Author's School

School of Engineering & Applied Science

Author's Department/Program

Computer Science and Engineering


English (en)

Date of Award

January 2009

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Chair and Committee

Gruia-Catalin Roman


Mobile ad hoc networks: MANETs) and wireless sensor networks: WSNs) are two recently-developed technologies that uniquely function without fixed infrastructure support, and sense at scales, resolutions, and durations previously not possible. While both offer great potential in many applications, developing software for these types of networks is extremely difficult, preventing their wide-spread use. Three primary challenges are: 1) the high level of dynamics within the network in terms of changing wireless links and node hardware configurations,: 2) the wide variety of hardware present in these networks, and: 3) the extremely limited computational and energy resources available. Until now, the burden of handling these issues was put on the software application developer. This dissertation presents three novel programming models and middleware systems that address these challenges: Limone, Agilla, and Servilla. Limone reliably handles high levels of dynamics within MANETs. It does this through lightweight coordination primitives that make minimal assumptions about network connectivity. Agilla enables self-adaptive WSN applications via the integration of mobile agent and tuple space programming models, which is critical given the continuously changing network. It is the first system to successfully demonstrate the feasibility of using mobile agents and tuple spaces within WSNs. Servilla addresses the challenges that arise from WSN hardware heterogeneity using principles of Service-Oriented Computing: SOC). It is the first system to successfully implement the entire SOC model within WSNs and uniquely tailors it to the WSN domain by making it energy-aware and adaptive. The efficacies of the above three systems are demonstrated through implementation, micro-benchmarks, and the evaluation of several real-world applications including Universal Remote, Fire Detection and Tracking, Structural Health Monitoring, and Medical Patient Monitoring.


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