Projects

Open Source Sensing Initiative: Proposed Projects

 
Initiative setup
Now in progress, we are working on this website (based on Drupal) and planning an organizational meeting and first conference, both to be held in the Silicon Valley area.  Your assistance is welcome.
 
Video demonstration project   (need wiki)
Multiple people have suggested that, given the immense volume of video data already being collected by numerous entities and the lack of standards for how this data is handled, we should do a demonstration project showing how Open Source Sensing principles would be implemented for video data.  This would include specifying the level of disclosure applying to the hardware, the software, and most important, how the data is processed: who gets it, how long it is kept, in what ways may it be used, etc.
 
Data exchange project   (need wiki)
As pervasive sensing ramps up, threats to privacy, data security, and data trustworthiness increase.  Current data exchange standards are either solid but obsolete (ITU) or modern but broken (OGC), driving commercial firms to develop multiple competing efforts (e.g., GeoRSS) which do not deliver the desired goals of privacy, security, and authentication.

A window of opportunity exists for an open source project to set the goals for a new data exchange standard and produce a widely-usable reference implementation in a standard language such as Java.  Such a reference implementation would be welcomed by the commercial sector and would be well-positioned to fill the need for an updated ITU standard.  By filling this need via an open source project, the software community can ensure that privacy tools are included to enable "pervasive decentralization": fine-grained control of what is shared or not shared.

By providing the improved security and authentication desired by governments and the commercial sector, the new standard can succeed at adding the privacy tools needed to protect civil liberties in a world of pervasive sensing.

One way to get traction for this as a de facto standard, standard bodies aside, is to promote it as an open source solution to the cloud computing data interchange problem. In the abstract this is an identical design problem and currently a hot topic.  How do you share real-time data between organizations in the cloud to maximize the promise and value, while ensuring that the data cannot be misappropriated or misused along the way? There is currently no standard way of mixing and matching data clouds in this way but a lot of people view it as the next stage of evolution on the internet.
 
Citizen-Controlled Sensing: 
Using open source & nanotechnology to reduce surveillance & head off Iraq-style wars

See project proposal.