Research Projects NTT-MIT Research Collaboration: a partnership in the future of communication and computation

Cricket: A Location-Support System for Pervasive Mobile Computing

(formerly: "WIND: Wireless Networks of Devices")


Start date: 07/98

Hari Balakrishnan and John V. Guttag

Minoru Katayama and Minoru Kubota

Project summary

WIND is a system of middleware and protocols that will enable new applications in dynamic, mobile networks of devices, sensors, actuators, and computers.

Project description


The primary design goal of WIND is to make networks self-configuring and the system and applications self-organizing, where they can discover services and function without manual intervention. We identify five key areas of research to achieve these goals:

  • Configuration, the task of automatically creating topologies and adapting them to mobility and change.
  • Message routing, the task of disseminating information between nodes taking bandwidth, latency and energy consumption into account.
  • Discovery, the task of automatically discovering and using networked resources, without manual configuration or administration. INS (Intentional Naming System) is a new naming system that we are developing to achieve this, where applications can name objects and services by intent rather than network location.
  • Adaptation, the task of learning about and reacting to changing network conditions, including congestion, wireless errors, latency variations, and route changes. In particular, we are designing a Congestion Manager (CM) to perform congestion control and provide an API for application adaptation.
  • Security & privacy, the task of ensuring secure and authenticated access to devices and maintaining device and user privacy.

Demos, movies and other examples

Intentional Naming System (INS)

Our implementation of INS is currently in the alpha status. The alpha version of INS and several applications that use INS (e.g. Floorplan, Camera, Printer, Audio/Video servers) are available for download from Several screen snapshots showing the running applications can be viewed from here.

Location-Aware Stream Migration

Video on location aware stream migration. (18MB)

The principal investigators

Presentations and posters

"The Cricket Indoor Location System", 2001

"Wireless Networks of Devices", William Adjie-Winoto, Amit Chakraborty, Jeremey Lilley, Elliot Schwartz, Hari Balakrishnan, John Guttag and Minoru Katayama, NTT, Musashino, Japan, January 2000.



"Wireless Networks of Devices Resource Discovery", November 1999

"Design and Implementation of an Intentional Naming System, ACM Symposium on Operating Systems Principles (SOSP)", December 14, 1999, Kiawah Island, SC.


Nissanka B. Priyantha, Allen K. L. Miu, Hari Balakrishnan and Seth Teller. The Cricket Compass for Context-Aware Mobile Applications Proc. of the 7th ACM MOBICOM Conf., Rome, Italy, July 2001.

Nissanka B. Priyantha, Providing Precise Indoor Location Information to Mobile Devices, SM Thesis, MIT, January 2001.

Nissanka B. Priyantha, Anit Chakraborty, and Hari Balakrishnan The Cricket Location-Support System, Proc. of the 6th ACM MOBICOM Conf., Boston, MA, August 2000.

H. Balakrishnan and Seshan, S.  The Congestion Manager (draft-balakrishnan-cm-01.txt), Internet draft (ECM WG), November 1999, Expires April 2000.

W. Adjie-Winoto, Schwartz, E., Balakrishnan, H., Lilley, J. The design and implementation of an intentional naming system, Proc. 17th ACM Symposium on Operating Systems Principles (SOSP), Kiawah Island, SC, Dec. 1999.

H. Balakrishnan, Rahul, H. S., Seshan, S. An Integrated Congestion Management Architecture for Internet Hosts, Proc. ACM SIGCOMM, Cambridge, MA, September 1999.

H. Balakrishnan, S. Seshan, P. Bhagwat, and F. Kaashoek, Self-Organizing Collaborative Environments. NSF/DARPA/NIST Workshop on Smart Environments, Atlanta, GA, July 1999. (Position paper.)

W. R. Heinzelman, J. Kulik, H. Balakrishnan, Adaptive Protocols for Information Dissemination in Wireless Sensor Networks, Proc. 5th ACM/IEEE Mobicom Conference, Seattle, WA, August 1999.  A later version is also available (submitted to ACM Mobile Networks journal).

H. S. Rahul, H. Balakrishnan, S. Seshan, An End-System Architecture for Unified Congestion Management, Proc. 7th Workshop on Hot Topics in Operating Systems (HotOS VII), Rio Rico, AZ, March 1999.

Proposals and progress reports


NTT Bi-Annual Progress Report, July to December 1998:

NTT Bi-Annual Progress Report, January to June 1999:

NTT Bi-Annual Progress Report, July to December 1999:

NTT Bi-Annual Progress Report, January to June 2000:

NTT Bi-Annual Progress Report, July to December 2000:

NTT Bi-Annual Progress Report, January to June 2001:

NTT Bi-Annual Progress Report, July to December 2001:

NTT Bi-Annual Progress Report, January to June 2002:

NTT Bi-Annual Progress Report, July to December 2002:

For more information