Beating congestion with mobiles

From the Beeb: Beating congestion with mobiles.

If you do not like crowds, congestion, chaos — and few do — then you might want to avoid Rome’s rush-hour. But congestion in the city might be about to ease a little as researchers use Italy’s passion for mobiles to combat Rome’s daily war on wheels.

Researchers from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) are using data from mobile-phone networks to create real time maps of people moving around the city.

Networks keep track of subscribers to ensure signals stay strong, and because so many people have mobiles, this data can give an accurate picture of where people are in a city.

"This is really the first time that you can take an urban system, like a big city, and try to see in real time how it lives, how people move and what’s happening in the city," says Carlo Ratti from MIT. [continue]