PerCom Discussions

PerCom 2011 Panel

Pervasive and Social Computing:
Where Are We Heading?


Sajal K. Das, NSF and University of Texas at Arlington


Pervasive Computing is experiencing evolutionary changes due to increased popularity of smart phone applications and participatory sensing that involve human social interactions and behavior. Pervasive computing platforms and applications are capable of capturing relevant information about the social dynamics and make probabilistic inferences, thus leading to social reasoning. The notions of social dynamics and social reasoning are more sophisticated than the popular notion of context, because they capture not only an individual node’s situation but also inter-node dynamics over time and the overall social behavior of the pervasive system. The convergence of pervasive and social computing blurs boundaries between human social interactions and cyber-physical space, thus posing significant complimentary challenges: (i) how to develop new solution paradigms for pervasive systems and services that take into account human social interactions and dynamics; and (ii) how to exploit complex social and psychological experience to enable future pervasive/mobile applications. This timely panel will address unique research challenges and opportunities in this exciting inter-disciplinary topic and project on the future of the socio-pervasive world.


Dr. Sujata Banerjee is a principal scientist and research manager in HP Labs, where she is the co-principal investigator for the flexible programmable networks project. Prior to HP Labs, she was an associate professor at the University of Pittsburgh. Her research has spanned the areas of network measurement, quality of service, performance analysis of wired and wireless networks, and more recently, network energy efficiency. She served as the general chair of ACM MobiSys 2010 and co-chaired the Technical Program Committee of IEEE SECON 2008. She is a recipient of the US National Science Foundation CAREER award in networking research. She holds a Ph.D. degree from the University of Southern California; B. Tech. and M. Tech. degrees in Electrical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Bombay.

Dr. Mads Haahr Dr. Mads Haahr is a Lecturer in Computer Science at Trinity College Dublin. He holds BSc and MSc degrees from the University of Copenhagen and a PhD from Trinity College Dublin. His research interests include mobile and ubiquitous computing, self-organising systems, interactive and location-aware narrative, computer game studies and artificial intelligence for games. He edits a multidisciplinary academic journal called Crossings: Electronic Journal of Art and Technology, and has built and operates the Internet's premier true random number service RANDOM.ORG.

Dr. Eric Horvitz is a Distinguished Scientist at Microsoft Research. He research interests include challenges in machine learning and reasoning, human-computer interaction, search and retrieval, social computing, and e-commerce. He has been elected Fellow of the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence (AAAI) and of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). He has served as President of the AAAI, and the advisory boards of the NSF Computer and Information Science and Engineering Directorate, the Computing Community Consortium (CCC), and the Naval Research Advisory Committee. He received his PhD and MD degrees at Stanford University. More information can be found at

Dr. David McDonald is an associate professor in The Information School at University of Washington. He has ongoing projects studying mass interaction in Wikipedia and technology and media use in the home. He has published research on collaborative authoring, recommendation systems, organizational memory, and public use of large screen displays. His research interests span Computer-Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW) and Human-Computer Interaction (HCI). He earned his Ph.D. in Information and Computer Science at the University of California, Irvine. He worked at FX Palo Alto Laboratory in the Personal and Mobile technology group and at AT&T Labs, HCI group. He was recently a Program Director for Human Centered Computing (HCC), Network Science and Engineering (NeTSE), and Social Computational Systems (SoCS) programs at the National Science Foundation.

Dr. George Roussos is a Reader in Pervasive Computing at the Department of Computer Science and Information Systems, Birkbeck College, University of London, where he leads the pervasive computing research group. He is currently investigating the effects of social activity on pervasive computing system architectures, and exploring mechanisms to support navigation and findability.

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