The Semantic Product Memory: An Interactive Black Box for Smart Objects

author: Wolfgang Wahlster, German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI)
published: June 30, 2010,   recorded: June 2010,   views: 322
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Description

A semantic product memory stores a diary of an individual physical object in a persistent way on an embedded sensor system that is networked by wireless communication to a smart environment. The product monitors itself and its environment. Semantic technologies based on OWL ontologies guarantee interoperability of the product memory across the complete supply chain and lifecycle of smart objects and enable end user access to the product’s lifelog. In this talk, we present the layered architecture together with the representation and inference formalisms used in our SemProM project, funded by the German Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) with 16 Million Euro. SemProM goes well beyond traditional RFID technology and is the basis for intelligent automation in smart factories, event-driven logistics as well as smart retail and after-sales. Collecting information logs about objects in such smart environments and making it available - for example about an object’s origin, location, movements, physical properties, environmental conditions, usage history, as well as warranty and maintenance data - can help enterprises to improve their business processes and create new ones. Existing business process models become more accurate since information taken directly from the point of action can be used to manage or adapt processes in real time for the emerging Internet of Things. We show how such embedded “black box” event recorders can transform everyday objects like cars, circuit boards, pizzas and drug blister packs into smart products. We show how consumers of smart products can access the lifelogs of products by NFC-enabled smartphones using SemProM’s browser and track the complete history of a product in multimodal dialogues. A role-based access control mechanism ensures privacy and security of the SemProM product memories. We will discuss fully operational pilot implementations of semantic product memories developed in the SemProM consortium together with major German companies like SAP, BMW, Siemens, DHL, Globus Retail and Kohl Pharma.

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