Computer Science

News and events

5 February 2014

Control and Understanding: Owning Your Home Network

Presented By Dr Richard Mortier, University of Nottingham
  • 2.30pm
  • N.1.12, Haslegrave Building

About this event

Abstract: Does your home network work the way you want it to, every day? Does your parents? Your neighbours? Home networking has become mundane, but it remains one of the most complex domestic technologies that people have to install and manage. In contrast to much work in the space, the Homework project began by explicitly considering the users' needs rather than blindly reusing existing technology. Properly addressing these needs requires more than just new user interfaces bolted on top of existing infrastructure, having interesting design and implementation implications that go much further down the stack. In this talk I will give some background to Homework, briefly describe some of the ethnographic work we carried out, and go into the impact this had on our technology design. In doing so I will describe the design and implementation of our Homework Router on Linux using Open vSwitch and NOX, and some of the capabilities we have built using it: putting people into the protocols, providing physically mediated access control, reducing interaction overhead for secure wireless association, and enabling users to implement network policies. I may also reflect briefly on the process of doing work like this that sits at the intersection of HCI and systems/networking.