School of Computer Science

Module 06-25689 (2022)

Mobile & Ubiquitous Computing (Extended)

Level 4/M

Christopher Baber Semester 2 20 credits
Co-ordinator: Christopher Baber
Reviewer: Christopher Baber

The Module Description is a strict subset of this Syllabus Page.


This module is concerned with the issues surrounding mobile and ubiquitous computing systems. It examines the particular issues that arise in these systems both from a technical perspective and in terms of usability and interaction. The underlying theoretical and technological frameworks are discussed. Students are introduced to development tools and techniques for building mobile systems and their understanding is reinforced through practical work. The present and potential future applications are reviewed.


The aims of this module are to:

  • Provide the student with an understanding of the technology used in mobile systems and the constraints that these impose on designers
  • Demonstrate the use of mobile technologies to provide novel services
  • Give students practical and theoretical knowledge and skill in the development of mobile systems

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module, the student should be able to:

  • Demonstrate an advanced understanding of the technologies used in mobile and ubiquitous systems and the constraints that they impose.
  • Demonstrate an advanced understanding of the range of novel applications based upon mobile systems as well as their particular requirements.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the models and technologies for developing mobile applications including future technologies.
  • Demonstrate practical skills in developing mobile applications
  • Demonstrate an understanding of recent research issues in the field of Mobile and Ubiquitous Computing.


This module is only appropriate for students with excellent programming skills in a language such as Java.

Cannot be taken with

  • 06-29289 - Mobile & Ubiquitous Computing


  • Main Assessments: Continuous assessment (100%)
  • Supplementary Assessments: Continuous assessment (100%) over the Summer Period

Detailed Syllabus

  1. Introduction to mobile systems design: a. Power, memory, connectivity issues b. System development and programming platforms
  2. Wireless technologies:
    • Wireless communication: radio, medium access protocols
    • Infrastructure networks
    • Infrastructure-free networks: e.g., ad hoc networks, sensor networks, DTNs, opportunistic networks
    • Mobile computing and applications: operating system support for mobility, file systems
  3. Ubiquitous computing: embedded devices, m-commerce, location-aware applications, mobile games and multimedia, the Internet of Things
  4. Sensing technologies: classes of devices and systems issues, mobile phone sensing systems
  5. Context detection and inference: principles and algorithms for context inference, introduction to machine learning techniques for mobile systems design
  6. Privacy and security issues related to mobile computing
  7. Mobile HCI
    • Design constraints
    • Input, Output
    • Unique affordances of mobile devices
  8. Programming mobile devices
    • The basic building blocks
    • Creating UI’s
    • Locating and Sensing
    • Storing Data
  9. Case studies will be selected among the following:
    • Mobile systems for computational science
    • Mobile sensing systems
    • Mobile technologies for smart cities
    • Pervasive computing at a scale

Programmes containing this module