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We think ourselves as being dynamic, unpredictable individuals, but that’s an ilusion. In a study published in last week’s Science, researchers looked at customer location data culled from cellular service providers. By looking at how customers moved around, the authors of the study found that it may be possible to predict human movement patterns and location up to 93 percent of the time.
It’s not currently possible to know exactly where everyone is all the time, but cell phones can provide a pretty good approximation. Cell phone companies store records of customers’ locations based on when the customers’ phones connect to towers, including logins and keepalives for the connection. Taking this data and paring it down to users might allow them to see if they could develop any measure of how predictable human movements and locations are.