Using Cell Phones to Collect Data
My colleague and fellow MIT Alum Grey Held reminded me to blog this today – thank you, Grey.
MIT recently released its 2009 list of young innovators under the age of 35 years. One of this year’s winners is Nathan Eagle. He operates a service called Txteagle – a service that lets any company send cell-phone users simple tasks such as text translation. Participants are paid in credits that can be used for cell phone service or redeemed for cash. Very cool. See article.
Nokia also has some projects going on using cell phones to help researchers collect data on the spread of disease, environmental conditions, etc. SMS is a very pervasive, simple and inexpensive means of collecting data from the field.
In more commercial uses, we saw a snack food company in the UK use SMS as part of a sweepstakes. Each time a bag of chips was opened and the buyer/consumer of the chips texted in the code within the chip bag, this company could see who was buying and at what time of the day their product was being consumed.
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