I am a senior principal researcher at Microsoft Research in Redmond, WA. I work in the Artificial Intelligence section of the lab, concentrating mostly on understanding and predicting peoples' location. This has applications for mobile computing, local search, maps, and driving. I earned my PhD in Robotics from the School of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University.


I helped Nabil Hossain create an online game for crowdsourcing funny headlines. We're using the data to train an algorithm to create funny headlines automatically. This will be a demo paper at ACL 2020 titled "Stimulating Creativity with FunLines: A Case Study of Humor Generation in Headlines".

Heba Aly and I, along with coauthors Gireeja Ranade and Eric Horvitz, won a best paper runner up award at the 2018 SIGSPATIAL Conference. Our paper is called "On the Value of Spatiotemporal Information: Principles and Scenarios".

I gave an invited talk called "Curious True Facts About People and Location" at a bio-navigation symposium in Kyoto, Japan in September of 2018. Can you find me in this picture? (Hint: front row.)

I gave a keynote talk at Ford's internal AI conference in June 2018. I explained our recent work on traffic modeling with a Markov random field, computing the value of GPS data, and finding safer driving routes.

I got a 10-Year Impact Award at the 2017 UbiComp Conference for a research paper I wrote in 2007 on location privacy called "Inference Attacks on Location Tracks".

My  coauthors and I got the best paper award at the 6th International Workshop on Pervasive Urban Applications, collocated with UbiComp 2017. The paper describes an algorithm for predicting the number of taxi pickups in New York City.

Latest Research

Intern Heba Aly, along with coauthors Gireeja Ranade and Eric Horvitz, develop a way to compute the monetary value of GPS data for various scenarios.

What are the best questions a personal digital assistant should ask to learn the most about you? We used mutual information on census data to compute the best few questions. This was work with Nikola Banovic when he was an intern with me at Microsoft Research.

Instead of computing the fastest driving route (green), we can compute the safest route (red), or a compromise between the two (black).

Events induce people to tweet. Here is the average number of tweets sent from some NFL football games in 2017. There is a steep rise in number before the game starts, and then a gradual decrease. There are parallels to evoked mental responses in the brain.

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