The Magitti Activity-Aware Leisure Guide: Opportunity Discovery, Innovation and New Technology Platform Development at PARC


Date Thursday May 29th 2008
Time 4:00-5:00pm
Venue George E. Pake Auditorium

PARC Forum

In this presentation, we describe a project undertaken at PARC for Dai Nippon Printing Co. Ltd., to assist them in developing a new business opportunity beyond their traditional printing. The solution, codenamed Magitti, was designed to be synergistic with DNP’s existing strengths in the publishing industry whilst incorporating the latest in context- and activity-aware computing techniques to recommend published content. We cover market and opportunity discovery fieldwork, as well as the system components and user experience and, very briefly, an early field evaluation in which users tested a prototype in Palo Alto and surrounding neighborhoods in California.

Magitti is an electronic mobile leisure guide for when you are out and about and want to know what a neighborhood has to offer. It presents options for things to do, filtered by how well they match your current activity and interests. You don¹t have to tell Magitti what you are doing; it uses an inference engine to figure this out for itself. Your interests are then inferred from your time, location, past behavior and predicted activity type (i.e., dining, shopping, seeing or doing). Taste profiles and preferences can be dynamically adjusted if you wish to improve the recommendations further. For example, you can tell Magitti that you prefer vegetarian food in general, but right now you are looking for fast food. Each recommendation comes with user reviews and ratings which also determine how likely it is that an item will be recommended. Magitti always assumes that you want to see the best offerings in each category first and over time it learns from your behavior so that recommendations keep getting better.


Victoria Bellotti is a Principal Scientist and manager of the Socio-Technical and Interaction Research (STIR) group at PARC. She studies people to understand their practices, problems and requirements for future technology. She also designs and analyzes systems, focusing on user needs and experience and is an inventor on multiple patents and pending patent applications. Her past work encompasses domains such as transportation, process control, computer-mediated communication, collaboration and ubiquitous computing. Victoria is best known for her research on personal information management and task management. However, more recently, she has been focusing on user-centered design of context- and activity-aware computing systems.

Victoria received a B.S. in Psychology in 1982, an M.S. in Ergonomics in 1983 from University College, London UK and a Ph.D. in Human Computer Interaction from Queen Mary and Westfield College, London UK in 1991.

Bo Begole is Manager of the Ubiquitous Computing Research Area at PARC. He is an applied computer scientist who creates technologies for novel

end-user applications. His past work includes systems that provide synchronous collaboration of single-user applications, computer-mediated communication, distributed interpersonal awareness, sensor-based interruptibility detection, temporal pattern modeling and prediction, media device interoperability, and context-aware mobile information retreival. He is a co-Chair of the 2008 conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW 2008), to be held in San Diego, CA, USA on 8-12 Nov 2008.

Bo received a B.S. in 1992 in Mathematics from Virginia Commonwealth University, an M.S. in 1994 and a Ph.D. in 1998 in Computer Science from Virginia Tech. Prior to his studies, Bo served in the US Army as an Arabic language translator specializing in Egyptian, Libyan and Iraqi dialects. Bo is glad he switched careers when he did.

Additional information

Focus Areas

Our work is centered around a series of Focus Areas that we believe are the future of science and technology.

Licensing & Commercialization Opportunities

We’re continually developing new technologies, many of which are available for Commercialization.


PARC scientists and staffers are active members and contributors to the science and technology communities.