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Like Google, most weeks Microsoft gets a big bundle of patents – and its forty-two patent awards this [past] week puts it on top of the charts.

US patent 8,260,775 is one that’s worth digging into.

Microsoft describes this innovation as a “geo-temporal searching tool” that will make life vastly easier for people trying to track you down. That means employers, the government, advertisers and, unfortunately, stalkers and angry ex spouses.

Clearly, another one for the privacy folks to track. This shot from the patent has a description below the fold that uses the historic composer J. S. Bach as an example of tracking over time and geography. It shows a select region of Europe centering in Bach’s home region of what is now Germany – and a time window from the years 1685 to 1765.

It isn’t hard to imagine all kinds of marketing scenarios that could make use of such data on real live social network users. Potential political, marketing and data aggregation uses abound.

Microsoft’s patent on geo-temporal tracking, as you can see, could conceivably show a location portion of a search interface – finding people by time and location. In the Bach example, you get search events in a visible window onscreen.

Gina SmithReadWriteWeb

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