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Towards Pervasive Computing


Towards Pervasive Computing
Vandana Dhingra and Tanvi Rustagi
1 2

Apeejay College of Engineering, Sohna 1 2 E- mail:,

ABSTRACT: Pervasive computing is a new dimension of personal computing that integrates mobile communication, ubiquitous embedded computer system, consumer electronics and power of Internet. It is a rapidly developing area of Information and Communications Technology (ICT). The term refers to the increasing integration of ICT into people’s lives and environments, made possible by the growing availability of microprocessors with inbuilt communications facilities. Pervasive computing has many potential applications, from health and home care to environmental monitoring and intelligent transport systems. In this paper, we have discussed about how pervasive computing is different from traditional computing, its evolution from its predecessor fields, various issues related to pervasive computing and discussed various other research areas that are required to be studied with pervasive computing. Keywords—Ubiquitous Computing, Pervasive Computing Systems (PCS), Mobile Computing, Distributed computing, Human-Computer Interaction.



ervasive or Ubiquitous computing has the potential to radically transform the way people interacted with computers [4]. The key idea behind pervasive computing is to deploy a wide variety of computing devices throughout living and working spaces. These devices coordinate with each other and network services with the goal of providing people with universal access to their information and seamlessly assisting them in completing their task. Pervasive computing thus marks a major shift in focus away from the actual computing technology and towards people and their needs, so instead of manually managing their computing environment by for example copying files between devices or converting between data formats user simply access their applications and their data whenever and wherever they need. With its vision of ubiquitous information access, pervasive computing significantly impacts computing devices and their deployment in addition to conventional desktop and server computers, pervasive computing environments encompass many different devices of various sizes and capabilities, including PDA cell phones, video game consoles, robotic dogs. Furthermore, in addition to well -administered and controlled computing server rooms with racks of computers, computing devices are now everywhere, often embedded in places not typically associated with computing, such as living rooms. Laboratories and server rooms with racks of computers, computing devices are not everywhere often embedded in places not typically associated with computing such as living rooms. Pervasive computing systems (PCS) and services may lead to a greater degree of user knowledge of, or control over, the surrounding environment, whether at home, or in an office

or car. They may also show a form of ‘intelligence’. For instance, a ‘smart’ electrical appliance could detect its own impending failure and notify its owner as well as a maintenance company, to arrange a repair. Pervasive computing has been in development for almost 15 years but still remains some way from becoming a fully operational reality. Some core technologies have already emerged, although the development of battery technologies and user interfaces pose particular challenges. It may be another 5–10 year before complete PCS become widely available [5]. This depends on market forces, industry, public perceptions and the effects of any policy/regulatory frameworks.

Rather than using the network to connect computers that are being used directly by people, these appliances communicate over networks such that people do not directly monitor the communication between machines and programs. The majority of these communications will occur in an end -to-end structure that does not include a human at any point. The number of machines connected to the Internet has been increasing at an exponential rate and will continue to grow at this rate as the existing networks of embedded computers, including those that already exist within our automobiles, are connected to the larger, global network, and as new networks of embedded devices are constructed in our homes and offices. The kinds of devices that will be used to access the Internet are no longer confined to desktops and servers, but include small devices with limited user interface facilities (such as cell phones and PDAs); wireless devices with limited bandwidth,

sometime by going on and offline at widely varying rates. nested transactions… High Availability Distributed Replication.directed adaptation. dist databases. Many of these devices are mobile. 1: Evolution of Pervasive Computing from Mobile system and Distributed Systems . • Remote information access. (d) concern for battery power consumption. • Remote communication. Mobile Computing It was born in the early 1990’s with the advent of fullfunction laptop computers and wireless LANs. 5. (c) limitations on local resources imposed by weight and size constraints. and electrical power. Mobile computing is still a very active and evolving field of research. distributed file systems.phase commit. whose body of knowledge awaits codification. including location sensing and location-aware system behaviour. Although many basic principles of distributed system design continued to apply. • Security. the new devices will have the following characteristics: 1. rollback recovery… Systems Remote information access Dist file systems.waved in triangulation context. Unlike traditional Desktop Computers and existing networks. end-to. including Mobile IP. The results achieved so far can be grouped into the following broad topics: • mobile networking. The research that followed from the mid-1970 through the early 1990’s created a conceptual framework and algorithmic base that has proven to be of enduring value in all work involving two or more computers connected by a network—whether mobile or static. including atomic transactions. including caching. wired or wireless. they will be replaced (or fail) far more rapidly than is no common. Many will have small. including optimistic and pessimistic replica control. mirrored execution. two. Over the time. and optimistic recovery . bandwidth -adaptive file access. and distributed databases. ad -hoc protocols. Often. including protocol layering. variable-speed processor scheduling. and techniques for improving • mobile information access. • High availability. This body of knowledge spans many areas. 2. caching… Distributed security Encryption mutual authentication… Mobile networking Mobile IP. wireless TCP fixes… Mobile information access Disconnected operation weak consistency… Adaptive applications proxies. including disconnected operation. ad hoc networks. • Remote procedure call. distributed and nested transactions.awareness… Smart spaces Mobile Computing Pervasive Computing EVOLUTION OF PERVASIVE NETWORKING Pervasive networking is said to be evolved from mobile computing and pervasive computing [8]. 3. They will change rapidly. inexpensive processors with limited memory and little or no persistent storage. changing not only geographic position. and the use of end-to-end arguments in placement of functionality. but also their place in the topology of the network. transcoding agility… Energy-aware systems goal. including transcoding by proxies and adaptive resource management • system-level energy saving techniques. • fault tolerance. four key constraints of mobility forced the development of specialized techniques. and energy-sensitive task and memory management • location sensitivity. and two-phase commit. (b) lowered trust and robustness of mobile elements. sparse or pervasive. energy -fair ad hoc networking. 4. function shipping. including encryption-based mutual authentication and privacy.94 computing power. Invisibility Localized scalability Uneven conditioning Fig. Mobile and Pervasive Computing (CoMPC–2008) Distributed Systems The field of distributed systems arose at the intersection of personal computers and local area networks. Remote communication Protocol layering RPC. the use of timeouts. and embedded processors with severe limitations on the amount of memory and computing power available to them.end args… Fault tolerance ACID. They will be used s source of information. such as energy aware adaptation. They will connect to other computing elements without the direct intervention of users. and selective control of data consistency. sometimes by being mobile. often sending that information into the center of the network to which they are attached. • support for adaptative applications. These constraints are: (a) unpredictable variation in network quality. they will be connected by wireless networks. disk spin -down… Location sen sitivity GPS.

However the Environment While the consumption of natural resources might be reduced through the miniaturization of PCS devices. The National Consumer Council (NCC) suggests there may be questions over liability—for example if systems are interconnected it will be harder to establish who is responsible if something goes wrong. movements. transmitted and stored in greater volume. for example on users' everyday interactions. as a result of their ability to [2]: • gather sensitive data. Engineering Issues The UK Computer Research Center (UKCRC) highlights specific issues including the current lack of low cost technology to locate devices and the lack of suitable power sources. Privacy : With personal information being collected. security. or the result of deliberate attempts to damage the system. Technological Measures: It is argued that privacy. However. [3] The National Consumer Council (NCC) suggests there may be questions over liability—for example if systems are interconnected it will be harder to establish who is responsible if something goes wrong. In terms of consumer data. there are also potential risks. possibly responding to hazards more quickly than humans. • retrieve and use information from large databases/ archives of stored data. Privacy. consumer groups such as the NCC say that developers need to give more consideration to privacy issues. Data mining involves processing large quantities of data to spot patterns and trends. For example. The NCC also points out that faulty system may be harder to repair because of the degree of interconnection. Similar concerns exist over prospective PCS applications in domiciliary care. activating the brakes without driver intervention. Also the complexity of PCS systems means that their communications. Three measures are frequently cited as vital in establishing robust security measures: • the volume of transmitted data should be kept to a minimum.Towards Pervasive Computing 95 opportunities for ‘data mining’ activities could be vastly increased with PCS. There is debate over how privacy can be protected while still realizing the benefits of pervasive Computing. for example if the security of the vehicle’s controlling software is breached. some argue that there is the potential to violate existing legislation. The advent of pervasive computing may mean that data can be collected without a person’s knowledge or consent. While some of these issues are likely to be covered by the transposition into UK law of the E Directive on Waste Electrical and C . However. These might be accident al. the opportunities for data interception. However the potential ubiquity and integration of PCS into the environment pose additional challenges. Some argue that this could violate existing data protection law [4]. software and hardware are likely to suffer from faults. preferences and attitudes. such as the home. Breaches of security could expose vulnerable individuals to malicious acts within their own homes —for example the withholding or overprescribing of medications. because data mining activities can detect unknown relationships in data. The NCC also points out that systems means that their communications. Many of these i sues occur already with ICT such as the Internet s or mobile phones. Integrated transport systems could involve road vehicles having actuating devices that intervene in the driving process. any gains are likely to be offset by technological proliferation. or the result of deliberate attempts to damage the system. theft and ‘ubiquitous surveillance’ (official and unofficial) will be heightened. While this may help avoid accidents. These principles are accepted by many centers of PCS research and development. Safety and Security: Pervasive computing also gives rise to debate over safety. and whether new legislation will be required. These might be accidental. ISSUES RELATED TO PERVASIVE COMPUTING There are engineering problems to be solved before many of the envisaged applications of PCS can become a reality. the new Mercedes S -Class features an active braking system that can detect rapidly slowing vehicles in front. Moreover. safety and security can be better protected if appropriate procedures and protocols are integrated into PCS at the design level rather than implemented retrospectively. • alter the environment via actuating devices. • data that require transmission should be encrypted and sent anonymously (without reference to the owner). without user intervention or consent. This may be compounded by problems of treating microelectronic waste embedded in other objects and has implications for recycling because of the possibility of such waste contaminating recycling channels. software and hardware are likely to suffer from faults. PCS could be embedded in places considered private. • security should be treated as an ongoing and integral element of PCS. security and safety. the operation of PCS raises questions over privacy. safety and environmental impact. this can lead to more effective targeted marketing. Data on many aspects of personal life could be recorded and stored. This law also requires that personal data should be collected for a specified purpose only. Security and Safety Pervasive computing systems may have implications for privacy. The NNC argues that in the case of RFID. with the risk of breaches of privacy. 6 privacy issues were considered only late in development and have still not been fully addressed.

. mobile and pervasive computing share many research topics with other areas of research. “Towards Security and Privacy for Pervasive Computing”. IEEE computer. We will also have to address research challenges in areas outside computer systems. Digital Divide There is a risk of technological and social isolation for those who do not use the technology (whether it be through choice. [2] Roy H. ACM/IEEE Int’l Conf. Campbell. 2000. Mobile Computing and Networking (Mobicom 2000). W. M.” Scientific Am. Pervasive computing could improve the lives of those with illnesses and disabilities. IEEE. and Ark.” IEEE Personal Communication. number. there may be increased risk from exposure of body tissues to the potentially damaging effects of such radiation.. Volume 38. Campbell and Brian Bailey in Proceedings of the 3rd International Conf. as new hardware technologies converge with research progress on the many fundamental problems discussed in this paper. Jan–Mar. In this framework.” Proc.. Geetanjali Sampemane. “Pervasive Computing: Vision and challenges. a user exercises and delegates her authority using her smart phone. C. Roy H. ACM P ress. D. October. software agents (with specific relevance to high-level proactive behavior). 10–17. OVERLAP WITH OTHER RESEARCH AREAS REFERENCES [1] “Towards a Pervasive Computing Benchmark”. and to revisit long-standing design assumptions in others. 1999.S. Jalal Al-Muhtadi. D. pervasive computing offers new beginnings f r the adventurous and the restless—a rich o open space where the rules have yet to be written and the borders yet to be drawn. However. et al. a research project that sits at the intersection of Security and Mobile Computing is Grey. M. Sept. 2002... M. [6] Saha. p. 19–25. When describing his vision. Anand Ranganathan. their needs and capabilities should be considered from an early stage in the design of the system. [8] Satyanarayanan.. pp. sustained over many years. “The Computer for the 21st Century. As these devices may be carried close to the body (more so than current ICT) and remain constantly activated. 2: Mobile and pervasive computing overlap with other research areas Figure 2 presents a broader perspective of the research challenges we face in this area.96 Electronic Equipment. and the elderly.C. 94–104. Jalal Al-Muhtadi. Published by IEEE. [4] Weiser. Like the Frontier of the American West in the early 19th century. 65 Published in IBM Journal. and expert systems and artificial intelligence (particularly in the areas of decision making and planning). Capabilities from these areas will need to be integrated with the kinds of computer systems capabilities. “Challenges: An Application Model for Pervasive Computing. M. Mobile and Pervasive Computing (CoMPC–2008) CONCLUSION Pervasive computing will be a fertile source of challenging research problems in computer systems for many years to come. it is widely agreed that in order for these groups to benefit from PCS. on Pervasive Computing and Communications Workshops (PerCom 2005 Workshops). pp. Aug. [5] Banavar. Health Non-ionizing radiation is a by-product of the wireless signals that are likely to be used to connect pervasive computing devices into broader networks. . Grey area at inters ection seeks to develop a secure and flexible framework for access control to both physical and virtual resources. Pervasive computing will thus be the crucible in which many disjoint areas of research are fused. lack of income or skills). [3] Weiser. further action (including further regulation) may be required. March. Dryer. G. 6th Ann. Prasad Naldurg. [7] “At what cost pervasive? A social computing view of mobile computing systems”. 266–274.. this could lead to some consumers being deprived of access and freedom of choice. A Mukherjee “Pervasive Computing: A paradigm for the 21 st Century”. Dennis Mickunas. education and retail services are likely to be delivered through PCS embedd ed within smart homes. pp. For instance. 2003.. banking. reprinted in IEEE Pervasive Proceeding of Third International Conference on Software Reliability. Hot topics: Ubiquitous computing. 1993. Brian Ziebart. 49. Jacob Biehl. As this figure shows. Eisbach.. Fig. The early decades of the 21 st century will be a period of excitement and ferment. 2001. Solving these problems will require us to broaden our discourse on some topics. PP. For example. 1991. Weiser was fully aware that attaining it would require tremendous creativity and effort by many people. These areas include human-computer interaction (especially multi-modal interactions and human-centric hardware designs).