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Reality mining: sensing complex social systems


We introduce a system for sensing complex social systems with data collected from 100 mobile phones over the course of 9 months. We demonstrate the ability to use standard Bluetooth-enabled mobile telephones to measure information access and use in different contexts, recognize social patterns in daily user activity, infer relationships, identify socially significant locations, and model organizational rhythms.

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    Using a 6-month old battery of a Nokia 6600 in a sparsely populated Bluetooth environment.


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The authors would like to express their gratitude to Wen Dong, Stephen Guerin, Tony Pryor, and Aaron Clauset. We would also like to thank Hari Pennanen and Nokia for their support. Finally, Mika Raento deserves particular recognition as the architect of Context and whose efforts were instrumental to this research.

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Correspondence to Nathan Eagle.

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Eagle, N., (Sandy) Pentland, A. Reality mining: sensing complex social systems. Pers Ubiquit Comput 10, 255–268 (2006).

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  • Mobile phones
  • Bluetooth
  • Complex social systems
  • Wearable computing
  • User modeling