1st OPENi Hackathon in Athens on September 12th-13th, 2014

The 1st Hackathon “Mobile Apps: From inspiration to implementation with… OPENi Cloudlets and APIs!”, organized by the OPENi Project, will be held on Saturday September 13th, 2014 in Innovathens, Peiraios Str. 100, Gazi, Athens, Greece.



OPENi Platform Overview

By Dónal McCarthy (TSSG)

OPENi isn’t all about APIs, in fact the OPENi Platform is composed of four major components, only one of which is the API framework. The three others are 1) the Cloudlet Storage framework which is responsible for storing users’ data, 2) the Security Framework which handles authentication, authorisation, and much more, and 3) the mobile client libraries which provide generic building blocks that allow the development of applications that utilise OPENi services.

As outlined in previous blogs the OPENi API framework will be capable of interoperating with a variety of cloud-based services. It will abstract the integration challenges to a single open standard without losing any service features. It is our belief that it will promote innovation by offering application developers an advanced framework that enables them to design and build complex applications involving the combinations of independent cloud-based services.

The OPENi cloudlet storage framework will provide application consumers with a single location to store and control their personal data. With control mechanisms that are inherently secure and trustworthy it empowers the consumer to remain in control of their data. As an open technology, the OPENi Platform will be validated by the open source community, therefore consumers are afforded greater confidence that the data stored in their Cloudlet is not being used without their consent when compared to closed-source alternatives.

The OPENi Security framework contributes the security and privacy mechanisms to the overall Platform. The features that it provides are authorization, authentication, fine grained sharing and access control, and data encryption.

To provide convenient access to the OPENi APIs and cloudlet storage we will provide a mobile client library. This library will abstract and simplify access to the OPENi services across multiple mobile platforms and will take the form of a lightweight developer SDK. This library will be designed to promote rapid application development and easy developer on-boarding.

The combination of these four components creates a powerful platform which is beneficial for consumers, application developers and service providers alike. The vision for OPENi is to provide a platform that could be deployed and operated by many different application hosting or service providers looking to add value to their existing offers. These ‘OPENi hosting providers’ will take advantage of various facets of the OPENi platform in ways that best suit their business model.

To accommodate hosting providers who wish to use a subset of OPENi’s full complement of components we have structured the Platform as a number of discrete services, each one capable of functioning on their own. The Cloudlet Storage framework can serve mobile applications that do not utilise the OPENi API framework; likewise the API Platform’s integration with Cloud Based Services and Graph API can function just as well with another data storage mechanism. To extend this idea further both frameworks could use a 3rd party security frameworks once they are API compliant with OPENi’s. It is important to remember that this is a logical separation, of course all components work best when used together.

OPENi API Framework (Part I): Studying the landscape of cloud-based Services

By Iosif Alvertis, Michael Petychakis, & Fenareti Lampathaki (NTUA)

Today, an emerging trend to expose functionalities through publicly available APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) has not only redefined how software and services are delivered, but also indicates how business value is moving towards a thriving high-paced mobile application ecosystem. Along these lines, the OPENi focal research contribution lies on the cloudlet concept and on an open API framework that will be capable of interoperating with any cloud-based service, abstracting the integration challenges to a single open standard without losing any service features.

During the first months of the OPENi project, we docused on an analysis of the underlying state of the art in the cloud-based services landscape in order to provide concrete recommendations and guidelines to drive the forthcoming design and implementation of the OPENi APIs Framework.


Mobile Cloud Analysis: Introducing the Cloudlet Concept

By Leigh Griffin, Lukasz Radziwonowicz, Dónal McCarthy, Robert Kleinfield and Eric Robson

Attitudes towards computing have changed dramatically in the last ten years with technology becoming affordable and more mobile, bringing about a generation of technology savvy users. The availability of technology is complemented by advances in the underlying network, with consistent connection speeds and coverage reaching saturation levels. This has ensured a smooth experience for users and consequently expectations about what technology can do for a user’s life have risen. This expectation has been facilitated by a multi-billion dollar industry, delivering applications and services for user consumption. This industry has culminated in the rise of modern social networks, instantly connecting friends and family regardless of geographic location and allowing a heretofore unseen level of interaction.  Users are therefore offered a plethora of applications and services to meet their demands. This choice can cause confusion around where their data is stored and what provider may have access to it