Leveraging Smart Phones to Reduce Mobility Footprints
International Conference on Mobile Systems, Applications, and Services (MobiSys), Kraków, Poland, June 2009
Mobility footprint refers to the size, weight, and energy de- mand of the hardware that must be carried by a mobile user to be eective at any time and place. The ideal of a zero mobility footprint is achievable by encapsulating per- sonal computing state in a virtual machine (VM) and de- livering it over the Internet to a locally-obtained computer close to the user. In locations with poor Internet connectiv- ity, the demands placed on WAN bandwidth can result in unacceptable user experience. We show how this challenge can be overcome by using nascent smart phone technology as a trusted personal assistant called Horatio that serves as a self-cleaning portable cache for VM state. Since most users already carry cell phones for voice calls and texting, Hora- tio does not increase the size or weight aspects of a user's mobility footprint | there is only a small increase in the energy aspect. We have built an experimental prototype of Horatio, and measurements conrm its ability to improve user experience even with current smart phone limitations.