Canada Dashboard Digest

Algorithm Predicts Future Location Based on Friends’ Movements


July 13, 2012

Toronto Star reports on the development of an algorithm that can predict smartphone users’ future locations based on the movements of their friends. In a study of 200, the algorithm predicted users’ future locations to within 20-100 metres, according to the report. Lead researcher Mirco Musolesi of the University of Birmingham acknowledges “a problem for privacy,” but says, with protection of phone data, the algorithm could help behavioural advertisers. Harvard University Assistant Professor Edoardo Airoldi says that large-scale human behaviour studies such as this are the “next big thing” in big data.
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