Recent activities (April 2021):
- Submitted 7 pieces of academic work in three months.
- Doing a writing retreat for 3 weeks on the countryside.
GreaseDroid is my latest project. It aims to give end-users more choice about the technology they rely on.
The idea is to create a community of patch developers that write instructions that describe how to modify certain app features. In turn, end-users — even those with limited expertise — can choose what modifications they would like to make to their apps.
At the moment, GreaseDroid allows users to block apps’ access to personal information, as well as remove distracting elements from the Twitter app.
Publication (published as LBW at CHI2021, together with Siddhartha Datta and Max Van Kleek): https://arxiv.org/pdf/2102.11819.pdf
TrackerControl is an Android app to restrict tracking on smartphones. Tracking means collection of data about app usage. This includes the times when you start and close an app, and what buttons you click.
My colleagues at Oxford found that 90% of apps can share data with Google, and 40% with Facebook.
Pretty scary, but does it surprise you? Give the app a try, if you want to learn if you’re being tracked, too. (Spoiler: Yes)
You’ve probably heard of the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). But, would you know what it means? Presumably something with data protection, ha?
Software developers have to apply this law to their software. But, the thing is highly complex and ambiguous.
This is why I tried to summarised the essentials of GDPR for app developers. If you’re one of them, check it out!
Ever felt like exploring a different identity? Well, then IdentiSwap might be something for you. If not, why not try?
IdentiSwap is a browser extension that allows you to see what a first-time visitor on YouTube would see for their next-up recommendations. That’s the stuff on the right hand side, when playing a video.
It’s been speculated that these recommendations have brought Trump into office because they drive you to ever more extreme, sensational content. Remember videos watched spent means ads served for YouTube. A coincidence?
Again, pretty scary. I really wonder how I manage to keep sane in my PhD. Anyways, give it a try if you’re bold!
- Research into YouTube
- Organising my first talk, with Reuben Binns for the Oxford Legal Tech and Fintech Society