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How Ubiquitous Networking Will Work

        Tech | Networking

In the Zone
This screen shot shows how the users' zones and object zones will overlap. The user now owns the device.
This screen shot shows how the users' zones and object zones will overlap. The user now owns the device.
Photo courtesy AT&T Laboratories Cambridge

With an ultrasonic location system in place, it’s possible for any device fitted with a bat to become yours at the push of a button. Let’s say the user leaves his workstation and enters another room. There’s a phone in this room sitting on an unoccupied desk. That phone is now the user’s phone, and all of the user’s phone calls are immediately redirected to that phone. If there is already someone using that phone, the central controller recognizes that and the person using the phone maintains possession of the phone.

The central controller creates a zone around every person and object within the location system. For example, if several cameras are place in a room for videoconferences, the location system would activate the appropriate camera so that the user could be seen and move freely around the room.

When all the sensors and bats are in place, they are included in a virtual map of the building. The computer uses a spatial monitor to detect if a user’s zone overlaps with the zone of a device. If the zone’s do overlap, then the user can become the temporary owner of the device.

If the ultrasonic location system is working with virtual network computing (VNC) software, there are some additional capabilities. Computer desktops can be created that actually follow their owners anywhere with in the system. Just by approaching any computer display in the building, the bat can enable the VNC desktop to appear on that display. This is handy if you want to leave your computer to show a coworker what you’ve been working on. Your desktop is simply teleported from your computer to your coworker’s computer.


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