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September 23, 2008

Bob Iannucci – The Way We Live Next

ESPOO, Finland – Opening the second annual ‘The Way We Live Next’ conference at Nokia HQ in Espoo, chief technology officer Bob Iannucci gives an insight into ‘Agenda 2015’ – what Nokia thinks the world will be like seven years from now.
Iannucci talks about the eight areas of focus for research in Agenda 2015 and how the research is actually being carried out.

The focus for research centres around creativity, mixed reality, user and content modeling, physically personal devices, human interface, dynamic wireless, scalable service platforms and Internet of things.

As well as giving us an overview on the research areas, Iannucci talked about how Nokia pursues open innovation, and “engages the World’s Premiere Institutions”.

Woah. He’s just talked about how the research team looks at the technology that’s already on the device and uses that to gather information. For example, using Bluetooth to sense your environment. The concept is to re-look at the technology and see how the information gathered could be useful in a sensory application. Clever stuff!

Traffic Works is a mobile field trial that used 100 cars, 100 Nokia N95s, 150 Berkeley Students, 10 miles of California freeway – it took place earlier in the year. The trial worked and it’s now being ramped up with a larger trial coming up. The process takes GPS info from devices to a central server, which in turn aggregates the data and distills it. Now, that’s all fine, and available now, but Iannucci wants to take it further.

How about taking it a step further and combining the traffic information with your diary, the service will actually tell you about a traffic problem before you leave the house – effectively giving you traffic prediction before the act.

The researchers took that further too and show up to the second crowd flows in busy locations. Anyone who’s been through London Victoria station on a busy weekday morning will know the need for one of these.

But it doesn’t stop there. The researchers are looking at how this system could be used to monitor personal health and monitor things like influenza outbreaks.

Or, what about real-time weather monitoring across 100s of millions of users? Sounds interesting, huh! More on weather coming up!