The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) and Nokia Research Center today announced a research collaboration to advance the state of the art in mobile computing and communications technologies. CSAIL and Nokia will establish a new research facility – the Nokia Research Center Cambridge – near the MIT campus. The facility opens January 1st 2006.
The collaborative work of the Nokia Research Center Cambridge will center on a view of the future where small handheld devices such as mobile phones will become parts of an “ecosystem” of information, services, peripherals, sensors and other devices.
This collaboration sounds promising. Lets hope they develop the ueber mobile device I dream of, that lets me surf the web with high speed anywhere in the world on a 17 inch screen with 1280×1024 pixels resolution. That fits in the palm of my hand, has a full QWERTY keyboard and weighs less then 100g and has a 100hour battery life. “Information and communication technologies are becoming ever more critical in all aspects of our personal and professional lives,” said MIT President Susan Hockfield. “By carrying out long-term research in these fields, including novel uses of hand-held devices, MIT and Nokia will make new communication opportunities and services available for people around the globe.”
“For Nokia, this is a fresh approach to our research collaboration with universities,” said Dr. Bob Iannucci, head of Nokia Research Center. “Bringing together the collective expertise of MIT and Nokia in mobile computing and communications provides a vehicle for rapidly generating new concepts and bringing innovations to the marketplace on a large scale.”
The collaborative work of the Nokia Research Center Cambridge will center on a view of the future where small handheld devices such as mobile phones will become parts of an “ecosystem” of information, services, peripherals, sensors and other devices. Research will address new user interfaces that incorporate speech and other modalities, new mobile computing platforms – including low power hardware platforms and wireless communication, as well as new software architectures. Researchers will also address new ways of managing information: The use of Semantic Web technologies – an extension of the current Web developed in part at CSAIL and at the Nokia Research Center – will enable devices to more intuitively and automatically understand interconnected terms, information and services.
Approximately twenty researchers from MIT and twenty researchers from Nokia will participate in joint projects under the direction of a joint steering committee. Dr. James Hicks from Nokia Research Center has been named director of the Nokia Research Center Cambridge. Professor Arvind, Johnson Professor of Computer Science and Engineering, will be the program manager.
“This is a totally unique kind of collaboration for both MIT and Nokia,” said Professor Rodney Brooks, director of CSAIL. “Unlike most university-industry alliances, where researchers work at their own pace – often at opposite ends of the globe – the joint laboratory with Nokia will bring a dynamic group of scientists into close physical proximity in an open, creative and dynamic environment.”
This new collaboration builds on the foundation of a strong relationship formed during past collaborations between MIT and Nokia. Most recently, Nokia was a founding partner in the MIT Oxygen Alliance, a major research project involving more than 150 researchers at CSAIL with the goal of creating a new breed computers devoted to serving people’s needs.
The Nokia Research Center Cambridge will be located in the Kendall Square area of Cambridge, Massachusetts, a five-minute walk from CSAIL’s main headquarters. It will begin operations on January 1, 2006. Five initial research projects have already been planned.