A Virtualization Approach for Accessing IoT Resources and Appliances Control in Smart Home



Muhammad Ali Jibran1, Shabir Ahmad, Song Wang-Cheol, Do-Hyeun Kim*


Department of Computer Engineering, Jeju National University

Jeju, South Korea

E-mail: alijibran35@gmail.com1, * kimdh@jejunu.ac.kr





Internet of things (IoT) is a paradigm envision to connect every physical thing by making a smart space. In IoT smart space, every physical object is capable of receiving and sharing data, however, the challenge is these physical objects are diverse in nature and require a uniform representation in the cyber world. This paper presents virtualizing diverse physical objects in a uniform interface so that it could be consumed and shared in different IoT application. We save the virtual objects of physical devices and provide the reusability and uniform representation in the IoT app store. A smart-home client-based application is developed to interact with the app store to consume commonly used virtual objects and share the application-specific virtual objects to the application store. It also allows connectivity to home appliances in a smart home environment from anywhere using the stored virtual objects’ executables.


Keywords- Internet of Things; smart space; cloud computing; virtual objects


1. Introduction


According to the International Communication Union, in the near future, everything will be connected in an intelligent way through the “Internet of Things” [1]. Internet of things is the network of smart physical devices which are connected to the internet [2]. With the passage of time, the number of IoT devices are expected to increase exponentially, due to the awareness of Industrial internet of things and advancement in cellular networks [3]. In the recent past, IoT have remarkable applications in everyday life, therefore, a huge investment is being made by a number of research organizations to realize its potential [4].

 The development of IoT devices is one of the key researches to enable mass participation in the realization of IoT applications and device management [5]. Due to an exponential growth of IoT devices, effective device management, configuration, authentication are the primary challenges owing to its limits. For efficient way of controlling the IoT devices remotely, we need a digital representation of IoT devices such as virtual objects. The virtual object is a replica of a real physical object, it is the programmatic representation of attributes and methods that composes a smart physical object. These virtual objects can be controlled easily through client applications and provide the controlling of a physical object in the real responsive environment. A virtual object also provides real-time visual feedback of a physical device. So it’s essential to use a virtual object to control the physical IoT devices.

The main challenge in virtual objects’ management is that there are a lot of instances in literature where these virtual IoT devices are employed, but the problem is that these devices are diverse in nature, so the virtual object also differs to reflect their physical counterparts. This creates a huge challenge of standardizing the representation of virtual objects, which is regarded as of paramount importance for the cyber-control of physical objects through virtual objects.

In this regard, the aim of this research is to provide a IoT-based virtual objects from different IoT domains in a near-to-uniform fashion. A client application is implemented as a proof-of-concept to develop and share virtual objects and communication with the cloud-based app store.




2. Virtualization and Sharing and Access of Physical Objects


We have 3 steps for virtualization and sharing and access of physical objects. First step, we register the user. And we support a virtualization to register physical object. Finally, user discovery and access physical devices using virtual objects.

First step, A new user wants to use the app store, he needs to access the app store registry interface. Once he gets access to the interface, the user requests the registration by triggering the registration service.

Second step, we register the virtual object into the IoT app store, user must be logged in to the application store. For this user can open the app stores’ sign in page, fill out the credentials and then press sign in to proceed to the app store. App store checks the credentials from the database record and redirects the user to the main page of app store.

Third step, User requests to add the virtual object, app store display the form for adding the virtual object. The user adds the virtual object and its descriptions into the form and request to post the object. It shows the user interaction with the client application, and if the user did not have the executable installed on the mobile then he uses his mobile and login into the IoT app store to get the executable.

Example, we have electric fans, lights, motors, and CC-TV cameras in smart home appliances could be. IoT server deployed on Raspberry PI which allows running of IoT application and listening to the designated port to perform the corresponding actions to receiving the input.

We provide the repository for virtual objects for smart home appliances. The repository is a central place where similar virtual objects can be stored and retrieved by other similar applications. This allows a great deal of reusability and also provides uniform access from cyber space. A smart-home client-based prototype application is developed to interact with the cloud-based app store. And we exhibit consumption of commonly used virtual objects and at the same time register their own application specific virtual objects to the application store. It also allows connectivity to home appliances in a smart home environment from anywhere using the stored virtual objects’ executables.


3. Conclusion


In this work we propose a virtualizing of physical objects to manage and control home appliances using virtual objects. It solved the challenge of physical objects heterogeneity by providing a uniform representation in virtual space. The effectiveness of the work is assessed by a mobile-based client prototype application which shares and consume virtual objects from the cloud and controls the appliances using them. The proposed work is the first ever attempt to provide a mechanism to share and reuse components of IoT applications.




This research was supported by the MSIT (Ministry of Science and ICT), Korea, under the ITRC (Information Technology Research Center) support program (IITP-2017-2017-0-01633) supervised by the IITP (Institute for Information & communications Technology Promotion), and this work was supported by Institute for Information & communications Technology Promotion(IITP) grant funded by the Korea government(MSIT) (No.2017-0-00756, Development of interoperability and management technology of IoT system with heterogeneous ID mechanism), Any correspondence related to this paper should be addressed to Dohyeun Kim.




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