Intertain - Home Lab


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The INTERTAIN research team is maintaining a blog here

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The Home Lab provides an environment for key research themes which involve user-centered, distributed, interactive and intelligent multi-device applications. INTERTAIN Home Lab's primary goals are:

  • Facilitating user-centered experimental research in a realistic environment where we can connect mobile, Web and physical worlds in a multi-disciplinary setting.
  • Serving as a showcase for state-of-the-art technologies & demos. It can show the ubiquitous nature of information, presented on mobile phones and other Web-enabled devices.
  • Providing a laboratory to experiment with distributed technologies and human-aware applications, based on sensor input and background knowledge.
  • Fostering collaboration among the Computer Science groups in national and international projects.
  • Serving as an attractive environment for advanced courses and student projects.

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The future house will have knowledge about the person living there. It will know who your friends and family are and know their preferences and understand their needs. If you visit your parents, this will be detected and their home will seamlessly adapt to your preferences. Adapted ambience, lights, music and tv could be present.

Future health care will be much more decentralized and personalized. The bathroom mirror and your mobile phone will give you daily advice related to your health and lifestyle. When in risk, your doctor will be warned and can have access to a full report about your stamina, blood pressure, eating habits, etc. The data will be automatically collected by sensors in your house, PDA, clothes and devices worn on your body, such as wrist bands with motion trackers. The VU initiated ICT4depression project is already experimenting with these kind of technologies.

Another project is the ALWEN (Ambient Living with Embedded Networks) project, in cooperation with DevLab, Philips and 3TU. The combination of Body Sensors, Ambient Sensors, Wireless Networks and Telemedicine implements a novel approach to zeroth, first and second line care and addresses the widely recognized fact that care must be organized differently.

The rise of internet TV, the explosion of theme (on-demand) channels (YouTube, personalized radio and TV guides) combined with your preferences stored on the internet gives an opening for personal media. See the things you want to see and hear whenever you want them, on whichever medium is available to you at the moment. TV and audio can follow you through the house, but also from your way back from work. Let the internet keep track of which episode you already saw on your favorite channel; you no longer need to select where you were in a movie if you leave the house and come back to start where you left off. The most recent and up-to-date news, from multiple sources, automatically verified to be correct.

The exploration of the future of television in the ubiquitous Web by integrating semantics is done in the NoTube project, which is a collaboration with BCC, RAI and Thomson.

From a technical point of view, we create a stable, secure and safe platform which allows any and all applications to communicate to each other seamlessly. One ubiquitous and invisible network will allow all different kinds of applications working together. No longer updating, converting and adapting all your data to fit a required standard.

In the Interdroid project, VU Amsterdam is building a platform for distributed applications on mobile devices, where applications can share information in new and interesting ways.

Other examples include the E-culture project, the cultural heritage project with the Rijksmuseum, Europeana, PrestoPrime, LarCK (with Siemens and the World Health Organisation)

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The INTERTAIN Home Lab provides a physical place and many facilities to service future research.

  • Intelligent walls with ‘hidden’ equipment, such as camera's and sensors
  • Real time object location system (Ubisense)
  • Interactive multi-touch table
  • Demo bar with integrated computer equipment
  • Several robot devices, e.g. a Paro seal and a X80-H mobile Robot
  • Several smartphones with GPS facilities
  • HomeLab TV, visualization & broadcasting equipment (all connected)
  • Large (8 meter) video wall
  • HD video conferencing facilities
  • HD TV set, Blu-ray player and game consoles
  • Human Ambience Lab equipment:
    • Real-time eye tracking facilities
    • Smart physiological monitoring facilities
    • Virtual Reality cycle trainers + bike

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If you are interested in using these facilities for research, meetings or other activities, you can contact the INTERTAIN team: intertain@cs.vu.nl

Usage of the Intertain Homelab facilities is explained in this document.

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