Mates, when social networks marry presence

University of Michigan has developed Mates, a location based social networking program, that creates buddy lists on your IM based purely on people in your immediate vicinity. Leveraging wireless networks, it can find people in your classrooms, neighborhoods or even in case of Silicon Valley, in your office parks.

Smart Mobs: With mates, your IM program could automatically create buddy lists based on the people in your classroom, office building, or neighborhood; you could be informed via SMS when old friends happen to be nearby or your laptop/handheld could connect you to a live feed of information about nearby people and events. The open infrastructure will allow existing software to harness the location based social networking and a platform on top of which other new applications can be developed.