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Tracking People's Behavior with Algorithms (Smart CCTV)

  1. Dec 15, 2009 #1
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2009
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 15, 2009 #2
  4. Dec 15, 2009 #3
    You know I don't mind so much if my city streets had cameras deployed. I think it's an O.K. idea actually. As far as I know the system has worked out well for the streets it covers in Britain.

    I'm not exactly sure how this "Samurai" system would benefit anybody without some sort of high-leveled AI system that could replace human intelligence on the situation. It would appear to me that many false-positives would be relayed just by people acting sketchy in regular life. And it would probably also not be able to pick up all that many people who may commit acts of violence just based on how they are walking or through their actions.

    What I would be most afraid of is people thinking that the system is good enough to be RELIED upon to catch these people. It would in my opinion create a more slack enviroment; that is definitely not good for security of an area suchas an airport or subway system.
  5. Dec 15, 2009 #4
    In the article it sounds like the idea is to develop some sort of rudimentay AI. When it comes to these types of measures, while one in isolation is not necessarily cause for alarm, the combination of multiple tracks (as in Britian, where you have acoustic weapons being used to keep teenagers from loitering, CCTV on every street, and the increased use of RFID) a cultural shift takes place where people gradually begin to accept more and more intrusive monitoring as the norm. This may not be an issue yet, but it certainly sows the seeds for trouble. What happens after these systems are implemented and the relative peace and prosperity of Britian are disrupted? (as for a hypothetical example, as the result of climate change). It is much easier to give a government power then it is to roll it back.

    As far as your conclusion, I agree. It seems like any terrorist worth their salt would know enough not to act overtly suspicious anyway. It seems far more likely the result will be the harassment of easier targets by lower level officials (as is often the case here with TSA or the police) then the apprehension of truly dangerous people.
  6. Dec 15, 2009 #5
    It is much better to compromise and have a say in the inevitable than to fight it and have no say when it arrives. This sort of technology is coming, it will happen, and the only question is whether or not the people on the side of your rights will have any say in how it is implemented and controlled to better preserve your rights. As you say, once government seizes its power it will not let it go easily.

    I think that most bombers (especially suicide bombers) are newbies and likely to be more nervous. Besides, I doubt that it is intended solely for terrorist activity much like I doubt that my country's NSA data mining project is solely intended to target terrorists.
  7. Dec 15, 2009 #6
  8. Dec 16, 2009 #7
  9. Dec 16, 2009 #8
    What would be the least undesirable option?
    - the threat posed by individuals
    - or, the threat posed by organized government

    In China it is different situation but I don't know how real the second threat can be in the case of the Western nations ...

    I see that you agreed that the threat from organized government is not real as for now. I think you are ignoring the push for transparency in the governments and increased scrutiny of the government activities by the media. Thus, I disagree with your conclusion about the future.
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2009
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