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Saturday, January 18, 2014

On the frontiers of science

Posted by Marc Abrahams in Improbable Research
Annoying phone calls and documents clog our telephone, email, and other communications networks. Inventors, and the institutions backing them, are trying to fight technology with technology. Here are three of their patent applications:

International patent application WO 2007070622 A3, Filed Dec 14, 2006 by ‎Anurag Agarwal and Deepak Jindal (Google is involved): “A system and method for evaluating documents for approval or rejection and/or rating. 

The method comprises comparing the document to one or more criteria determining whether the document contains an element that is substantially identical to one or more of a visual element, an audio element or a textual element that is determined to be displeasing.”

US patent application 20100278325 A1, filed May 4, 2009 by Navjot Singh, Saurabh Bagchi, Yu-Sung Wu (Avaya Inc. and Purdue Research Foundation are involved): ”A method for predicting whether a telephone call that is being set up will be considered annoying by the called party and, if so, for preventing it from being established. 

The illustrative embodiment predicts whether a telephone call will be considered annoying by the called party based on temporal characteristics of previous calls from the same caller. For example, when a called party receives an unwanted telephone solicitation, he or she will usually hang up within the first minute. 

If many telephone calls are made from the same caller, and all of these calls last under a minute, then it is reasonable to predict that future calls from this caller will be considered annoying.”

US patent application US 20130260743 A1, filed May 31, 2013 by Xiufeng Wang, Zhenglei Xu, Liang Deng, Xin Chen (Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd. is involved): “The subjective perception of the subscriber is important for a telecom operator. 

If the subscriber has a good feeling for a certain communication service, the subscriber is promoted to use the service. In a statistical period, if the subjective perception of a subscriber is poor, and the subscriber cannot receive care from the operator, the subscriber may complain and even change carriers. 

Therefore, it is very necessary for a telecom operator to accurately identify potential subscribers who have poor subjective perception and may complain or change carriers, and offer preventive care to the subscribers, or offer active care to subscribers with important values.”