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The Era of Place and Presence

by Jack Santos  |  August 24, 2012  |  Comments Off on The Era of Place and Presence

Just got back from Gartner Catalyst late last night.  Awesome conference – thanks to all that reached out and introduced themselves, stayed attentive during my presentations, asked questions, interacted in one-on-ones, and commented on my blog and research.

I can’t say enough about the Erik Wahl keynote – evidenced by the crowd jumping out of their seats for a standing “O” and rushing the stage for autographs.  He did a great job.

One of the topics that keeps coming up is mobility and Big Data.  It’s interesting to see what kind of impact our mobile devices and their ability to locate/track/monitor are having. One example I used at the conference was my “Fit Bit” –  or a pedometer on steroids.

For a few years now I have been using Google location.  Ostensibly I first used it collaboratively with my kids so I would know where they were, and they would know where I am.  Interestingly enough, the geek boys accepted the monitoring, while the women (wife and daughter) would have none of it.

Now that we have had a few years of experience, and improvements, I thought I would share the kind of reports I am getting.  Like, my last two weeks worth of travel:


Obviously the trip to the Catalyst Conference stands out, as does my travels along the Maine Coast during vacation (kayaking and camping).  Location even allows me to replay it chronologically….

Sure – there is still some fine tuning that needs to take place – like this chart on my location dashboard:


I apparently spend no time at work, and a lot of time out away from home…

For me, the creepiness factor starts to set in here (I am sure of many of you passed that point long ago in this discussion)


Now – for the record, I didn’t “check in” (facebook, foursquare, or Google plus) – yet location still made some observations about the where and when of my whereabouts – including Chris Howard’s favorite Indian restaurant in San Diego (Masala in Old Town).

And even more intriguing, my travel calendar from the last year, accompanied (in another table) by airports and travel time,,


Note I haven’t DONE A THING to have this info collected – except to keep my phone on, and sign up for Google location.

It gets better than that in terms of detail and interesting information, but we’ll stop here.  We are just scratching the surface of big-geo data, and the advantages (or disadvantages) of mobility.  Now, interesting enough, my iphone and plan is associated with work.  And that is where the work/privacy issues really start to come into play.  But that’s for another blog day….

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Category: catalyst-12  fun  future  innovation  mobility  social-media  wireless  

Tags: 3g  catalyst-na  cloud  consumerization  mobility  privacy  social-media  wireless  

Jack Santos
Research VP
7 years at Gartner
40 years IT industry

Jack Santos is a Research Vice President with Gartner, part of the Enterprise Architecture and Technology Innovation team within the Gartner for IT Leaders product. He focuses on enterprise architecture and technology trends. Mr. Santos' specific area of research covers individual development, leadership and management practices for enterprise architects, EA innovation, and collaboration approaches. Read Full Bio

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