Researchers at the University of Washington and the University of California-San Diego have developed a free service to track missing laptops, reports PCWorld.com.
Adeona, named after the Roman goddess credited with guiding children back to their parents, works like this, according to the story:
After the software is downloaded it, it anonymously sends encrypted notes about the computer's location to servers on the Internet. If the laptop is lost, the user downloads another program, enters a user name and password, and then picks up this information from the servers. The Mac version of Adeona even has software that photographs the computer's latest user.
While the service can't exactly take you to the exact person who has the laptop, it does provide the IP address that last used it and nearby routers to help you find it.