Collaborative business items

Collaborative business items - or CoBIs - are an approach to build pervasive computing systems in order to support business processes with mobile assets and items. CoBIs enable the delegation of tasks originally located in stationary large back-end systems down to mobile assets and items. For instance, these tasks include the direct, i.e. item-centric, monitoring and detection of hazardous situations like they may occur when working with chemical goods. We refer to this delegation as logic on the items. The items are augmented by sensor technology and made aware of their surroundings and actions imposed on them. Collaboratively, they are able to reason on common states and enforce pre-defined conditions with only temporary support of stationary back-end computer systems. As a result CoBIs allow a more fine-grained, immediate, realtime and stable control of the handling of items. This paper presents the CoBIs fundamentals and results derived from implementations in a workplace safety scenario on handling various chemical goods. The results back up our claim that for the use of business logic in critical - e.g. dangerous - environments relocation of business logic onto items is required.