Andrea Passarella - Main Projects

IIT-CNR, Pisa, a<dot>passarella<at>iit<dot>cnr<dot>it.

Active projects

These are brief abstracts of the main projects I’m working on:

  • FP7 EC FET-AWARE RECOGNITION Project: Relevance and cognition for self-awareness in a content-centric Internet (2010-2013).
    RECOGNITION will develop a radically new approach for embedding self-awareness in ICT systems. This will be based on the cognitive processes that the human species exhibits for self-awareness, seeking to exploit the fact that humans are ultimately the fundamental basis for high performance autonomic processes. This is due to the cognitive ability of the brain to efficiently assert relevance (or irrelevance), extract knowledge and take appropriate decisions, when faced with partial information and disparate stimuli. Using the psychological and cognitive sciences as concrete inspiration, our approach is to develop functional models of the core cognitive processes that allow humans to assert relevance and achieve knowledge from information. This involves mechanisms such as inference, belief, similarity and trust. These will be translated to the ICT domain by development of flexible RECOGNITION algorithms that can be imbedded in ICT on a flexible basis for self-awareness. We will demonstrate this new paradigm for Internet content. The future Internet will see ever- increasing amounts of content that needs to be effectively managed and acquired, often from portable devices and in diverse spatial and social situations. The massive scale of content will swamp the user with information, impeding effective management and relevant acquisition by the user. By exploiting the self-awareness capability we will enable the users, content and network to cope effectively in a scalable manner, thus making unprecedented amounts of relevant content available and unleashing new classes of applications that extract maximum utility from content.
    I contributed to write the project proposal, and together with Marco Conti I am leading the IIT-CNR scientific activities in the project.

  • FP7 EC FET-PERADA Socialnets project: Social Networking for Pervasive Adaptation (2008-2011).
    This project involves researchers of Cardiff University (UK), IIT-CNR (Italy), University of Cambridge (UK), National and Kapodistrian University of Athens (Greece), University of Oxford (UK), University of Aveiro (Portugal), and Institut Eurecom (France). In this project we are looking at how to exploit the structures defined by human social relationships to develop an entirely new paradigm for adaptability in technology-rich pervasive information and communication systems. Human social relationships have dynamic characteristics, massive scalability, inclusivity, self organisation and remarkable structural properties. These social links may be based on diverse issues emanating from trust and human-centric behavioural characteristics. Exploiting social networks for communication between electronic devices provides a unique way of translating qualitative human behaviour into adaptation for pervasive systems. This is because the behaviour of the human can be used to define and adapt a unique social structure between the electronic devices. Social anthropology results merged with models of social networks’ structure will be exploited to design trustable and adaptive networking protocols and data management systems for pervasive information and communication environments. Therefore, “Social Networking for Pervasive Adaptation” will i) investigate and understand dynamics of human social relationships; ii) model and analyze the social system dynamics and structures based on characterisation of human interactions; iii) Develop and validate the adaptive human behavioural-based paradigm for pervasive adaptation; iv) Develop the mechanisms and protocols for the electronic social networking paradigm and validate it from the technological standpoint, that is, its technical feasibility, effectiveness and scalability; v) Develop and validate the social mechanisms and protocols to assert & reinforce appropriate trust and security in dynamic situated environments; vi) Develop and validate the social mechanisms and protocols to acquire and provide user-relevant data & situated knowledge in pervasive technology rich environments using social networks.
    I contributed to write the project proposal, and together with Marco Conti I am leading the IIT-CNR scientific activities in the project.

  • FP6 EC FET-SAC Haggle Project: “A Novel Communication Paradigm for Autonomic Opportunistic Communication” (2006-2010).
    This project involves IIT-CNR (Italy), the University of Cambridge Computer Lab (UK), Thomson Research (France), Institut Eurecom (France), Uppsala University (Sweden), EPFL (Switzerland), SUPSI (Switzerland), Martel Consulting (Switzerland). Haggle is a new autonomic networking architecture designed to enable communication in the presence of intermittent network connectivity, which exploits autonomic opportunistic communications (i.e. in particular in the absence of end-to-end communication infrastructure). We depart from the existing TCP/IP protocol suite, completely eliminating layering above the datalink, and exploiting an application-driven message forwarding, instead of delegating this responsibility to the network layer. To this end, we go beyond already innovative cross-layer approaches, defining a system that uses real best-effort, context aware message forwarding between ubiquitous mobile devices, in order to provide services when connectivity is local and intermittent. We use only functions that are absolutely necessary and common to all services, but that are sufficient to support a large range of current and future applications, more oriented to the human way of communicating (and more in general, the way communities of any type of entities communicate), rather than related to the technological aspect of the communication.
    I am leading the IIT-CNR scientific activities within the Work Package WP1 “Node Architecture”, WP2 “Communication Architecture”, and WP3 “Integration and Trials”.

  • FP6 EC PATHFINDER – Measuring the Impossible Memory Project: “MEasuring and MOdelling Relativistic-like effects in brain and NCSs” (2007-2010).
    This project involves researchers of IIT-CNR (Italy), of SUPSI (CH), of the Libera Università “Vita Salute S.Raffaele” of Milan (Italy), and of Philipps-University Marburg (Germany). This project builds on recent psychophysical and neurophysiologic findings showing that as humans and animals move their eyes, their visual systems are subject to strong and robust (albeit transient) distortions of perceived space and time. It has been suggested, with strong supporting evidence, that these distortions may be relativistic-like consequences of the rapid remapping of neurones, necessary to compensate for the changes in retinal position produced by the eye movement. We plan to investigate and measure these phenomena with a multidisciplinary approach that combines the techniques of human psychophysics, functional magnetic imaging, animal neurophysiology and modelling within a Networked Control System (NCS).
    Together with Marco Conti I am leading the IIT-CNR scientific activities in the project.

Past Projects

  • FP5 EC FET-IST MobileMAN Project “Mobile Metropolitan Ad hoc Network” (2002-2005)

  • Rutgers University (The State University of New Jersey, USA) “DataSpace” Project (1997-2005)

  • Project “SMILE: WiFi-based System for Multimedia Applications in a Mobile Environment”, funded by the Fondazione della Cassa di Risparmio di Pisa (2004-2006)

  • Project VICOM “Virtual Immersive Communications”, funded by the Italian Ministry of Education and Research (2002-2005)

  • Project “Performance Evaluation of Complex Systems (PERF)”, funded by the Italian Ministry of Education and Research (2002-2005)