 : Polyagogic Computer Unit.

In 1994, my preoccupation has been to define the perspectives of the teaching of the 3D in Education. The solution brings an answer to the question : how to teach and learn a large quantity of information with quick memorization and understanding, living the knowledge and the know-how in its own imaginary per the multimedia and simulating numerical virtual ? Thus the polyagogy should be teached and learned in a amphitheater with visualization and simulation of the concepts in different disciplinary fields (Saint-Jean P., 1994).

Fig. 3 : Polyagogic amphitheater for the numerical Virtual.

An other concept of polyagogy was used with my co-worker J. Bollot, in 1995 for the conception of the CyberNavire (CyberShip) in the Polynesia islands to answer the question : how teaching, learning and training in a class room where people live in few small too far islands ? The solution was a double-bottomed ship, sailing between the islands with computer platform room, multimedia and Internet Network with satellites.

The same year an other project has been concepted with my co-worker Wall>Ich to give an answer about the problematic which is defining by the collation of the local aspect defined by a variety of cultures and the globality of the information with Internet. That has been accelerated in there evolution by the new technologies. And the AME project (Arts et Mutations Electroniques, Arts and Electronic Mutations) has been concepted with a Cybermobile and Mediamobile, using a big trailer INOX 01 designed by Jean Nouvel, an electronic and computer platform twisted, wired and connected up for the multimedia numerical virtual teaching.

Why the PolyAgogic CyberSpaces ?

With the notions of CyberSpace and network, the polyagogy increases its concept by the opening up of a new world, a relational world between the local and the global, necessary and may be essential for the evolution of the democratic reflection.

It was the opportunity to redefine the concept of polyagogy not in terms of local, individual and personal device but in terms of global, collective and networking device to link concrete, abstract and virtual actions in a same project using the information of several disciplines. It is also the possibility to include human factors, social situations, design, ecological and health components. It is in fact to set the problem of education through the new technologies.

In other words, the PACS is a project which give us some replies to a crisis of a society in full evolution and especially a tool of questionment by the praxis. In this case, the solutions are not only given directly by the reasoning with the language but also by the simulation, true to life in the imagination mind, the multisensorial thought, propitious to give the intuition, complementary to the deduction, in the virtual multimedia reasoning. And thus propositions and choices could be done and effective in the concrete and in the abstract.

This project is planned :


Its objectives have been to put in agreement with :

Thus, the vision of an interactive amphitheater to immersion, a "startrek of the Universal American Studio" non essentially for the leisure but for the education, appears as a cultural change will of a mode of teaching, stemming of the prayer and the perusal of the ancestral scriptures, by a new modernity complementary of the pedagogy. This one is characterized by the fact to offer the discovery and the adventure in knowledge and know-how spaces where all disciplines would have reason to be and to make live their own points of view, totality and separately. What would arouse the local difference and the global resemblance, and makes this the reflection by the apprehension of apparently complex worlds but that in fact would be perceptibly simple because stemming phenomenon and comprehensible process by the imaginable.


Composition of the PACS as Installation

The PACS VOLUNTATIS is composed of an amphitheater with seven interest and activity areas structured in three groups :


Fig. 7 : Side View of the PACS.

Fig. 8 : Over View of the PACS.


Fig. 9 : Polyagogic CyberShip of the numerical Virtual.

And the Musearium composed of :


Each participating people could have a credit card (financial, cultural, pedagogical) that would give the possibility to have a virtual personal space on disk and to participate in the collective space. At this time he uses technical, pedagogical and social functions and proposes its own information, its reflections, its points of view and its trips in participating to different projects as actor, spect-actor or simply spectator.

Technical functions

Pedagogical functions

Social functions


The polyagogy is a non unique and complementary solution to the disciplinary pedagogy. It is indispensable to insure the conceptual perceptual and functional evaluation and the self-organization of the phenomenological knowledge and the processoral know-how by adaptive aggregation and dispersion of the texturing information. What optimize regularly and continuously the efficiency and the pedagogical wealth in generating by network effect and by self-regulated reflection and imagination, new goals, new projects, news potentialities, and new projections of the future insuring a progressive actualization that is the fundamental and essential property of the Virtual.


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