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CeBIT2009: Personal Guardian Angel for Senior Citizens

Many people want to continue to lead independent lives in their own homes for as long as possible, even in their old age. Intelligent environments can help to make this wish come true.

How this can be done will be shown by scientists from the Fraunhofer Institute for Experimental Software Engineering at the joint booth of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft B36 as well as at booth B40 of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research - both located in Hall 9 of this year's CeBIT, the world's largest computer trade fair.

In the homes of the future, technology will play an ever increasing role, according to the researchers at Fraunhofer IESE. The scientists are currently developing information technology concepts for a system that will collect detailed information about the environment via a network of many unobtrusively mounted sensors, analyze these, and then react in accordance with the specific situation.

"In this way, we are basically making the environment intelligent. Using many almost invisibly mounted sensors, the system observes the resident's activities of daily living", explains Dr. Martin Becker, who is in charge of the research area "Ambient Assisted Living" at IESE. "This makes it possible to detect and assess which risk exists in a specific case, whether there is a trend towards deterioration, and, in particular, whether an acute emergency exists."

One special challenge is to set up the system in such a way that it works safely and reliably on the one hand, and can be continually adapted to changing demands on the other hand. In addition to conventional, i.e., passive, sensors that use wireless transmission, for example, to transmit their data to a central office for further processing, embedded miniature systems are being developed. The complete microcomputers can be placed anywhere in the house, work autonomously, and independently communicate with each other. In their entirety, they present themselves to the resident as a homogeneous, intelligent environment, with the technology (which can operate almost without human input, if so desired) always staying discreetly in the background until needed.

Alexander Rabe
Phone +49 (631) 6800 1002
Fraunhofer-Institut für Experimentelles Software Engineering IESE
Fraunhofer-Platz 1
67663 Kaiserslautern
Important Data:
Booth of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft: Hall 9, Booth B36
Booth of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF): Hall 9, Booth B40

Press Talk with the President of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft, Prof. Hans-Jörg Bullinger, and the Executive Director of the Fraunhofer Institute for Experimental Software Engineering, Prof. Dieter Rombach: 3 March 2009, 3.30 p.m. at the booth of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft in Hall 9, Booth B36.

Fraunhofer-Institute for Experimental Software Engineering

Fraunhofer IESE is one of the worldwide leading research institutes in the area of software and systems development. A major portion of the products offered by our collaboration partners is defined by software. These products range from automotive and transportation systems to telecommunication and telematics equipment, from information systems and medical devices to software systems for the public sector. Our solutions allow flexible scaling. This makes us a competent technology partner for organizations of any size - from small companies to major corporations.

Under the leadership of Prof. Dieter Rombach and Prof. Peter Liggesmeyer, the past decade has seen us making major contributions to strengthening the emerging IT location Kaiserslautern.

In the Fraunhofer Information and Communication Technology Group, we are cooperating with other Fraunhofer institutes on developing trend-setting key technologies for the future.

Fraunhofer IESE is one of 57 institutes of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft. Together we have a major impact on shaping applied research in Europe and contribute to Germany's competitiveness in international markets. As part of the Fraunhofer Center Kaiserslautern, the institute is officially a "Selected Landmark 2009" in the contest "365 Landmarks in the Land of Ideas".

Patrick Leibbrand | Fraunhofer Gesellschaft
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