Department of Mobile and Distributed Systems to collaborate with T-Systems and Intel
Mobile communications systems and services have become an integral part of virtually all sectors of everyday life, and their significance grows continuously. Considering business communications, our social relationships, health care or transport and logistics, in all these fields the number of mobile applications available is on the increase. Inevitably, the underlying infrastructure becomes more and more complex, too. Wireless networks, powerful terminal devices and flexible interfaces between different types of platforms form the basis for the ongoing growth of mobile applications and services. However, while this infrastructure provides anytime and anywhere-access to all sorts of information, the need to maintain ongoing connectivity poses a huge challenge for the computer industry.
The Department of Mobile and Distributed Systems at Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität (LMU) in Munich is prepared to approach this challenge. Together with Frank Lafos of Intel and Dr. Stephan Verclas of T–Systems, the LMU experts plan to close the gap between the established technologies used by commercial firms and advanced developments that have emerged from research in university laboratories. “In close collaboration with our industrial partners, we want to find ways of tackling the practical problems that arise in existing systems, so that both sides profit from this interaction”, says Professor Claudia Linnhoff-Popien. “The industry gains access to the results of our applications-oriented research, and the university – both students and faculty – benefits from the input for their academic research projects which emerge from the multitude of the industry’s concrete, practical problems. This benefit applies to both, basic and specialized research areas which address particular problem statements.”
Intel, specialist for semiconductor technologies, unveiled the Intel Open Lab München in March 2009. Just now, T–Systems, Corporate Client Division of the Deutsche Telekom, is building an Innovation Center in the Euroindustriepark München, which is scheduled to open in April 2010. The new agreement makes the resources of both facilities available to the computer scientists at LMU.
In context of their strategic alliance, LMU, Intel, and T–Systems intend to pursue five topics from the field of mobile applications and services. In the area of Mobile Application Development, the partners plan to explore ways of exploiting the full potential of the latest high-performance SIM cards. These cards permit the excecution of diverse mobile applications in parallel, irrespective of the underlying platforms in use. For example, they enable business applications and processing of sensitive information to be performed in a secure environment. With input from T–Systems, LMU computer scientists are currently developing a new application for damage assessment in insurance cases. The goal is to optimize the use of mobile phones for surveying damage to vehicles that have been involved in traffic accidents. As soon as an insured party, by utilizing his smart phone, notified his insurer about an accident, he receives an SMS including a download link to a dedicated software. After launching this software, it executes a detailed workflow that instructs the recipient how to document the damage incurred, e.g., asking him to select an appropriate type/degree of damage from a collection of sketch diagrams or to photograph or film damaged parts, and taking him through the whole procedure. If difficulties arise, the user can directly contact a member of the insurance company’s staff. The principal technological challenge presented by this project lies in the optimization of the real-time video link between the policy holder and the insurance representative.
In the area of Seamless Computing, Communication and Localization the focus is on how to ensure that users have continuous access to all available networks. Information regarding user location is becoming more and more important, entailing the development and provision of location-dependent services. At the Intel Open Lab, the computer experts from the LMU will be able to utilize a WiMAX testbed. The wireless standard WiMAX (Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access) already plays an important role in broadband communications. The partners have identified Car2X as a third priority topic. This project aims to interconnect road users and road infrastructure so as to support the dynamic exchange of information between vehicle and network. In the area of Health and Assisted Living most problems arise in data convergence and interfacing between the various players in the healthcare sector. In this field there is an urgent need to design new models for distributed storage of medical information, to establish standards for the simple and secure communication of such data, and to develop novel, intelligent terminal devices that make life easier for both patients and healthcare professionals. The fifth issue of interest selected by the partners is Green ICT. The ICT (Information and Communications Technology) sector itself has the potential to make a direct contribution to protecting the climate by significantly reducing the energy consumption of its products. A more intelligent use of energy in communications technology would in turn permit other industries to reduce their emissions. By the year 2020, annual emissions of CO2 or CO2 equivalents (CO2e) in Germany could be reduced by up to 25% (or about 207 megatons) with the help of ICT. This is the conclusion of a study entitled "SMART 2020 Deutschland", which was carried out by Deutsche Telekom, Huawei, SAP, Siemens and The Boston Consulting Group. For instance, the adoption of intelligent applications would make it possible to increase the efficiency of energy use in transportation, in the electricity industry and in heating systems.
Prof. Dr. Claudia Linnhoff-Popien
Lehreinheit für Mobile und Verteilte Systeme
Phone: +49 (0) 89 / 2180-9149
Phone: +49 (0) 89 / 99143-631
T-Systems Enterprise Services GmbH
Phone: +49 (0) 69 / 66531-126