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Ubiquitous Computing for Business: Find New Markets, Create Better Businesses, and Reach Customers Around the World 24-7-365 Hardcover – March 10, 2011

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 280 pages
  • Publisher: FT Press; 1 edition (March 10, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0137064438
  • ISBN-13: 978-0137064434
  • Product Dimensions: 0.9 x 6.3 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,277,737 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

"Distilling research over a score of years, Bo nicely describes Ubiquitous Computing's tremendous business potential."
--Gordon Bell, author of Total Recall: How the E-Memory Revolution Will Change Everything
"In a field where there remains a surprising paucity of authoritative reference works in print, Bo Begole's detailed and comprehensive overview stands out."
--Adam Greenfield, Managing Director of Urbanscale; author of Everyware: The Dawning Age of Ubiquitous Computing
"Finally, a comprehensive and wonderfully clear articulation of Ubiquitous Computing...."
--John Seely Brown, former Chief Scientist of Xerox Corp. and Director of Xerox PARC
"For innovating in an ever more uncertain world, Bo Begole shows us that computing power everywhere has emerged as the essential foundation."
--Michael Useem, Professor of Management and Director of the Leadership Center, Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania; author of The Go Point: When It's Time to Decide
"Few people on the planet know more about Ubiquitous Computing and context awareness than Bo Begole."
--Justin Rattner, Intel Chief Technology Officer and Director of Intel Labs

"Ubiquitous Computing was coined at PARC decades ago, and the vision has continued to evolve here since."
--Teresa Lunt   Director of Computer Science Laboratory, Palo Alto Research Center

"Coming from the birthplace of Ubiquitous Computing at PARC, Dr. Begole's excellent introduction to this growing technology is approachable, interesting, well-informed, and humorous."
--John Krumm, Microsoft Research; Editor of Ubiquitous Computing Fundamentals
"Ubiquitous Computing for Business takes the potential value in Ubicomp technology and makes its value real."
--Mike Kuniavsky, author of Smart Things: Ubiquitous Computing User Experience Design
"On par with the business impact of laser printing, the Ethernet, and personal computing, this new paradigm of Ubiquitous Computing is revolutionizing the ways businesses exchange information and interact with customers."
--Sophie Vandebroek, Xerox Chief Technology Officer and President of the Xerox Innovation Group
From the Web to the iPod, cell phones to social networks, a few extraordinary technologies have changed the world, enabling massive new industries and destroying companies that couldn't adapt. It's about to happen again, thanks to new Ubiquitous Computing ("Ubicomp") technologies that will interweave computing more deeply into human life than ever before.
Bo Begole stands at the center of the Ubicomp revolution: He leads the team at the legendary Palo Alto Research Center (PARC) that invented the paradigm and are creating and commercializing its technologies. In Ubiquitous Computing for Business, Begole briefs you on everything you must know to drive breakout value from Ubicomp technologies.
Begole maps the emerging landscape of Ubicomp, explaining how it reinforces and redirects other societal trends. Next, he helps you identify exceptional opportunities to profit from Ubicomp in internal processes, supply chains, and external products and services. Along the way, he helps executives, strategists, technology managers, and entrepreneurs make better decisions about everything from "build vs. buy" to risk mitigation.
* Embedding Ubicomp into higher-value offerings...
  ...or spinning Ubicomp solutions into whole new businesses
* Helping users, not bewildering them
   Leveraging pervasive devices, networks, and data to deliver services people want
* Touching, moving, grasping, and beyond
   Replacing mice and windows with Reality-Based Interaction (RBI)
* How to win in a Ubicomp world--or at least avoid losing
   Preparing for the collision of digital and physical worlds

About the Author

Bo Begole is a Principal Scientist at the Palo Alto Research Center, the famed innovation center credited with inventing and commercializing many core information technologies, including laser printing, Ethernet, graphical user interfaces, the laptop, and more. He currently manages the Ubiquitous Computing Area at PARC, a computer science team that invents and commercializes novel technologies like those in this book. Before joining PARC, he worked at Sun Microsystems Laboratories, where he created systems to facilitate global collaboration and sensor networks. Dr. Begole habitually collaborates with social scientists and others to create innovations that help people work together remotely, find information more rapidly with less effort, communicate more efficiently, and increase the performance of people using information technologies.


Dr. Begole has chaired committees of several research conferences crossing the fields of human[nd]computer interaction and computer-supported cooperative work, and he has participated on organizing and program committees in Ubiquitous Computing, intelligent user interfaces, user interface software and technology, and pervasive computing. With colleagues, he has written dozens of papers that have appeared in peer-reviewed scientific conferences and journals. He holds several patents. He also hosts and participates in several Silicon Valley business technology special-interest groups and has spoken at several business and technology conferences.


Dr. Begole received a B.S. degree in Mathematics (summa cum laude) in 1992 from Virginia Commonwealth University, an M.S. degree in 1994, and a Ph.D. in 1998 in Computer Science from Virginia Tech. Before earning his degrees, he served in the U.S. Army from 1981-89 and during the Gulf War in 1991 as an Arabic language translator. He lives in Los Altos, California, with his wife, Florence, and three children, Brighton, Aiden, and Annecy.


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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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See all 9 customer reviews
Again, very good overview on the subject.
Stacy E. Burrell
D. in Computer Science from Virginia Tech.
Ira Laefsky
For changed it will, for better or worse.
Osmun R. Latrobe

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By John Gibbs TOP 1000 REVIEWER on March 31, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The history of failed business projections and predictions of disruptive technologies makes the business strategist's job seem impossible, but we can at least see the general trends and estimate some prospective impacts, according to Bo Begole in this book. Ubiquitous computing involves using technologies to bridge physical and electronic information spaces, increasing efficiencies in our personal, school and work lives.

After creating laser printing, Ethernet and the first personal computer, researchers at Xerox's Palo Alto Research Center turned their attention to computing devices which would support effortless, convenient and pervasive computing. Prototypes included handheld devices, tablets and wall-sized computers and displays. Many of the types of computing envisaged by researchers are now being commercially implemented in smartphones.

Particular examples of business uses for ubiquitous computing described in the book include personalised activity-targeted marketing, a location-aware smartphone application for recommending leisure activities and restaurants, a location-aware application for using a smartphone to retrieve a document from a network and print it on a nearby network printer, an application for detecting a person's presence and "interruptibility", and a system for recording and displaying multiple images of a shopper wearing different clothing or jewellery, to assist the shopper in making selections.

As the book illustrates, computing is becoming simpler and more complicated at the same time. It is very difficult to predict future technology accurately, but the trends clearly include capturing a broad range of transaction data and using that to provide customised information and services to people based on their location and context via mobile devices. I found this to be an interesting book on a topic which is of great importance to businesses.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Ira Laefsky VINE VOICE on March 1, 2011
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
James (Bo) Begole is Manager at the Xerox PARC Research Center of Ubiquitous Computing Technologies, and has a Ph.D. in Computer Science from Virginia Tech. In this excellent business review of the place of Ubiquitous Computing technologies he develops an excellent and comprehensive picture of how smart sensors and computers distributed throughout our environment will affect the business and financial picture over the next decade. But, in my opinion as one who has advised commercial clients of the value of new information technologies (at Arthur D. Little, Inc. and Digital Equipment Corporation) there is a need to educate both on the application of the technologies in terms of multiple fully-fleshed out examples of a new technology in practice as well as in the business trends and models which enable a consumer/investor to predict the financial impact of these technologies. I believe the excellent business and trending model of the Begole's prediction of the business impact of these technologies must be supplemented by a more complete picture of how sensors and smarts everywhere will affect our lives. This is amply provided in such works as Adam Greenfield's "Everyware", Mike Kuniavsky's "Smart Things" and Stefan Poslad's "Ubiquitous Computing". It is a narrow path between the "Scylla" of creating a technology book for the layman, and the "Charybdis" of an almost purely business models book for the investor and client company. Perhaps, Dr.Read more ›
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A. J Terry on March 19, 2012
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
The audiences for Ubiquitous Computing for Business are chief technology officers and technology scouts. People who are familiar with computer technology, but who are not programmers. There is enough technical detail for programmers to fill in the dots, but this is not a how-to book.

Author Bo Begole's premise is that people now work on computers by using one or two computers of their own to use specific applications to perform tasks--and that this method is all wrong. He argues that you should be able to focus entirely on the task, and that computers and other devices near you (which may not even look like computers) assist you with their infrastructure. You wouldn't necessarily consciously interact with them.

The first part of the book explains the concept of ubiquitous computing. Begole envisions a world where everyone is surrounded by computers and sensors, and where data is readily available. He assumes computers will try to figure out your context without your explicitly explaining your task or your preferences. It's a frame of mind, not a specific technology. The second part of the book does specific case studies in a few vertical markets; these are real projects that Xerox PARC consulted on.

This is a good book for its audiences. It has the right technical level, it's a good length, and it's very readable. Begole's ideas are well worth consideration, even if you decide you disagree with them.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Osmun R. Latrobe VINE VOICE on May 23, 2011
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This book is book is an essential work for anyone interested in the next wave of computing. It focuses on the uses of technology to make the computing process invisible to the information consumer. Technology that is pervasive, ubiquitous, and self directed that can anticipate the user's needs, and provide the specific information necessary. It discusses the current impediments to such technology. Such as that which we all face in dealing with the Apple/Microsoft incompatibilities. Ubiquitous computing will only attain its full potential when there are uniform standards for data input, retrieval, storage, and cross-linking of sotware. Many of us pray for a simple USB port on an IPad. It may be a step backwards, but until Apple can provide the input and output and software compatibilities needed to share information, we are in the interim limited in the usefulness of its products.

This book opens up a whole new philosophy of the nature of computing and its potential utility. Whether one agrees with the ideas presented or not is irrelevant. What is relevant is the opening of a whole new vista of computer function and purpose. Somewhat like Kurzweil's views on artificial intelligence, we may not like it, but we need to know what is happening. When the book narrows its focus to particular applications, it is useful only for providing potential applications. But the concepts it broaches are very profound. One does not need any background in computer science to read and benefit from this book. It is not so much about how the computer works, as what should be its function in our society, and how businesses can benefit from understanding what is happening. For a business, whether a brick and mortar retailer or online seller, this book is an essential.
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