If you were shown exactly how much your daily transportation choices
contribute to/avoid CO2 pollution, would you be more willing/satisfied
to adopt less carbon-intensive behaviors? Maybe yes. But if you were
asked to manually keep track of each movement for estimating such
contribution, would you keep doing it in the long-term? Probably not.
E-Mission is a smartphone app developed at the AMPLab in UC Berkeley
(California, US) that monitors transportation carbon footprint while
trying to keep users engaged. Effort is minimized, as trips and modes
of transportation are inferred from GPS and accelerometer data, while
attention is stimulated via data visualization, game-like interaction
and decision making analysis.
Self-tracking apps like E-Mission represent first steps towards a
better understanding of a yet unexplored potential for data-driven
sustainability promotion. Furthermore, the data collected from these projects
have potential benefits not only for the individual, but also at the
societal level. For example, in the case of transportation, knowing
how, where and when people move could help policy makers planning
more effectively new bike routes and public transport schedules.