Introduction to Ambient Intelligence in Internet of Things Environments and Cyber-Physical Systems

Introduction to Ambient Intelligence in Internet of Things Environments and Cyber-Physical Systems

DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-8973-0.ch001
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This chapter discusses current role and future prospects of ambient intelligence in development of applications for the internet of things environments. The authors provide an introduction to the field of ambient intelligence and specifically discuss what makes it so important to be a core element of cyber-physical systems. The main focus of the chapter is on providing analysis and the reasoning for development of smart spaces and delivering ambient intelligence to internet of things environments. The chapter provides definition and overview of recent trends and advances for service development with all identified key technological enablers of modern info-communication technologies, including data mining, big data analysis, recommendation systems, and so on. The main messages of the chapter are summarized by the conclusion section.
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The recent trend in service industry is shift of users’ interest and preferences towards the context-aware, situational, and personalized services. The Ambient Intelligence defines principles of interworking for all devices that surround the user and so creating proactively-responsive user-friendly environment. Internet of Things (IoT) is a good example of delivering the Ambient Intelligence to the end users. One can find a lot of works on making digital services intelligent and sensitive to the individual needs of the users as illustrated in the papers of (Cook, Augusto, & Jakkula, 2009) and (Evers, Kniewel, Geihs, & Schmidt, 2014). It is important to ensure to provide such services with the critical volume of the reliable data. But only a few services are able to accumulate the required critical mass of data within scope of their routine operations. One of the most classic problems is that data collected in one service is not accessible from another. As a result of the observable lack of mechanisms for information exchange between the services we have a digital ecosystem with high fragmentation of services and data.

Another key challenge is to organize intelligent use of all available information appropriate for the service in a given context of the user. The direct consequence of this challenge is that the service provision chains become lengthy and, in addition to Internet resources, allow to involve a multitude of heterogeneous IoT devices, services, and users localized in the physical surrounding: various embedded and consumer electronics devices as well as personal equipment that accompanies human.

But before diving into details of Ambient Intelligence and surrounding technologies we want to stress attention of the reader on the general history of progress in information and infocommunication technologies (IT and ICT) that we have seen in the last 40 years. Figure 1 illustrates historical evolution of availability of computing power per person.

Figure 1.

Historical evolution and shift on availability of computing power per person


Only in a few decades our society shifted from high centralization and deficit of computing power and memory, to extreme distribution and availability/access to the huge volume of computing power and memory at any place. This change in technology availability fuels shift of user expectation on how friendly shall be our environment and much assistance we are expecting from it.

Internet of Things (IoT) is a paradigm that is under active development for the last 10 years and is still among the most referred and desired topic. IoT is targeted to provide seamless support for internetworking of different devices and sensors using Internet. A number of specific platforms have been developed to support IoT devices communication, e.g., OpenIoT (Soldatos et al., 2015). The most classic understanding of IoT refers to the connection of physical objects. However, the core of IoT technology is in information interconnection and convergence as discussed in the works of (Atzori, Iera, & Morabito, 2010) and (Wang, Zhu, & Ma, 2013). The IoT work routine is based on continued processing of huge number of data flows, originated by various sources and consumed by multiple applications.

The Ambient Intelligence (AmI) supported by IoT play the key role in development of Intelligent Environments (Augusto, Nakashima, & Aghajan, 2010; Augusto, Callaghan, Cook, Kameas, & Satoh, 2013). Broad deployment of Intelligent Environments will completely change perception of the physical space. The intelligent software agents help to orchestrate all aspects of an environment and so create an interactive holistic functionality that enhances users’ experience. The AmI will be one of the key elements of the 4th Industrial Revolution (Trussell, 2018; Winfield et al., 2019).

Key Terms in this Chapter

Web of Things (WoT): The new evolution of the IoT principles that is delivered as an overlay on top of IoT and targeted in adoption of the standards that made the web popular.

Ambient Intelligence (AmI): Electronic environments that are sensitive and responsive to the presence of a user, which disappear into surroundings until only the user interface remains perceivable by users. The ambient intelligence paradigm builds upon pervasive computing, ubiquitous computing, profiling, context awareness, and human-centric computer interaction design.

E-Healthcare (E-Health): A healthcare practice supported by electronic processes and communication.

E-Tourism: The analysis, design, implementation and application of IT and e-commerce solutions in the travel and tourism industry; as well as the analysis of the respective economic processes and market structures and customer relationship management.

Smart-M3: An open-source software platform that aims to provide a smart spaces infrastructure. It combines the ideas of distributed, networked systems and semantic web. The ultimate goal is to enable smart environments and linking of real and virtual worlds.

Smart Space: A set of communicating nodes and information storages, which has embedded logic to acquire and apply knowledge about its environment and adapt to its inhabitants in order to improve their experience in the environment.

Cyber-Physical Systems (CPS): A mechanism that is controlled or/and monitored by computer-based algorithms and tightly integrated with the Internet. In cyber-physical systems, physical and software components are deeply intertwined, each operating on different spatial and temporal scales, exhibiting multiple and distinct behavioral modalities, and interacting with each other in a lot of ways that change with context. Examples of CPS include smart grid, autonomous automobile systems, medical monitoring, process control systems, robotics systems, and automatic pilot avionics.

Knowledge Corpus: Defines the smart spaces structure that consist of a set of shared resources including data and data processing function, which continuously performs data mining operations for extracting new relevant knowledge and performing routine monitoring functions based on the target functions set by the user or smart space services.

IoT Device: Is a physical device embedded with electronics, software, sensors, actuators, and network connectivity sufficient for collecting and exchanging data with other devices.

Service Intelligence: Is a measurement of an ability of a service to adopt behavior to the environment without human intervention.

Fog Computing: An architecture that uses collaborative multitude of the user clients and devices located in the user’s proximity to carry out major part of processing, storage and communication tasks related to delivery of services to the user.

Edge Computing: A distributed computing paradigm that largely or completely based on computations performed on a set distributed device (smart devices or edge devices) as opposed to computations run on a centralized cloud in core network.

Internet of Things (IoT): Is the internetworking of IoT devices that enable these devices to collect and exchange data for a achieving a common goal.

Smart Environment: Is a concept of the physical world that is richly and invisibly interwoven with sensors, actuators, displays, and computational elements, embedded seamlessly in the everyday objects of our lives, and connected through a continuous network.

User Profiles: Contain information about the users.

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