Roy Want

E-mail: roywant AT acm. org,  roywant AT
Google Inc., Mail-Stop: US-MTV-B43
1600 Amphitheatre Parkway
Mountain View, CA 94043, USA

Last Updated: January, 2018
Click here for a printable version 


Research Interests

Mobile computing, ubiquitous & pervasive  computing,  hardware design, electronic commerce, smart cards, distributed systems, multimedia systems, location finding systems, cellular automata, novel user interfaces, MEMS, electronic tagging (RFID/NFC/BLE)


Professional Awards






  Skill Set


  Projects (Click Here for Photo Archive that involve prototype devices)




Journals & Periodicals

Book, Book Chapters & Published Reports

Articles  & Editorials

Workshop Papers (published)

EIC Introductions (IEEE Pervasive Computing) 

Papers in Review

For  selected publications referencing my work (click here)


   Professional Activities  

Professional Societies, Awards, Standards, and Executive Committees

Conference Program Chairs

Conference Technical Program Committee Service  

Invited Presentations (selected)

Editorial Posts

PhD Thesis Committees

Industry & Academia Technical Awards

Pre-College Award

Government Grants, Industry Committees


Patents   (click here for latest patent search)

Over 110 patents filed since 1990, the following 101 have issued:

Patent Issued Title
101 US09817540 2017-11-14 Device, system, and method of composing logical computing platforms
2017-10-17 Self-organizing hybrid indoor location system
99 US09666013 2017-05-30 Cloud-based vending
98 US09662569 2017-05-30 Sensor fusion to combine sensor input data from multiple devices into one input stream
97 US09621703 2017-04-11 Motion to connect to kiosk
96 US09609482 2017-03-28 Cloud-coordinated location system using ultrasonic pulses and radio signals
95 US09413872 2016-08-09 Motion to connect to kiosk
94 US09282232 2016-03-08 Collaborative Image Control




Creating a social network based on an activity




System and method for code communication




Secure peer-to-peer network setup




Motion initiated time synchronization




Variable read rates for short-range communication




Activity distribution between multiple devices




Privacy display




Search with my location history




Collaborative image control




Labeling communication device call logs




Dynamic geometry management of virtual frame buffer for appendable logical displays




Gesture detection using an array of short-range communication devices




Communication redirect via short-range communication for digital item retrieval  




Computing device interaction with visual media




User model creation




Controlling a target device using short-range communication




Virtual control panels using short-range communication




Device, system, and method of providing an extended display with desired relative display orientation 




Privacy display

74 US08363586 2013-01-29 Social networking and advertisements in a mobile device on a local personal area network
73 US08281123 2012-10-02 Apparatus and method for managing and protecting information during use of semi-trusted interfaces 
72 US08254995 2012-08-28 Method and device for communicating data 
71 US08170212 2012-05-01 Device, system, and method of establishing secure wireless communication
70 US08117284 2012-02-14 Unsolicited and unconfirmed computing platform service information 
69 US08107879 2012-01-31 Device, system, and method of establishing multiple wireless connections
68 US08081612 2011-12-20 Device, system, and method of selectively activating a wireless network connection
67 RE42927 2011-11-15 System and method for obtaining and using location specific information
66 US08041951 2011-10-18 Code-based communication connection management 
65 US07831278 2010-11-09 Method and device for communicating data with a personal wireless storage device
64 US07779193 2010-08-17 Method and apparatus for external data transfer in a personal storage device
63 US07707150 2010-04-27 Automatic exchange of information in an ad-hoc computing environment
62 US07664529 2010-02-16 Methods and apparatus for data communication for mobile electronic devices
61 US07483952 2009-01-27 System transmitting unsolicited and unconfirmed computing platform service information to wireless devices
60 US07426403 2008-09-16 Methods and apparatus for data communication for mobile electronic devices
59 US07337466 2008-02-26 Information hiding through time synchronization
58 US07278024 2007-10-02 Session authentication using temporary passwords
57 US07253800 2007-08-07 Manipulative user interface systems and methods
56 US07229017  2007-06-12 Laser locating and tracking system for externally activated tags
55 US07202783 2007-04-10 Method and system for identifying when a first devices is within a physical range of a second device
54 US07200812  2007-04-03 Method, apparatus and system for enabling users to selectively greek documents
53 US07174462 2007-02-06 Method of authentication using familiar photographs
52 US07089288 2006-08-08 Interactive context preserved navigation of graphical data sets using multiple physical tags
51 US07082578  2006-07-25 Computer user interface using a physical manipulatory grammar
50 US06816859 2004-11-09  Rotationally desensitized unistroke handwriting recognition (extended)
49 US06630922  2003-10-07  Handedness detection for a physical manipulatory grammar
48 US06628447 2003-09-30  Array of rotatable solid elements for color display
47 US06611196 2003-08-26  System and method for providing audio augmentation of a physical environment
46 US06608549  2003-08-19 Virtual interface for configuring an audio augmentation system
45 US06573916 2003-06-03 Navigation of rendered virtual environments using physical tags
44 US06542083  2003-04-01  Electronic tag position detection using radio broadcast
43 US06498601 2002-12-24  Method and apparatus for selecting input modes on a palmtop computer
42 US06456273 2002-09-24 Flap array under fluidic and electrical control
41 US06446208 2002-09-03 User interface system based on sequentially read electronic tags
40 US06422474 2002-07-23 N-space indexing of digital data representations using physical tags
39 US06366697 2002-02-04 Rotationally desensitized unistroke handwriting recognition
38 US06342830 2002-01-29 Controlled shielding of electronic tags
37 US06340957 2002-01-22 Dynamically relocatable tileable displays
36 US06340931 2002-01-22 Network printer document interface using electronic tags (extended)
35 US06326946 2001-12-04 Operator icons for information collages
34 US06297838 2001-02-10 Spinning as a morpheme for a physical manipulatory grammar
33 US06297805 2001-02-10 Multiple interacting computers interface-able through a physical manipulatory grammar
32 US06292744 2001-09-12 Infrared beacon positioning system (extended)
31 US06268857 2001-07-31 Computer user interface using a physical manipulatory grammar
30 US06249226 2001-06-19 Network printer document interface using electronic tags
29 US06243075 2001-06-05 Graspable device manipulation for controlling a computer display
28 US06243074 2001-06-05 Handedness detection for a physical manipulatory grammar
27 US06241364 2001-06-05 Light fixture embedded infrared beacon
26 US06216087 2001-04-10 Infrared beacon positioning system
25 US06176425 2001-01-23 Information management system supporting multiple electronic tags
24 US06160540 2000-12-12 Zoomorphic computer user interface
23 US06122520 2000-09-19 System and method for obtaining and using location specific information
22 US06021399 2000-02-01 Space efficient method of verifying electronic payments
21 US06008727 1999-12-28 Selectively enabled electronic tags
20 US06005482 1999-12-21 Surface mounted information collage
19 US05982520 1999-11-09 Personal storage device for application and data transfer
18 US05952638 1999-09-14 Space efficient method of electronic payments
17 US05857023 1999-01-05 Space efficient method of redeeming electronic payments
16 US05825675 1998-10-20 Apparatus and configuration method for a small, hand-held computing device
15 US05818425 1998-10-06 Mapping drawings generated on small mobile pen based electronic devices onto large displays
14 US05812865  1998-09-22 Specifying and establishing communication data paths between particular media devices in multiple media device computing systems based on context of a user or users
13 US05793630 1998-08-11 High precision spatially defined data transfer system
12 US05721725 1998-02-24 Protocol for channel access in wireless or network data communication
11 US05627517 1997-05-06 Decentralized tracking and routing system wherein packages are associated with active tags
10 US05611050 1997-03-11 Method for selectively performing event on computer controlled device whose location and allowable operation is consistent with the contextual and locational attributes of the event
9 US05603054 1997-02-11 Method for triggering selected machine event when the triggering properties of the system are met and the triggering conditions of an identified user are perceived
8 US05564070 1996-10-08 Method and system for maintaining processing continuity to mobile computers in a wireless network
7 US05555376 1996-09-10 Method for granting a user request having locational and contextual attributes consistent with user policies for devices having locational attributes consistent with the user request
6 US05544321 1996-08-06 System for granting ownership of device by user based on requested level of ownership, present state of the device, and the context of the device
5 US05530235 1996-06-25 Interactive contents revealing storage device
4 US05493692 1996-02-20 Selective delivery of electronic messages in a multiple computer system based on context and environment of a user
3 US05493283
Locating and authentication system
2 US05485634 1996-01-16 Method and system for the dynamic selection, allocation and arbitration of control between devices within a region
1 US05402469 1995-03-28 Carrier locating system

Europe: 00124926.7-2206, Virtual Control System Using non-imaging Scanner
Europe: 00124927.5-2210, Patterned Retro-reflective Tags Usable in
Laser Scanning Systems


  Media: Projects & Career





  • IEEE CCNC'14: keynote "Pervasive Computing is the New Black",  R. Want, 11th January 2014, Las Vegas, NV.


  • IEEE PerCom'13: keynote "The Golden Age of Pervasive Computing", R. Want, 19th March, 2013, San Diego, CA






  • Intel IDF Fall August 19-21, San Francisco, 2008: Dynamic Composable Computing  Demo Booth & Tech Session.
  • Intel Blog: Carry Small, Live Large, April 9th 2008
  • Intel IDF Spring March 30-April 2nd 2008, Shanghai, China: Gaming & Dynamic Composition
  • Intel Blog: Dynamic Composable Computing, March 27th 2008









  • Business Week, 4th December 2000, "Frontier: Forecast 2001 The Wireless Future A unified phone, fax, and browser? Not yet. But loads of improvements will make your life easier", by Kevin Ferguson, 
  • Metropolis, July 2000, "Warm and Fuzzy logic", by Peter Kupfer pp100-p135, (Electronic Tags p134).
  • Red Herring, July 2000, Hindsight (ParcTab reference in Red Herring 1995 article), p64, by John J. Eilenberg.
  • ComputorEdge Online- San Diego, "Invisible Computers" by David Ross.
  • New York Times, Circuits -D5, "As gadgets shrink, they may wind up in surprising places.", by Anne Eisenberg, May 4th 2000. (Embedded Computing).
  • Red Herring "Handheld Devices - Revolution at Hand",  by Niall McKay, May 2000, pp232-235 (Electronic Tags).
  • C-NET/CNBC "Beyond the PC", TV interview Richard Hart Hosting, Sat 1pm, April 8th 2000.
  • Info World, "Converging Future", by Eve Epstein, Friday 7th January 2000 (MEMS, IT and the future).
  • PC World, "The Future PC", by Michelle Campanelli , pp116-130, January 2000, (electronic tagging quotes).
  • Newsweek, "Future of the Internet", January 2000, by Lois Taylor.


  • San Jose Mercury News, "The Post-PC Era" , by Deborah Claymon, 29th November 1999, pp10E & 22E (Electronic Tagging)
  • Worth Magazine, Visions: The Internet in 2002, by Ed Sussman and Lan N. Nguyen, November 1999 pp152-163, E-tags: quote: 22. "You won't have to know a web sites address" 
  • CACM, The Post-PC Era, October 1999 p21-22 (Parctab) by Larry Press
  • LA Times,  The Cutting Edge: Focus on Technology, "Computing's Next Wave: Thinking Toasters", by Ashely Dunn,1C p1. Aug. 23rd 1999, (electronic tagging quotes)
  • The Financial Post (Toronto, ON) Sowing PARC's next revolution, April 21st 1999, Page C13 - Internet Stock Fountain. by Sentor Avzav.
  • Tech Week, (Silicon Valley), "PARC Place", by David Becker, March 22nd 1999, Vol 2. No. 6. p1 & p18-p19. (PARC & Internet Fountain)
  • KRON TV, "Electronic Tagging", Reporter: Anthony Moor, Channel 4, 11pm, 6th May.


  • San Jose Mercury News, "Here, there and Everywhere", Elizabeth Wasserman, , Jan 6th 1998, pp1F-2F (Minder & ParcTab).
  • WE magazine, "Life Inside the Lab". by Charles A Riley II. , March 1998, pp67-69 (PARC & ubicomp)
  • Mobile Computing and Communications, "The Shape of Things to Come" by Elaine C.Y. Chen. ,
    June 1998, pp75-86. (Active Badge and ParcTab).


  • The Times (UK), The Techno-gospel according to Mark.  Interface Magazine p10-11 Jan. 1997
  • "Ruhiger Leben", Profil Extra,  p18-20. June 1997  (Active Badge and ParcTab)
  • SCAN CNBC-TV, "Future on Computers"  Network 5.30pm May 10th, 1997, 7mins
  • Kron TV: Computing futures. 8th Oct '97
  • Austrian TV: ORF Treffpunkt Kultur, August 9th 1997.
  • PBS ch.9, Life on the Internet, The Future of Computers. 6.30-7.30pm Sun 26th Oct 
  • ABC News TV "Tonight Cutting Edge" Nov 14th, 1997
  • ABC Nightline with Forrest Sawyer TV , Nov 17th, 1997
  • Der Spiegel "Mit meinem Hause reden" Nov '97 p224-225  (Active badge and Parctab)
  • Chip. "Smarte Helferlein" p290, Nov. 1997. (Active badge and ParcTab)


  • Soutwest Airlines SPIRIT magazine, Invisible Computers" by Jim Morrison.  March 1996 P78--88 [Parctab]
  • San Francisco Business Times, "Making Computers Sociable" by Daniel S. Levine. . Technology Quarterly Page March 15-21, 1996 [Active Badges]
  • Blid der Wissenschaft (Tr. The Magazine of Science and Technology), "Die Zukunft Erfinden (Kreative Chaoten denken fur Xerox)" Bruni Kobbe October 1996 P34,  [Parctab]
  • Life on the Internet, "The Disappearing Net", Cochran Entertainment, 1996.


  • PC Computing, January 95, , "The Office of the Future", 190-196, by Wendy Taylor.
  • Popular Science, February 95, , "Total Recall", pp 46-48/80-81 by Robert Langreth
  • WIRED, March 95, "You're Not Paranoid: They Really Are Watching You", pp95--85, by John Whalen.
  • Oakland Tribune, March 1st , , Cyberia - Excursions in the Digital Domain, Interview by Howard Bryant, D1-4.
  • Stern Magazine, March 28th, , Interview by Thomas Borchert, Published 19th October 95, pp144--148.
  • L'Express, March 9th, , Sneaky Chips, Interview by Christophe Agnus photo-shoot 28th March. Issue published on August 8th, pp58--59
  • Communications Week International, April 11th, , Telecom '95, Interview by Susan Grossman
  • Southwest Spirit, April 17th , , Southwest Airlines, Interview by Jim Morrison
  • PBS "Frontline" - High stakes in Cyberspace, June 14th, , with Robert Krulwich, produced by Frank and Martin Koughan. See Aired Oct on TV 31st (Halloween).
  • Il Manefesto, June 26th, , Interview by Flamina Denarie @ Berkeley
  • San Fransisco Examiner, September 15th, , "Playground of Invention", by Susan Moran.
  • Info Week & Boston Globe, September 30th,, Interview by Emily Kay
  • Pen Computing Magazine, November 95, , "Pen News - Xerox Partab", p16.


  • Profiles: Continental Airlines: Oct 94, p 14. - Digital Skeleton Key.
  • Channel 5 news coverage of Ubiquitous Computing at PARC (28th Apr)
  • Wired. "PARC IS BACK!", Feb '94. Featuring the Active Badge and ParcTab, pp91-95. by Howard Rheingold.
  • Smithsonian. Vol 25 No.6 'We're going to have computers coming out of the Woodwork' by Richard Wolkomir. pp82-93 (features Parctab).


  • Glamour Magazine: Coming: Employee trackers, Susan Vinella, April 1993, p117
  • BYTE: Track People with Active Badges, Dick Pountain, December 1993, p57-64


  • West Mag: San Jose Mercury News. March 8th 1992. "The Boss that never Blinks". Tom McNichol
  • San Jose Mercury News, Thur. March 1992. "A Computer to Wear". Rory J O'Connor
  • Palo Alto, Weekly. Vol X111, No. 32. May 6th, 1992. "The Office of the 21st Century", Jock Friedly.
  • Milwaukee Journal: May 19, 1992 Hardwear: Computers move into the world of fashion. A. Pollack
  • InfoWorld: June 1992. "Active Badges Limit Privacy But Boost Productivity", Bob Metcalfe.
  • InfoWorld: July 6 1992 page 51 "More on Active Badges and fears about loss of privacy" Bob Metcalfe.
  • Business Week: Aug 17th, 1992. "Big Brother, Pinned to your chest." Peter Coy
  • The Times (UK). Thur 27th. August 1992. "Adults Baffled By Complex Gadgets". (ParcTab picture from EP).
  • The New York Times: Sat Sept 12 1992 "Orwellian Dream Come True: A Badge That Pinpoints You" Leonard Sloane
  • The Washington Post: 8th October 1992 "Active Badges Play Follow the Worker; Computerised Trackers Spark Worries about 'Big Brother'". J. Burgess.
  • Mercury News: 8th October 92. "You Can't Hide from the Badge - Computer tracks your every move. John Burgess
  • Security Management Magazine: Nov. 1992. "The badge that beckons". Lisa Arbetter.
  • Omni Magazine: Dec 92 Issue STYLE: "Dress Code: The ultimate PCs will be worn." A. J. S. Rayl.
  • CBS-TV. Banmiller on Business (Ch. 2). "Active Badges in the Office World". Sat. 29th August 92, 10.30pm Staring R.Want, B. Schilit, and Marvin Theimer in a 6 minute documentary.

  Sports & Hobbies