Using time and time patterns to detect things.
Bob Pinner (CDC) – An internal medicine and infectious disease doc, now working on epidemiology – three major dimensions are time, place, and person. The structure of things they think about are similar to events. Infectious disease surveillance is what he works on – monitoring trends, or more recently, early detection. Can you go earlier than a specific diagnosis, to a syndrome, or even earlier, to a set of conditions. The earlier you get the less specific the signals are. Public health functions are organized locally by state and county – that’s good for local response but not so good for national distribution of medicine, for instance.
Steve Hofmayr (Sana Security) – Trying to detect malicious software on a single computer. Gathering information can leave you vulnerable. If you’re looking at time on your computer, looking at dynamic behavior of a system. When it behaves a little strangely, it’s not enough to define it as bad, but when it’s a lot strange it’s too late. With machines you can roll back what happened once you know. Analagous to the immune system, which doesn’t mount a massive response right when it sees something new, but waits to gather more information before responding. A classic example – You’d think if something on its machine that tries to hide itself is bad, but it’s not necessarily. Or if a process survives a reboot. But if enough of those kinds of events are correlated in time, then it becomes more likely that there is some malware.
Dan Doman – At doubleclick they had a vision of highly targeted advertising. Keeping track of demographic data is difficult – he got interested in inferring demographics – e.g. people who go to sports sites are likely to be guys, etc. Contextual advertising is delivering advertising within the context that the consumer is in now. You look for the numbers of times people are looking at things (“velocity”) over a period of time which indicate an intensity of interest.
Omar Tawakol (Revenue Science) – Behavioral targeting – advertisers and marketers have always wanted to reach people based on what they care about. Behavioral targeting talks about the person reading the page, not the text on a page. It also brings the notion of time into the equation – if you go to a car site, and then to an entertainment site, the entertainment site can show you car ads. In advertising there are two uses for time – one is branding, which is all about your interests; the other is direct response, where the goal is immediate response. Branding is more time independent – it you’re a golfer you probably will be in five years, but if you’re looking to buy a mortgage, you probably won’t buy again for five years.