Technische Universität München

BMWi-funded project: Seamless online-offline

The collaboration with working students has long been an important part of the recruitment process for mobileX AG. It was in this spirit that our close collaboration with TU München came about, which has now evolved into a joint research project. In collaboration with members of the group, work is underway on the Seamless online-offline mode project for mobile workers through the automatic reconciliation of dynamic master data and redundantly stored mobile dynamic work data. This project is being sponsored by the Central Innovation Program SME and the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy.

The basic situation
For over 12 years, mobileX AG has been successfully placing the products mobileX-MIP for Field Service and mobileX-Dispatch with customers and continuously enhancing these products. mobileX-MIP for Field Service is an offline-capable mobile field service solution that provides the necessary job data to technicians on-site for their work. When a network connection is present, data is automatically exchanged in the background via „Passive Sync“. The data is displayed on laptops, tablets, or smartphones, depending on usage.

But the offline capability can also lead to synchronisation and parallel processing problems. For example, if an order is being processed by two technicians at the same time, this can cause conflicts at the data field level. This means that multiple changes to the same data element have to be consolidated using conflict strategies.
A new working mode is thus needed for field service applications, one which is barely perceptible as being different from online access and which handles conflicts arising from parallel changes to redundantly stored data.

Different solution approaches for the observed conflicts are being developed by the Group of Applied Informatics - Cooperative Systems. The solution strategies are based on different approaches, e.g.

  • automatic (Client/Server/Last/First-Wins, disjunctive, technical priority according to workflow using customer logic)
  • heuristic or
  • manual (such as solution via release monitor)

The evaluation is made based on general principle-based advantages and disadvantages.

The concept devised is then applied using example use cases and is exhaustively tested using test data.

Along with conflict management, the collaboration also covers the following work packets:

  • Fault-tolerant back end posting: Integration of conflict management with posting of changes that have been released by the client
  • Detection of changes on the back end: Analysis of heuristics necessary for detection of changes on the back end, criteria include scalability, speed of change detection, resulting load
  • Security: Systematic logging of attack scenarios and evaluation of possible security solutions

Responsible contact person in the group: Dr. Wolfgang Wörndl

Support code: KF2080206ED1


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