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Location Technology Homes in on Where Stuff, People Are

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University of Wisconsin-Madison Professor Jignesh Patel

Professor Jignesh Patel is co-founder of Locomatix, a company that is developing location-aware services using a combination of smart-phone applications and publicly available information such as streams of GPS data.

Credit: University of Wisconsin-Madison

Technology that provides location data is exploding, leading to the rollout of location-aware services. University of Wisconsin-Madison professor Jignesh Patel says the emergence of technologies that can sense location and continuously stream that information should underlie the emergent mobile commerce phenomenon.

Increasing numbers of electronic devices come equipped with technologies that can tell users their precise whereabouts. These devices, in combination with high-performance database management systems and software applications that automatically and continuously retrieve information of interest, will make it possible to track virtually anyone or anything that is interfacing with the system.

Patel and his colleagues have developed technology that enables mobile devices to proactively search for information. The system "constantly takes in data, blends it, and mixes and matches to figure out who needs what information when and delivers it," he says. "The system is constantly working for you. You've told it the information you need, and now it continuously works for you looking for things that match your needs."

From University of Wisconsin-Madison
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