Information collection using handheld devices in unreliable networking environments
Torres, Marisol M.
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Information collection is a critical task in a wide range of tactical and strategic military and civilian operations. The ability to gather accurate information in a timely manner is a difficult task, but sharing that information and making it accessible in near real-time compounds the challenges. The ability to do all three in an environment where network connectivity is intermittent or non-existent seemed virtually impossible until recent years. Network connectivity plays a significant role in how we conduct business. Our requirements to share information do not change simply because there is little or no existing infrastructure in our area of operations. In fact, information sharing can prove to be more important in areas where infrastructure is simply nonexistent. It is for this reason that the Lighthouse suite of applications was conceived. This research takes a deeper look at specific goals and requirements for information collection using handheld devices, and identifies a data synchronization algorithm and existing network connectivity technologies that can be used to implement sharing between handheld devices. The recommendations can be used to enhance information sharing, promote accuracy of data, and improve the efficacy of information-gathering techniques when implemented in austere networking environments.
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