Misc (mostly mobile comm, IM, TM, etc)
Ubicomp readingsAs We May Think, Vannevar Bush
This was a visionary paper written in 1945 near the end of WWII. In it, Bush describes the coming (for him) and evolving (for us) digital age. In the article, he floats ideas that come close to the digital camera, digital storage, speech recognition, credit cards, etc. However, the main contribution of the paper is his idea of a "memex". This was a mechanical device that comes close (in concept) to a combination of a computer, bookmarking, and internet databases. The memex was designed to help a person deal with the massive amounts of information accumulated over a lifetime by providing easy, associative (similar to the human mind) access. The "essential feature" of the memex was the "process of tying two items together". In contrast the current (1945) search algorithm was indexing.
The Computer for the 21st Century, Mark Weiser
Seminal paper. Weiser gives broad overview and definition ubicomp. It also notes a major area of problems/research for ubicomp: context awareness: "If a comptuer knows merely what room it is in, it can adapt its behavior in significant ways..." It presents some early Xerox PARC work in developing and using a ubiquitous computing environment (tabs, pads, and boards). It also gives a vision of the future world through a narrative about "Sal" and use of ubiquitous computing.
Some Computer Science Issues in Ubiquitous Computing, Mark Weiser
This paper details Xerox PARC's initial foray into Ubicomp. It describes PARC's system of Tabs, Pads, and Boards in gory, hardware detail. He then goes on to generalize what he saw as some of the unique problems ubicomp would generate in the larger world of computer science. These included hardware issues (low power requirements, pens, and wireless networks), network protocols (wireless cellular protocols and routing protocols), interaction substrates (x-windowing systems, menuing systems), applications (the two examples he gives are location finders (similar to ActiveBadge system) and drawing programs), privacy, and computational methods (optimal cache sharing).
The Coming Age of Calm Technology, Mark Weiser and John Seely Brown
A Survey and Taxonomy of Location Systems for Ubiquitous Computing, Jeffrey Hightower and Gaetano Borriello
This paper decided underwhelmed me. It presents a generalized taxonomy of location systems and then a survey of the field circa 2001. A loose outline of their taxonomy is:
I.) Location Sensing Techniques
B.) Scene Analysis
1.) Detecting physical contact
2.) Monitoring wireless cellular access points
3.) Observing automatic ID systems
II.) Location System Properties
A.) Physical Position and Symbolic Location
B.) Absolute vs. Relative Position
C.) Localized Location Computation
D.) Accuracy and Precision
The paper goes on to survey a number of location systems and gives several useful tables and graphs comparing systems.
Privacy as part of taxonomy? Receiver identified as specific ID or not?
Phidgets: Easy Developmennt of Physical Interfaces through Physical Widgets,Saul Greenberg and Chester Fitchett
This paper extends the widget metaphor for GUIs to input device. Greenberg introduces "phidgets" which are physical widgets. These physical widgets are designed to be prepackaged electrical components which computer scientists usually do not have the capability to build. They enable rapid prototyping of physical interfaces as widgets do for guis. Without getting into too much detail, they not only packages the physical hardware, but also packaged the communication software and made it easy to use via APIs. They also wrote "drop in" widgets (ActiveX and later Khai and Jason Brotherton extended it to Java) which plug into GUI software (VB, etc) to enable easy programming of these devices.
There could be debate about whether this is an engineering contribution vs. research contribution. While there are a limited number of devices, this paper serves as an ideal proof of concept. Gregory: "Makes (electrically) easy things easy. Context toolkit makes hard things easy."
see also iRoom and iStuff out of Stanford
The Context Toolkit: Aiding the Development of Context-Enabled Applications, Daniel Salber, Anind Dey, and Gregory Abowd
This paper introduces the idea of a context toolkit designed to make incorporating context in applications easier. It details two widgets "IdentityPresence" and "Activity" and their implementations. It also shows a couple of potential applications using the widgets.
The hardware sensor (mic, rfid tags, etc) are refered to as "Generators", "Interpreters" abstract that raw data into something useful, and "Aggregators" or servers collect the information into larger sets.
This system eventually failed because it is hard to add sensors due to tight coupling between Aggregator and Interpretter. Scaling issues. Given arbitrary set of sensors, code must be added for given config to aggregator and interpretter.
How to evaluate toolkits is a larger meta-problem.
Charting Past, Present, and Future Research in Uniquitous Computing, Gregory Abowd and Elizabeth Mynatt
This paper details three major research areas for ubicomp in the millenium:
1) Natural Interface computing - often combines multiple "data types" (ex. speech and writing in classroom settings). Errors are a large problem w/ three parts: error reduction, error discovery and error recovery.
2) Context aware computing - context defined as who, what, when, where, why. "Context fusion" involving more than one aspect of context (necessary because of errors and sensor limitations).
3) Capture and Access - capturing snippets of environment and accessing them later. Often want non-sequential access. Privacy concerns.
Using the Experience Sampling Method to Evaluate Ubicomp Applications, Sunny Consolvo and Miriam Walker
This paper shows to two researchers adapted a commong technique in psychology, ESM, for use in evaluating ubicomp applications. The Personal Server team at Intel Research Seattle needed to know what devices were present in the environment that people might want to annex. The eval. team implemented an ESM on a PDA to judge. The paper provides poor details on the exact intent of the study, but provide a useful rubric for determining specifics when implementing an ESM. This paper would be appropriate for people who needed to learn ESM and already have a firm idea of what questions they need to ask their subjects. Also worth noting that they gave their subjects financial incentive to respond to the alerts.
Useful would be a study design showing how to apply their methodology from the ground up. Study explanation was very poor and vague. Hard to tell if this was embarrassment or just oversight.
A Diary Study of Information Capture in Working Life, Barry Brown, Abigail Sellen, and Kenton O'Hara
This is a slight twist on a diary study. The team needed to evaluate the market for a new device, the "CapShare", a hand-held scanner. They divided people into two groups, "Paper" and "Multimedia" and gave them digital cameras to snap pictures of things they wanted to "record". They told the paper group to only record paper/documents items while they told the other group to record anything/everything. They then interviewed the subjects using the pictures to jog people's memories. They discovered that 35% of the time, people in the paper group wanted to capture something other than letter size documents, meaning their device needed to accomodate post-its and flip charts size things. They also developed an interesting taxonomy which stemmed from what people were trying to capture. In a nutshell, those were:
They applied this taxonomy to their device to help inform software development and features of the device.
Disappearing Hardware, Roy Want, Trevor Pering, Gaetano Borriello, and Keith Farkas
Article concentrates on the hardware issues of ubicomp. Makes the case that hardware (he sort of also includes software) should "disappear" from the user and allow users to concentrate on what they want to do rather than the tools needed to do it.
Four most notable improvements in last 10 years:
Trends that will drive ubicomp:
Hard problems/Physical limitations:
Future challenges/research areas:
Interestings stats: PCs make up only 2% of processors sold
Beyond prototypes: Challenges in deploying ubiquitous systems, Nigel Davies and Hans-Werner Gellersen
Makes the case that the whole of a ubicomp application is far greater than each of it's parts (privacy, infrastructure, sensor networks, cost, etc)
The human experience, Gregory D. Abowd, Elizabeth D. Mynatt and Tom Rodden.
Idea that machines should be about the humans behind them.
Physical interaction issues:
Design and eval issues:
Stuck in the Middle: The Challenges of User-Centered Design and Evaluation of Infrastructure, Keith Edwards, Victoria Belotti, Anind Dey, and Mark Newman
Paper looks at (ubicomp) infrastructures and the struggle between design and evaluation of the infrastructure itself. They detail 8 lessons learned from two case studies: Placeless Documents and the Context Toolkit.
Developing Consumer-Friendly Pervasive Retail Systems, Panos Kourouthanassis and George Roussos
Paper talks about MyGrocer, a ubicomp application for use in grocery stores. Based on RFID for products. Looked at what shoppers would want given a display on their cart that tracked their purchases. Things such as store layout maps, running total of items in cart, expedited checkout, shopping list based on past purchases, etc.
Technology is nothing spectacular, but user studies were good. Started with focus groups and then a limited implementation (2 aisles and about 100 products).
Classroom 2000: An experiment with the instrumentation of a living educational environment, G. Abowd
Details the first few years of Classroom 2000/eclass. Talks about the hand in hand design of system and evaluation of system. Timeline structure.
Initial prototype split into Preproduction, Live Capture, Postproduction, and Access. Helped quantify what were most important features and what should be focused on full time. Transitioned into "living laboratory" which was wider deployment and eval. Found users tended to take less notes but found no differences in attendance or exam results.
User Study Techniques in the Design and Evaluation of a Ubicomp Environment, Sunny Consolvo, Larry Arnstein, B. Robert Franza
Discusses problems of evaluating ubicomp apps. Shows how different techniques can be used for the design and evaluation sections.
For design, they used Intensive Interviewing (lab setting, open ended interview) and Contextual Field Research (CFR) (following people in environment). II first then leading to CFR. In the eval. they use Lag Sequential Analysis (code things in relation to other events) instead of usability testing.
Used in context of LabScape and a biology lab.
PlantCare: An investigation in practical ubiquitous computing systems, Anthony LaMarca, Waylon Brunette, David Koizumi, Matthew Lease, Stefan B Sigurdsson, Kevin Sikorski, Dieter Fox and Gaetano Borriello
Automated system for taking care of plants; robot navigates and waters them. Scenario for building system, but really investigates true "out of the box", background appliances. Integrated wireless sensors and power issues resolved in novel ways. True integration of sensors, hardware, and software. Conclusion: integration is crucial. Autonomous operation.
Issues in Personalizing Shared Ubiquitous Devices.Trevor, J., Hilbert, D.M. and Schilit, B.N
Two seperate pieces to paper. Evaluation framework and personalized devices implmentation.
Makes the case for "comparative evaluation" which says that ubicomp devices have to be evaluated against other things; the ethnography approach isn't enough. Thus, when they decided to implement an approach to personalizing devices, they went with two types of devices (integrated and remote).
They wanted to make group devices (presentation computer, brainstorming display, and printer/copier) personalizable. Added terminals or built in capabilities to computers. Also augmented systems to allow connections and control from remote, mobile devices thru a wireless network. Fair bit about architecture of system. Looked at Usability, Utility, Availability, Trust, and Privacy.
Tools for Studying Behavior and Technology in Natural Settings., Intille, et al.
Tools for studying ubicomp in environment over long periods of time: environmental sensors, Context-aware experience sampling, and image-based experience sampling.
Sensors deployed in environement. "tape to" environement for fast install/removal. Then use ipaq w/ sensor detecting to trigger "context aware" sampling. Built open-source software for
experience sampling beyond commerically available stuff. context-aware sampling tries to overcome self-report biases. image-based sampling invoves "sampling" the user in a highly instrumented environment by snapping pictues and then interviewing or using a diary to trigger subject's recall later.
Privacy by Design - Principles of Privacy-Aware Ubiquitous Systems, Marc Langheinrich
A best practices sort of document for ubiquitous computing.
Starts with history of privacy and the 5 types of privacy: behavioral or media, territorial, communication, bodily, and information privacy.
US Privacy Act of 74 defined 7 principles:
Principles and Guidelines (specifically for ubicomp)
The cloak of invisibility: Challenges and Applications, Franco Zambonelli and Marco Mamei.
"shows" in a pencil-and-paper kinda way toward invisibility cloak. Out there, but kinda fun paper.
At Home with Ubiquitous Computing: Seven Challenges, Keith Edwards and Beki Grinter
Looks specifically at challenges to ubicomp in home.
Last modified 28 March 2005 at 10:56 am by Valerie Henderson