The Virtual Twin: A Socialization Agent for Peer-to-Peer Networks

The Virtual Twin: A Socialization Agent for Peer-to-Peer Networks

Alexandre Gachet (University of Hawaii at Manoa, USA) and Pius Haettenschwiler (University of Fribourg, Switzerland)
Copyright: © 2005 |Pages: 12
DOI: 10.4018/jiit.2005040105


As peer-to-peer computing finally reaches a critical mass, it triggers changes in the IT landscape that traditional network infrastructures, based on centralized, client/server topologies, cannot manage. Consequently, the ad hoc, self-organized, and loosely controlled nature of peer-to-peer networks needs to be supported by a new coordination layer representing the interests of the user. In order to define this new abstraction layer, this paper introduces the concept of the virtual twin — a kind of anthropomorphic representation of the networked person with whom the user can identify and feel comfortable. We discuss the inner structure of the virtual twin, first in an intuitive and informal way with an emphasis on its social aspect, then in a more detailed way with the analysis of its main components.

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