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Comments on CC/PP based on the PERSIST project

From: Leckey, Alexander J <alexander.j.leckey@intel.com>
Date: Mon, 19 Jul 2010 14:49:49 +0100
To: "public-uwa@w3.org" <public-uwa@w3.org>
Message-ID: <7D07DB03D5AECA4CB23F2CA801AA720BE25D5AB5@irsmsx502.ger.corp.intel.com>
Dear all,

PERSIST is a European Union FP7 project researching the concept of a Personal Smart Space (PSS) to provide pervasive environments to users. As part of the project we attempted to use the CC/PP standard but it did not fully meet the requirements of profile management within the project. Below is some feedback with suggested features for the next draft of changes. I would ask you to review and let us know if you need any clarification.

Thanks,
Alec Leckey.



Suggested changes to the CC/PP standard based on the PERSIST Project
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1       Introduction
The CC/PP standard describes how a user profile could be used and maintained to provide the end user with a personalised experience of system behaviour.  The standard is primarily centred on profile management within a web environment with particular focus on content adaptation and content delivery driven by device capabilities and user preferences.  The user agent profile is defined under the CC/PP standard as including
"...preference information pertaining to the capabilities of the device, the operating and network environment, and the users personal preferences for receiving content and/or resource." [1]
The following sections highlight how the standard does not fully meet the requirements of profile management within the PERSIST project [2].  Persist is a European Union funded FP7 research project developing the Personal Smart Space (PSS) [3] concept to provide pervasive environments.  Suggestions are made as to how current standards may be expanded to meet profile management needs in a pervasive environment.

2       Why PERSIST could not use this standard
2.1     No context dependent profile content
The CC/PP standard does not consider any user context information in the user profile content.  Profiles consist of components with a number of associated attributes which are static values describing the capabilities of the component or settings to be applied.  This constrained view offers little scope to provide highly adaptive system behaviour.  In a context-rich pervasive environment profile content such as preferences will often be dependent in the user's current context.  For example, if the user is at work and they are alone in their office they may prefer to receive telephone calls through a video display however, if they are not alone they may prefer to receive calls through their telephone handset and further, if they are not at work, they may prefer to receive calls through their mobile phone.  This scenario would be difficult to orchestrate with a user profile conforming to the CC/PP standards.
2.2     No guidelines for profile adaptation
When providing a system to manage user profile information including preferences it is important to allow such information to be adaptable over time.  In particular user preferences may change through time as the user experiences new situations and resources (e.g.  the user may start a new job in a different office).  Preference changes may also occur due to a 'change of mind' on the part of the user (e.g. The user may decide to start using Internet Explorer for browsing because they are experiencing problems using their usual Firefox browser).
The CC/PP standard provides several graphical representations of what a profile might look like.  However, there is no provision for  this to be displayed to the user or for the user to have access to all their profile information.  There is also no provision made for the user to adapt their profile manually or for any implicit profile management mechanism (based on behaviour monitoring and learning) that might perform adaptations on behalf of the user.
2.3     Portability
In a pervasive environment users are mobile and therefore encounter many different resources which may or may not provide similar functions.  For example the user could have a duplex, colour printer at work on which they prefer to print documents double sided, in colour.  If they go to a meeting in another office that also has a duplex, colour printer the user's printing preferences should be automatically applied even though the physical resource is different.  The CC/PP profile maps settings and capabilities to physical components and therefore it may be difficult to port common component type settings across similar (but different physical) components.

3       Required additions
3.1     Context dependent profile content
Rather than only associating static values (CC/PP attributes) with components it should be possible to include context-dependent information.  User preferences should indicate what settings the user prefers in a range of different contextual situations.  In a pervasive environment user context can change frequently during the course of component use.  Therefore profile management mechanisms must be dynamic in that they should monitor user context, evaluate context-dependent preferences and automatically update component settings to those that are most appropriate given the user's current situation.
3.2     Profile Adaptation
When holding information regarding user behaviour and preferences it is necessary to allow the user full control of the information in terms of ownership and access.  If system behaviour is driven by context-dependent preferences allowing the user to easily view and manipulate this information gives two advantages.  Firstly, the user will gain a better understanding of why the system is behaving in such a way.  Secondly, if system behaviour does not meet user needs the user can immediately change this by manually altering their preferences.  CC/PP standards need to highlight this important requirement for profile management.
As well as manual adaptation (termed explicit in Persist) of the user profile, in a pervasive environment it is also necessary to provide mechanisms to aid the user with profile management.  This automatic profile adaptation (termed implicit in Persist) reduces profile management burdens on the user..  In a pervasive environment where the user can have access to numerous resources in various contextual situations, exclusively explicit profile management can prove a time consuming task.  CC/PP should consider how implicit management using behaviour monitoring and machine learning functionality could enhance the user experience.

References
[1]     W3C: Composite Capability/Preference Profiles (CC/PP): Structure and Vocabularies 2.0.
[2]     Project homepage: http://www.ict-persist.eu, accessed on 9th July 2010.
[3]     Taylor, N.K.: Personal eSpace and Personal Smart Spaces. In: First PerAda Workshop on Pervasive Adaptation, (SASO'08), Venice, Italy (2008).


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Received on Tuesday, 20 July 2010 07:01:57 UTC

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