"AMbient ECologies"



Summary of the "AMEC" project:



Within the next decade, as digital technologies become increasingly pervasive, we may find ourselves living with almost invisible, intelligent interactive systems – an ‘Ambient Intelligence’ – that will form a part of our everyday existence and “ecology”. The implications of this development are far reaching for individuals, businesses and communities. Ambient Intelligence could lead to great opportunities. But as with all new technologies, we know that the technology itself is neither good nor bad. It is how we might use it that makes the difference. The main challenge at this moment is to guarantee that the new Ambient Intelligence technologies are appropriate, sustainable and meet people’s individual and social needs.

 The AMEC (Ambient Ecologies) proposal addresses this challenge by defining the architectural framework and developing the methodologies, tools and design methods for people involvement, which will facilitate a user-centered evolution to this new ‘Ambient Intelligent’ environment.


The objectives

More specific AMEC will:

  • Develop a new architectural framework for integrating heterogeneous hardware and software components under a set of common concepts.

This framework will consist of: a layered architecture implemented with a set of components, a set of concepts implemented as an ontology and a novel interaction metaphor, implemented as a language.

The architecture will consist of three layers: hardware and communication, operating system and distributed framework. AMEC will deliver components in each layer that will enable people to create, adapt and control their digital environment in a natural way

  • Develop the necessary tools to analyze the architecture, engineer the (digitally enhanced) artifacts and to compose applications.

This will include an editor for composing applications, a simulator for evaluating their performance and a set of methodologies for developing the artifacts.

  • Develop a people oriented design methodology for the design of Ambient Intelligent environments.
    This methodology should provide the required input for guiding the technological development of ambient digital ecologies to ensure relevance to human desire and need, and high quality of user experience, both ease-of-use and delight-in-use.

The methodology will not focus on one particular stage in the business creation process like for example the concept creation phase. It will be designed to ensure user input in all stages of the design and development and at all major decision points.

  • Implement proof of concept demonstrators. Based on the outcome of people studies the project will design and develop two demonstrators to serve as proof-of-concept applications. The demonstrators will be deployed and evaluated by real users.

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last updated 21-07-2003

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