September 19, 2003
HP's POV Cam Prototype

hppov.jpgThe BBC has written an article on HP's newly developed prototype Point Of View camera, which uses a pair of glasses as the camera's mount/casing. While the BBC's article has some 'futureshock' fodder, there are also some interesting quotes regarding image post-processing. The article also says that they're using metadata to hold orientation data.

This extra data keeps track of how and where a picture was taken and can spot if a subject was walking or turning.

The system also inspects images to see if people are smiling or looking directly at the camera lens.

Worst line from the article:

"HP need to look at the implications on privacy and stuff like that before they flood the market with these."

Dear mister "technology analyst" Bill Thompson: go read up on "Sousveillance" and look up at all the corporate security cameras around before you start attacking HP for building a camera that individuals can protect themselves with.

Posted by nym at September 19, 2003 12:21 PM | TrackBack

I have my own commentary about "why this is not the rise of the panopticon".

It's important to keep in mind that my wearable computer can only record what I am actually hearing and seeing.

This is an important distinction from hidden (or "security") cameras - which are pervasive.

With so many cameras around, you can't really tell if you are being observed/recorded or not at any given time or place. This is literally true in some urban centres.

Whereas even if everyone had a camera in their glasses, you could still have privacy simply by going somewhere and glancing around to see if there are any other people present and directing their attention at you. If there are not, then you are not being observed or recorded.

It's a different story with the hidden and semi-hidden "security" cameras everywhere. Because of them, you can never really tell whether or not you are being recorded or observed by persons unknown. That is the panopticon.

Posted by: Don at November 14, 2003 03:38 AM