Virtual Compass: Relative Positioning to Sense Mobile Social Interactions

Nilanjan Banerjee, Sharad Agarwal, Paramvir Bahl, Ranveer Chandra, Alec Wolman, and Mark Corner

Abstract

There are endless possibilities for the next generation of mobile social applications that automatically determine your social context. A key element of such applications is ubiquitous and precise sensing of the people you interact with. Existing techniques that rely on deployed infrastructure to determine proximity are limited in availability and accuracy. Virtual Compass is a peer-based relative positioning system that relies solely on the hardware and operating system support available on commodity mobile handhelds. It uses multiple radios to detect nearby mobile devices and places them in a two-dimensional plane. It uses adaptive scanning and out-of-band coordination to explore trade-offs between energy consumption and the latency in detecting movement. We have implemented Virtual Compass on mobile phones and laptops, and we evaluate it using a sample application that senses social interactions between Facebook friends.

Details

Publication typeInproceedings
Published inPervasive (Pervasive Computing)
PublisherSpringer Verlag

Previous versions

Nilanjan Banerjee, Sharad Agarwal, Paramvir Bahl, Ranveer Chandra, Alec Wolman, and Mark Corner. Virtual Compass: relative positioning to sense mobile social interactions, Microsoft Research, 25 January 2010.

Nilanjan Banerjee, Sharad Agarwal, Paramvir Bahl, Ranveer Chandra, Alec Wolman, and Mark Corner. Virtual Compass: Relative Positioning to Sense Mobile Social Interactions , Springer Verlag, May 2010.

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