The continuous growth of the urban population and the high development and maintenance costs of infrastructure-based approaches make it necessary the utilization of distributed schemes. Among distributed systems, there is an increasing interest in edge cloud models, both for vehicular and pedestrian applications. Politecnico di Torino, in collaboration with TU Berlin, developed a distributed application based on the micro cloud concept formulated in the field of vehicular edge computing for spreading content items in an indoor pedestrian environment.

Faced with growing cost of infrastructure, distributed approaches for information dissemination and retrieval have the potential of turning the large demand into an advantage. An example is provided by data dissemination application in a micro cloud distributed environment. Micro clouds are the optimum choice for floating data contexts that do not rely on infrastructure. Being infrastructure-independent significantly reduces costs, but it shifts the burden to the users. A realistic indoor pedestrian mobility environment was simulated, with the sharing of contextual information in a subway station when a number of micro clouds are present (Figure 1). Therefore, content items created in each scenario are supposed to be meaningful for the micro cloud they belongs to, e.g., an early/late train departure information will be linked to the platforms area, while the announcement of a new item in the store or in the coffee shop is an example of data content likely created in the main hall micro cloud.

Using a content sharing procedure that accounted for the user position within the subway station, as well as for the list of owned and demanded items, it was shown in [1] that it is possible to reach 100% content items spread also without an infrastructure that caches the content item.

[1] M. Rapelli, G. S. Pannu, F. Dressler and C. Casetti , Content Sharing in Pedestrian-based Micro Clouds, IEEE VTC Spring 2022

Figure 1: Subway station map with micro clouds

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