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The overall architecture of the NARF framework is depicted in the figure on the right. As shown there, the framework consists of two main building blocks, namely a runtime system which is deployed on a personal mobile device and an associated set of development tools that is used off-line to create the necessary configuration.

The task of the runtime system is twofold. During normal operation, the runtime system performs the actual recognition of the relevant features of the context and it enables applications to retrieve them and to be notified upon changes. In addition to the normal operation that performs the actual recognition, the runtime system can also be used to gather traces in sampling mode. These traces can then be used as an input for the development tools.