Monday, July 25, 2005

Your cell phone knows you

Ryan Singel at Wired reports on some work at the MIT Media Lab to use data from cell phones to track and predict the behavior of their owners.
Cell phones know whom you called and which calls you dodged, but they can also record where you went, how much sleep you got and predict what you're going to do next.

[Nathan] Eagle's Reality Mining project logged 350,000 hours of data over nine months about the location, proximity, activity and communication of volunteers, and was quickly able to guess whether two people were friends or just co-workers ... Eagle's algorithms were able to predict what people ... would do next and be right up to 85 percent of the time.

Users create their own automatic life diary that could be searched and queried. "I can go ask it, 'How much sleep did I get in October?' 'When was the last time I had lunch with Adam?' 'Where did I go after that?'" said Eagle.
Microsoft Research has a project with similar goals called MyLifeBits.

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