There are billions of computers over the Internet. If these computers can form a super computer, this computer can have unimaginable computing power and software running on this computer may also benefit from this unimaginable computing power. However, there are outstanding challenges for the development of such software. From 2000, we started to study these challenges and proposed a new paradigm for software running on the Internet – Internetware. Led by Professor Hong Mei and Professor Zhi Jin, our research on Internetware has been supported with three consecutive funded projects in the National Basic Research and Development Program. The major breakthrough results of our research on Internetware are as follows. On the basic model of Internetware, we have constructed an open and cooperative Internetware model, which can specify new characteristics of Internetware, such as autonomy, cooperativity, evolution, situationality, emergence, and trustworthiness. On the execution support, we have implemented autonomous management of containers and systems supporting on-demand cooperation and online evolution. On the development methodology, we have implemented architecture-driven Internetware development and evolution in the whole lifecycle.
Based on our research on Internetware, we have achieved a series of leading technologies in software components, software architecture, and software self-adaptation, resulting in over a hundred publications in top journals and conferences in the software field, such as TSE, TOSEM, TMC, ICSE, ASE, FSE, OOPSLA, and WWW (including 16 best/distinguished/featured papers). Based on our research on Internetware, we have delivered over 20 invited talks in international conferences (e.g., Middleware、IEEE Software Expert Summit, ICGSE, and CollaborateCom), obtained over 40 innovation patents, and formed several national or industrial standards. We have won the National science and technology prizes four times at the national level and five times at the provincial level. The tools and systems we have developed for Internetware have been applied in several large information systems.
As an academic concept from China, Internetware has received world-wide attention and recognition: A book titled “Internetware: A New Software Paradigm for Internet Computing” is selected by Springer Editor’s Choice: Featured Publications from China. Since 2009, International Symposium on Internetware has been held 9 times, each with over 100 attendees including international attendees from over 20 countries world-wide (such as US, Europe, and Japan). The IEEE Computer magazine published a collection of articles on Internetware in the “Computing in Asia” section. There are also special issues on Internetware published in the IEEE Software magazine, IEEE Transactions on Services Computing, and ACM Transactions on Internet Technology. Professor Hong Mei was elected as a TWAS Fellow in 2013, and an IEEE Fellow in 2014，Professor Mei also won the IEEE Technical Achievement Award in 2015. This is also the first time that the IEEE Technical Achievement Award is given to a recipient from mainland China in it 32 years’ history.
Our research on Internetware has become a driving force for the research on technological innovation over the Internet inside China. The National Natural Science Foundation of China has funded over 30 projects with Internetware as the topic. The National Research and Development Program has also funded a series of projects on Internetware, including a large-scale multi-institutional project titled “Technological System and Supporting Environment for Trustworthy Development, Execution and Evolution of Large-Scale Internetware”. In 2013, CNCC organized a technical forum on Internetware with over 300 attendees. In 2014, “Theory, Methodology and Technology of Internetware” is elected as one of the "Top Ten Scientific and Technological Progresses" from colleges and universities.