Date of Award

Fall 2008

Project Type


Program or Major

Electrical and Computer Engineering

Degree Name

Master of Science


The market for smart devices was identified years ago, and yet commercial progress into this field has not made significant progress. The reason such devices are so painfully slow to market is that the gap between the technologically possible and the market capitalizable is too vast. In order for inventions to succeed commercially, they must bridge the gap to tomorrow's technology with marketability today. This thesis demonstrates a design methodology that enables such commercial success for one variety of smart device, the Ambient Intelligence Node (AIN). Commercial Off-The Shelf (COTS) design tools allowing a Model-Driven Architecture (MDA) approach are combined via custom middleware to form an end-to-end design flow for rapid prototyping and commercialization. A walkthrough of this design methodology demonstrates its effectiveness in the creation of Global Network Academic Test (GNAT), a sample AIN. It is shown how designers are given the flexibility to incorporate IP Blocks available in the Global Economy to reduce Time-To-Market and cost. Finally, new kinds of products and solutions built on the higher levels of design abstraction permitted by MDA design methods are explored.