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Design Contractualism for Pervasive/Affective Computing

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1 Author(s)
Jeremy Pitt ; Inst. for Security Sci. & Technol., Imperial Coll. London, London, UK

The convergence of pervasive, stream, and cloud computing, with advances in sensor technology and signal processing, provides a platform for a wide range of innovative applications based on a more-refined understanding of the users state, wherever they may be and whatever they might be doing. Recent developments have made it possible to infer intentional (goal-driven) behavior and affective (emotional) states from scent, gestures, facial expressions, and other physiological signals, and these signals can be continuously detected in a pervasive environment in which our bodies, clothing, and physical surroundings are saturated with sensors. There is overwhelming evidence that people will trade this data in order to receive value-added services or derive other social benefits. There is equal evidence that some application or service providers will appropriate what is essentially personal data and aggregate it, privatize it, or data-mine it, with potentially disturbing implications for individual and collective privacy. Ideally, we would leverage these technological advances to provide smarter pervasive and affective applications, without compromising (often hardwon) social constructs such as privacy and other civil liberties.

Published in:

IEEE Technology and Society Magazine  (Volume:31 ,  Issue: 4 )