DATE: Thursday, February 23, 2012
TIME: Noon to 1 pm
PLACE: Gates 8102

SPEAKER: Rajesh Balan, Singapore Management University

TITLE:The LiveLabs Urban LifeStyle Innovation Platform

A central question in mobile computing is how do you test mobile applications, that depend on real context, in real environments with real users? User studies done in lab environments are frequently insufficient to understand the realworld interactions between user context, environmental factors, application behaviour, and performance results. In this talk, I will describe LiveLabs, a new 5 year project that will starting at the Singapore Management University in early 2012. The goal of LiveLabs is to convert three real environments, the entire Singapore Management University campus, a popular resort island, and two popular shopping malls, into living testbeds where we instrument both the environment and the cell phones of opted-in participants (drawn from the student population and members of the public). We can then provide 3rd party companies, and researchers the opportunity to test their mobile applications and scenarios on the opted-in participants -- on their real phones in the three real environments described above. LiveLabs will provide the software necessary to collect network statistics and any necessary context information. In addition, LiveLabs will provide software and mechanisms to ensure that privacy, proper participant selection, resource management, and experimental results and data are maintained and provided on a need-to-know basis to the appropriate parties.

I will describe the broad LiveLabs vision and identify the key research challenges and opportunities. Through this talk, I hope to solicit suggestions and help to solve any of the key challenges (and other challenges that we don't even know about yet) that are presented. In addition, we are also looking for post-docs, research assistants, and new tenure-track faculty members to help with this initiative. If time permits, I will also summarize the various research initiatives being undertaken by my research group.

Rajesh Balan obtained his Ph.D. in 2006 from a small private university located in the south-western corner of Pennsylvania. He then joined an even smaller university in Singapore (the School of Information Systems in the Singapore Management University). His research interests are quite eclectic and include developing novel mobile and pervasive applications, investigating and building massively multiplayer game infrastructures, building next-generation transportation systems, developing appropriate mechanisms for obtaining large amounts of funding from government agencies, and understanding and analyzing the issues related to distributed software engineering. More details about his research can be found at


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