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Completed work

MSc thesis spring 2011

Tool-chain development for end-user composite services, Frank K. Mbaabu (NTNU, Dept. of Telematics)

Telephony has become an integral part in the day to day communication and new telephony services are quickly being deployed in the industry. There is a need for users to be provided with new services on the fly; these services can be composed from existing services to provide an added-value service. The vision is to allow ordinary people, who are the end users, to easily compose a set of available services and run them on their devices while they are on the move without requiring specialized IT or telecom skills.

An end user service composition approach is followed that reduces the composition complexity and difficulty from the end user perspective. The approach enables the end users to personalize the compositions with a powerful presentation and supporting the end users to dynamically customize the service composition.

A scenario based approach is followed whereby different practical composition scenarios are explored to shed light on several aspects of how the end users can personalize the composition process using the tool that has been presented by creating compositions that create added value services for the scenarios looked into.

PDF will be soon be available online

Collaboration-based intelligent service composition at runtime by end users, K.M Imtiaz-Ud-Din (NTNU, Dept. of Telematics)

In recent years, technologies in the area of ubiquitous computing have ex- perienced a great advancement. This has resulted in a wide-spread use of services in order to improve the quality of our daily life. For example, a person with a mobile device can use the services available in the ubiquitous computing environment to plan and execute his or her travel, to connect to family and friends, to perform his or her researches, even to manage his or her business. However, most of the services are dynamic in nature in terms of their availability, robustness and the mobility of the user. These services also appear impermeable to the end users i.e. the end users do not get to control and configure the services in a way so as to feel like programmers developing services to accomplish certain goals. We envisage that in such a context end users, with no programming knowledge, will have a hard time to find services of their choice and that it will be hard for these end users to derive substantial benefits from these services. Unguided automation is not the answer to this problem as a particular service suggested automatically by a dynamic composition mechanism may not be suitable for a specific user at a certain point of time and in a given context. On the other hand explicit specification of service instances will mean that the user will be bogged down with the problem of runtime optimization in a dynamic environment where several factors as indicated earlier determine the availability of the services having required functionality. In order to address this issue we introduce the notion of intelligent service composition where the end user will have a great degree of flexibility to define his or her own rules or conditions based on which an optimal composition will be made automatically from a set of collaborative services by runtime adaptation in a specific context and point in time. This is a step forward compared to the present dynamic composition mechanisms which do not facilitate end users defining their own conditions dictating the selection of specific service instance at runtime. We have de- veloped this conceptual solution to bring end users towards adaptive use of services. We validated our conceptual solution through a scenario-based evaluation approach with an implementation of a proof-of-concept prototype.

PDF will be soon be available online

Customer-driven project spring 2011

City Explorer (SW development project work - Course IT1901)

The project has developed a user tailorable City Explorer for the Android platform. The idea is that different actors (e.g., tourist guide editors, tourist officers, visitors, teachers, students, etc.) can create and share information about places and itineraries in a city. The City Explorer is an attempt to fill a gap in the market for mobile tourist guides allowing users to create their own points of interest and tours for any large or small city.

The application supports

  • basic functionality for exploration, e.g. selecting an itinerary, getting info of the next place in an itinerary, showing a place on a map, getting there,…
  • functionality for tailoring exploration, e.g. creating a new itinerary, setting up reminders to get to a place,…
  • functionality for sharing information via emails, bluetooth, etc.

A presentation of the application is available on prezi. The project report is also available as PDF.

Project autumn 2010

Composition of telephony services

Telephony has become an integral part in the day to day communication and new telephony services are quickly being deployed in the industry. There is a need for users to be provided with new services on the fly; these services can be composed from existing services to provide an added-value service. The vision is to allow ordinary people, who are the end users, to easily compose a set of available services and run them on their devices while they are on the move without requiring specialized  IT or telecom skills.

An end user service composition approach is followed that reduces the composition complexity and difficulty from the end user perspective. The approach enables the end users to personalize the compositions with a powerful presentation and supporting the end users to dynamically customize the service composition.

A scenario based approach is followed whereby different practical composition scenarios are explored to shed light on several aspects of how the end users can personalize the composition process using the tool that has been presented by creating compositions that create added value services for the scenarios looked into.

PDF available online.

Android composition mechanisms

The aim of the project is to investigate the creation of new applications for Android by exploiting mechanisms of the platform in innovative ways and composing existing application components on Android. Specifically, basic platform mechanisms will be introduced and a simple scenario will be specified and realized to illustrate how the mechanisms can be used for composition.

MSc thesis spring 2010

An Evaluation of Mashup Technology, Gine Lilje (NTNU, Dept. of Telematics)

Mashups are web applications developed using contents and services available on the web. Mashups provide a flexible and easy-to-use way for service composition on the Web. In this report we share the result of an evaluation of the mashup technology considering the two scenarios City Guide and Doctor's Appointment defined by the UbiCompForAll research project. The main focus has been the evaluation of the functionality provided by the mashup makers Yahoo! Pipes and Intel Mash Maker. The report also shares the result of an usability test on Yahoo! Pipes performed on four of the members of the UbiCompForAll research project and three master students at NTNU. Our results shows that Yahoo! Pipes and Intel Mash Maker is not so suitable as a stand-alone solution for the two services. Using mashup technology as an extension to another service platform and end-user composition tool can be useful for further work. The result from the usability test shows that Yahoo! Pipes require that the user has some programming experience. Thus, Yahoo! Pipes is not suitable as a end-user service composition tool for the average end-users of the services City Guide and Doctor's Appointment.

The thesis is not available in an electronic form. A paper copy can be ordered. Contact Mona Nordaune at NTNU, Item.

Real-time end-user cooperative composition using Google Wave, Espen Herseth Halvorsen (NTNU, Dept. of Telematics)

Google Wave is an open and extensible platform for real-time end-user cooperation and communication, which was first presented at the Google I/O Conference on May 27, 2009, and has already attracted the interest of both software-developers, enterprises and end-users. Google Wave is not just a product of Google, but is an open standard, with a well-documented set of protocols and algorithms, open-source software, open APIs for 3rd party developers, playground for debugging and a free service.

The task in this thesis is to examine how Google Wave can be used as a platform/tool for end-user service composition. The in-depth analysis of the Google Wave platform should be done by looking into the following questions: a) overview of the components of Google Wave technology; b) discussion of Google Wave from an end-user service composition viewpoint; c) developing a concrete proof of concept of a service composed in Google Wave based on an end-user service composition scenario; d) investigation of possibilities to make service composition more intelligent and automated (semi-automated) with the help of Google Wave Robots.

PDF is available online

Project autumn 2009 / spring 2010

Creating a city guide over Android

This assignment will investigate the realisation of a tailorable City Guide application on the Android platform. A city guide might provide various kinds of functionalities such as retrieving information about points of interest, locating and selecting points of interest, planning a tour, providing navigation support, sharing experience with friends, locating friends, setting up and participating to games (e.g. quizzes), setting up reminders for events (e.g. lunch and meetings with friends).

The work will as much as possible exploit existing innovative software as building blocks, e.g. Google maps, Google calendar, twitter. It should investigate how such software can be tailored and composed together. The assignment will result in the demonstration of a prototype City Guide on Android.

PDF available online. Video of prototype available on YouTube.

Intelligent Travel Guide – Service Composition by End- User

The goal of this assignment is to investigate possibilities for end-user service composition using a composed service for the intelligent travel guide as case study. This kind of composed service is aimed for the frequent business or leisure traveler in a typical city environment. In this case the city is Trondheim downtown and the communication infrastructure will be the Wireless Trondheim network as well as the mobile telephony networks. Devices that will be used will range from laptop to various kinds of handheld gadgets. The main position or location enabler will be the GPS system.

The task will consist of the following subtasks:

  1. Work out and describe the composition scenarios of the service possibly with several situations (involved actors, interactions, etc.) and different settings (location, multiplicity, preferences, etc.). It is required to specify these situations in such a way that traveler, travelling-agency, and someone-on- traveler’s-behalf will be the composer.
  2. Select and define a set of services for the composition.
  3. Define the appropriate user interface for executing and composing these services.

PDF available online.

Modelling end-user varibility using the SPACE method and ARCTIS, Gine Lilje (NTNU, Dept. of Telematics)

With today’s mobile technologies and service platforms it is technically possible to provide very rich and diverse end-user services. As the end-users get more familiar with advanced platforms, their expectations increase, including requirement for flexibility. The assignment has identified end-user needs for variability using the City Guide scenarios as a case study. It has investigated the support provided by the SPACE method and the Arctis tool for modeling flexibility. It proposes a set of extensions needed to better fulfill the needs for end-user flexibility.

MSc thesis spring 2009

City Guide: Service Composition in an Urban Environment, Eirik Blakstad (NTNU, Dept. of Computer Science)

The aim of this thesis has been to develop and validate the user interface of a service composition tool for creating mobile tourist services in a city environment. The project has been conducted in cooperation with SINTEF and the Norwegian research project UbiCompForAll.

As part of this thesis, a number of scenarios were created initially, showing what kind of functionalities accessed using mobile devices might be useful for tourists in the city. Based on these scenarios, the graphical user interface of a composition service tool was created and then assessed through the involvement of several users using a paper prototyping approach.

The results from the paper prototyping assessment showed that the proposed interface is generally easy to understand and use, although there were a number of improvements necessary in the areas of information abstraction, module naming and letting users be able to see the final product of the composition.
In addition, as part of the assessment of the proposed interface, the realizability of the services specified using this interface was evaluated. An architecture for the service derived from the specification developed by the user was defined. This enabled us to check that all the information necessary for creating the composed services can be provided when using the proposed user interface.

PDF available online.

Composing end-user services, Jens Einar Heide Vaskinn (NTNU, Dept. of Telematics)

Service composition is currently a very hot topic in the Service Oriented Computing area. End-user programming is one aspect of this. This thesis proposes one such end-user programming environment for telecom services where a user can create, edit and set up a self defined behaviours when e.g. receiving calls or sms. The environment consists of services which can be used to program the desired behaviour. Some useful service is defined and a xml representation of them has been worked out.

The thesis takes a scenario based approach to this and uses different real life composition scenarios to shed light on several aspects of the programming interface and service
composition e.g. creating compositions, combining compositions and constraints.

PDF available online.

Published December 9, 2009

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