Ubiquitous computing aims to create surroundings transparent to the user, where devices with communication and process capacity such as PDAs, cellular phones, sensors, etc.) can cooperate actively.
This type of surroundings require the use of adaptable applications, able to respond to changes of their context [Katz94]. The information relative to the surroundings (e.g., . location, existing capacities of the devices, networks, etc.) is called normally "context information", and plays a fundamental role being the core around which all the ubiquitous applications and services are based.
The project will be centred over three fundamental aspects of ubiquitous computing: (i) the underlying infrastructure of communications, (ii) the acquisition and management of the context information and (iii) the provision of dependent adaptable services of the context.
For the communication infrastructure, our proposal is based on the use of wireless ad hoc networks, that are able to provide connectivity in a easy and flexible form. We will develop the protocols necessary to optimize the routing by using multiple routes as well as communications multicast limiting the "date-overhead" and by means of new metrics based on the "widest-path" approach. For the management of the context information, we will develop "middleware" that will discover, interpret and store [Schilit94] the contextual information, offering an API for the adaptable applications. In [Thompson04] it is shown that without such intelligent systems to support pervasive computing environments, users will be overwhelmed by the complexity of the system with which they are asked to interact. Unlike most of previous works, our middleware besides storing context information will process and abstract this data by means of a motor of inference based on techniques of "semantic Web".
As an example of a context dependent application, we will implement a service of adaptable multimedia streaming, able to adapt the multimedia flows (used codecs, images size, refresh rate, etc.) to the changing conditions of the surroundings such as variations of bandwidth, capacities of the terminals, etc. The novelty stands in that the application will also use evaluations of the quality perceived by the user. In addition, a demonstrator called UBIQMUSEUM will be implemented in which we will evaluate the whole proposal.