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Infrastructure Sensing in IEEE Computer

UW CSE’s Shwetak Patel is developing a system to make it easier for individuals and companies monitor “home” activity by using strategically placed sensors on air, water, gas, and electrical infrastructure.  Patel expects his approach, which he calls infrastructure-mediated sensing (IMS), to be more cost effective and less labor intensive than other activity-sensing platforms.

“IMS uses a single sensor in a strategic place to measure pressure signals in air vents and waterlines as well as electrical signals in power lines.  Machine-learning technologies correlate physical events such as turning on a light, flushing a toilet, or opening a door with different signals.  According to Patel, the primary goal of IMS is to reduce the economic, aesthetic, installation, and maintenance barriers to home monitoring by reducing the cost and complexity of deploying and maintaining and activity-sensing infrastructure.  Patel said that in large volumes the water, pressure, and power sensors will cost as little as $50 each.”

Read the Computing Now article here.