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Implications of Ubiquitous Computing

A Research Topic of the Distributed Systems Group

While developments in information technology never had the explicit goal of changing society, but rather did so as a side effect, the visions of pervasive and ubiquitous computing expressly propose to transform society by fully computerizing it. It is therefore likely that this will have far-reaching consequences for our everyday lives and ethical values. With its orientation towards the public as well as the private, the personal as well as the commercial, the vision of ubiquitous computing aspires to create technology that will accompany us throughout our entire lives, day in and day out. And if Mark Weiser's vision of "invisible computing" actually materializes, we won't even notice any of it.

It is easy to see how these technical developments could soon set unanticipated (if not unacceptable) defacto standards for a long time to come, especially regarding areas such as consumer privacy, reliability, security, health, and economy. Of course, the potential of ubiquitous computing for positively improving not only business margins but also our social life and our economic and physical well-being, cannot be denied: people will be able to stay in contact with far-away family members more easily through context-aware homes, and those with physical or mental disabilities will have the chance to lead a more independent life with the help of smart infrastructures and intelligent clothings. Reflecting on these issues is an important research topic in the Distributed Systems Group, where we try to analyse the possible long-term implications of ubiquitous computing through both scenario building and prototype development.

See also the following related items:

Participating Researchers

Iulia Ion (until 2012), Marc Langheinrich (until 2008), Michael Rohs (until 2005)

Selected Publications

See the Publications of the Distributed Systems Group page for a full listing of our publications.

Related Student Projects

The following table lists corresponding student projects in our group. Note that some descriptions will be in German.

TypeTitleStudentSupervisorSemester
S Erweiterung des Welterkl├Ąrers um einen smarten Blindenstock Michael DullerVlad CoroamaSS 04
M Dynamische Autoversicherungen und -steuer Christoph Pl├╝ssVlad CoroamaSS 04
S Einbindung von RFID-Tags in eine existierende Welterkl├Ąrer-Infrastruktur Christoph PluessVlad CoroamaWS 03/04
S Smarter RFID-basierter Puzzle-Assistent Nicola OprechtJ├╝rgen BohnWS 03/04
D Welterkl├Ąrer f├╝r Sehbehinderte Felix RoethenbacherVlad CoroamaWS 03/04
P Indoor Navigation for Visually Impaired People (Navigation Layer) Nicolas TissotVlad Coroama,
J├╝rgen Bohn
SS 03
ETH ZurichDistributed Systems Group
Last updated January 1 1970 01:00:00 AM MET ko