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VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland is the largest multitechnological applied research organization in Northern Europe. VTT provides high-end technology solutions and innovation services. From its wide knowledge base, VTT can combine different technologies, create new innovations and a substantial range of world class technologies and applied research services thus improving its clients’ competitiveness and competence. Through its international scientific and technology network, VTT can produce information, upgrade technology knowledge, create business intelligence and value added to its stakeholders. VTT is a non-profit-making research organization.

Erweko Oy, 2012

VTT TECHNICAL RESEARCH CENTRE OF FINLAND Vuorimiehentie 5, Espoo P.O.Box 1000, FI-02044 VTT, Finland Tel. +358 20 722 111, Fax +358 20 722 7001

in business and everyday life

Graphic design: Tuija Soininen, VTT

Contents 2)

The next ICT disruption


New business from ubiquitous technologies


Emphasis on customer focus through business model



12) Interaction 18) Interoperability


The next ICT disruption


he next ICT disruption occurs as physical and digi-

‘smart spaces’. These are essential building blocks for ubiq-

The ICT disruption is just starting to be visible in our everyday

tal worlds become bridged by sensors, actuators,

uitous computing.

lives. ‘Internet of Things’ is a term that describes the future

and ambient intelligence. This trend is described by

well: ICT will be everywhere.

terms such as ‘ubiquitous computing’, ‘pervasive

Interoperability means sharing information between devices

computing’, ‘calm technology’, and ‘ambient intelligence’.

and services residing in the same space, which will lead to

No matter the term we use, the impacts are great and can

synergy benefits and new business opportunities. VTT ,

justifiably be compared with such technological revolutions

together with partners, has developed the interoperability

as the introduction of the telephone or the Internet. For only

platform M3 for this purpose. M3 makes it possible to build

a few examples, think about intelligent traffic systems guiding

new mash-up applications in smart spaces on top of existing

drivers to less congested roads, the location-based services

devices and services.

Embrace the future with VTT.

that grew in only a few years from research prototypes into an everyday commodity, contactless technology for easy

Smart devices and services are aware of the user’s location,

Heikki Ailisto

payment, or the mixed-reality type of user interfaces now

situation, and context, which will improve user experience

Research Professor, Programme Manager

seen in some games.

and work processes’ efficiency, also cutting costs. VTT has developed a state-of-the-art activity recognition software

To seize the opportunity of ICT disruption, VTT launched the

library for portable and resource-limited devices. The activity-

Open Smart Spaces (OPENS) spearhead programme in

recognition library is capable of, for example, enabling a

2009. The four-year programme directed and co-ordinated

device to know whether the user is resting, sitting, walking,

VTT’s activities in the field. It comprised a portfolio of research

or travelling by car or bus. This information is needed for

projects – implemented with European and Finnish compa-

context-aware services or mobile advertising.

nies and research partners with the support of Tekes and the EU – as well as contract projects for companies and VTT-

New methods of interaction, particularly mixed-reality as well

funded ‘mini-projects’ aimed at creating demonstrations and

as contactless services utilising smartcards and mobile

inventions that can help our customers and spin-offs. The

devices, will take user experience to a new level. VTT has

volume of the OPENS programme will total approx. 300 per-

world-class technology for implementing augmented- and


mixed-reality applications. Recent technology development, including 3D cameras, opens exciting new possibilities for

VTT develops solutions for interoperability, intelligent devices,

gesture based user interaction and other applications. VTT

and services, as well as human/technology interaction in

has grasped these possibilities.



New business from ubiquitous technologies hen we started our programme back in 2009,

One might ask how we were able to close the gap between

we decided to create new business from

research and commercial exploitation, which have very dif-

ubiquitous technologies not only for VTT but

ferent maturity levels. This clear challenge had to be tackled

for our customers as well. Today our custom-

through, first, identification of potential topics and, then,

ers use VTT’s solutions in their products and services. For

creation of an offering that provides added value for our

example, Finnish company VividWorks uses VTT’s aug-

clients. Fortunately, we chose augmented reality and con-

mented-reality solution, which helps VividWorks’ customers

text awareness from among existing competencies for our

to see with ease how specific items of new furniture would

main topics; both of these started to climb the hype curve

fit their living rooms. Another very visible result of the pro-

as the programme progressed.


gramme has been Nokia Battery Monitor, which has been downloaded five million times in all. With this application,

Through a thousand customer meetings over the years, our

users have a clear view of which applications use the bat-

personnel learned about the customer needs. For these, we

tery most and can also share their data with other users.

were able to fund internal development projects (mini-pro-

More examples of our collaboration with customers are

jects) to establish concrete competencies and offerings. We

found on the following pages.

also established closer co-operation with specific customers. For example, our work with ST-Ericsson in the area of

New business was built also by spin-offs that the pro-

wireless charging has proved to be very fruitful for both par-

gramme was able to assist in their launch stage. These were

ties. Within the programme, we also have increased inter-

built on new technologies developed by VTT. Adfore pro-

national sales in Japan and Germany through co-operation

vides both mobile and laptop users with information about

with Toyota, NSN, and Siemens.

local sales, opening hours, and traffic conditions by using context information. With a Hookie Technologies mobilephone client, an end user’s activities can be followed throughout the day. The information can be used for wellness purposes as well as for games. A third spin-off, called 6Starz, makes it possible to share details with new friends by touching one mobile phone with another or to perform check-in at various types of locations more accurately than

Marko Jurvansuu


Key Account Manager


Emphasis on customer focus through business model PENS was the first large-scale VTT research

networks, or ecosystems. Understanding the roles of the

programme that was planned and managed

various value-network companies enabled us to gain better

from the outset on the basis of a business-

understanding of the technology- and business-related chal-

model approach. At their core, business mod-

lenges these companies face in both the short and long term.

els address this question: How can we effectively and sus-

One might consider, for example, the activity-recognition

tainably create and deliver value for our customers? From a

solution for mobile devices that was developed in OPENS.

research programme perspective, this means that by adopt-

From the perspective of a mobile-marketing ecosystem, it

ing a business model approach we are emphasising the cus-

provides the essential element – the context knowledge – for

tomer viewpoint in configuring research strategy, in carrying

efficient marketing communication.


out research projects, and in finding the most efficient ways to deliver the research results to our stakeholders.

Finding means to deliver value efficiently – i.e., efficient ways to transfer our research results to our customers – was con-

In addition to being the fundamental question for all busi-

stantly given attention in the OPENS programme. A pro-

nesses, the challenge of value creation and delivery also

gramme-specific IPR team was established with a special

resonates with VTT’s overall mission, which is to produce

focus on IPR generation and utilisation. Active and close col-

research services that enhance the international competitive-

laboration with VTT’s Business Intelligence, Business Solu-

ness of companies, society, and other customers in crucial

tions, and Business Development units enabled better ‘pro-

stages of their innovation processes.

ductisation’ of our research results. Direct-sales activities and close customer contacts too were stressed throughout the

In the OPENS programme, business-model thinking was


applied not only on the programme level but at project level as well. This meant that already in the planning stages of individual research projects, the key business-model issues had to be tackled: How can we create value? Who are our customers? What is our value proposition and offering? The benefit of business-model thinking is that it forced us to take a holistic view with respect to the technologies and mar-

Timo Koivumäki

kets. Smart-space solutions are created in value creation

Research Professor


Smartness ‘Smartness’ is a term that is often used quite liberally to describe automatic or intelligent behaviour of a digital device, system, or service seen as useful by the user. The

Lightweight distributed data processing and decision-making methods for small mobile embedded devices

most common use of the concept is in the term ‘smartphone’. Smartness, or being truly useful and pleasant for

A versatile tool for mobile phones’ energy consumption tracking and management Customer: Nokia

Customers: Nokia, Suunto, Polar, VTI (Murata)

the user, is not an easy thing to achieve. It is based on

Challenge: Modern smartphones use a lot of energy. They

complex algorithms and data. The data are needed by

Challenge: There exist more and more interconnected

have large, energy-hungry screens and many applications,

learning methods that involve modifying the behaviour of

embedded devices with quite limited computational, mem-

which differ in their energy consumption. For a mobile-phone

the system and also during the execution of the smart

ory, and energy resources. Also there is a need for efficient

user, the energy consumption leads to several questions:

algorithm, to make the choices presented useful. Acquir-

data processing in such devices. One example is distributed

How long will the battery last with the user’s normal usage

ing data during use often requires sensors embedded in

decision-making among several smartphones in view of the

habits? How much energy does a new downloaded applica-

the device or the user’s environment and sensor-data

current context.

tion use? What is the condition of the battery pack? How can

processing algorithms.

the user control the energy use of the phone? Solution: Working with several industrial partners, VTT has

VTT’s special competence is in design and implementa-

developed efficient data processing and decision-making

Solution: VTT has developed, in collaboration with Nokia, a

tion of smart algorithms for resource-limited devices with

methods for small embedded devices. The methods are

versatile tool for a mobile phone’s energy consumption track-

limited battery capacity, processing power, or memory

highly optimised and enable very lean resource consumption

ing and management. It is able to detect the normal applica-

space. These devices are typically portable or wearable.

by the target devices. The methods have been efficiently

tion usage patterns of a mobile-phone user and the energy

Examples can be cited of smart solutions related to

applied to automatic recognition of human physical activity.

consumption of the applications running on the phone. It also

energy usage optimisation for mobile phones as well as

models the characteristics of the battery pack. In addition, it

methods of recognising the user’s context. Both rely on


allows the user to control when to switch the phone over to

the same competence in designing algorithms for

power-save mode.

resource-limited devices. We also present an example

Low consumption of computational, space, and energy resources

case of smart technology used to support elderly people

High performance


in living at home, based on our competence in sensor-

Enabling of novel kinds of services – e.g., for mobile

data analysis.

Ability to estimate the energy consumption of mobilephone applications

phones •

Accurate and adaptive battery models

Ability to estimate the actual remaining usage time of the phone


Automatic detection of context transition of a mobile-phone user Customer: Adfore Challenge: Often it is more important to detect when the context of a mobile-phone user changes than to detect the actual context. For example, the right point for direct marketing might be when a person leaves the workplace, directing the user to a shop. It is possible to track the mobile-phone user context all the time, but this would consume too much energy. In addition, the change in context should be detected almost immediately. Solution: VTT has developed a method that estimates potential time instances in which the context is about to change. The context-change detection is activated only near to the potential change time, which leads to significant energy savings. Currently, the method is applied to the mobile-phone user’s location only, but it is applicable also to other context types. Benefits: •

Fast and accurate detection of context transition

Low energy consumption

Enabler of a very broad range of mobile services in, for example, the marketing and security domains


User verification with mobile-phone motion sensors

User identification with a car key

Remote detection of the situation/context of persons or vehicles

Customer: Toyota ITC Challenge: It is difficult to know the context of a person or

Challenge: A mobile phone is a personal device that often contains sensitive or even confidential information. The phone

Challenge: A vehicle can be stolen with a stolen key. The car

object remotely. Usually, no real-time information is available

and the information contained on it could become lost or

should be usable only by authorised persons. In addition, the

on the safety of a person who is working alone in a dangerous

stolen. The phone cannot verify whether it is being used by

same key can be used by several family members, who may

environment or to verify proper handling of expensive equip-

its legitimate user.

well have different personal preferences for the car. The car

ment. Current mobile-phone and other device solutions pro-

also does not know the context linked to a driver.

vide only raw data, but they do not offer context recognition.

be used as a biometric identifier. Motion sensors embedded

Solution: VTT developed an algorithm that identifies a driver

Solution: VTT offers an intelligent context recognition solu-

in a mobile phone can be used to obtain the gait pattern and

by his or her walking style. The algorithm uses the data from

tion that includes both a hardware platform and software.

thus verify the user.

accelerometers in a car key, and comparison is made

Activity-recognition algorithms detect whether a person is

between the walking style of the current key-holder and the

running, falling, still, or performing other activities.

Solution: VTT’s walking-pattern detection system GAIT can


database of authorised users. The car can personalise the

Ability to protect the confidential material stored on the

seat and mirror positions in advance to match driver prefer-


phone against theft



Example use case: The mobile phone PIN code is not used

Improved safety

when the mobile phone detects that it is being carried by its

No need for additional hardware

rightful owner. When the mobile phone is stolen, it locks itself

Lightweight implementation

with the PIN.

A small embedded device that has both context recognition and communication capabilities

Extension of user identification to embedded devices

A unit that can be carried by a person or embedded in a vehicle

The possibility of small-scale production: VTT manufactures the device and tailors the software to customer needs

Example use case: A security guard catches a thief by running and has to use physical force to hold down the suspect. VTT hardware in the guard’s belt informs the operation centre about this dramatic change in context. More units are sent to the site.


A dynamic indoor positioning solution

Automatic CO2 footprint calculation

Challenge: Indoor positioning based on location fingerprint-

Customer: Nokia Research Centre

ing (e.g., WiFi RSSI, digital images, or magnetic anomalies) requires a burdensome set-up phase. If the environment

Challenge: Consumer decisions will be heavily dependent on

changes, the map has to be revised.

green values in the near future. Green values will become a major component of company information, leading to an

Solution: The reference fingerprint database is collected by

overflow of green information. Therefore, a need exists for

means of autonomously operating mobile robots or other

automatic means to simplify and synthesise the information.

moving vehicles, such as trucks and forklifts. A vehicle equipped with VTT’s solution performs simultaneous localisa-

Solution: Jointly with Nokia Research Centre, VTT has devel-

tion and mapping, and it thus builds a 2D/3D map of the

oped a mobile-phone application that can recognise trips


made by a mobile-phone user automatically. The application also detects several modes of travel, such as private


car and train, automatically and is able to estimate the

Enabling of mobile positioning and 3D reconstruction of

CO2 emissions of the user on the basis of this informa-

indoor spaces

tion. The application also connects to an external ser-

• •

Provision of added value for domestic robot manufactur-

vice and is able to fetch information on the CO2


emissions for each means of travel automatically,

A highly modular platform that utilises state-of-the-art

in several countries.

building blocks from Open Source libraries and interfaces

Benefits: •

Rich and accurate information on the

No need to remember the timing and

Example use case: In a large logistics centre, automated trucks identify their position but also simultaneously detect

CO2 emissions caused by travelling

how their surroundings are changing and create a dynamic map.

length of the trips •

Enabling of novel services, such as company-level CO2 emission tracking.


ShoppingMate – a location- and contextaware service assisting consumers during their shopping

A wireless network for real-time work-site management Customer: Lemminkäinen Infra

Customer: Fonella Challenge: On a road construction site, real-time status and Challenge: There is a need for a shopping system that com-

progress information should be made available so that the

bines the advantages of traditional shopping and e-shopping

process can be optimised and the work plans updated in line

so as to help consumers find what they need and to save

with the actual status. This means collecting process data

time. The challenge is to develop a system that is accessible

wirelessly from work machines and work-site locations, then

at any time from any place, and that is easy to use even for

integrating these different data sources with each other for an

computer novices, and to ensure a high level of security and

up-to-date view of the process’s state.

privacy management. In addition, it should enable shop-owners to differentiate their products from competitors’.

Solution: VTT implemented a wireless work-site network for mobile work machines on a road pavement site. It enables

Solution: VTT, together with partners, developed an innova-

collection of process and sensor information, along with

tive digital system that transforms mobile phones into highly

analysis of the data collected. This real-time status informa-

interactive personal shopping assistants. The outcome is a

tion is used mainly for managing and constantly optimising

terminal-independent application that combines user, prod-

the work process. It can also be transferred to remote stor-

uct, and service-supply profiles with location-awareness.

age for quality assurance purposes.



A solution that is profitable for all payers involved –

Real-time process optimisation

Work plans that are updated on the basis of actual sta-

Service providers, as a result of extensive usage and


appropriate revenue models


Consumers, who will enjoy better value for money

Shop-owners, who will gain from an increase in sales

Higher quality in road construction

Human posture- and activity-monitoring in furniture via low-cost wireless sensors Customers or industrial partners: Caritas-Säätiö, KPO, Temelex Oy, Vivago Oy (Suomi-Soffa SSF Oy) Challenge: Recognition of human posture and activity is useful in making the life of the elderly living at home safer. The challenge is to recognise posture and activity by non-invasive means. Solution: We approach furniture-occupancy and humanbehaviour monitoring from the angle of minimally intrusive sensors. The motivation is in tracking behaviour and detecting abnormal living patterns among elderly people living at home. We use capacitative proximity sensors for this; we have developed very low-cost sensors, with wireless sensor network technologies, and have also built posture and activity classifiers upon that development. Benefits: •

Low-cost instrumentation of furniture involving capacitative sensors

Robust monitors for tracking of the posture and state of activity of the furniture-users

Ease of integration with other systems


Interaction As the world around us becomes populated with more

Augmented-reality software

Augmented-reality interior design

becomes crucial that we be able to interact with them in

Challenge: Augmented-reality (AR) applications require real-

Customer: VividWorks Ltd.

ways that do not overburden us. VTT has addressed this

time video-tracking algorithms that identify features in the

issue by developing means of natural interaction.

picture. There is little support for cross-platform augmented-

Challenge: It is always difficult to judge how a new piece of

reality application developers. End users have a large variety

furniture seen in a shop would fit with existing home interiors.

of devices and platforms, which require diverse AR solutions.

Previously, 3D technology enabled virtual furnishing only in

and more devices and things-cum-computers, it

Our efforts have led to an augmented- and mixed-reality technology platform that is used for fast and efficient

artificial environments. The challenge has been to develop

development of natural user interfaces and new ways of

Solution: VTT has developed the ALVAR (A Library for Virtual

augmented-reality furnishing technology that would seam-

using computers to visualise the future – e.g., in interior

and Augmented Reality) software. Possible platforms are

lessly integrate virtual furniture into real living environments.

design or building simulation in real-world settings. This

Windows, Linux (including Android and Maemo), Flash, Sil-

platform employs a world-class 3D tracking method and

verlight, iPhone/iPad systems, and Symbian.

software library for augmented- and mixed-reality apps (ALVAR).

Solution: VividWorks developed their new product line VividAR on the basis of VTT’s augmented-reality tracking tech-


nology (from the ALVAR SDK). The solution is tightly inte-

World-class video feature tracking technology that is

grated with the existing VividWorks’ product line, offering all

Natural interaction in combination with social media is at

made available for customers

the functionality for such uses as selecting colours and mate-

the focus of the 6Starz concept, driven by a start-up

Multi-platform nature

rials, or building modular furniture – now all augmented in

company building on Near Field Communication (NFC)

An Open Source solution

photos taken of the consumer’s home. VividAR can be down-

technology and VTT’s research results. The next few

Availability of various development tools

loaded from various Finnish as well as foreign furniture manu-

pages will give the reader a glimpse of technology and

facturers’ and resellers’ Web sites.

application emphasising the importance of natural inter-

Example use case: When a family eat breakfast, the children


use a mobile phone to see an augmented cartoon character


on the cereal package. They also participate in a daily story

A new, unique product line for VividWorks

game, with new content presented every morning.

A spearhead for the company’s international marketing and growth

A new marketing and sales tool for furniture-manufacturers and resellers

Improved ways for consumers to evaluate furniture and make purchase decisions


Source: VividWorks Ltd.


Augmented-reality solutions for data glasses

Enhancement of reader experience through augmented-reality

Customers: Vuzix Corp. (the world’s leading data-glass manufacturer)

Customers: Aller Media, DNV, Futurecode

Challenge: Vuzix manufacture data glasses specifically tar-

Challenge: How can one enable digital content to be effi-

geted at augmented-reality applications. In addition to view-

ciently linked with print media?

ing, they wanted to provide tools for creating and testing 3D content for the AR applications. Typically, the content is pro-

Solution: Augmented-reality is a technique of superimposing

duced with 3D design tools, such as Autodesk 3ds Max.

virtual objects on the user’s view of the real world, providing

However, it is not possible to test the 3D models easily with

a novel visualisation technology for a wide range of applica-

an AR application at design time.

tions. An augmented-reality application distributed with the Dibidogs children’s book and with two magazines makes the

Solution: Vuzix developed maxReality, an add-on tool for 3ds

main characters of the television series seem to pop out of

Max. It takes the newly created 3D model, adapts it to max-

the pages and have engaging interaction with the reader.

Reality Viewer, and allows the designer to test the AR experi-

Besides PC and browser platforms, VTT’s technology is avail-

ence within 3ds Max and by using the Vuzix data glasses.

able for all major mobile platforms – namely, Android, iPhone,

The maxReality Viewer system is based on VTT’s ALVAR

and Nokia systems.

technology. Benefits: Benefits: •

tent design process for AR applications •

Novel and interesting combination of print media and digital content

Creation of engaging interaction with users and efficient

An enhanced reading experience, which provides better

A new business area and revenue stream for the company

Ready-to-be-applied technology and easy solution development

A larger user base for data glasses from among professional content designers and their customers

A faster, more efficient, and dramatically easier 3D con-

capture of their attention insight into the message the text is conveying


A depth camera enabling new kinds of interaction with gestures Challenge: Our environment does not support smooth and

Low-cost depth cameras in 3D human tracking and scene reconstruction Customers: RDnet Ltd, Imagenesis Ltd

Detection and tracking of people for interactive digital installations •

Multi-camera technology’s elimination of dead zones

Non-criticality of sensor location, coupled with fast calibration

intuitive interaction with devices and objects via gesturebased interaction. For interaction involving gestures, develop-

Challenge: Three-dimensional scene sensing has several

ment of video content analysis using traditional 2D cameras

interesting applications, from human detection and tracking

faces very difficult problems (e.g., changes in scene illumina-

to measurement of the dimensions and geometry of a space.

tion, object recognition, object connectivity, and pose estima-

Obtaining 3D information in practical applications can be a


complex task.

Solution: Most of these issues can be conveniently resolved

Solution: RDnet Ltd, together with VTT, develops technology

by means of 3D sensors. The price of depth sensors has

for capturing precise 3D dimensions and geometry of free

dropped dramatically in recent years. VTT offers a software

spaces by using a mobile set of sensors.

platform for rapid development of natural/gesture-based user

Imagenesis Ltd is a producer of turnkey interactive spatial

interfaces and video surveillance systems.

experiences and content products for museums and science

Ability to obtain better-articulated and more complex information

centres. On the basis of the person detection and tracking Benefits:

technology developed at VTT, they have included effective

Fast prototyping with VTT’s expansive knowledge

real-time interaction elements in their products.

A low-cost solution

Availability of licences

Benefits: 3D scenes’ reconstruction

Example use case: A person sees an interesting digital sig-

Low-cost off-the-shelf hardware components

nage display in a shop. He or she interacts with the display

Generation of dense point clouds instead of a sparse set of points

by means of hand gestures and sees advertisements geared to his or her gender and age.

The option of operation in low-light and even dark conditions

A fast and robust way of operating


ICT that helps to optimise parking facilities’ management

Applications for computerised living environments

The 6Starz brand, developing a start-up business

Customer: Finnpark Tekniikka

Partners: VTT, Ideapark Koy, Luova Tampere, Aurinkomat-

Customer: SoLoCEM

kat, NeuroAgent, Lempäälän kehitys, Nokia Corporation, and Challenge: In a typical parking facility, the monitoring covers

Tekes – the Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Inno-

Challenge: How can one launch a start-up business and

only the total number of vehicles in the facility, or, at most, on


design a global mobile Web service product? Scarce resources require focus on development in accordance with

every floor of it. Especially in large underground facilities, the challenges are to improve such monitoring such that it has a

Challenge: How do people accept and use new technolo-

business needs. A development platform related to NFC

precision of a smaller area and to track individual vehicles.

gies? Are new technologies always needed?

technologies, Facebook, and service testing should be brought into the real world.

Solution: VTT has worked with Finnpark in the development

Solutions: VTT created the IHME space: a room filled with

of a new parking-facility monitoring solution, in which cam-

new technologies such as ‘smart boards’ and touchscreens.

Solution: VTT provided in-depth expertise in the selected

eras that are able to recognise vehicles’ licence plates are

This space was placed at Lempäälä Ideapark, to gather

technical approach. Furthermore, VTT has been mapping the

installed throughout the facility, with data collected, pro-

direct user experience.

technological choices in line with business development needs. A roadmap has been created for brand-building with

cessed, and visualised for both the facility-operators and the clients. The system has been developed to be installed first


in Tampere’s new P-Hämppi facility, which, through this and

other ICT systems, will become the most technologically advanced parking facility in Europe today. Benefits: •

Improved monitoring of the facilities’ capacity in various areas

Ability to collect statistical data for optimised facility management

Helping the client to find his or her own vehicle

Helping the client to find free parking spots


a target of global customers.

Convenience and entertainment for the user and developer


Fast feedback from the user

The right business and technology choices

A roadmap for building of a global brand

Product testing in context

A multi-device learning platform for schools Customer: Schools and the public sector Challenge: New pedagogical approaches emphasise learning by doing. Teachers need tools to control the learning process, as well as channels to challenge students with new assignments. Solution: The mobile enhanced learning (MEL) platform stretches from mobile phones to tablets and gives both students and teachers the tools they need. The MEL facilitates technology-based learning and helps students to express their needs, thoughts, and experiences during learning activities in the form of user-created multimedia content, such as images and videos. Benefits: •

The MEL’s provision of a scalable learning platform for schools and enabling of the learning process to move outside the traditional classroom setting and into the learners’ environment – the learning process becomes more situated, personal, and collaborative

That the collection of learning activities captured during the school journey will stay in the repository, enabling a new kind of school history for the students and their families


Interoperability We are surrounded by systems, devices, and services that are digitally controlled. Today, these do not engage in dialogue with each other and so cannot share or use

Opening of information on embedded devices for intelligent applications in smart environments

information that another system or device possesses. This unfortunate situation is particularly commonplace in

User-centric and energy-efficient management of indoor environment Customer: Senaatti

Customers: People and society

offices, manufacturing and retail, and other such fields.

Challenge: Building automation and other systems provide

As digitalisation of our everyday life advances, this isola-

Challenge: Our environment is full of devices and embedded

a great deal of information on indoor environment. However,

tion of systems becomes an even more pressing issue.

systems that include useful information and capabilities.

only a small fraction of this information is actually utilised in

Developing intelligent services, homes, buildings, and cities

the facility management. This may lead, on one hand, to

Naturally, there are efforts to address this issue via open

for us would be much easier and more cost-effective if we

unnecessary or incorrectly directed energy consumption and,

standards or more limited industry alliances. A few of

could use existing infrastructure. Solutions that are simple to

on the other, to an unsatisfactory indoor environment.

these efforts have borne some fruit. Interoperability

integrate into existing systems and that preserve their inde-

between products made by a single manufacturer is the

pendence and honour their purposes are needed.

most easily achieved, and some major consumer elec-

Solution: VTT has been involved in the development of new means of utilising the information provided by the various sys-

tronics and appliance companies have chosen this route.

Solution: The Semantic Web principle of opening data in

tems. Our solution brings the information to the users of the

In the home automation domain, several industry alli-

understandable format was extended to the embedded sys-

facility in real time. Furthermore, the solution provides an

ances, of which ZigBee is perhaps the most widely

tem domain. VTT has developed scalable and portable M3

opportunity for a user to give feedback on the indoor environ-

known, are in competition.

solutions for information sharing for embedded systems and

ment so that those responsible for the facilities’ maintenance

mobile devices. Shared information enables the creation of

can react to possible problems efficiently.

VTT approaches the issue from an open system view-

intelligent mash-up applications similar to those on the Inter-

point. Jointly with our European and Japanese partners,

net in the physical domain.

we have studied open interoperability platforms for smart spaces and object identification (i.e., tagging). As


a result of this work, we have proposed and adopted

open technologies such as M3, NFC, and uCode.

Increased user satisfaction with the indoor environment

Energy savings in adjustment of the building automation according to real needs

A simple, portable, and scalable solution for sharing of semantic information

Domain-, language-, and platform-independence

An opportunity for mash-up of information and technologies



Better focusing of maintenance work

Opportunistic computing in smart environments Customers: Accenture, SAE – Automation Challenge: Communities of objects, such as refrigerators, set-top boxes, and thermostats, with embedded sense– compute–actuate nodes as found in homes and other buildings are inherently heterogeneous in their sensing, actuation, and computing resources/capabilities. Moreover, the actual mix of objects available in a wide variety of settings is largely unknown at the time of development. Therefore, the main challenge of applications is to take the best possible advantage of whatever resources happen to be available at run time. Solution: A platform for building automation was created that simplifies the task of developing and deploying opportunistic applications in heterogeneous and incompletely specified object collections. Benefits: •

Easy implementation

Flexibility of accessing resources

Cost-effective programming of new applications


Remote adjustable camera Situation based Adaptation of Intelligent Services in Smart Environments

Wireless Customer AP or industrial partners: Nokia, CRF, CCC, TECNALIA, Conante

Embedded Linux computer

Challenge: Digital services of smart environments require inherent intelligence. Heterogeneous systems and devices are to be easily integrated, get sharing information and acting together. A common understanding is required about information, context and behaviour. End- user’s intent and situa-

Bridgetionheight sensor are also to be taken into account when adapting applications to fit to the situation at hand.

Solution: Semantic information broker service collects and shares information from/with different devices and actuators

NFC tag trace

in understandable format for the devices. It is interoperability over different programming languages and formats. Application development is supported by a professional modelling tool and end-user programming environment. Benefits: •

Lower risks due to incremental development of smartness into existing environments

Improved user experience

Effective development

Innovative solutions for run-time information security and performance management

Motivating end-users to develop intelligentPhoto: applications. Johan Moreels NFC reader •


Ubiquitous M2M service networks (UseNet)

Situation-based adaptation of intelligent services in smart environments

Tagging of individual objects in the Internet of Things

Polar, Ouman, Alcatel-Lucent, BULL, Fagor Electrodomesti-

Industrial partners: Nokia, CRF (Italy), CCC (Italy), TECNA-

Challenge: In 2015, there will be three times more devices

cos, Foreca Consulting, Soraluce, Thales Communication &

LIA (Spain), Conante (Netherlands)

connected to the Internet than people on the planet. Prod-

Customers: ITEA 2 research project (industrial partners:


ucts, locations, people, and other physical objects in huge Challenge: Digital services of smart environments require

numbers could be connected to the Internet as well. There

Challenge: M2M systems have been limited to vendor- or

inherent intelligence. Heterogeneous systems and devices

should be a global way to find and connect information on

domain-specific closed systems. This has resulted in high

are to be easily integrated, start sharing information, and

these objects.

development costs, as solutions have had to be developed

begin acting together. A common understanding is required

and implemented separately for each domain or even specific

about information, context, and behaviour. Also, end users’

Solution: Universal Ubiquitous Code provides means to tag

business case.

intent and situation are to be taken into account in adaptation

practically every object in the world with a unique identifier.

of applications to fit to the situation at hand.

VTT provides the u-Easy application and service for creating

Solution: UseNet set out to develop ubiquitous M2M service

a globally unique identity (uCode) for any kind of object and

networks, wherein the infrastructure is able to connect and

Solution: A semantic-information brokerage service collects

writing it to an NFC tag or to a QR code. Features include

combine services produced in different domains. Standardi-

and shares information from/with different devices and actua-

adding picture, text, and location data to the virtual identity

sation played a key role in the project, which has had a major

tors in understandable form for the devices. It is interoperable

as well as reading object history.

impact on M2M standardisation internationally. The bulk of

across several programming languages and formats. Appli-

the effort was concentrated on the M2M core architecture

cation development is supported by a professional modelling


through the European Telecommunications Standards Insti-

tool and end-user programming environment.

A simple way to create a globally unique identity for any


Ability to utilise ideas from the u-Easy application in mul-

tute (ETSI). Benefits:

kind of object and to attach information •

Lower risks, on account of the incremental development

tiple areas of application, such as the food industry,

of smartness into existing environments

manufacturing, and flow of goods

Wider business possibilities for companies

Increased service quality

Improved user experience

Reduced costs

Effective development

Example use case: An artist makes a painting and creates

Increased customer satisfaction

Innovative solutions for run-time information security

a uCode tag for it. After dozens of years, the new owner of

Fast exploitation

and performance management

the painting can track where it was created and where it was

Motivates end users to develop applications

located previously.


Wireless battery charging over NFC Customer: ST-Ericsson Challenge: Wirelessbattery charging is becoming a viable option for charging our every object: mobile phones, remote controllers, laptops, LEDs, gadgets, etc. The main motivation for wireless charging lies in its usability. It will come to full fruition when wireless chargers are massively embedded in our living environment and interoperable with devices to be charged independently of their manufacturers. The implementationof this easy-to-use ubiquitous charging facility calls for activities and new innovations in several areas. Solution: VTT has developed wireless charging solutions that can exploit existing Near Field Communication resources. Thanks to its technical expertise and solid theory-based knowledge developed in co-operation with industry player, VTT has also been able to contribute to global standardisation for this field via the NFC Forum ( VTT was one of the initiators of the NFC Forum Wireless Charging task force, established in February 2012. Benefits: •

More compact and cost-efficient wireless charging interfaces for small devices


A more pervasive charger infrastructure


The possibility of integrating NFC-based services into charging applications



Internet of things, Ubiquitous computing

Advanced radio systems, Smart grids

User experience technologies

Heikki Ailisto, Research Professor, Programme Manager

Tapio Rauma, Key Account Manager

Tatu Harviainen, Senior Scientist

+358 40 555 0726

+358 40 526 8231

+358 50 549 8785

IP Networks, Ubiquitous technologies

ICT for health and environment

Data communications, Software technologies

Marko Jurvansuu, Key Account Manager

Kari Kohtam채ki, Key Account Manager

Jukka Kiviniemi, Key Account Manager

+358 40 547 9441

+358 40 512 7611

+358 40 037 2856

Business development

Crossmedia technologies

Data communications, Terminal devices

Timo Koivum채ki, Research Professor

Harri Nurmi, Key Account Manager

Heikki Anttila, Key Account Manager

+358 40 507 3631

+358 40 571 7753

+358 40 517 0140

ICT business solutions

Information and product security, Software technologies

Software business & production

Seija Sihvonen, Vice President +358 40 532 1637

Jukka Rautava, Key Account Manager

+358 40 744 7094

+358 40 571 5761


Tony Wong, Key Account Manager

Graphic design: Tuija Soininen, VTT

VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland is the largest multitechnological applied research organization in Northern Europe. VTT provides high-end technology solutions and innovation services. From its wide knowledge base, VTT can combine different technologies, create new innovations and a substantial range of world class technologies and applied research services thus improving its clients’ competitiveness and competence. Through its international scientific and technology network, VTT can produce information, upgrade technology knowledge, create business intelligence and value added to its stakeholders. VTT is a non-profit-making research organization.

Erweko Oy, 2012

VTT TECHNICAL RESEARCH CENTRE OF FINLAND Vuorimiehentie 5, Espoo P.O.Box 1000, FI-02044 VTT, Finland Tel. +358 20 722 111, Fax +358 20 722 7001

in business and everyday life

Ubiquitous technologies  

Ubiquitous technologies in business and everyday life

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