Versatile Interface for TRUstworthy VItal User (oriented) Services

[TU/e] [WMC]
[Medecs] [Kempenhaegghe]
[SAN TU/e]


In future, detailed and fully up-to-date personal information, including data from real-time body sensors, will be accessible for widespread use by multiple services and applications. This information can come from sources as diverse as certified medical exams carried out by qualified professionals, or mass-market on-body accelerometers casually used for computer gaming. The use of body sensor data can start early in people’s life, when baby phones measure the emotional state to gently guide the newborn into a peaceful sleep. Late in people’s life, body sensing can play an important role in assisting seniors to age in dignity in a safe natural home environment.

During the decades in between, sensor data can be used in applications ranging from sport coaching to intensive computer gaming and medical– preferably ambulatory–monitoring during periods of illness, or chronic need of attention. Yet the widespread use of body data, not only including people’s physiology but also their emotions, raises societal issues. It also comes with interesting scientific challenges, particularly because the technical constraints of node power consumption and wireless links and networks have to be taken into account. The VITRUVIUS project aims at exploring the underlying key consequences for the architecture of Body Sensor Networks (BSN) and the handling of information about the individual's body coming from power-constrained wireless sensor nodes.

The handling of medical information about the human is migrating from a hospital-centric to a patient-centric approach. Body data is not only used in healthcare but also in lifestyle and entertainment services, where the person-centric thinking already is pervasive. Ownership and exercising access rights of personal privacy-sensitive data is a delicate question, and has to be studied at architecture level, in the context of severe limitations in ultra low power sensors nodes with unreliable and bandwidth-limited sensor modules.

The proposed project VITRUVIUS addresses some of the underlying key questions for the architecture of BSNs.

  1. Is the envisaged system architecture is viable for entertainment, lifestyle and social services simultaneously?
  2. How can services providers easily develop new services and applications, without rolling out their own body sensor hardware, but reusing and coexisting with each other? This aspect is a key focus question in this IOP GenCom Call.
  3. How to partition (automatically or by computer aiding) body-centric and infrastructure centric processing and storage of data?
  4. Can a service developer adequately handle the technical constraints that govern the BSN?