Joining forces for a smarter planet

In summary: 
  • An ambitious new collaboration between UTS and IBM seeks to create an intelligent ecosystem that connects people, devices, technologies and the built environment
  • Professor Mary-Anne Williams says today's smart devices have some intelligence and are mobile, but they lack social awareness and the ability to easily share knowledge and work together

Imagine a world where your phone displays the current position and direction of the elevator, where the building can help locate a colleague, and where your fridge can notify your car to collect milk on the way home from work.

This future is a step closer thanks to an ambitious new collaboration between UTS and IBM that seeks to create an intelligent ecosystem that connects people, devices, technologies and the built environment.

In a new Australian Research Council-funded Linkage grant, researchers from the UTS Centre for Quantum Computation and Intelligent Systems (QCIS) and IBM will work together to develop an innovative framework, models and practical toolkit that will help to design and build future intelligent ecosystems.

Professor Mary-Anne Williams. Picture by Joanne SaadProfessor Mary-Anne Williams. Picture by Joanne Saad

Professor Mary-Anne Williams, Associate Dean of Research for the Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology, explains that an intelligent ecosystem enables intelligent devices to share knowledge, collaborate and seamlessly work together.

"Today's smart devices have some intelligence and are mobile, but they lack social awareness and the ability to easily share knowledge and work together," Professor Williams said.

"An intelligent ecosystem will allow the devices we develop for use every day to undertake complex tasks by collaborating and learning.

"Imagine your refrigerator at home detects that you need milk before you leave the office late at night, so it notifies your car which recommends a detour via find the closest shop on route with milk available."

According to Glenn Wightwick, Director, IBM Research and Development – Australia, the project was a logical fit with IBM's Smarter Planet Initiative, which has a focus on engagement with changing technology.

"This Linkage project builds on a number of collaborative projects we've conducted with UTS that are in line with the Smarter Planet initiative, which is about using information technology to enhance the way the world works," Mr Wightwick said.

"There is certainly a shared vision between IBM and Professor Williams's team to explore, develop and exploit advances in information technology that have the capacity to change the way we live."

Categories:
Technology and Design

Thanks for this great idea of new function of smart device.
I just have one small question:
From this idea, the smart phone will contain all your personal information, such as where you live, bank account, investment, and etc. If it is lost by mistake, or stolen, there will be a very high risk of being used for bad purpose.
So how this issue will be solved , which is highly likely will happen in real life?

Thank you for your question. Protection of personal information is paramount in the development of innovative IT applications and this project will take a strong pro-active approach to managing personal information. We are working with IBM and they have an outstanding reputation in protecting private data. In many cases encryption can be used and in others bio-metric data such as fingerprints can be used to protect personal data that is hosted on smart devices.

Hi, protecting personal data is a big issue. I am agreed with Prof. Mary-Anne regarding the way of protecting personal info in a 24/7 usable device. You can enhance the security by applying (finger+Face) as key to decryption. Here mode detection from face can be used to detect suspicious victim of vandalism.