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IDT Open Seminar: Federated Embedded Systems: Technology and Business Challenges
Traditionally, embedded systems have been confined in a single product, with little or no communication to the outside world. However, with the availability of high-performance low-cost communication technology, it becomes feasible to also communicate with other systems. Combining this with a possibility of dynamically adding software plug-ins to the embedded system gives new, and probably game-changing, possibilities to extend embedded systems and have them cooperate with each other.This presentation covers our ongoing research in the area of Federated Embedded Systems, which are embedded systems that voluntarily cooperate with each other and with Internet based services. The basic idea is that a federation of several products can be created by installing plug-in software in each of the product’s embedded system, and then let those plug-ins communicate to provide a totally new service, which was not foreseen at the conception of each of the individual systems. This mechanism thus allows a very flexible creation of systems-of-systems. Importantly, it also opens up the embedded systems for third party developers acting in a software ecosystem around the product, and this creates opportunities for open innovation.The presentation gives a technical overview of the concepts needed for enabling an embedded system for plug-ins and external communication. This will be based on work we are doing with distributed automotive systems, where we are developing a solution based on the AUTOSAR standard. We will further discuss concrete applications to show the benefits that can be achieved with this technology. Then, we will discuss how this affects the way we develop systems, where the traditional relation between an integrating original equipment manufacturer (OEM) and a number of suppliers is changing fundamentally, giving possibilities for open innovation. This has implications on many parts of the development process, but also on the business models of the firms involved.