Embedded Technology for Smart
Artefacts with Collective Awareness
Computing is fundamentally characterized by the connection of things
in the world with computation" (M. Weiser) The Smart-Its project
is interested in a far-reaching vision of computation embedded in
the world. In this vision, mundane everyday artefacts become augmented
as soft media, able to enter into dynamic digital relationships.
In our project, we approach this vision with development of "Smart-Its"
- small-scale embedded devices that can be attached to everyday
objects to augment them with sensing, perception, computation, and
communication. We think of these "Smart-Its" as enabling technology
for building and testing ubiquitous computing scenarios, and we
will use them to study emerging functionality and collective context-awareness
of information artefacts.
The project envisions small-scale smart devices - "Smart-Its" -
that can be attached to mundane everyday artefacts to augment these
with a "digital self". These devices will be as cheap, as unobtrusive
and as generic as state-of-the-art smart labels (i.e., RFID tags).
In addition these devices will be enabled with perception of their
environment, with peer-to-peer communication, and with customizable
behaviour. Collections of such devices will be used to augment and
interconnect entire families of artefacts, such as scattered personal
belongings, toys in the playroom, and objects in collaborative interactive
Hans W. Gellersen,
Cooperative Systems Engineering Group,
Tel: +44 1524 593823 (or CSEG office 593041),
fax: +44 1524 593608.
University of Karlsruhe,
Distributed Systems Group,
Perceptual Computing and Computer
PLAY Research Studio,