SOCA wants to explore the physical reality of University of Aveiro Campus, as the substrate to potentiate this living environment. The sensing of the person in physical context enables personalized and predictive responses, and is a major step towards a smarter and safer environment. Our main objective is to create a living environment based on an open innovation ecosystem where data is gathered from multiple sources, processed, integrated, and made available for applications and users, and that is able to create a service sphere able to assist every individual inside it (from personal health to routine daily chores), while supporting continuous innovation (both incremental and disruptive).
Sensing (the environment and the individual), data transfer (a telecommunications and networking problem), extracting value from the data (a big data problem) and finally services (consuming the data) – all of these having to be developed with the dual objective: assessing and evolving “real” services, and promoting the development of technologies and devices for novel systems and services.
Smart Open Campus (SOCA) envisions the research and development of an ecosystem, centered in an infrastructure located at the Campus of the University of Aveiro, where data are automatically gathered from multiple sources, processed, integrated, and made available for applications and users to create a service sphere able to assist every individual inside it, from personal health to routine daily chores. In this sense, SOCA is a practical platform for enabling and testing developments for the smart city and the assisted living society.
This overall and general objective can be divided into more specific aims, of which we highlight the following scientific research areas: Sensing the environment: to deploy sensors for environmental data gathering, allowing local and remote processing, classification, storing and alarm generation without intrusion and privacy invasion; Sensing the individual: health monitoring by means of wearable systems, allowing automatic alarm generation and/or direct and unattended call for help without human intervention; Data transfer: it will be supported by a high-performance communications infrastructure, enabling the transport of large amounts of data to/from the users as well as from diverse sensing devices. Moreover, it will serve as a testbed for most of the concepts and technologies that are currently being developed by the research groups of DETI, as well as an integrated showcase for most of what is DETI’s research and high-end training. This will be paramount to assure the double approach that is required to develop such a living innovation ecosystem. Assistance: deployment of autonomous cooperative robots able to interact with humans in different ways, such as providing several services, assistance in specific (elderly, emergency) situations or even human and space monitoring, while connected to a network of information and processing technologies to assist in autonomous decision counseling. The long-term goal would be to have a multi-agent, multi-device integrated system, able to provide different levels of assistance not only to the UA community (e.g., students, teachers, administrative and technical staff) in their studying and/or working environment, but also to visitors and eventually to other members of the society. Learning: develop learning methods and strategies that allow the above systems to adapt over time.