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Volume 16 / Issue 12

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DOI:   10.3217/jucs-016-12-1480


Ambient Intelligence: Beyond the Inspiring Vision

Rui José (University of Minho, Portugal)

Helena Rodrigues (University of Minho, Portugal)

Nuno Otero (University of Minho, Portugal)

Abstract: Ambient Intelligence (AmI) has emerged in the past 10 years as a multidisciplinary field within ubiquitous computing, attracting considerable research, funding and public attention and leading to many research groups, and conferences specifically focused on Ambient Intelligence topics. From its conception, AmI has always been a field strongly driven by a particular vision of how ICT technologies would shape our future. This has given the AmI vision, essentially as proposed by ISTAG, an excessively central role in shaping the field and setting its research agenda. We argue that this inspiring vision should no longer be the main driver for AmI research and that we should now re-interpret its role in the background of 10 years of research.

In this paper, we reflect on what it means for AmI to move behind its foundational vision and we identify a number of emerging trends around some of its core concepts, more specifically the notion of intelligence, the system view and the requirements process. The main motivation is to search for alternative research directions that may be more effective in delivering today the essence of the AmI vision, even if they mean abandoning some of the currently prevailing approaches and assumptions. Overall, these trends provide a more holistic view of AmI and may represent important contributions for bringing this field closer to realisation, delivery and real social impact.

Keywords: Ambient Intelligence, design, global computing, innovation, open innovation, scenarios, situated intelligence, ubiquitous computing

Categories: D.2.1, D.2.10, H.1.2, I.2.0, K.4.2