Two Papers Accepted for LBS 2019

This is the first time I’ll be attending the Conference on Location Based Services and we have two papers in the program:

Marina Georgati, Carsten Keßler
A 3D Routing Service for Indoor Environments

Preprint PDF

Abstract: Large and complex buildings with substantial numbers of visitors require fast and effective navigation support to help first-time and infrequent guests to easily find their destination and avoid stressful situations. Most existing solutions are based on in-situ localization and routing, therefore requiring expensive indoor positioning infrastructure. In contrast, the objective of this research is the development of a cheap and easily deployable indoor routing service that visitors can use to plan the route to their destination before their visit. It visualizes both the interior space of a building and its users’ individual routing paths in a virtual 3D environment. The proposed solution is entirely based on open source tools and has no installation requirements for the user. Its functionality is demonstrated in a building at the Aalborg University Copenhagen campus. This kind of ex-situ 3D digital navigation promises to help users gain a better understanding of the explored environment, and to improve people’s cognitive spatial maps when combined with animated stimuli and landmarks.

Carsten Keßler, Grant D. McKenzie
Consistency Across Geosocial Media Platforms

Preprint PDF

Abstract: The increasing use of geosocial media in research to draw quantitative and qualitative conclusions about urban environments bears questions about the consistency of the data across the different platforms. This paper therefore presents an initial comparative analysis of data from six different geosocial media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Google, Foursquare, Flickr, and Instagram) for Washington, D.C., using population and zoning data for reference. We find that there is little consistency between the different platforms at small spatial units and even semantically rich datasets have severe limitations when predicting functional zones in a city. The results show that researchers need to carefully evaluate which platform they can use for a particular study, and that more work is needed to better understand the differences between the different platforms.

Paper accepted for AGILE 2019: Route Optimisation for Winter Maintenance

We have a paper accepted for AGILE 2019 in Limassol:

Nikmal Raghestani and Carsten Keßler (2019)
Route Optimisation for Winter Maintenance (← preprint)

Abstract: In many countries, winter maintenance is a requirement to keep public life going throughout the cold season. This paper investigates the optimization of salt spreading routes in Denmark in terms of service time and cost. It looks at salting as a capacitated arc routing problem and proposes a greedy randomized adaptive search procedure to this end. At the core of the proposed approach is a heuristic algorithm based on simulated annealing that improves the initial route by searching for alternatives within a predefined search space, taking into account a number of constraints and criteria at each iteration of the procedure. The performance of the optimization approach is tested on three different existing service routes, where it is shown to reduce route length by an average of 8.7% and service time by an average of 9.5%.


Silent Shout →

“Our phone is going around the city asking, ‘Are you ‘Home Wi-fi’? Are you ‘Home Wi-fi’?’ Your phone does that one network at a time but it always sends out its MAC address and the name of the network,” Briz continued. “So then it might be like, ‘Hey, it’s me. Here’s my MAC address again. Now I’m looking for ‘Work Wi-fi’, now that cafe I connected to once, now ‘Mom’s House’, and so on.’” The protocol is structured like a Greek tragedy, with recurrent choral interjections and a relentless quest for home.

Many people think that you need GPS to be able to locate a device. This article explains very nicely why WiFi alone is a very capable tracking technology if you are walking around with a smartphone all day – and why this huge privacy issue is very unlikely to go away.

JOSIS Special Issue on Geospatial Privacy & Security

First Call for Papers: Special Issue on Geospatial Privacy & Security in the Journal of Spatial Information Science

Overview

Location privacy has been a consistent theme in spatial information science for quite some time. While early work on this topic was primarily focused on theoretical concerns over the exploitation of personal location information, recent advances in mobile technology have spurred renewed interest in this domain. As the ubiquity of these sensor-rich devices, smart homes and cities, and content contributed to geosocial media applications increases, the privacy and security of our personal data has come to the forefront of our social dialog. Citizens today are demonstrating appropriate concerns about data sharing, how their data are being used, and implications of having so much data in the hands of a select few.

Researchers in the spatial sciences offer a unique perspective on the discussion of data privacy and security. As a substantial amount of data are generated with some level of location information, a better understanding of the privacy implications of working with, and securing these data are paramount. Additionally, spatial data supports its own unique set of quantitative and qualitative analysis techniques, many of which may impact the privacy of the data contributor or expose details on how the data was created. Researchers in the geospatial sciences are well situated to explore these numerous aspects (as well as the social, economic, political, etc. lenses) through which location privacy and data security can be framed.

Topics of interest for the special feature include, but are not limited to:

  • Context-aware mobile applications
  • Obfuscation techniques
  • Educational approaches to location privacy
  • Policy implications of personal location information
  • Role of location in personal relationship development
  • Geosocial media implications
  • Credibility, trust, and expertise related to location information
  • Tools and systems for preserving or securing private information
  • Techniques for sharing private location information
  • Methods for securing location information
  • Place-based data privacy
  • Individual vs. group privacy preservation
  • Gamification techniques
  • Next-generation location-based services
  • Geofencing
  • Marketplaces for location data
  • Legal aspects of geoprivacy
  • Connections between location data and other kinds of personally identifiable information

Important Dates

Paper Submission: January 31, 2019
Paper Notification: April 30, 2019

Submissions of the following types will be considered:

  • Research papers on original research results
  • Surveys on the state of research in the outlined areas
  • System and Application reports on research enabling tools, lessons learned from applications, user interaction & interfaces

Guest Editors

Grant McKenzie, McGill University, Quebec, Canada
Carsten Keßler, Aalborg University, Copenhagen, Denmark
Clio Andris, Penn State University, State College, USA

Feel free to reach out to one of the guest editors with any questions pertaining to this special issue.

Location Privacy Panel @ GI_Forum 2018

I’ll be heading down to Salzburg this week to moderate the closing session at GI_Forum 2018, which will be a panel discussion on location privacy. I’m looking forward to an interesting discussion with the panelists:

  • Francis Harvey, Leibnitz-Institut für Länderkunde, Germany
  • Jochen Höfferer, STADT:SALZBURG, Head of Marketing & Digitization
  • Dietmar Jahnel, Department of Public Law, University of Salzburg
  • Bernd Resch, Department of Geoinformatics – Z_GIS, University of Salzburg

Abstract: Paying with a credit card, swiping the monthly pass at the subway station, or recording workouts with a fitness tracker all contribute to a detailed picture of our movement patterns and associated activities. Moreover, most of us constantly carry a mobile phone, which produces an even more detailed and continuous personal-level location history. This panel will discuss the implications that these developments have on our location privacy. Is it worth giving up on privacy for the gained convenience? Is my current location – in public – a matter of privacy? Do we still even have a chance to escape this seemingly voluntary surveillance machine? And who may gain access to our location data? The panel will discuss these questions based on a series of short opening statements from the panelists, followed by a discussion bringing together the legal, technological, and ethical dimensions of location privacy.

OA2020

I just learned about OA2020:

VISION: OA2020 is a global alliance committed to accelerating the transition to open access.

MISSION: We collaborate to transform the current publishing system, replacing the subscription business model with new models that ensure outputs are open and re-usable and that the costs behind their dissemination are transparent and economically sustainable.

If your library has not signed the expression of interest yet, please make them do.

Access Jupyter Notebooks over SSH tunnel

I’m currently running some analyses on a virtual machine in the cloud, and it turns out that there is a really neat way to access Jupyter Notebooks remotely without installing Jupyter Hub. So if you (like me) just run the notebooks for yourself and don’t need multi-user support and the like, you can simply SSH into your remote machine (replacing username and host, obviously:

ssh -L 9999:localhost:9999 username@host

Enter your password for the remote machine when prompted, and, when logged in, start a notebook server and tunnel the output to your local port 9999:

jupyter notebook --port 9999 --no-browser

Starting the notebook server this way will make it show a URL that you simply paste into your local browser, et voilà – a Jupyter Notebook with code executed in the cloud.

LoPaS 2018: Location Privacy and Security Workshop at GIScience 2018

I’ll co-organize a workshop on Location Privacy and Security at GIScience 2018 in Melbourne this coming August. Details below – feel free to share widely and submit a paper, of course!

More Information: https://ptal-io.github.io/lopas2018/

Description Location privacy has been a topic of research for many years but has recently seen a resurgence in interest. This renewed interest is driven by recent advances in location-enabled devices, sensors and context-aware technology, and the broader Internet of Things (IoT). The data generated via these devices are being collected, analyzed, and synthesized at an unprecedented rate. While much of these data are used in the advancement of products or services, many individuals are unaware of the information that is being collected, or how it is being used. The resulting information extracted from these personal data have contributed to significant advances in domain such as location recommendations or fitness/health services, but these advances often come at the cost of location privacy. This workshop is aimed at facilitating a discussion surrounding current methods and techniques related to location privacy as well as the social, political, etc. implications of sharing or preserving location privacy. Further, this workshop invites contributions and discussions related to methods and techniques for securing location information and preserving the privacy of geospatial data.

We invite two types of submissions for this workshop:

  • Novel research contributions (6-8 pages)
  • Vision / work-in-progress papers (3-6 pages)

Also note that all registered workshop participants will be invited to give a 5 minute, ignite style, lightning presentation on a subject related to the workshop topic.

Topics of Interest include, but are not limited to:

  • Context-aware mobile applications
  • Obfuscation techniques
  • Educational approaches to location privacy
  • Policy implications of personal location information
  • Role of location in personal relationship development
  • Geosocial media implications
  • Credibility, trust, and expertise related to location information
  • Tools and systems for preserving or securing private information
  • Techniques for sharing private location information
  • Methods for securing location information
  • Place-based data privacy
  • Individual vs. group privacy preservation
  • Gamification techniques
  • Next-generation location-based services
  • Geofencing
  • Marketplaces for location data

Important Dates:

  • Submissions Due: 4 June, 2018
  • Acceptance Notification: 2 July, 2018
  • Camera-ready Copies Due: 16 July, 2018
  • Workshop: 28 August, 2018

Organizers

  • Grant McKenzie, University of Maryland, College Park, USA
  • Carsten Keßler, Aalborg University, Copenhagen, Denmark
  • Clio Andris, Penn State University, State College, USA

Program Committee
See https://ptal-io.github.io/lopas2018/