Exploring novel ubiquitous computing systems and applications inevitably requires prototyping physical components. Smart-Its are hardware and software components that augment physical objects with embedded processing and interaction to address this need. Our work, which uses small computing devices called Smart-Its, addresses the need to create embedded interactive systems that disappear from the foreground to become secondary to the physical objects with which people interact during everyday activities. Such systems create new design challenges related to prototyping with embedded technologies and require careful consideration of the physical design context.
Smart-Its was a flagship project within the EC's initiative The Disappearing Computer, investigating augmentation of physical objects with context-awareness. The project developed the Smart-Its hardware/software platform that became widely adopted in the research community as a prototyping tool (e.g. in the Equator IRC), and that has been commercialised as the ""Particle Computer"". The project further contributed methods for context-based interaction, e.g. the ""Smart-Its Friends"" technique for device pairing by shaking, which has over 180 citations (Google Scholar) and inspired follow-on work by ourselves and others in areas from HCI to security. RAE_import_type : Journal article RAE_uoa_type : Computer Science and Informatics