iSpace is an umbrella framework for research environments at University of Essex that brings together a number of disciplines spanning areas from networking to smart environments to socio-technical studies. As part of this project, people from various groups develop solutions for various environments, such as home (home@iSpace), campus(campus@iSpace) and city (city@iSpace).
The IE group is involved in various aspects of this project though its current main involvement is in the home@iSpace part, especially through the living smart environment, a two bedroom flat, developed from original research using the one room intelligent student dormitory (iDorm) at the University of Essex, for Intelligent Building (IB) research. This apartment makes possible ubiquitous networked sensors and actuators, the infra-structure for which is accommodated within the specially constructed walls, so that the heterogeneous networking infrastructure is hidden from view. Designed to provide a flexible test-bed for research into intelligent buildings and adaptive environments within an ubiquitous computing context, the home@iSpace offers the possibility for examining the deployment of various system solutions and user interfaces within the intelligent environments of tomorrow. home@iSpace was designed as a live-in environment and various socio-technical evaluations are performed here to examine how end users respond to systems that are being installed.