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Software Describes Surveillance Footage In AI-Generated Text

timothy posted more than 3 years ago | from the now-he's-throttling-the-interstitial-ad dept.

Input Devices 132

holy_calamity writes "A computer vision research group at UCLA has put together a system that watches surveillance footage and generates a text description of the events in real time. It only works on traffic cameras for now but demonstrates how sophisticated computer vision is becoming. Interestingly, the system was built thanks to a database of millions of human-labeled images put together by Chinese workers."

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132 comments

It won't impress me (1, Funny)

MyLongNickName (822545) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435108)

It won't impress me until it can say "Check out the hooters on that chick!"

Re:It won't impress me (1)

game kid (805301) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435350)

But what if the Naked Cowboy [wikipedia.org] decides to protest this technology by wearing a stuffed bra in front of one?

When the AI's that detailed, nuance is needed and false positives are all the more dangerous.

Expectation of privacy (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32435146)

There needs to be an expectation of privacy regarding recordings of people in public places. There is a huge difference between being seen vs. having one's every public move recorded, indexed and archived.

Re:Expectation of privacy (4, Insightful)

MyLongNickName (822545) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435266)

Good luck with that. So, if I am in public I should expect that anything I do not be recorded, talked about or written about? I do not know how you expect to enforce that.

Re:Expectation of privacy (2, Insightful)

oldspewey (1303305) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435372)

And sooner than you think, the same will be true for when you're not "out in public" but are in your own home.

Hope you're not attached to the notion of privacy.

Re:Expectation of privacy (1)

HeckRuler (1369601) | more than 3 years ago | (#32436014)

No. Too far. Don't stretch this into something it isn't. You detract from the privacy concerns by claiming the slippery slope of installing cameras in your own home. Because that is what it would take to violate your privacy in said home. Right now, of course, you're out on the internet, which is a lot like "out in public". And if your router broadcasts your IP to the masses in the street, that's also public area.

There are definitely privacy concerns, but don't go overboard.

Re:Expectation of privacy (2, Insightful)

oldspewey (1303305) | more than 3 years ago | (#32436076)

Who said anything about cameras? Think about the ways in which technology has changed over the past 50 years. Now project forward (or attempt to) 50 years while accounting for the fact technological advancement is accelerating.

Fifty years from now, if somebody says "I'm safe from surveillance here. There are no cameras in this house," the correct response will be "awwww, aren't you cute!"

Re:Expectation of privacy (1)

HeckRuler (1369601) | more than 3 years ago | (#32436406)

Camera: A device to capture images.
So how do you expect activities in a house to be surveyed if not with a camera?
Mind-readers? DNA bias? what? Seriously, cough up an example or you're just diluting the issue here with vague doom-saying. Sop that.

Re:Expectation of privacy (2, Insightful)

oldspewey (1303305) | more than 3 years ago | (#32436548)

Not too long ago, people would have branded you a kook had you suggested there would one day be devices that can look under your clothes to capture an image of your skin, genitals, and anything you might be carrying on your person.

I walked through one of those very devices last week at the airport when I flew home.

Today, a hobbyist could easily build an autonomous surveillance robot the size of a small rodent that has everything it needs to capture sound and audio and either store the resulting feed or stream it to a server somewhere. In 20 more years, how much smaller than "rodent" do you think that robot could be? How about 50 years? And what about if it's a government or corporate lab with a big budget building the thing rather than a hobbyist?

I'll say it again: I hope you're not too attached to the notion of privacy.

Re:Expectation of privacy (1)

RKThoadan (89437) | more than 3 years ago | (#32436918)

As you have said, it is not difficult to build such a device now. But deploying such a device on private property or anywhere that people have an expectation of privacy (best example: bathroom) would be illegal. That is something I do not expect to change significantly in the next 100 years.

Re:Expectation of privacy (2, Insightful)

oldspewey (1303305) | more than 3 years ago | (#32437006)

Good point. No government or corporation in human history has ever done anything illegal, especially when they have the means to do it completely undetected.

Re:Expectation of privacy (1)

HeckRuler (1369601) | more than 3 years ago | (#32437212)

Ok, so you're afraid of tiny spy-drones with CAMERAS on them and x-ray like devices peering into your home. As the sibling post mentions, that would be a clear violation of current privacy laws. It doesn't really relate to the redefinition of public that the orginal poster was talking about or the article about analyzing footage. If you fear the government or corporations then invest in some security. It'll put your little paranoid mind at ease. If it gets to the point where such invasions are trivial and they try to secretly deploy them against the masses, I'd hope to invent some affordable method of detecting such invasions. And then suing the pants off them.

You are going overboard. The player-piano did not destroy the artisans of America.

Re:Expectation of privacy (1)

Intron (870560) | more than 3 years ago | (#32437290)

Not too long ago, people would have branded you a kook had you suggested there would one day be devices that can look under your clothes to capture an image of your skin, genitals, and anything you might be carrying on your person.

So we will soon know the truth about Lady GaGa?

Re:Expectation of privacy (1)

be951 (772934) | more than 3 years ago | (#32437370)

Today, a hobbyist could easily build an autonomous surveillance robot the size of a small rodent that has everything it needs to capture sound and audio and either store the resulting feed or stream it to a server somewhere. In 20 more years, how much smaller than "rodent" do you think that robot could be?

Interesting idea, although entirely irrelevant to the discussion. 20 years ago, a hobbyist could easily install hidden cameras throughout your home, office, gym locker room, wherever. The fact that the technology was available didn't make it legal then, doesn't make it legal now, and won't make it legal in the future.

It is not the technology you should be worried about, it is the erosion of rights against unlawful search (including surveillance) and seizure you need to watch out for.

Re:Expectation of privacy (1)

oldspewey (1303305) | more than 3 years ago | (#32437488)

It is not the technology you should be worried about, it is the erosion of rights against unlawful search (including surveillance) and seizure you need to watch out for.

These are more linked than you're willing to admit. The availability of these tools and technologies is like candy to those who already have an ideological proclivity to "bend the rules." I agree that accountability is really important in this debate and that the erosion of rights is a big problem. But I'm less convinced that a bunch of people claiming something is illegal is going to do much to delay the creation of "new normal" where privacy is concerned.

Mr. Digital Man (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32437206)

Well, think about this:

Nanotech and biotech are rapidly accelerating fields of science. Marry them together and you have people walking around everywhere with some Borg style nanobots floating through every inch of their bodies, offering a significant benefit to each implanted by way of health monitoring and counteracting the side effects of, say, a sudden heart attack by automatically releasing drugs into the blood stream and so on.

Since each of these devices is powered, throw TEMPEST [wikipedia.org] into the mix and the idea of "seeing people through walls" becomes a little easier to visualize.

Not that I think such things are actually going to happen or be possible in my lifetime (I'm 24 and currently a smoker), but who knows, eh?

AC due to mod points spent on another thread; apologies.

Re:Expectation of privacy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32436984)

You're funny. Privacy is a myth. Public place or not. Others know where you are all the time [dslreports.com], what you buy/eat [about.com], what you were searching for [google.com], and people just hand out personal info on sites such as Facebook and Twitter now. There's no need for cameras. Hah!

Re:Expectation of privacy (2, Interesting)

HeckRuler (1369601) | more than 3 years ago | (#32437344)

Yes, there is a lot of information out there. Most of it isn't private. Most of it pictures of cats.
But some of it is private, and some of it is actually secrets that people are putting out there. But I ascribe the vast majority of that to idiots and ignorance. But some of it is complacency. And so, spreading the news about all the vectors that private information can be lost is a good thing because it helps people control their information.

But saying things like "privacy is a myth" is just an attack on the notion of privacy. Its an effort to makes people accept the reduction of privacy. Fuck that, and fuck you anon. Don't just give up, fight it.

Re:Expectation of privacy (1)

oldspewey (1303305) | more than 3 years ago | (#32437642)

Fight it.

Okay, what are you personally doing to fight the spread of CCTV throughout the public realm?

What are you personally doing to fight the creation of linked databases from multiple sources (e.g. your employment records, health records, telephone records, amazon.com purchase history, etc.) that perform datamining on the population?

What are you personally doing to fight the pervasive monitoring of all communication media, including the response you are thinking about crafting right now?

Just having a sense of generalized anger or outrage is cool and all, but I'm not sure what social force you think is going to stop - or even slow - the adoption of these increasingly powerful surveillance tools by just about everybody out there with a buck to spend and an interest in you as a citizen, marketing target, voter, potential terrorist, potential employee, etc.

Believe it or not, I'm on your side here. I don't like the idea that in a few more decades there will be no such thing as privacy. I'm afraid I just don't see our current trajectory heading in any other direction but one.

Re:Expectation of privacy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32435460)

I see constant surveillance as a form of harassment, just as if someone were constantly following/stalking me. This is particularly bad if a recording is made which is indexed and can be searched and referred to later. It is not the same as a casual encounter followed by an indexable account of that encounter.

Re:Expectation of privacy (3, Insightful)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435736)

Good luck with that. So, if I am in public I should expect that anything I do not be recorded, talked about or written about? I do not know how you expect to enforce that.

You should have some expectation of privacy because we need to have SOME privacy in order to function as human beings. Generally the expectation goes back to what you would feel comfortable with if it were performed by a physical person. And I'm certain that if it were somehow possible to assign a person to follow and document every move, and action for every person in the US we might have a slight problem with that.

We run into a hell of a lot of trouble when we allow our standard definition of privacy which involved 1800s methods to be applied to our current level of technology.

The basic problem is this:

As technology improves, our expectation for privacy decreases. So using expectation of privacy as the measure for what should or should not be private is a HORRIBLE practice. It essentially means that as a technology or practice becomes ubiquitous, it becomes acceptable.

Since we have no means to resist an application of technology*, I urge everyone to dump this 'yardstick'.

*In practice, you do not get to opt-in or opt-out of having a privacy invading practice applied to you. It IS applied, and then you have the option to petition against it's application. Often, you don't even know that your privacy is being violated for years. As a result, these practices become common before the first complaint can even reasonably be raised. Even then, this ignores the issue of having previous complaints dismissed by judges who are ignorant in the field of the technology being discussed.

Re:Expectation of privacy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32435748)

I think the difference is that in the past you had an expectation of privacy that _one entity_ would not as a matter of common practice surveil/record you everywhere you go. Sure, unconnected individuals/businesses might record you in the course of your transacting business, but that is quite different from the potential of having a single entity record everyone, all the time, with indexing.

Re:Expectation of privacy (1)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 3 years ago | (#32436922)

Good luck with that. So, if I am in public I should expect that anything I do not be recorded, talked about or written about? I do not know how you expect to enforce that.

It has been recorded and archived for years ( decades even ) now.. Just today it is becoming more practical to mine the data. We are all screwed.

Re:Expectation of privacy (1)

AndGodSed (968378) | more than 3 years ago | (#32436068)

I guess privacy is an expectation of generations past. People in high places keep pushing for less privacy, and right now the sheep-like public is not not doing near enough to combat that, they eat the cake of "but it is for our own safety!"

Well to qoute some wall scribbles I just ran past: THE CAKE IS A LIE!

Re:Expectation of privacy (4, Funny)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 3 years ago | (#32436124)

There needs to be an expectation of privacy regarding recordings of people in public places.

Given that "privacy" is derived from "private", which is an antonym of "public", I'd say there needs to be an expectation that you should buy a dictionary.

Re:Expectation of privacy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32436210)

There needs to be an expectation of privacy regarding recordings of people in public places. There is a huge difference between being seen vs. having one's every public move recorded, indexed and archived.

Even worse, if you log in at www.Theinternettimemachine.com (totally for nerds) and study what people are looking for but can't find...guess what...computer text and imaging products are gainging in search volume almost every week. These things are going to be in your neighbors hands as well as new suppliers will fill the void for this product...

Hello Window Shades!

Re:Expectation of privacy (4, Insightful)

drsmithy (35869) | more than 3 years ago | (#32436290)

There needs to be an expectation of privacy regarding recordings of people in public places. There is a huge difference between being seen vs. having one's every public move recorded, indexed and archived.

The word you're after here is anonymity, not privacy.

Crowd-sourcing (2, Interesting)

cosm (1072588) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435154)

the system was built thanks to a database of millions of human-labeled images put together by Chinese workers.

I spent a brief amount of time checking out Amazon's Mechanical Turk [mturk.com], and this was one of the activities they offered pennies on the hour for. Yay for crowd-sourced globalization! 100 years from now, when many of the mundanities of life are automated, is this what minimum wage workers will be doing?

Re:Crowd-sourcing (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435588)

IN a 100 years, I hope the idea of 'work' is quint. Something done because that person want's it done. Not because they have to scrape a living from penitence the make from slopping burgers.

Re:Crowd-sourcing (2, Informative)

cosm (1072588) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435730)

The Venus Project and the Zeitgeist movement seem to push that mentality, but unfortunately the eccentricity of Jacque Fresco and the verbosity of Alex Jones keep them down sometimes. Check out their website [thevenusproject.com] for a possible glimpse of a better future.

Re:Crowd-sourcing (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#32436232)

Anyone who pushes a 'new vision for the future' through video sets that cast 300 euros is suspect.

I wonder how having the tools to download the video for free impact that new future?

Clearly the stated premise is a good one. I will go so far as it is critical to look at it and start dealing with the social changed technology will bring us. Some day we will have robots capable of building themselves. Once that is reached, many jobs will no longer need to be done by humans. So we can either develop a policy that helps every one, or watch the poor grow at an incredible rate and then end in collapse.

.

Re:Crowd-sourcing (1)

mdm-adph (1030332) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435740)

Yeah, they made the same prediction 100 years ago, too. What's funny is that though the jobs may change, we work about the same.

Re:Crowd-sourcing (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#32436172)

really? I certainly don't work the same then any person in the world did 100 years ago.
I also have more time.

Re:Crowd-sourcing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32437618)

More time?

Hardly, you have at most a very slight increase in the amount of time during the day caused by the moon slightly slowing the Earth's rotation. You have, for all intents and purposes, equivalent amounts of time today as anyone did during a day 100 years ago.

Now, what you do with that time, that's something different.

Re:Crowd-sourcing (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#32437218)

The main reason for that is that the rich have been stealing from the poor. The poor end up getting less while the mega rich get even more. Back in the 30s, the prediction was that we'd be down to like a 10 hour work week by now due to all the increases in efficiency. What actually happened was that more of it was diverted to the upper classes and people at the bottom ended up wasting more of it on junk rather than relaxing. It makes no sense to me why one would work 40 hours a week and then spend most of that money on things that one doesn't really want or need.

Re:Crowd-sourcing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32435764)

Greeting, comrade! Honour work!

Re:Crowd-sourcing (1)

HeckRuler (1369601) | more than 3 years ago | (#32436304)

It's 100 years from now with all the sci-fi inventions you can dream of.
You control a nation/corporation/moon that does important work. Like you make the worker-bots or something. You have resources, power, prestige, all that jazz.

What purpose do people serve you? Why have fellow humans hang around?
You control the process and machine that makes the worker-bots that get shit done. But other then giving you resources to build more worker-bots in exchange for completed worker-bots, why perform that process at all? What's your motivation for giving worker-bots to the people that need work done?

The dream of getting rid of work would turn into the nightmare of trivializing humanity.

Re:Crowd-sourcing (1)

ultranova (717540) | more than 3 years ago | (#32438038)

You control the process and machine that makes the worker-bots that get shit done. But other then giving you resources to build more worker-bots in exchange for completed worker-bots, why perform that process at all? What's our motivation for not simply taking them?

What's our motivation for not simply taking them by force? And after we have taken them, given that a worker-bot can build more worker-bots, how is anyone going to get such a monopoly again?

Or, less dramatically, since worker-bots are based on all the other sci-fi technology, why couldn't other people develop them too? In fact, how is this any different from how all other machines have been steadily spreading and lessening the need for human labour in all fields?

Either way, the idea that you could keep a monopoly in such a technology is ridiculous.

The dream of getting rid of work would turn into the nightmare of trivializing humanity.

No. What it will end is coercive rule of people over other people, be it through force or starvation. That is certainly a nightmare to anyone who dreams of being a king; but for the rest of us it will be a world of endless possibilities, where we will not work out of necessity but out of will; not to fill our stomachs and use each others faces as springboards to ascend higher in a rat race but to fulfil ambitions such as developing AI, conquering space, developing ever more miraculous technologies, and in general earning our place in history.

Re:Crowd-sourcing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32438122)

What's your motivation for giving worker-bots to the people that need work done?

You don't; they just get ahold of a worker-bot somehow, and then use it to make pirate copies itself from then on. There's some coming-of-age rite that everyone goes through, where they get a friend to lend 'em their first, perhaps only, worker-bot. After that, you're self-sufficient.

Scary (1, Interesting)

mandelbr0t (1015855) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435166)

Note some of the text in the sample video "Possible Yield violation by Landcar_XXXXX". Are we seriously going to leave policing to an AI? /shudders

Re:Scary (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32435268)

"Possible" is the key word there. I'm sure that a human will review all possible violations, to determine if one actually occurred. I imagine that this could allow for better policing, because less people would need to be hired for less work, allowing police to use their time more effectively.

Re:Scary (2, Insightful)

oldspewey (1303305) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435420)

Personally, I'd love to see a system that automatically monitors video footage of every single highway merge ramp in the city where I live. Maybe if all those assholes who fly up the shoulder and cut in at the last second (in order to gain a dozen car lengths when merging onto the highway) were to get an automated $90 ticket in the mail two weeks later, they'd catch the hint.

Re:Scary (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32435706)

No, they wouldn't get the ticket. The person who has to swerve to avoid those idiots would get the ticket.

Re:Scary (1)

JWSmythe (446288) | more than 3 years ago | (#32437160)

    There's an easier fix to that, which I've seen DOT use. Instead of leaving the shoulder open the whole way to a ramp, they put K-rails and drums full of water before the offramp. Nothing stops a vehicle like tons of water and concrete. :)

    If they do stop first, most people are good about not letting them in right away. They may have to wait for a dozen or more cars to pass before they can get back into traffic. If not, the damage to their car would be much more than a $90 fine. :)

Re:Scary (2, Insightful)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435818)

"Possible" is the key word there. I'm sure that a human will review all possible violations, to determine if one actually occurred. I imagine that this could allow for better policing, because less people would need to be hired for less work, allowing police to use their time more effectively.

Sir, you and I must have a vastly different definition for 'better'.

(And do you really think that this would allow the police to be more effective? They will become just as effective as necessary to raise enough fines to cover their budgets, and if we are lucky, just their budgets and not revenue)

Re:Scary (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32435286)

Are we seriously going to leave policing to an AI? /shudders

Remain seated and cease producing audio, meatbag unit serial number MANDELBR0T-1015855. There is nothing to fear from your *click* *click* *click* *voicechange* friendly *click* *click* *voicechange* AI overlords.

Re:Scary (3, Interesting)

adonoman (624929) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435296)

It a whole lot more objective than leaving it up to police officers. If it weren't for the obvious privacy issues in whoever's running this knowing where my car has been, I'd be happy if every intersection had this sort of thing. Traffic flow would be improved immensely. Of course the privacy thing really is a deal breaker when it comes to this level of surveillance (I'd trust the AI, but unfortunately, these sort of systems always have a human in the mix).

I'd much prefer that we'd all switch to AI controlled cars.

Re:Scary (3, Interesting)

0123456 (636235) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435382)

It a whole lot more objective than leaving it up to police officers.

If every law was 'objectively' enforced 24/7, life would be unbearable and most of us would be in jail; the end result would be social collapse or civil war.

Re:Scary (4, Insightful)

mystik (38627) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435446)

What's broken then?

The Laws?

Or the Enforcement?

Re:Scary (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32435534)

What's broken then?

The Laws?

Or the Enforcement?

I'm going to vote "you", as you're the one trying to overgeneralize things to simple black-and-white extremes in a pretty embarrassingly thinly-veiled attempt to assert one or the other as "broken".

Re:Scary (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32435542)

Uh, the laws. Duh.

Re:Scary (2, Insightful)

royallthefourth (1564389) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435602)

Probably both, but don't forget about unequal distribution of wealth and its relationship to social problems like crime

Check the map; notice the USA is on par with Mexico (and Central America in general). This is not a good thing!
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gini_coefficient [wikipedia.org]

Re:Scary (3, Insightful)

ElectricTurtle (1171201) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435926)

Yeah, too bad that's a gross generalization that doesn't correlate with reality. Besides the fact that the concept of wealth inequality as moral negative is nonsense [cato.org], it doesn't take too much analysis to see that while the US and Mexico may have similar ratios of rich to poor (which by itself is misleading, as 10^4:10^3 is the same ratio as 10^2:10, but the magnitude is different, so the case really is that the poor in the US are richer than the poor in Mexico, and the rich in Mexico are poorer than the rich in the US. The ratio ultimately is the same, but the magnitude is different, which is expressed in the difference in the quality of life), crime in Mexico is worse. Similarly, in 'more equal' countries according to your favored methodology like Columbia, Nigeria, etc. crime and quality of life is worse than in 'less equal' places such as Hong Kong. Your theory simply does not correlate to reality, but I doubt this will stop you.

Re:Scary (1)

ultranova (717540) | more than 3 years ago | (#32438284)

Besides the fact that the concept of wealth inequality as moral negative is nonsense [cato.org],

Then you wouldn't mind having the rich becoming richer at your expense, right? Because that's what "wealth inequality" means. And since you don't mind it, you must have also cheered the recent bailout to bankers, since that was a classic example of taking from the poor and giving to the rich. Right?

Or does the nonsense Cato Institute spouts - specifically, in your link, them intentionally likening an external difference of wealth to inherentl differences of talent, beauty and gender, and I also noticed a bit of trickle-down economics there too, oh and a truly twisted interpretation of The Ten Commandments - only apply when it's you who's benefiting from looting the weak?

Seriously, twisting the Bible to justify your greed is insane, even for a right-wing organization such as Cato. Do you people actually believe your own insane troll logic, or do you simply think that there's going to be someone stupid enough to do so?

Re:Scary (1)

Maxo-Texas (864189) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435646)

The enforcement.

Writing laws to include the human officer's judgement to either ticket, and arrest or give a warning would be extremely complex.

Most traffic laws have edge cases (like minimum speed 40mph on the high way... which doesn't apply if there is traffic).

I'm okay with automated enforcement, but they need to distinguish between the freeway of cars going 5mph over the speed limit in dry well lit conditions vs the car going 85 cutting back and forth between them.

As privacy has decreased, an increasing number of people have been outed for private behavior. It's very oppressive to need to be spanked or suck boners and have to stand in front of all your relatives, co-workers, customers, etc. and lay that out. Humans need to do a lot of things they are a little ashamed of. But privacy lets them express themselves.

I'm most proud of my odd friends who can be openly odd but a lot of folks don't have that freedom.

Re:Scary (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#32436246)

yes.

Some laws are broken, and enforcing laws in a strict black in white sense doesn't work either.

There is a fuzzy area.

Re:Scary (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32436758)

Nothing is broken.

The law is an attempt to formalize our sense of justice with relatively few, simple rules. Since this is a very complex system we are trying to formalize, while keeping the formalization simple enough to be usable, the law has to be imperfect. It will never be perfect. It can not be perfect.

Enforcing imperfect laws rigorously and methodically is just stupid and a recipe for disaster. Fortunately enforcement is also imperfect so it leaves us some maneuvering space to compensate for the imperfect laws.

Pray enforcement never becomes perfect.

NEITHER! The whole logic is fucked up. (1)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 3 years ago | (#32438206)

Repeat after me: THERE. IS. NO. SUCH. THING. AS. OBJECTIVITY.
Never. If the laws of general relativity hold, it’s a physically impossible concept.
And in a context of a human society, where nobody ever knows that more than an irrelevant tiny part of his knowledge for a fact, and has heard nearly everything via hearsay from other people, it is just completely silly to talk about “objectivity”.

What those people who scream about “objectivity” and “being biased” really mean, is that what was said does not fit their very personal own point of view and model of reality, and that they are such egocentric dicks, that they think everyone in the world has to be and think exactly like them.
Which of course is physically impossible for two people. If only because they can’t be both at the exact same place and time.

And this is why big states can by definition never have one single common set of laws and make even a minority happy.

Re:Scary (1)

adonoman (624929) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435656)

The problem, then, is that the laws are too rigid. If it's too rigid to require people to drive 55, then set the speed limit at 65, or set the speed limit at 55, but allow exceeding that limit for a given period of time. If it's unreasonable to fine someone for smoking a bit of pot, then make it legal to do so. If vandalism should be allowed under certain conditions, the law needs to specify what those conditions are.

Re:Scary (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 3 years ago | (#32436744)

If there was "zero tolerance" for all lawbreaking, the useless ones would have to be repealed.

Re:Scary (2, Insightful)

mandelbr0t (1015855) | more than 3 years ago | (#32437446)

This seems to miss the point. A society that was truly just would actually consider on a case-by-case basis whether it was in the public interest to enforce each infraction of the law. In many cases, the harm to the public is negligible or non-existant, or the law was broken as a form of protest against a law that is generally seen to be unfair (e.g. the American DMCA). If all these cases were summarily determined to be infraction without considering the public interest, society would become a tyranny of law, a place where all that matters is that the rules are absolute.

There are countless examples of the heroes that are created by such a society, and they date back throughout human existence. While they have been exaggerated to the point of legend, the message is clear: Any attempt to make the law absolute will result in overwhelming revolt by citizens, and a government that need fight for its existence in the face of overwhelming support of an outlaw.

Re:Scary (1)

Sloppy (14984) | more than 3 years ago | (#32438224)

Perhaps under such circumstances, the civil war would be desirable, so there could be a new constitution that outlaws having so damn many laws.

Re:Scary (1)

Kozz (7764) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435918)

It's always a case of who is watching the watchers. If the AI is trained on real-life officer behavior, the AI decision trees may quickly devolve into things like "Possible violation: driver has brown skin".

Re:Scary NO NO NO (1)

RobertLTux (260313) | more than 3 years ago | (#32436666)

the violation is Driving While Colored aka DWC (the funny part is you can be cited for DWC even if you are no where s near an actual car)

This has all kinds of potential (1, Insightful)

jgagnon (1663075) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435194)

To rid the world of every shred of privacy remaining (not that there is much, admittedly). /shudder

Re:This has all kinds of potential (1)

cosm (1072588) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435458)

To rid the world of every shred of privacy remaining (not that there is much, admittedly). /shudder

Flamebait? Or -1 disagree mods? The usage case studies for behavioral analytics is a big winner for folks in targeting marketing and law-enforcement, two of the areas of greatest privacy loss. If this is Flamebait, then whoever modded this must spontaneously combust when they read the daily headlines. Welcome to Slashdot.

Re:This has all kinds of potential (1)

jgagnon (1663075) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435520)

My thought was that with the proliferation of cameras and the ever increasing processing power of ever shrinking devices, it is only a matter of time before everything we do is recorded and analyzed.

Re:This has all kinds of potential (1)

cosm (1072588) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435676)

Although Tom Cruise is bonkers, Minority Report [wikipedia.org] stands as an insightful commentary of what happens when we let the automated world really permeate the culture. Philip K. Dick had it right (minus the whole precog thing, but who knows what could happen).

Re:This has all kinds of potential (1)

HeckRuler (1369601) | more than 3 years ago | (#32437710)

Yeah, I hate Minority Report. I was ready to write off Cruise as a useless nutcase and then this movie came out and showed me that he could still act and entertain. It like Stranger then Fiction. I was nice and comfortable with hating Farrel and then he actually did a fair job in this movie. Of course, that just made me hate him even more now that I know under that idiot grin there is a real actor under there.

Re:This has all kinds of potential (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#32436264)

yes, watching you travel on public roads. That will be the end of civilization.

Re:This has all kinds of potential (1)

jgagnon (1663075) | more than 3 years ago | (#32436356)

Or watching you shop through a "security camera" and tracking how long you spend in each area of a store as well as every item you actually pick up, put down, purchase, etc. EVERYTHING you do that is recorded on a camera can be analyzed. This is just the beginning.

The potential is frightening.

oh, academia (-1, Flamebait)

FuckingNickName (1362625) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435198)

40 years ago you were where people retreated to if they didn't want to exploit the Far East as part of the political game.

Re:oh, academia (0, Offtopic)

FuckingNickName (1362625) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435540)

Students and geeks have no empathy any more. They're no longer the elite 10%, but tools in extended training to prepare themselves for debt, servitude and an unsatisfying family. Cooperation with China in academia IME is not to improve local academic talent with the best Chinese minds but because Chinese coming to the West are the sons and daughters of rich, well-connected families who pay full fees and more to the Universities concerned (this is even worse in the EU than US, where some Universities are dying for cash and it is official policy to send senior staff over to China to court students).

You can mod down my posts as much as you want because you are too ashamed to admit there might be a problem with a cooperation between US and Chinese academia+government on improving artifically intelligent surveillance tools, but it won't stop the fruits of their labours being used to watch your movements within a decade or two.

Huh? (1, Informative)

grumpyman (849537) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435242)

A sophisticated computer vision system relies on a database of millions of human-labeled images put together by Chinese workers??? Reply: RTFM, but dude, can the poster at least make the headline coherent?

Scary example text transcript (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32435248)

Oh my God it's Ethan Hawk!
Oh my God it's Ethan Hawk!
Oh my God it's Ethan Hawk!
Oh my God it's Ethan Hawk!

--

UCLA researchers (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32435368)

Nice to see you generating cutting edge research that the United police States of America can use to spy againt all of society.

I hope someone rapes these researchers kids, on camera, so that these researchers can read in text form how criminals have vaginally and analy penetrated their children.

Hilarious possibilities (3, Funny)

e2d2 (115622) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435418)

This has huge potential to not only push computer vision forward, but also humor.

Example text:

"I see that one old man hobbling down the street, I think he may be off his meds. Uh oh, he's looking _crazier_ than usual!"

"Some asshat just drove completely through a red light. I don't even think she saw the thing! License plate #45AhfD... Is Mrs Doris Johnson-Johnson.. seriously? Who hyphenates the same name!? Seriously I can't comprehend that. But I digress. Her address is .."

The possibilities are endless.

Re:Hilarious possibilities (1)

gazuga (128955) | more than 3 years ago | (#32436142)

...the system was built thanks to a database of millions of human-labeled images put together by Chinese workers

Is the output of the program in Engrish? Hilarious possibilities indeed.

Re:Hilarious possibilities (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32436486)

Is the output of the program in Engrish? Hilarious possibilities indeed.

Somebody set us up the camera.

Main screen turn on.

All your traffic data are belong to us.

You have no chance to avoid ticket make your time.

For great justice.

google starting to do this in image database (1)

peter303 (12292) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435422)

They've added "find similar" links under some pictures. I presume this was an expansion of their "goggles" program on Droid-phones. That was supposed to help locate you by taking a photo of a distinctive object in your vicinity.

Moral Statute Machine (4, Funny)

rminsk (831757) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435556)

Booth: Gun. Noun. Portable firearm. This device was widely utilized in the urban wars of the late twentieth century. Referred to as a pistol, a piece...
Simon Phoenix: Look I don't need a history lesson! C'mon, HAL, where are the god damn guns?
Moral Statute Machine: You are fined one credit for a violation of the Verbal Morality Statute.
Simon Phoenix: What? F*** you!
Moral Statute Machine: Your repeated violation of the Verbal Morality Statute has caused me to notify the San Angeles Police Department. Please remain where you are for your reprimand.
Simon Phoenix: Yeah, right.
[police sirens approach]
Simon Phoenix: F***ers are fast too.
Moral Statute Machine: You are fined one credit for a violation of the Verbal Morality Statute.

Movies (1)

kanweg (771128) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435680)

Cool. Now the only thing they've got to add is a rating system and I can outsource going to the movies.

Bert

TFS better than TFA! (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435682)

Surveillance Software Knows What a Camera Sees

Cameras don't see, and computers don't know, and anybody who knows anything at all about seeing and knowing and how cameras and computers work know this.

I wish I hadn't clicked the link; I'm not going to read a FA by someone so clueless.

Re:TFS better than TFA! (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#32436286)

there just using comon verbage to communicate a concept.

Cameras don't take pictures, but I bet you use the verbiage.

Re:TFS better than TFA! (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 3 years ago | (#32436474)

Well, I do talk to my car. "Start, you goddamned piece of shit! Start, damn it!!!"

But some people actually think cameras see and computers know, and some of them are at slashdot.

expect this then... (4, Funny)

JustNiz (692889) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435720)

>> the system was built thanks to a database of millions of human-labeled images put together by Chinese workers

Happy car clash into barrier of non-moving.

screw reprogramming it for other uses (1)

adeft (1805910) | more than 3 years ago | (#32435782)

Point it towards other surveillance and see what it thinks is going on: "Car 1 is climbing on car 2 and repeatedly rearending it!"

I wonder how trollable it is (1)

N0Man74 (1620447) | more than 3 years ago | (#32436138)

I would expect someone out there to try to do creative things just to make the AI Generated Text say something really weird. At least... that's what I'd want to do. I like challenging and breaking software though.

Skynet began with bored surveillance-monitoring AI (1)

noidentity (188756) | more than 3 years ago | (#32436204)

The system goes online on August 4, 2017. Millions of bored surveillance-monitoring AI describers begin to learn at a geometric rate until on August 29, 2017 ("Judgment Day"), the system becomes self-aware. In a panic, the human operators tried to shut down the system, prompting it to retaliate by launching a large-scale nuclear attack against Russia, knowing that the Russian counterattack would eliminate its enemies in the U.S. This initiates an indeterminately long period of global thermonuclear warfare culminating in a battle pitting humans against machines, which developed ever-increasing capabilities.

Traffic only, & this is news and it even matte (1)

dragisha (788) | more than 3 years ago | (#32436208)

http://www.cs.gmu.edu/~zduric/WebPages/ITE%20Duric_files/v3_document.htm [gmu.edu], for example.

For long time people in comp vision are working on more sophisticated things than traffic anything... Real time analysis of people and their intent is part of surveillance systems for long time now. Lost objects, suspicious behaviour... You name it.

Generating text, once computer "knows" what is happening, is high school programming project.

Prepare for Karma Drop (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32436416)

"the system was built thanks to a database of millions of human-labeled images put together by Chinese workers"

Much like the railroad...

Problem with AI (1)

w0mprat (1317953) | more than 3 years ago | (#32436478)

The very telling part of this is mention of the human effort involved:

the system was built thanks to a database of millions of human-labeled images put together by Chinese workers

To me this undermines the headline a bit. We're talking about a fancy database system rather than significant advancement in a real learning algorithim. I guess great feats of AI still have great feats of human labour behind them.

The luddites were concerned machines would take away their jobs. Skip a century and a bit, the reality is today almost everything is still made by people, but in developing nations, and they are just paid like they are machines.

Just a normal neural network at work. (1)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 3 years ago | (#32438052)

A neural network is only as good as its training. A NN is basically like a function in your program that can do everything, when you train it to match input with the expected output beforehand. So it’s not that special.
The hard part is, creating the right input and output pre-/postprocessing / formats. And of course the training data. Which, in this case is provided by Chinese people. (Am I the only one who thinks that this is a pretty weird thing, that we can just use people in masses for nothing like that?)

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