Skip to main content

SBP11 Day 1

I am in University of Maryland, College Park this week for the 2011 International Conference on Social Computing, Behavioral-Cultural Modeling, & Prediction (SBP11) Conference. The Conference is nice to call those attendees without computer science background like me the “domain experts” because we bring our domain knowledge (hospitality management in my case) to the field.


I attended two tutorials on the first day (March 28). I like Dr. Alex “Sandy” Pentland’s mobile sensor project at MIT. His team uses “mobile sensors” or cell phones to collect data about actual human interactions. The data --- “signals” --- can help researchers predict people’s social relationships among groups, organizational structures, participants’ daily routine, and behaviors.

I have to admit that I do not know computer science or Dr. Pentland’s work well. However, I can see an even brighter future of the mobile device market. Have you imagined that you can predict your customers’ purchasing behaviors? How about anticipating customers’ needs without even asking the customers? As a researcher, instead of measuring people’s intentions in a survey, how do you like the idea of collecting and owning the data of people’s real behaviors?

Stay tuned for SBP11 Day 2. Dr. Bei Yu and I co-authored a paper entitled Toward Predicting Popularity of Social Marketing Messages in this conference, which will be presented in Day 3.

Comments

  1. Josephine PimentelMarch 29, 2011 at 6:42 AM

    With the recent smart phone take over it is not surprising that businesses are using data collection from customer patterns based on purchases made from their phones. Nearly half the population of cell phone users have smart phones, I myself being one of them and I can vouch that it is a convenient and easy to use form of technology. I think companies will benefit from this technology because they will be able to track and cater to customer trends without having to ask the customers directly through menial surveys that most people do not take the time to fill out thoroughly. The only issue I see with this recent development in technology is the issue of privacy and security. Now that companies will have complete access to our buying trends and credit card/bank information, it leaves hackers and people who may accidentally lose their phones at risk. Also some people may not feel comfortable with having certain business' tracking their daily routine and behaviors. These "mobile sensors" may give some cell phone users the feeling that their basic privacy rights are being violated if say for instance they do not want to make available to others what they or purchasing or what their daily patterns are.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thank you for pointing out a very good point, Josephine Pimentel! You are absolutely right. I am not sure if I will opt in one of this surveys myself. Meanwhile, Dr. Pentland discussed how researchers need to take away of the personal information of the smartphone uers before analyzing data. Also, he discussed how his project allows (or will allow) participants to control what personal information they want to share with the researchers.

    I have to agree with you the privacy issues and policy are a big issue. Social scientists need to get involved. It is such an multi-disciplinary subject.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Want a job at McDonald’s? Now, it is as easy as talking to Alexa

McDonald’s Corporation introduced the world’s first voice-initiated job application process called McDonald’s Apply Thru. Now, job seekers can initiate the job application process through McDonald’s Apply Thru by taking to either Alexa or Google Assistant.

How McDonald’s Apply Thru works
The job application process begins with the applicants saying:
Alexa, help me get a job at McDonald’s.” 
or
“Google, help me get a job at McDonald’s.”
Then, the job applicants will need to answer a few basic questions, including their name, job of interest, and the location where they want to work.
Afterward, the job applicants will receive a text message with a hyperlink that will take the applicants to continue the rest of the application process.  
Where McDonald’s Apply Thru serve
McDonald’s Apply Thru is now available in nine countries, including the U.S., U.K., Canada, Australia, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, and Spain. It will be made available to other countries in the coming months.
Why McDona…

Is today's market too tough for upscale restaurants?

Operating a restaurant is never easy, but is it particularly challenging for upscale restaurants?

Restaurants Unlimited Inc., for instance, which operates 35 fine-dining and “polished casual” eateries, filed for bankruptcy in Delaware last week. Earlier in June, the Four Seasons Restaurant, an iconic spot for power lunch in Manhattan also closed for business after its reopening within less a year.

Are these two examples an isolated case or the tip of the iceberg? Then, if upscale restaurants are struggling to survive in today’s market, what challenges are they facing?

The rising labor cost

According to the Bloomberg report, Restaurant Unlimited Inc. hires 50 salaried employees at the chain’s headquarter in Seattle, plus another 168 full-time and 1,885 part-time restaurant workers. The rising wages in Seattle, San Francisco, and Portland have resulted in a total of $10.6 million wage expenses in the fiscal year of 2019. Nevertheless, its revenue for the year ended in May dropped 1%, at $…

Suggestive Selling – All You Have to Do is Ask!! (By Nicole Lee)

A simple, relatively normal thing occurred while in the drive-through at Del Taco with my boyfriend the other day.After placing our semi-high maintenance food order, the person taking my order, in a forced monotone voice, unenthusiastically asks, “Would you like to add our new blah, blah, blah for dessert?”All my sweet-tooth-driven ears heard was “dessert” and I wanted something sugary to complete my four-course drive-through meal. My boyfriend asked if I wanted the donut thing they were trying to push, but I ended up going with a churro.As we received our food, my boyfriend told the server, “Good job on the upsell.”In which we received the same unenthusiastic “thank you” in reply. This all led to a discussion about suggestive selling, how easy it is, how to do it correctly, and how beneficial it is.Of course, this Del Taco drive-through upsell experience did not meet our standards of how to do it correctly, but it worked!

Easy-Peasy
Both my boyfriend and I have sales and hospitality ba…