Very cool OSS project for tracking and recovering your lost or stolen laptop.  It’s a project from the University of Washington.  This app sounds like a great way to address the 12,000 laptops lost per week at US airports.

The UW website states:

“Adeona is the first Open Source system for tracking the location of your lost or stolen laptop that does not rely on a proprietary, central service. This means that you can install Adeona on your laptop and go — there’s no need to rely on a single third party. What’s more, Adeona addresses a critical privacy goal different from existing commercial offerings. It is privacy-preserving. This means that no one besides the owner (or an agent of the owner’s choosing) can use Adeona to track a laptop. Unlike other systems, users of Adeona can rest assured that no one can abuse the system in order to track where they use their laptop. “

A very cool feature is using the iSight camera to take pics of the “user” after your laptop has been lost/stolen.  This feature is for Mac OS X, but Adeona is useful for laptops of all kinds.  The team is looking at Adeona for mobile devices.

Linux, OS X and XP/Vista are supported.

Btw kudos to: Ph.D. students Gabriel Maganis and Thomas Ristenpart, working with UW faculty members Tadayoshi Kohno and Arvind Krishnamurthy.