Project Aura
Distraction-free Ubiquitous Computing

Carnegie Mellon University

Aura is a large umbrella project with many individual research thrusts contributing to it.  Here is a partial list of research technologies being explored, with brief descriptions:

Task-driven Computing
  • Capture of high-level user intent
  • Suppression of low-level details from user
  • Intelligent suspend/resume
  • Seamless transitions to alternative platforms and applications
  • Proactive interactions with user
Energy-aware Adaptation
  • Dynamic change of application fidelity for reduced energy use
  • Battery life extension to user-specified goal
  • Tools for mapping energy use to software structure
  • Graceful integration with hardware-level power management
  • Energy locality
Intelligent Networking
  • Rich API for expressive QoS specifications
  • Bidirectional notification capability
  • Proactive application and user notification
  • Decentralized coordination of corrective actions
  • Network weather service
Resource Opportunism
  • Ability to “live off the land”
  • Discovery of compute servers and data staging servers
  • Anticipatory data staging to reduce entry latency
  • Adaptive policies for local vs. remote execution

Speech Recognition,
Language Translation,
Augmented Reality

  • Footprint reduction for mobile hardware
  • Multi-fidelity techniques for reduced resource usage
  • Offloading on compute servers
Multimodal User Interfaces
  • Hands-free operation
  • Distraction minimization
  • Speech-driven interfaces
  • Gesture recognition
  • Eye-tracking
Nomadic Data Access
  • Disconnected operation
  • Bandwidth adaptive, weakly-connected operation
  • Transparent switching of overlay networks
  • Conflict detection and resolution
  • Robustness, reliability, rapid failover
Wearable computers
  • Rapid prototyping
  • Design for wearability
  • User-centric design
User Interface Adaptability
  • Multimodal input-output
  • Dynamic switching of modality
  • Platform-specific considerations
  • Small-screen display techniques
Data and Network Adaptability
  • API for application-aware adaptation
  • Tolerance windows and asynchronous notification
  • Low-overhead resource monitoring
  • Transcoding for fidelity changes
  • Network QoS
Software Composition
  • Typed object managers
  • Dynamic discovery of modules
  • Proactive notification and triggers
  • Mobile code
  • Java
  • Virtual whiteboards
  • Intelligent workspaces
Wireless networking
  • WaveLAN
  • Bluetooth
  • InfraRed
  • Overlay networking
Security and privacy
  • Caching trust rather than content
  • Establishing trust in surrogates
  • Selective control of location information
User/Virtual Space Interaction
  • Interaction techniques for mobile users
  • Suite of interfaces with the Virtual Information Space (VIS)
  • Output modes for differentiating information
  • Context sensitive computing
  • Integrated system enabling users to run through sample scenarios that demonstrate our interaction concepts
Evaluation Metrics and Methodologies
  • Measures of user distraction
  • Benchmark problems for system adaptation

Last  edited by Tracy Farbacher for Satya on 11/06/2000