ICT – The Next Generation
ICT and Mobile Communications are rapidly becoming indispensable components of our personal lives, industry, and society. ICT has the potential to be the key enabling technology that solves crucial problems in future energy consumption and generation, climate and environmental change, affordable healthcare, efficient transportation, and the inclusive society. ICT will continue to be a focus of European development policies, industrial interest, and user demand.
Over the last decades, Sweden has achieved a very strong position in mobile communications. Researchers in Sweden and Finland have driven the development of the mobile internet. Several paradigm shifts lie ahead and these have already started to affect the ICT industry. Sweden as a nation needs to respond strategically to these challenges.
With this initiative, the TNG consortium Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) - Stockholm University (SU) – the Swedish Institute of Computer Science (SICS) and ACREO has the unique capability to achieve critical mass, producing research of the highest international quality. Set in the proper industrial environment the consortium can make significant impact on the Swedish ICT innovation system and continue to be a key European research player. An essential component in the latter strategy is to attract the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) Knowledge and Innovation Community (KIC) in the area of the “Future Information Society”.
The mission of this initiative is to secure and further develop the Consortium and Stockholm as a world leading center of ICT research and innovation.
Strategic research topics
The purpose of these projects is to explore new interactions between research groups, schools and partner organizations and should not be focused on a single participant.
The consortium will target four key areas, addressing challenges in usability, scalability, and sustainability, that we believe are of paramount importance for the continued development of Sweden as a leading ICT nation:
Human in the loop
Focus project: Malleable mobile materials
Designing novel mobile and ubiquitous applications is a challenge. The applications place high demands on infrastructure such as wireless network capacity, mobile interactions of novel kinds, access to open protocols at all levels, operating systems on mobiles and sensor units, and programming languages. This focus project connects the user-centred design perspective and technological demands.
Services enabled by multimodal communication
Focus project: Services enabled by multimodal communication
The project is approaching multimodal communication of expressions, opinions, preferences, and life stories as an enhancer of democracy. The main focus is research on multimodal communication, using a variety of techniques and tools for the mediation of expressions, i.e., how to utilize different 7 tools and media to present something, to illustrate and recreate expressions, their costs, reliability, and ease of use. The work also includes studies on the development of social and technology infrastructures for multimodal communication channels.
Focus project: Situated audiovisual interaction with robots
Robotic systems that can assist humans in a variety of their everyday tasks are a long sought goal of robotic research. The project combines research on robotics and audiovisual interaction in an integrated effort. A specific challenge is how to teach robots new tasks by means of audiovisual interaction. The project will also focus on usability aspects and on how a robot could adapt to the users’ shifting needs.
Internet of things
Focus project: Reliable industrial communication and sensor networks
Recent advances in sensor technology, low-power electronics, wireless communications, and networking have enabled the engineering of a completely new type of networked information systems, which have the potential to drastically decrease costs and increase productivity in a wide range of industrial applications. Reliable real-time wireless communication in harsh industrial environments is very challenging, and the current status of this technology is not sufficiently ; for instance, the scarce energy resources of battery-powered wireless devices, sets limits on the lifetime and system performance. The project develops new communication and networking strategies needed to fully utilize the broadcast nature of wireless communication and adaptation techniques to meet monitoring and control application demands. The project requires interdisciplinary collaborations between radio communication, operating systems and softwares, networking protocols, hardware and system integration, wireless communication and control, as well as testbed developments and applications.
Focus project: Mobile sensing and sensor fusion
Thanks to the development of new low-cost sensing and computing technology, a new area of mobile sensing systems is evolving with a pontential to revolutionize the way we interact with the physical environment. This project will be centered on the investigation of algorithms for acquiring, processing and automatic interpretation of sensory data obtained from a variety of mobile sensors, including vision, sound, radio and other physical variables. It is essential to take into account sensor, communication and platform constraints, and to include multi-sensor fusion with for instance positioning and navigation systems. The project requires interdisciplinary collaborations on perception, sensor technology, systems modeling, control engineering, image-video-audio processing, signal processing, and system integration.
Security and privacy
Focus project: Platform and system security
Platform security concerns the development of secure platform-based services from the hardware/chip, virtualization and OS layers to the application layer including technologies for code monitoring, code integrity verification and design verifications. This project is cross-disciplinary, and involves contributions from protocols and crypto, hardware and chip design, software and system security and analysis techniques.
Affordable and sustainable ICT infrastructure
Network layer models
Focus project: Network layer models for physical layer processes and phenomena
There is a need to improve the existing models for how physical (incl. MAC) layer signaling transfers into network layer "bits and packets." This project aims to bring together researchers with expertise in physical layer transmission, resource allocation, control and modeling, networking and system design, to propose and evaluate new such models.
Green ICT systems
Focus project: Energy-efficient wireless networking
Breaking the exponential energy growth of today's ICT infrastructure requires a holistic perspective - from new physical-layer algorithms and paradigms (cooperative transmission), via energy-efficient resource allocation and routing and smart use of redundancy at the application layer (multiple descriptions, distributed coding), to the system's perspective. How would we design the system and its parts if energy and not bandwidth efficiency is the key performance criterion?
Content-centric and semantic networking
New chair: Deployment of mobile services
Providing a superior user experience is the key to success in mobile services. More wireless bandwidth by deploying more infrastructure may take significant time, require large investments in more rural settings, and may not always be energy efficient. This chair will aim at providing substantial and measurable increase of the QoE by using a smarter, faster and convergent networks that is based on deriving and exploiting extensive knowledge of the user preferences and needs.
New technology for optical and wireless networking
Focus project: Optical Networking Systems
The spectacular growth of Internet traffic is putting ever greater capacity pressure on telecommunications networks. The real challenge is to create viable technological solutions that will offer high bandwidth to the end-user, support the connection capabilities in a secure way and provide efficient protection for failures, disasters and attacks. Successful and high-impact research in optical networking can be achieved by incorporating expertise from optical network architectures, optical components and systems (i.e. hardware), and optical network control and management (i.e., software), and is referred to as “cross-layer design”.
One important goal is to establish new collaborations between the groups in the areas of: network architecture, enabling technology and components for ICT systems (hardware) and network control and management (i.e., software).
Mastering complexity - managing dynamically evolving ICT systems
Focus project: Complexity fundamentals
This project addresses methodologies, models and engineering principles for design of self-organizing distributed systems. These techniques and tools should cover the life-cycle of the system to guarantee that it is manageable from its boot up, over generations of development until it should cease operation. The project studies scalable frameworks for complex systems design to develop 10 theory and algorithmic tools for rigorous design and analysis of large-scale networks of dynamical systems.
Complex communication and computing systems
Focus project: Complex communication and computing systems
Networked control systems and feedback control in distributed systems. It is especially challenging, where feedback control loops are closed over networked, distributed communication platforms. Architecture and design methodology for dependable and adaptive embedded systems shall be developed, which mitigate effects of system complexity and component variability.
Complex service systems
Focus project: Complex service systems
Adaptive and context aware services: Adaptability is an enabling capability for many service systems which must adapt themselves to changing conditions in both the supporting computing and communication infrastructure, as well as in the surrounding physical environment. An adaptive system has to (re)configure itself, augment its functionality and continually optimize itself. Self-managing and autonomic services: design of large scale services with self-managing properties. The current candidate service is Internet-wide secure storage service that is the basis for higher level services including social networks and video-on-demand.