Key technological success features for a domain specific open software ecosystem for ambient assisted living
Ambient Assisted Living (AAL) is a domain with great potential for economic and societal impact. But market uptake of such solutions is so far limited because of market, standards and technology uncertainty. The businesses that will prevail are those that are cost effective. To support cost effective development of AAL solutions, domain specific open software ecosystems are being established. We developed a survey to investigate key technology success factors for such ecosystems. The survey was sent to 60 developers from a representative selection AAL development projects. 18 responded. Following a qualitative data analysis we found several key factors and features that must be in place to facilitate the success of such ecosystems. We found that given the nature of the AAL domain, characterised by divergent users, software and hardware, developers are seeking for support in three main areas. First, they want the artefacts available in the ecosystem to support relevant standards in the domain. Second, support for tracing artefacts available in the ecosystem to requirements (domain-fit) is needed. Third, they want support for developing, testing and emulating for complex usersoftware-hardware workflows in this distributed environment. The main obstacle that will scare away developers from the ecosystems is lack of documentation of the artefacts in the ecosystem. Second, not enough decoupled components, and finally, lack of proper search features. Finally, in order to be able to learn to use the artefacts, examples, scenarios and API documentation is necessary.
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