You are here: Resources > FIDIS Deliverables > Profiling > D7.3: Report on Actual and Possible Profiling Techniques in the Field of Ambient Intelligence > 
AmI: science fiction or unfolding reality?  Title:
 Example of intelligent showers


Key concepts of AmI

Several concepts concerning AmI seem to be highly relevant, distinguishing AmI from other types of personalised services. Here we will pay attention to the ambient aspect, which includes both ubiquitous computing and ubiquitous communication, and the intelligence that is based on ubiquitous communication by means of intelligent interfaces. Lastly we will focus on the central concept behind AmI, which is personalisation of the environment, indicating the ‘human centred’ focus of AmI- applications.

Ambience: Ubiquitous computing and ubiquitous communication

One of most striking features of AmI is the fact that it will be embedded in everyday objects around us in an invisible way. This indicates both pervasive and ubiquitous computing and communication. It is in fact the disappearing interface that characterises the ambient aspect, or, in other words, the environment (the multiplicity of smart things we run into) becomes the interface. The software is hidden and works automatically to such an extent that people are less aware of it or even not aware at all. The idea is that we get used to AmI without constantly realising the presence of intelligent devices. This aspect is not new, we are already surrounded by systems and products with embedded computers like in televisions, intelligent TiVo recorders, cars and other means of transportation, machines, energy and communication systems. What is new is the real time wireless communication between technologies embedded in the environment and technologies carried by the human person, and linkage to data records held on the internet, a remote database or a personal digital assistant. This ubiquitous communication allows the customisation of an environment, by means of the software intelligence that will be introduced (through micro-processors) into many objects like television and cars, but also shoes, clothes, money, food, washing machines, walls, doors, heaters, windows, etc.


Other than ‘conventional’ forms of ubiquitous and pervasive computing, AmI constitutes an ‘intelligent environment’ that is aware of the specific characteristics of a human person in a specific context. By means of intelligent devices the environment adapts or learns about the needs of a specific human person, based on her past behaviour. On top of that, the intelligent devices allow the environment to respond intelligently by reorganising the environment according to the preferences of the human person, deducted from patterns in past behaviour. In other words, the intelligence consists of:

  1. Collecting, recording and processing data concerning a specific human person and her environment;  

  2. Inferring her preferences;  

  3. Responding by readjusting the environment according to these preferences; and  

  4. Storing the preferences by readjusting stored profiles in real time to continue the process of providing up to date intelligent responses. 


AmI: science fiction or unfolding reality?  fidis-wp7-del7.3.ami_profiling_02.sxw  Example of intelligent showers
7 / 62