Information Technology Reference
deriving from privacy protection. UC will be widely accepted only when
suitable technologies for privacy protection will be in action.
UC is not augmented reality; it makes computing resources available
in all environments. UC will surpass current ideas about the computer
as a basis element of our working space. In UC vision, computers will
disappear to be integrated in the environment and in the objects of every-
day use .
Several new technologies will be developed in the forthcoming years
that will be able to extract pieces of information from our movements and
actions, to process them, to devise our physical and/or mental status and to
decide if we need care. Many theoretical studies about the needs of the
people interested in UC were the first step towards this goal. Scientists tried
to devise if impaired people can be also among UC users .
In general, UC applications have to serve very heterogeneous requests;
this led to the design of personal interfaces that are suited to the single user
performing a request.
UC technology has been progressively introduced in everyday technol-
ogical objects, while reusing well-known interfaces for a new generation of
applications. This strategy has been adopted to reduce the traumatic effect of
the new technology.
Communication between UC devices will make it possible for the users to
monitor their house remotely while they are driving or to control kids or elder
While using UC systems, one must keep in mind that they are intended
for decision support and that they do not replace humans in the decision-
making process . All scientific studies related to UC technologies are
devoted to build systems that are able to 'think like humans' without
replacing the user. Such systems will be able to decide in place of the user
when there can be a health emergency or the danger of death.
This chapter was written with the contributions of the following students
who attended the lessons of 'Grids and Pervasive Systems' at the faculty
of Engineering in the University of Palermo, Italy: Bennardo, Bommarito,
Cannizzaro, Carlevaro, Carmicio, Castellino, Cefalù, Ciuro, Di Trapani,
Failla, Genco, Guglielmini, Iacono, Inguanta, Lo Cascio, Lo Iacono, Marino,
Portuesi, Sicilia and Tusa.
Authors would also like to thank Roberto Pirrone for his help in the