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Boffins wrestle with future in Roman Bath

High-tech giants backing pervasive network

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Technology firms are backing a University of Bath investigation into city-wide 'pervasive computing zones'. The £1.6m Cityware project has backing from IBM, Nokia, HP and Vodafone.

It's hoped the conclusions will help guide future mobile application development. Project leader Dr Eamonn O' Neill said: "Pervasive technology that is available to everyone, everywhere and at all times promises to be the next big leap in mobile computing technology.”

Selected local volunteers will be handed 30 top-spec mobile phones and will work with researchers over the next three years to see how the technologies affect their lives.

Cityware will make use of wireless networks, Bluetooth and Near Field Communication at different locations across the city. Among the first new services available to volunteers is a photo recognition server that recognises images of places around the historic city centre and returns tourist information about the site.

The team also hopes to learn lessons about security and the impacts pervasive technology will have on Bath's UNESCO World Heritage architecture. ®

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