Special Wednesday Seminar! Lin Zhang discusses Crowd-sourced Mobile Urban Sensing


This afternoon, Spetember 21,  there will be a special Wednesday Seminar. From 2-3 PM in 406 Davis Hall, Lin Zhang of Tsinghua University will present "Crowd-sourced Mobile Urban Sensing".

Wide area urban sensing is a topic of interest both within industry and academia, as well as a technique urgently needed by both city governments and urban residents.  In today’s rapidly urbanizing world, the urban sensing system provides up-to-date, complete and detailed observations of the climate, environment, traffic, and population of a city, all information which can aid government officials in the decision-making process.  The urban sensing system is also a frontier of Internet development, enabling cyber space to sense the ambient environments in which it is embedded.  However, there are two major challenges to urban sensing: communication capacity and sensing capability. 

This presentation will introduce a taxi-cab based mobile sensor system that was designed for wide-area urban sensing purposes.  The presented system addresses both of the aforementioned challenges as well as  considerations of economic and technical feasibility.  The system crowd-sources the sensing tasks to a group of taxi cabs roaming the city, and uses the store-carry-and-forward mechanism to collect and send sensory data to the data center for processing.  Compared to a static, dedicated sensor network, the system enjoys extremely low deployment costs with fairly strong coverage and performance.  The presentation will also describe the details of the system design, including the wireless channel measurement, an energy efficient neighbor discovery method, a utility-based routing protocol for data delivery, and a compressive sensing field recovery algorithm that exploits the sparsity of the physical field in order to reduce the volume of the required sensing data.  The presentation closes with a a discussion of future deployment plans and research directions for the system.