, Volume 10, Issue 1, pp 1-3
Date: 13 Sep 2005

Guidelines and open issues in systems support for Ubicomp: reflections on UbiSys 2003 and 2004

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One of the most enjoyable features of the systems support for ubiquitous computing (UbiSys) workshops in 2003 and 2004 has been the freeform small group and plenary discussion sessions. Last year, we focused on identifying ‘hot topics’ from the paper sessions to form break out groups for further discussion. This year the discussion session was motivated by a thought provoking talk from Wim Stut from Philips Research, where he highlighted two aspects they had identified during talks with researchers in this domain that he believed were often overlooked in existing scenarios:

  1. Self-configuration.

  2. Graceful degradation.

He argued that existing supporting infrastructures often make unreasonable assumptions about the degree to which the location, context and users of devices involved in typical Ubicomp application scenarios are known by the system. This knowledge is typically ‘just there’, i.e. is established a priori by system developers or “power” users, or is even so implicit to the scen