Menlo Device By Microsoft Tracks You Precisely

Menlo is a pocket-sized research device created by Microsoft that uses a variety of sensors to create a kind of digital bread crumb-trail that shows exactly where you've been, even indoors.


(Menlo [left] and Greenfield app collector)

The device would collect the trail data while the user walked indoors, underground, or in other spaces where GPS signals are unavailable or weak--such as multilevel parking garages that can baffle people who forget where they parked.

The resulting Microsoft Research device, a prototype phone called Menlo, packs a suite of sensors: an accelerometer to detect movement, a side-mounted compass to determine direction, and a barometric pressure sensor to track changes in altitude.

While existing phones contain some of these sensors, what's new about Menlo is an app called Greenfield, which aims to solve the Hansel and Gretel problem by harnessing the data from the sensors. The goal is to count a user's sequence of steps, gauge direction changes, and even calculate how many floors the user has traversed by stairs or an elevator. The app stores the trail data so that a user can later retrace his path precisely.

Fans of Jack Williamson's amazing 1936 novel The Cometeers may recall the cartograph:

He reached to unsnap the cartograph from his belt. He had brought that tiny instrument to map their movements. He opened the cover and peered at the strip.

"We're nearly seven miles from where the prison used to be," he said thoughtfully.

Via Technology Review.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 7/27/2011)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )

Related News Stories - (" Engineering ")

'Liquid Light' Flows Around Corners
Light as a superfluid.

Does Earth's Middle Mantle Hold Oceans Of Water?
Al Gore, you have no idea.

Anti AI AI Wearable Detects Artificial Voices
Combats another wearable, the voice-changing bowtie.

Drones Will Transform Cities
Where we're going, we don't use roads.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

TALOS Exoskeleton Development Proceeding
'Suited up, you look like a big steel gorilla...'

Autonomous Robots Navigate Like Rats
'Out of warrens in the wall, tiny robot mice darted.'

SINTEF Robot Cleans Solar Panels
'The window cleaners, with large padded feet...'

Pangorin Restaurant Service Robots
What'll you have? Jawa juice?

Drug Creates Real Melanin Tan
I've used them all my life...

Medical Drones Hover Like Angels Near You
'The death-reversal equipment is on its way...'

SkEye Amazing Israeli Gigapixel Drone
'An eye that could not only see, but fly...'

How Rude! DARPA Wants Robots To Behave More Like Threepio
'Do I know protocol? Why, it's my primary function.'

'Liquid Light' Flows Around Corners
Light as a superfluid.

Unrolling The Filmy Materials Of Space Tech
'When unfolded and unrolled... it became a tough, gleaming film.'

Buddy Companion Robot Your Bulbous Friend
'Nanny was built in the shape of a sphere, a large metal sphere, flattened on the bottom...'

Poli-X1 Prototype Bee Pollinator
Is there anything drones can't do?

Bake in Space Bake-Off... In Space!
'A joyous condition commenced for the cook in the electric kitchen...'

DeepMind AI Baffled By Homer Simpson, Needs Human Help
'Whenever a robot finds something it can't identify straight off...'

Does Earth's Middle Mantle Hold Oceans Of Water?
Al Gore, you have no idea.

Vaccine Blocks Heroin High
'You're biochemically incapable of getting off...'

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.