MoRePriv is a project focusing on personalization and privacy on mobile devices. Please see RePriv, a closely related project that performs browser-based personalization.


MoRePriv is a system that combines the goals of privacy and content personalization on mobile devices. MoRePriv discovers user interests and shares them with third-parties, but only with the explicit permission of the user. We demonstrate how background user interest mining can effectively infer user interests in a mobile operating system. Inference is based on parsing and classifying multiple stream of (sensitive) information about the user, such as their email, SMS, Facebook stream, and network communications.

To enable easy application personalization or skinning, MoRePriv approximates user's interests using personas such as technophile or business executive. The use of personas also limits the potential for information leaks. MoRePriv has been prototyped as an OS-level service in Windows Phone 7 which exposes persona information and allows the user to control access to persona data.

We demonstrate that MoRePriv can enable simple, but effective OS-wide universal personalization: for example, long drop-down lists in application UIs are automatically sorted to better fit the order of user's likely preferences. However, the real power of MoRePriv comes from exposing a personalization API to apps. Using a number of cases studies, we illustrate how more complex personalization and app skinning tasks can be achieved with the help of MoRePriv.



(a) no personalization

 (b) graying out details

 (c) emphasizing entity highlighting

The figure shows a text sample (a), a summarized version of the text with unnecessary details faded (b), and a report with highlighting of key entities (c). While many users will prefer versions (b) and (c) to version (a), because both draw attention to important parts of the text, the raises an important question: what is important. The answer is subjective: if the user is someone interested in business or public policy, the aspects of the text that have to do with the FTC and it chairman are relevant. Text summarization benefits from personalization: for someone interested in technology, the parts of the text talking about Microsoft are important.

The figure on the left demonstrates the power of mobile personalization. A traditional challenge on mobile devices is the lack of screen real estate. As such, long articles are diffcult to read, giving rise to various bookmarking services such as Instapaper, ReadItLater, etc. However, in a news article such as might be found in Wall Street Journal or The New York Times, often only a fraction of the article is relevant to a given user.

As such, a customized summarization strategy will go a long way toward making the user more productive.

Further, MoRePriv personalization can be used for sophisticated personalizations such as the news reader below. The left imager shows the news reader with personalization off, the second reads the current technophile persona and selects the news stream accordingly.