Enabling the Automatic Generation of User Interfaces for Remote Laboratories
Remote laboratories are an important component of blended and distance science and engineering education. By definition, they provide access to a physical lab in a distant location. Many architectures enabling remote laboratory systems exist, the most common of which are Client-Server based. In this context, the Server interfaces the physical setup and makes it software-accessible. The Smart Device Specifications revisit a Client-Server architecture, with the main aim of cancelling the dependencies which inherently exist between a Client and a Server. This is done by describing the Server as a set of services, which are exposed as well-defined APIs. If a remote laboratory is built following the Smart Device Specifications, any person with programming skills can create a personalized client application to access the lab. But in practice, teachers rely on the mediated contact with a lab provider to have information about what kind of experiment(s) the lab in question implements. Even though there is a complete description of the available sensors and actuators making up a lab and how to be accessed, it is not clear how they are connected (relationships). In this sense, a list of sensors and actuators are not enough to make a guided selection of components to create the interface to an experiment. Therefore, the aim of this work is to support teachers in choosing the experiments and creating the respective UI on their own, in a pedagogically oriented scenario and by taking into consideration the target online learning environment. This is done by revisiting the Smart Device Specifications and extending them, in addition to proposing a tool that will automatically generate the user interface of the chosen experiment(s).
KeywordsRemote laboratories Online learning Cyber physical systems User interfaces Personalisation
This research is partially funded by the European Union in the context of Go-Lab (grant no. 317601) project under the ICT theme of the 7th Framework Programme for R&D (FP7).
- 1.Bogdanov, E., Ullrich, C., Isaksson, E., Palmér, M., Gillet, D.: From LMS to PLE: a step forward through opensocial apps in moodle. In: International Conference on Web-Based Learning, pp. 69–78. Springer (2012)Google Scholar
- 2.Dasarathy, B., Sullivan, K., Schmidt, D.C., Fisher, D.H., Porter, A.: The past, present, and future of MOOCs and their relevance to software engineering. In: Proceedings of the on Future of Software Engineering, pp. 212–224. ACM (2014)Google Scholar
- 3.Halimi, W., Salzmann, C., Gillet, D.: The Mach-Zehnder interferometer — a smart remote experiment based on a software template. In: 2016 13th International Conference on Remote Engineering and Virtual Instrumentation (REV), pp. 287–292. IEEE (2016)Google Scholar
- 4.Harward, V.J., Del Alamo, J.A., Lerman, S.R., Bailey, P.H., Carpenter, J., DeLong, K., Felknor, C., Hardison, J., Harrison, B., Jabbour, I., et al.: The iLab shared architecture: a web services infrastructure to build communities of internet accessible laboratories. Proc. IEEE 96(6), 931–950 (2008)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- 5.Lowe, D.: MOOLs: massive open online laboratories: an analysis of scale and feasibility. In: 2014 11th International Conference on Remote Engineering and Virtual Instrumentation (REV), pp. 1–6. IEEE (2014)Google Scholar
- 7.Salzmann, C., Gillet, D.: Remote labs and social media: agile aggregation and exploitation in higher engineering education. In: 2011 IEEE Global Engineering Education Conference (EDUCON), pp. 307–311. IEEE (2011)Google Scholar
- 8.Salzmann, C., Gillet, D.: Smart device paradigm standardization for online labs. In: 4th IEEE Global Engineering Education Conference (EDUCON) (2013)Google Scholar
- 9.Salzmann, C., Govaerts, S., Halimi, W., Gillet, D.: The smart device specification for remote labs. In: 2015 12th International Conference on Remote Engineering and Virtual Instrumentation (REV), pp. 199–208. IEEE (2015)Google Scholar
- 10.Tawfik, M., Salzmann, C., Gillet, D., Lowe, D., Saliah-Hassane, H., Sancristobal, E., Castro, M.: Laboratory as a service (LAAS): a model for developing and implementing remote laboratories as modular components. In: 2014 11th International Conference on Remote Engineering and Virtual Instrumentation (REV), pp. 11–20. IEEE (2014)Google Scholar
- 13.Zutin, D.G., Auer, M., Ordu, P., Kreiter, C., et al.: Online lab infrastructure as a service: a new paradigm to simplify the development and deployment of online labs. In: 2016 13th International Conference on Remote Engineering and Virtual Instrumentation (REV), pp. 208–214. IEEE (2016)Google Scholar