Feeds

MIT launches buddy-stalker messenger service

Finding friends on campus

Intelligent flash storage arrays

MIT students are tracking each other as they wander from lecture to lecture using iFind, a new piece of beta software from the university's Senseable City Lab.

The system looks like an instant messenger client, but as well as pinging messages back and forth, it presents the user with a map of the campus showing where all their friends are, in real time. It plots "buddies" who are logged in by tracing where they are accessing the campus' WiFi network.

iFind has been developed by François Proulx, with help from the Senseable City Lab's Director Carlo Ratti.

Proulx told News.com: "When you hover your mouse over your friend, a little ripple or star blinks, and you see a pop-up with the name of your friend, building and room where he is. You can then double-click to start a chat."

He added that since its launch, about one person was downloading the software every minute.

As with normal IM systems, users have to agree to join a buddy list, and can appear invisible to a user or group of users if they chose. They do not have to be specifically logged in to appear online, however, as the software simply tracks their WiFi card accessing the network.

The system is also peer-to-peer, to avoid location data being stored anywhere on a central server. Proulx says this is unusual, and that other, similar systems do rely on central servers collecting and storing location information.

Proulx says he also plans to release the code to the wider community under the GNU public license. ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Mighty Blighty broadbanders beg: Let us lay cable in BT's, er, ducts
Complain to Ofcom that telco has 'effective monopoly'
Download alert: Nearly ALL top 100 Android, iOS paid apps hacked
Attack of the Clones? Yeah, but much, much scarier – report
Yahoo! blames! MONSTER! email! OUTAGE! on! CUT! CABLE! bungle!
Weekend woe for BT as telco struggles to restore service
Fujitsu CTO: We'll be 3D-printing tech execs in 15 years
Fleshy techie disses network neutrality, helmet-less motorcyclists
Soz, web devs: Google snatches its Wallet off the table
Killing off web service in 3 months... but app-happy bonkers are fine
Ofcom tackles complaint over Premier League footie TV rights
Virgin Media: UK fans pay the most for the fewest matches
FCC: Gonna need y'all to cough up $1.5bn to put broadband in schools
Kids need more fiber, says Wheeler, and you'll pay for it
NBN Co screws lid on FTTP coffin
Copper and HFC dominate in new corporate plan
prev story

Whitepapers

Seattle children’s accelerates Citrix login times by 500% with cross-tier insight
Seattle Children’s is a leading research hospital with a large and growing Citrix XenDesktop deployment. See how they used ExtraHop to accelerate launch times.
Why CIOs should rethink endpoint data protection in the age of mobility
Assessing trends in data protection, specifically with respect to mobile devices, BYOD, and remote employees.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Protecting against web application threats using SSL
SSL encryption can protect server‐to‐server communications, client devices, cloud resources, and other endpoints in order to help prevent the risk of data loss and losing customer trust.