World population is facing deep demographic changes. A number of societal challenges are to be tackled, and possible support from ICT is sought for. AAL (Ambient Assisted Living) technologies, aimed at fostering independent life of elderly people, are therefore becoming increasingly important. Based on the AAL-system named CARDEA and previously developed at the University of Parma, in this paper a new feature is presented, named CARDEAGate and aimed at providing an inexpensive and scarcely intrusive way for providing user localization and identification information.
Such information is needed to implement a number of useful functionalities, and most notably to carry out behavioral analysis in a multi-user context. A simple approach, based on a “wireless barrier” and exploiting ZigBee protocol features is shown to provide reliable monitoring information. Preliminary test results are given, whereas a full characterization is currently under way.