Elise Thomas writes at Hopes & Fears:

"Right now, in a handful of computing labs scattered across the world, new software is being developed which has the potential to completely change our relationship with technology. Affective computing is about creating technology which recognizes and responds to your emotions. Using webcams, microphones or biometric sensors, the software uses a person's physical reactions to analyze their emotional state, generating data which can then be used to monitor, mimic or manipulate that person’s emotions."

[...]

"Corporations spend billions each year trying to build "authentic" emotional connections to their target audiences. Marketing research is one of the most prolific research fields around, conducting thousands of studies on how to more effectively manipulate consumers’ decision-making. Advertisers are extremely interested in affective computing and particularly in a branch known as emotion analytics, which offers unprecedented real-time access to consumers' emotional reactions and the ability to program alternative responses depending on how the content is being received.

For example, if two people watch an advertisement with a joke and only one person laughs, the software can be programmed to show more of the same kind of advertising to the person who laughs while trying different sorts of advertising on the person who did not laugh to see if it's more effective. In essence, affective computing could enable advertisers to create individually-tailored advertising en masse."

"Say 15 years from now a particular brand of weight loss supplements obtains a particular girl's information and locks on. When she scrolls through her Facebook, she sees pictures of rail-thin celebrities, carefully calibrated to capture her attention. When she turns on the TV, it automatically starts on an episode of "The Biggest Loser," tracking her facial expressions to find the optimal moment for a supplement commercial. When she sets her music on shuffle, it "randomly" plays through a selection of the songs which make her sad. This goes on for weeks. 

Now let's add another layer. This girl is 14, and struggling with depression. She's being bullied in school. Having become the target of a deliberate and persistent campaign by her technology to undermine her body image and sense of self-worth, she's at risk of making some drastic choices."

 

Source: http://www.hopesandfears.com/hopes/now/int...

"Yahoo has filed a patent for a type of smart billboard that would collect people's information and use it to deliver targeted ad content in real-time."

To achieve that functionality, the billboards would use a variety of sensor systems, including cameras and proximity technology, to capture real-time audio, video and even biometric information about potential target audiences.

But the tech company doesn’t just want to know about a passing vehicle. It also wants to know who the occupants are inside of it.

That’s why Yahoo is prepared to cooperate with cell towers and telecommunications companies to learn as much as possible about each vehicle’s occupants.

It goes on to explain in the application:

Various types of data (e.g., cell tower data, mobile app location data, image data, etc.) can be used to identify specific individuals in an audience in position to view advertising content. Similarly, vehicle navigation/tracking data from vehicles equipped with such systems could be used to identify specific vehicles and/or vehicle owners. Demographic data (e.g., as obtained from a marketing or user database) for the audience can thus be determined for the purpose of, for example, determining whether and/or the degree to which the demographic profile of the audience corresponds to a target demographic.
Source: https://www.grahamcluley.com/yahoo-creepy-...
 Rogers

Rogers

 TeleGeography.com

TeleGeography.com

Have a look at this- KnightscopeAutonomous Robots that Predict and Prevent Crime 

I talked about a future like this at the QSymposium this year and many of the international relations scholars looked at me like I was from another planet! It took about 48 hours for people to realise that what I was saying was not just the stuff of science fiction, though I admit to watching every episode of Dr Who by the time I was 10 years old. I graduated with a Masters of Transnational Crime Prevention in the Faculty of Law in 2009- this is exactly what I studied, especially with respect to the notion of "hot pursuit" and separately intelligence-led policing (although now it's a lot more fashionable to talk about evidence-based policing. See my panel chairing at this Human Rights and Policing conference. A small part of my own presentation on proactive criminalisation is here.

Is this the future we want?

Is it just me, or can't you see where we're headed with this stuff?

I'd like to think that the data being collected by this BOT was going to be used just for peace and security but that would be a pipedream!

C'mon people "startup of the year"? Do we give prizes for novelty and innovation without thinking what it all might mean in the future?

And please don't give me the rhetoric about a knife being used to butter bread or to kill someone... this ain't the same thing! This is abhorrent! 

One day autonomous data collection, the next a packed mule! Anyone remember this article? But then the way these things are marketed you'd think they weren't real! Well think again... I had the great pleasure of entering Boston Dynamics in June of this year and was greeted by the monstrosities at the front door. The packed mules DO exist, they just haven't been unleashed en mass!

Thanks for the link KMA- interesting these Knightscope guys were given airtime at PII this year. Correct me if I'm wrong- but aren't these the guys PII is raising awareness against? What a smokescreen confusing mess!

Now compare!

Darlek: "I was made to take orders..."

Dr Who: "What does that mean?"

Darlek: "I am a solider, I was made to receive orders."

Katina: "My point exactly."


Poll taken as of 18 July 2014 indicates 53%|47% for|against technology is enslaving us.

poll for and against iq2.jpg


More information on attending the event here

City Recital Hall Angel Place
2 Angel Place
Sydney Australia

Tuesday, 12 August 2014 
6:45 -8:30 pm

Tickets available here

Documentary from thoughtmaybe.com (About)

   Douglas Rushkoff     2014     53:04    Social media networks purport the ability to interact with culture—talking directly to artists, celebrities, movies, brands, and even one another—in ways never before possible. But is this real empowerment? Or do marketing companies still hold the upper hand?  Generation Like  explores how the perennial quest for identity and connection is usurped in the pervasive game of cat-and-mouse by vast corporate power in the extensive machine for consumerism that is now the online environment. The audience becomes the marketer; buzz is subtly controlled and manipulated by and from real-time behavioural insights; and the content generated is sold back to the audience in the name of participation. But does the audience even think they’re being used? Do they care? Or does the perceived chance to be the ‘next big star’ make it all worth it?

Douglas Rushkoff   2014   53:04

Social media networks purport the ability to interact with culture—talking directly to artists, celebrities, movies, brands, and even one another—in ways never before possible. But is this real empowerment? Or do marketing companies still hold the upper hand? Generation Like explores how the perennial quest for identity and connection is usurped in the pervasive game of cat-and-mouse by vast corporate power in the extensive machine for consumerism that is now the online environment. The audience becomes the marketer; buzz is subtly controlled and manipulated by and from real-time behavioural insights; and the content generated is sold back to the audience in the name of participation. But does the audience even think they’re being used? Do they care? Or does the perceived chance to be the ‘next big star’ make it all worth it?

"....We use the information that your mobile phone already collects about your current location and whereabouts in order to make personalized suggestions about places to go, things to see, and stuff to do, that we think you would find interesting."

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"....Within The Human Locomotome Project, we have created a new technology utilizing mathematical models and diagnostics tools that can identify risks of age-related diseases on early stages through analysis of everyday activity movement. Access to this data provides awareness of your health factors, allowing for early prevention and lifestyle changes."

From The Guardian  (extracts with emphasis added):

"Keeping track of your emails and staying on top of your calendar might be hard enough, but for American software developer Chris Dancy, life doesn’t feel complete without several hundred data sets about his life being fed to him simultaneously at all times.

...

Today, Dancy is “travelling light”, only wearing seven devices: above his eyes sits the unmistakable horizontal bar of a Google Glass headset, which records everything he sees, while around his neck hangs a Memoto narrative camera, which takes a picture every 30 seconds for good measure. On one wrist is a Pebble watch, which sends him alerts from his two smartphones, while around the other is a Fitbit Flex, tracking his movement and sleep patterns 24 hours a day. And then there’s the stuff you can’t see: a Blue HR heart rate monitor strapped to his chest, a BodyMedia fitness tracker around his upper arm and, lurking beneath his waistband, a Lumoback posture sensor – “which vibrates when I slouch,” he beams.

“Right now I feel pretty naked,” he says, “because I can’t control the room.” Back at home in Denver, Colorado, all the data from these devices feeds directly into his ambient environment, which automatically adjusts according to his mood and needs.

“The house knows my behaviours,” he says. “If I get really stressed out and don’t sleep well, when I wake up the light is a certain colour, the room a particular temperature, and certain music plays. My entire life is preconditioned based on all this information that I collect in real time.”

...

“All this stuff [...] needs to be in my clothing. Why can’t your shoes have haptic sensors in them, so if you’re walking you don’t need GPS – your shoe just vibrates left or right? I think this low-friction, ambient feedback is really the future, but for now we have to strap all this stuff on and look silly.”

...

Dancy is perhaps the most extreme exponent [of] a community dedicated to tracking and archiving every aspect of their known existence. But might others also be watching them too?

“That’s a very real concern,” says John Weir, director of the Wearable Technology Show. “You can quantify yourself as much as you want, but a lot of that is fed back on the web, and a lot of the companies now hold immense amounts of data on their customers. Particularly with medical applications, where people will hopefully be feeding stuff back to their doctors, the ownership of data and privacy is going to become a big issue.”

Dancy shares these concerns, but is more optimistic about the beneficial power of mastering our data, as long as we stop giving it away. “We don’t have a sharing problem, we have a data intimacy problem,” he says. “It’s urgent that people look at the data they are creating and giving away – so much of it can be used to make our lives better, rather than lining the pockets of mega corporations.”

In reality, few have the software skills to ensure their personal data is not being harvested against their will, so maybe it’s for the best that most wearable tech still makes you look like an extra from Star Trek. For some, that’s a useful deterrent from ever wearing it."

Source: http://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/ar...
 Graphic from NSA showing the intent to upscale world-wide automated malware attacks and siphon data to DoD.

Graphic from NSA showing the intent to upscale world-wide automated malware attacks and siphon data to DoD.

In some cases the NSA has masqueraded as a fake Facebook server, using the social media site as a launching pad to infect a target’s computer and exfiltrate files from a hard drive. In others, it has sent out spam emails laced with the malware, which can be tailored to covertly record audio from a computer’s microphone and take snapshots with its webcam. The hacking systems have also enabled the NSA to launch cyberattacks by corrupting and disrupting file downloads or denying access to websites.
The implants being deployed were once reserved for a few hundred hard-to-reach targets, whose communications could not be monitored through traditional wiretaps. But the documents analyzed by The Intercept show how the NSA has aggressively accelerated its hacking initiatives in the past decade by computerizing some processes previously handled by humans. The automated system – codenamed TURBINE – is designed to “allow the current implant network to scale to large size (millions of implants) by creating a system that does automated control implants by groups instead of individually.”

...

When TURBINE implants exfiltrate data from infected computer systems, the TURMOIL sensors automatically identify the data and return it to the NSA for analysis. And when targets are communicating, the TURMOIL system can be used to send alerts or “tips” to TURBINE, enabling the initiation of a malware attack.

The NSA identifies surveillance targets based on a series of data “selectors” as they flow across Internet cables. These selectors, according to internal documents, can include email addresses, IP addresses, or the unique “cookies” containing a username or other identifying information that are sent to a user’s computer by websites such as Google, Facebook, Hotmail, Yahoo, and Twitter.

Other selectors the NSA uses can be gleaned from unique Google advertising cookies that track browsing habits, unique encryption key fingerprints that can be traced to a specific user, and computer IDs that are sent across the Internet when a Windows computer crashes or updates.

What’s more, the TURBINE system operates with the knowledge and support of other governments, some of which have participated in the malware attacks.

Classification markings on the Snowden documents indicate that NSA has shared many of its files on the use of implants with its counterparts in the so-called Five Eyes surveillance alliance – the United Kingdom, Canada, New Zealand, and Australia.
Source: https://firstlook.org/theintercept/article...
"Customers in a Perth shopping centre are being tracked secretly via their mobile phone wireless signals as part of a trial aimed at bringing consumers back to "bricks and mortar" shopping in the face of online competition.
Insights, a program developed by inhouse group, a small digital media company founded in Mandurah, has been in place in an unnamed shopping centre for the past six months.
Sensors hidden in the ceiling are tracking the movements of up to 70,000 customers a week and recording data, including how many people visit, which shoppers return and which departments they frequent.
The data is used by the centre to adjust its promotions and displays."

 

 Courtesy: thewest.com.au

Courtesy: thewest.com.au

 Courtesy: news.com.au

Courtesy: news.com.au

"The goal is to track the movement of shoppers in order to better understand shopping patterns, thus creating improved marketing campaigns
The tracking of user activity via smartphones is not too uncommon these days. Apple was caught tracking iPhone and iPad user locations via an OS X app, Microsoft was sued for allegedly tracking user locations without consent in WP7, and Google's Android mobile operating system has apps that track and share user info as well.
Now, an Australian shopping center in Queensland will obtain fit receivers that track shopper's locations within two meters by identifying unique mobile phone radio frequency codes.
The shopping center, which remains unknown for now until it makes a public announcement when the system is up and running, will get the fit receivers from a UK company called Path Intelligence. This new tracking operation is called the Footpath system."

 

 Courtesy: dailytech.com

Courtesy: dailytech.com

  http://research.microsoft.com/en-us/um/beijing/groups/hci/

http://research.microsoft.com/en-us/um/beijing/groups/hci/

The world we live in has become suffused with computer technologies. They have created change and continue to create change. It is not only on our desktops and in our hands that this is manifest; it is in virtually all aspects of our lives, in our communities, and in the wider society of which we are a part.

[ HCI 2020 produced many ideas, both thrilling and troubling.  This report is not a conventional publication of an academic conference but seeks to convey the passion of those ideas, for the general reader and the HCI practitioner. For the general reader, this is important because knowledge of what the future might be may empower, while ignorance harm. For the HCI practitioner, its purpose is to map out the terrain and suggest new approaches while keeping an eye on the main prize: the embodiment of human values at the heart of computing. 

This two-day forum brought together academics from the fields of computing, design, management science, sociology and psychology to debate, contribute to, and help formulate the agenda for Human-Computer Interaction in the next decade and beyond. Participants also came from the commercial world, including representatives from software companies, hardware manufacturers, and content providers.]

PDF Download

image : http://www.embedded-vision.com/
image : http://www.embedded-vision.com/

"...DARPA links human brainwaves, improved sensors, cognitive algorithms to improve target detection ."

[ For warfighters operating in the field, the ability to detect threats from standoff distances can be life-saving. When advanced radar and drone coverage is not available, warfighters typically rely on their own vision to scan their surroundings. Scanning over a wide area, though, is challenging because of the amount of territory that must be reviewed, the limited field of view of the human eye, and the effects of fatigue. Current technologies like binoculars, cameras, and portable radars can help to improve visibility and increase the threat detection rate. Unfortunately, current miss rates of 47 percent or greater using these technologies leave warfighters unprepared and vulnerable. ]

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Further reading here

[ image: hackeducation ]

 

"...You could track what you read, for example. Think of all that your Amazon Kindle knows about your reading habits: what you read, when you read, how much you read, where you stop, what you highlight, what you annotate. Or you could track what you write: how many words, how many pages, when you write, how much gets scrapped or tweaked, which verbs or adjectives you tend to overuse, how your phrasing falls into certain patterns (for better or worse)? You could also track your personal learning network: who you follow, what you say, whose links you tend to click on and actually read, who you ask for help and how quick they are to respond."

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Even more here

[ image: almax ]

""...1. A special camera connected to a special software is installed inside the mannequin's head.

2. This software analyzes the facial features of people passing through the front and provides statistical and contextual information useful to the development of targeted marketing strategies.

3. The embedded software can also provide other data such as the number of people passing in front of a window at certain times of the day."

 

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