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Information and Frequently Asked Questions


1. What does the sociometric badge measure?

Our badge measures the amount of face-to-face interaction, conversational dynamics (e.g. turn taking patterns, tone of voice, etc.), physical proximity to other people, and physical activity levels using social signals derived from vocal features, body motion, and relative location.

2. Does it detect other people not wearing a badge?

No, the badge can only detect face-to-face interaction and physical proximity to someone else who is also wearing a badge.

3. Does it record everything that I say?

No, it does not record the content of your conversations. It extracts non-verbal features (e.g. speaking speed, tone of voice, among others), from which the conversation cannot be re-constructed. However, they can also be programmed to record raw audio for specific applications.

4. Does it know everywhere I go?

No, it does not have a GPS. It can only do indoor location estimation when base stations are deployed inside a building.

5. Can I buy sociometric badges? How much do they cost?

They are currently not for sale but we are working on a new version that will be available next year (> July 2011). Researchers planning to use them for non-commercial applications will be able to buy them or collaborate with us on several research projects. Consultants or companies planning to use them for commercial applications will be able to license them. For more information please contact us at communicator@media.mit.edu

6. Will I be able to program them with my own applications?

The new version will run Linux, making them extremely versatile. We will provide the basic functionality and drivers and researchers will be able to specify several data collection features (e.g. sampling frequency, processing algorithms, etc.)


Ongoing projects (and collaborators):

Past projects and collaborators:

Current MIT UROPs:

  • Erik Verlage
  • Alejandro Hasfura


  • Nathan Davis
  • Agustya Mehta
  • Alice Yeh




Copyright (C) 2007-2011 MIT Media Laboratory
This website was last updated on: June, 2011