Programming Pervasive and Mobile Computing Applications: The TOTA Approach

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Marco Mamei, Franco Zambonelli
ACM Transactions on Software Engineering Methodologies 18(4), pages 15:1-15:56
July 2009

Pervasive and mobile computing call for suitable middleware and programming models to support the activities of complex software systems in dynamic network environments. In this article we present TOTA (“Tuples On The Air”), a novel middleware and programming approach for supporting adaptive context-aware activities in pervasive and mobile computing scenarios. The key idea in TOTA is to rely on spatially distributed tuples, adaptively propagated across a network on the basis of application-specific rules, for both representing contextual information and supporting uncoupled interactions between application components. TOTA promotes a simple way of programming that facilitates access to distributed information, navigation in complex environments, and the achievement of complex coordination tasks in a fully distributed and adaptive way, mostly freeing programmers and system managers from the need to take care of low-level issues related to network dynamics. This article includes both application examples to clarify concepts and performance figures to show the feasibility of the approach