Today's computing is no longer a term for desktop computers — smartphones with embedded sensing capabilities can produce immensely valuable data for researchers across a wide variety of disciplines. The embedded cellular, GPS, WiFi, Bluetooth, camera, accelerometer, gyroscope, etc., can objectively record information gathered from the users’ perspective for the benefit of all.
The computational power of modern smartphones is also substantial. Although services such as cloud computing provide substantial computing power, they have limited network heterogeneity, limited scalability, and lack a deployment path on end-user systems. Smartphones, laptops and tablets would provide deep insight into the user-centric Internet that were previously invisible.
Sensor applications evolve with the needs of users while networking of more “things” is possible through advanced interface technologies and protocols. Although sensor development and network technologies may advance in parallel with some cross-over, applications for sensors always rely on the networking technologies. Therefore, sensor applications will thrive with insight into the user-centric Internet.
Sensibility Testbed provide a unified programmable interface to sensors on smartphones, so that a researcher with user's permission can access the sensors on the device through the testbed. The sandbox interacts with the physical sensors on the device through a common, simplified API, which provides access to sensors in the same way on different devices. A researcher can write their sensing code once, and get highly accurate data across a diverse set of users. A key benefit of the Sensibility Testbed is that applications built for the Sensibility Testbed platform can run on any user’s device that is running the Sensibility Testbed code --- even those of other researchers.