Section: New Software and Platforms

UCN Data Collection

Contributors: Anna-Kaisa Pietilainen, Tom Logde (University of Nottingham), Richard Mortier (University of Nottingham), Peter Tolmie (University of Notthingham), Renata Teixeira

Available at: https://muse.inria.fr/ucn , code https://github.com/ucn-eu

The User-Centric Networking (UCN) project is seeking to understand how people consume various kinds of content when using computer networks. Within this project we are undertaking a detailed user study across a range of environments in order to understand the practices involved in consuming media and other content according to context. For the study, we have set up the following tools and software:

  • Registration and management website: we have developed a website containing information about the experiment, and user and device registration interfaces.

  • VPN server and clients for network traffic data collection: we are using OpenVPN open-source VPN server and available free clients on multiple platforms (OpenVPN for Linux, OpenVPN for Android, Tunnelblick for OS X, OpenVPN Connect for iOS) to collect network traffic traces from the participating devices. The VPN server is running on a secure Inria server, and we collect packet headers using tcpdump and http traffic logs with a Squid HTTP proxy. Collected data is stored on another server not directly accessible from the Internet.

  • Activity logging software: we have developed a small Android application to log additional activity details such as list of running applications, foreground application, screen state, network connectivity details, and system resources (cpu, memory, network, battery) usage.

  • Data collection from Moves and Google Calendar: we have written some code to import user data from Moves application and a Google Calendar based diary to add user location and daily activity logs to the data set.

  • Data visualisation: the website contains a section to visualise all the collected data (network traffic as a function of location, time of day, activity) to support interviews with an ethnographer.

    We have obtained Ethics approval from Inria's COERLE for conducting the data collection and the user study and have done the CNIL declaration for this data collection. Our data collection and user study will start early 2015.