Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Google Patents Software To Identify Real-World Objects In Videos

timothy posted more than 2 years ago | from the confuse-them-with-scale-models dept.

Google 150

hypnosec writes "Google has been recently granted a patent that could not only improve online search, but also will possibly give the search engine giant an awful lot of information about the world. Google wants to scan and analyze the content within videos (YouTube videos, most probably) and look for objects in the real world, identify them, and make a catalogue out of those objects. The patent describes Google's technology of scanning a video, picking out landmarks, objects and context; and subsequent tagging and categorization." Adds reader MojoKid: "The privacy implications of such an automated system are enormous. Facebook's own automatic facial recognition software was highly controversial when it debuted, and what Google has now patented puts Facebook to shame. The larger question, unaddressed in this patent, is whether we want our individual personal data to be tagged, filed, and logged without permission or choice."

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Big Brother Style Mind Reading (-1, Offtopic)

MindReading (2720721) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204299)

This provides excellent way for global mind reading. Like noted in this blog, mind reading can be nicely automated with Google's technology. In fact, this is already in use. It uses a combination of brain pattern matching [mindreading.me] , tiny video feed from your eyes and Google's technology to identify objects and context. It works wonderfully.

You might question how I know this? Because it's already in use. Such device has been planted in me and it is reading my mind. It knows my every thought and gives the device controllers voice notice of every object I put my eyes on. It is exactly like the technology Google is patenting and wants to develop. It's a huge opportunity for mass scale big brothering. I'm not entirely sure how widespread the mind reading technology is, but I do know this Google technology is part of it.

You have to fight against using these technologies. Yeah, it's "Google". That's what actually worries me a lot!

Re:Big Brother Style Mind Reading (4, Funny)

siddesu (698447) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204315)

Are you also a Warrior-Philosopher hovering in a glass castle over California by any chance?

Face Recognization (0)

Taco Cowboy (5327) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204411)

Having have the time to read TFA yet, but just wondering, how does this patent differ from the Face Recognization routine?

Or maybe this patent will enable the software to pick up one particular face, out of the thousands, in the video?

Re:Face Recognization (4, Funny)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204527)

Having have the time to read TFA yet, but just wondering, how does this patent differ from the Face Recognization routine?

Unlike the Face Recognization patent, this one has been written with the assistance of a spell checker.

Re:Big Brother Style Mind Reading (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204481)

This provides excellent way for global mind reading. Like noted in this blog, mind reading can be nicely automated with Google's technology. In fact, this is already in use. It uses a combination of brain pattern matching [mindreading.me] , tiny video feed from your eyes and Google's technology to identify objects and context. It works wonderfully.

You might question how I know this? Because it's already in use. Such device has been planted in me and it is reading my mind. It knows my every thought and gives the device controllers voice notice of every object I put my eyes on. It is exactly like the technology Google is patenting and wants to develop. It's a huge opportunity for mass scale big brothering. I'm not entirely sure how widespread the mind reading technology is, but I do know this Google technology is part of it.

You have to fight against using these technologies. Yeah, it's "Google". That's what actually worries me a lot!

Sit down on this cot, we're going to give you a shot which will make you much more relaxed. And then
we are going to show you to your new room. Sorry, it has a very small window and you won't get out much,
but you will be safe from THEM.

.

Yes (and law on questions at summaries broken). (5, Insightful)

ccguy (1116865) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204313)

The larger question, unaddressed in this patent, is whether we want our individual personal data to be tagged, filed, and logged without permission or choice."

How is a video uploaded to youtube 'individual personal data"? Sometimes it seems like we just want to complain about stuff.
I definitely want my (very few) youtube videos categorized, and most importantly, I want to be able to look for video contents.

By the way, the IO keynote demoed a search by content on pictures uploaded to google drive (the speaker typed 'pyramid' and the search returned 2 pictures with background pyramids), so this seems like an obvious improvement over that.

Re:Yes (and law on questions at summaries broken). (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204405)

oh, please, get your mouth off google's spasming cock.

Re:Yes (and law on questions at summaries broken). (2)

c0lo (1497653) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204407)

The larger question, unaddressed in this patent, is whether we want our individual personal data to be tagged, filed, and logged without permission or choice."

How is a video uploaded to youtube 'individual personal data"? Sometimes it seems like we just want to complain about stuff.

True. A bit further and someone will question whether the objects (captured in the clip) themselves may or may not... well... object.
I mean... can you imagine the shame of a jiggling conical green jelly object [youtube.com] to be tagged "dildo"? (spoiler: no pr0n was linked in the course of this posting).

Re:Yes (and law on questions at summaries broken). (5, Interesting)

Knuckles (8964) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204409)

How is a video uploaded to youtube 'individual personal data"?.

It can be non-private for the uploader, but private for other people in the video. You don't always know when you are in a video, and even if do you often cannot prevent it from being uploaded.

Re:Yes (and law on questions at summaries broken). (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204455)

Well, once they know that you're in the video they can notify you and you can ask them to blur you out. It's all a matter of what the law says, and if you don't like the laws, don't blame the company. Blame the politicians.

Re:Yes (and law on questions at summaries broken). (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204737)

Well, once they know that you're in the video they can notify you and you can ask them to blur you out.

And how are Google going to contact me? They don't have any permitted means of doing so.

I suppose they could dredge the uploader's Gmail e-mail history and send a mail to all the John Smiths therein...

Re:Yes (and law on questions at summaries broken). (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204795)

Unless you live like the unabomber, Google knows at least three ways to contact you. Heck, I am "anonymous" and they contacted me the other day.

Re:Yes (and law on questions at summaries broken). (1)

Patch86 (1465427) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204963)

I could already be in the background of a video with a million views and I wouldn't know it. If there were a way of identifying myself in YouTube videos, I'd be able to check them and get myself blurred/video removed if necessary.

Let's face it, the cat is already out of the bag in terms of the problem you state. There are already hundreds and hundreds of pictures of me on Facebook (not one of which I've uploaded) which I can do nothing about, and god knows how many more elsewhere on the net. The best I can do is refuse to let myself be tagged on Facebook (wither using the account option, or by not having a Facebook account) and hope for the best.

Re:Yes (and law on questions at summaries broken). (1)

thePowerOfGrayskull (905905) | more than 2 years ago | (#41205135)

Perhaps you should read-read tfs. It's not tagging people its pulling out objects and locations. No Los of privacy for anyone except potentially the video uploader - and that person was already giving up privacy by trusting a third party.

If someone else was in the uploaded video, it wouldn't matter under this tech.

Re:Yes (and law on questions at summaries broken). (1)

Knuckles (8964) | more than 2 years ago | (#41205279)

Perhaps I should have, but I was only responding to the short-sighted idea that it would be intrinsically impossible for private stuff to end up on YT

Re:Yes (and law on questions at summaries broken). (4, Insightful)

Taco Cowboy (5327) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204425)

The larger question, unaddressed in this patent, is whether we want our individual personal data to be tagged, filed, and logged without permission or choice."

How is a video uploaded to youtube 'individual personal data"?

 
How about the following scenario ...

You were present at a certain event, and someone took a vid of that event

Somehow you ended up in the vid

And the vid was uploaded to youtube, by someone other than you

Without this patent (or similar tech), someone happened to watch the vid on youtube might recognizes you

With this patent (and similar tech), they can now start categorizing every "familiar subject"

Whether or not your face end up in the list of "familiar subject" is another story, but the gist of the thing is, it's possible now to categorize everything

Re:Yes (and law on questions at summaries broken). (3, Funny)

horza (87255) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204619)

This is the Facebook face recognition. In the Google scenario it would now be able to tell you 84% of your photos have a cat in.

Phillip.

Re:Yes (and law on questions at summaries broken). (2)

ccguy (1116865) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204721)

How about the following scenario ...

You were present at a certain event, and someone took a vid of that event

Somehow you ended up in the vid

And the vid was uploaded to youtube, by someone other than you

Well, then you are already in youtube. The only difference now is that you are indexed. If it worries you, just look for yourself (assuming you can somehow) and if you show up ask for the video to be taken down, or for your image to be blurred, assuming you have any legal right to do that.

Re:Yes (and law on questions at summaries broken). (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204931)

The problem is that at that point it's too late. Unless you're suggesting that we only spend our time searching over and over again. It wasn't as big of a deal in the past when somebody we knew would have to view the video and tag it or random come across it. With this it's even more public than it was previously.

Same with the face recognition stuff. It wasn't a big deal being in somebody's photo when it wasn't indexed and tagged, but now it's a lot easier to find out what pictures a random person is in.

Re:Yes (and law on questions at summaries broken). (1)

ultranova (717540) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204979)

Well, then you are already in youtube. The only difference now is that you are indexed.

And that's a rather huge difference. There's a tremendous difference between "you might be seen" and "every move you made is recorded, indexed and cross-referenced automatically".

If it worries you, just look for yourself (assuming you can somehow) and if you show up ask for the video to be taken down, or for your image to be blurred, assuming you have any legal right to do that.

If it doesn't worry you, you'd feel right at home in East Germany, which utilized a manual system to keep tabs on everyone. This is basically the same system, only automated.

Re:Yes (and law on questions at summaries broken). (1)

ccguy (1116865) | more than 2 years ago | (#41205085)

Well, then you are already in youtube. The only difference now is that you are indexed.

And that's a rather huge difference. There's a tremendous difference between "you might be seen" and "every move you made is recorded, indexed and cross-referenced automatically".

Really? How exactly do my possible apparences in youtube become "every move you made is recorded, indexed and cross-referenced automatically".? There seem to be even more amazing technology somewhere.

If it doesn't worry you, you'd feel right at home in East Germany, which utilized a manual system to keep tabs on everyone. This is basically the same system, only automated.

You realize that the patent is about "Identify Real-World Objects In Videos", right?

And no, it doesn't worry me. Comparing this to East Germany is absurd and probably insulting to those who suffered its regime.

Re:Yes (and law on questions at summaries broken). (1)

VortexCortex (1117377) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204563)

How is a video uploaded to youtube 'individual personal data"?

If I video tape my genitalia and upload it to Youtube it would be individual personal data. Indeed, the video game glitches and prototypes I've uploaded to Youtube are my personal data. It's mine. I created it. Now, that said: If You see a copy of the PS1 game "Unholy War" on the coffee table in the background of my hypothetical "Coming to God" video featuring my individual and personal data, I would be pleased if you would be able to click said PS1 game and buy it, to play in your emulator -- Hexagonal Strategy gameplay like chess (or Battletech) + Arena Style 3D Deathmatch. Mmm, tasty, when publishers still took risks -- If that link automatically becomes "product placement", and I get paid for your referral link which results in some payment for my efforts in recording and making available the video: I'm all for it.

If you don't want to be seen in public, then just don't do that. As a regular Slashdot poster I'm fully qualified to inform you that it's perfectly possible to never be in public. My allergies were bad this past year (no, I mean crippling so, to the point of catching pneumonia due to fluid on the lungs -- In Houston, we have a Problem in that you get all your vitamins in one breath), so I stayed indoors almost exclusively and had my groceries and everything else delivered to my residence for about a month. However, were I to have been in public when my individual personal data had been video recorded then perhaps some one else would have shouldered the burden of editing the video, and they would monetise my junk via advertising referral traffic from Call of C'thulhu... I call it the "Bat Wing" when its stretched like that, but you can't fault the computers image recognition -- Nothing's perfect.

The point is, private data can also be public. I'm cool with monetising it as long as I get a cut. If it has to be monetised to support the traffic, then maybe I don't want it online. Movie Stars get to control monetisation of their likenesses, so should we all. If the stop and rob down the street wants to monetise the fact that I buy Zig Zags, Sunny-D, Ben & Jerry's and Hustler (for the photography, the stories are tasteless), then so be it -- I've got nothing to hide, but they shouldn't have anything to hide either: I'd like a cut of the video I helped make, it's only fair.

Re:Yes (and law on questions at summaries broken). (1)

dell623 (2021586) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204667)

Host it yourself. Why are you uploading it to Youtube then? And if the data is public, do you realize anyone can crawl through it, not just Google? The patent says nothing about monetizing it, and if the video is viewable, anyone can run such algorithms and get data off it, not just the hosting website.

Private data cannot be public. Keep it private. If you make something public, expect it to be stored for eternity even if you try to delete it, have all your pictures and videos crawled through by algorithms with face and object recognition.

Re:Yes (and law on questions at summaries broken). (1)

MrHanky (141717) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204755)

Once you publish it, it's no longer your personal data. It might be yours, but it's public.

Re:Yes (and law on questions at summaries broken). (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204953)

I distinctively remember that not even five years ago, everybody here said the exact same thing I'm saying now, and how it would be a trap, that Joe Random would fall for, but we would be too smart to fall for. Yet, now you get modded to oblivion even here, for daring to mention that the concept of "owning" information is utter nonsense. Because now, even here, people truly believe, that you can retain ownership/control over information, even after passing it on no completely non-controllable entities.

The sad fact is: The content Mafia propaganda worked. Even on us. All it took, was time, and endless repetition.

And now you and I are the evil ones, for thinking you can't own information.

___
This is the reason, I now started to gain interest in social engineering (includes lobbying, marketing, politics, etc.)... Because nowadays, reality and facts seem meaningless, and all that counts is emotions and beliefs. Of a groupthink. So instead of getting killed by that groupthink, I'm gonna be the CREATOR of that groupthink.

I hope they can already recognise the finger/Vsign (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204321)

as if I see their nosy cars on patrol that's what they will be seeing.

Expectation of Privacy (5, Insightful)

Angrywhiteshoes (2440876) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204327)

>> unaddressed in this patent, is whether we want our individual personal data to be tagged, filed, and logged without permission or choice

I'm not sure that you have any expectation of privacy in this case. You're putting videos on the internet at your own will or you are in a public setting where you are being filmed. I'm not sure if things like parties are considered to be private affairs or public outings or whatever and if you can expect that your actions will be kept secret from the world or not. Either way, I don't think that you can expect much. But, I'm not a lawyer, so I don't know. However, I wouldn't expect that any part of my life that I freely share with the world in anyway should be kept private unless it was agreed to beforehand.

Also, with regards to Google in general, I think your permission is granted when you use Google services. When this goes live, and you don't want to participate, you can delete your youtube account and host it somewhere else. Maybe a place with more privacy control. For people who are caught in it because their friend posted a video, well, I think that kind of pertains to my babbling in the first paragraph.

Re:Expectation of Privacy (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204337)

or you are in a public setting where you are being filmed.

This expectation of privacy nonsense needs to be thrown out. It was thought up before we had the technology capable of mass surveillance, and now it's very convenient for the government and companies. The government can simply work with companies to get the info (whatever government isn't allowed to do can simply be passed off to companies). I don't expect that my actions be secret, but I do expect that I shouldn't need to walk around with a mask everywhere I go just because some idiots can't differentiate between mass surveillance and some bystander spotting you while walking down the street.

Re:Expectation of Privacy (1)

iter8 (742854) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204865)

If I had mod points today, I would give them all to you, even if you are an AC. There is a qualitative difference between the idea of being seen in public and mass surveillance combined with indexing and long-term data storage. We need more than an expectation of privacy. We need a guarantee.

Re:Expectation of Privacy (5, Insightful)

causality (777677) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204957)

The government can simply work with companies to get the info (whatever government isn't allowed to do can simply be passed off to companies). I don't expect that my actions be secret, but I do expect that I shouldn't need to walk around with a mask everywhere I go just because some idiots can't differentiate between mass surveillance and some bystander spotting you while walking down the street.

I agree with you 100% about the mass surveillance thing. I have no idea why people are so eager to portray it as a completely 100% harmless condition that could never, ever be used against them. Apparently they've never heard the saying by Cardinal Richelieu: "give me six lines penned by the most honest hand, and I will find something in them which will hang him". Now imagine that applied not only to whatever you write, but to everything you say, everything you do, everywhere you go, stored indefinitely, in a nation with so many tens of thousands of laws it's nearly impossible to never break at least one of them...

If you want to embrace a no-privacy world, I sure hope that every human being on earth, including criminals, including tyrants, thinks you're a great person and never wants to harm you, because that sure is easier to do when they know a lot about you.

Regarding the government cooperating with companies to get around restrictions placed on government, the restrictions against government merely need to be updated to include "nor shall this be done by proxy". That would make it consistent with every law telling real people what they may not do. For a couple of hypothetical examples, you are not allowed to rob someone, nor are you allowed to hire a thug to rob someone; in both cases you would be prosecuted. Hiring a hit-man won't keep you from being prosecuted for murder even though you didn't perform the act personally. Restrictions on government need to close this "by proxy" loophole. Then they will be harmonized with the kind of laws each of us are expected to obey.

Re:Expectation of Privacy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204989)

>>For people who are caught in it because their friend posted a video, well, I think that kind of pertains to my babbling in the first paragraph.

I solved that problem. I don't have any friends!

Canary is dead (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204329)

It was squawking quite loudly a bit earlier, but with this announcement it seems to have permanently stopped.

I was expecting this (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204333)

After Andrew Ng's experiment with creating an unsupervised neural net of 16,000 computer cores at Google, it comes natural they have an interest in this field of photo/video tagging and start outputting some patents. There is a similar technology at (http://www.msravs.com/audiosearch_demo/) for transcribing speech to text and making archives of videos searchable by word (kind of like Google Books does for print).

Soon we will have all our huge archives of video, print and images analysed and searchable. Imagine the implications!

If you're worried about this... (1)

Gordonjcp (186804) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204365)

... you'd better not go outside. Somebody might see you! Better to stay in with the curtains drawn, and keep away from the windows just in case.

Re:If you're worried about this... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204399)

Why don't you provide a list where you were last time you went out?

I need to know all persons you talked to, all addresses you visited, the routes you took, and how long you stayed in each place.

Since you're not worried, I'm sure you'll provide this information ASAP.

Thanks.

Re:If you're worried about this... (1)

Gordonjcp (186804) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204435)

It's none of your damn business. If you happened to be there to see me, then fine.

Re:If you're worried about this... (1)

Hazel Bergeron (2015538) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204503)

So what you're saying is that it's OK that the technology may be deployed within a decade to answer AC's question without your getting a say in the matter, but when he (more honestly) asks you directly then it's not his "damn business"?

I like to apply the "your daughter in the bathroom" test. If you're OK with any information being processed for whatever purpose as long as it reaches public space, then you're OK with my using an infrared/whatever camera and sensitive microphone from the street to record and rebroadcast your daughter when she is in the bathroom.

'cos it's none of my damn business, but I happened to be in the street picking up this data.

Re:If you're worried about this... (0)

Gordonjcp (186804) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204517)

If you're in a private space - like your house, for example - then you have an expectation of privacy.

If you're standing outside in the street, out in public, you do not have an expectation of privacy.

It's really a pretty simple concept to grasp. I know right-wing Americans do have trouble with reading comprehension, but I don't know how I can make it any plainer.

Re:If you're worried about this... (1)

Hazel Bergeron (2015538) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204679)

1) "You have an expectation of" are cowardly weasel words for "I think you should have".

2) How are "in public" and "private space" defined? Use definitions which come down to something other than "space where you do not / do have an expectation of privacy".

3) Most material ends up being published from what I think you'd call "private space" - even following someone around inevitably shows them on "private" grounds.

4) What is so special about some kinds of space that you should not have any privacy protection there? In particular, why can I follow your daughter with a remote control car and take upskirt photos? Why am I allowed to place cameras in drains so every woman passing over, including your daughter, provides a nice panty shot for me to publish? Give a sound moral argument.

Re:If you're worried about this... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204805)

The courts have already defined the things you are asking for. No need to ask the submitter to do it. If you are afraid of Google, try Bing. Either one will find you what you want.

Re:If you're worried about this... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204853)

That's as laughable as the "reasonable person" nonsense. Ambiguous garbage. Not acceptable for important matters.

The expectation of privacy nonsense needs to go. We need sensible privacy laws that don't allow for mass surveillance.

Re:If you're worried about this... (1)

Hazel Bergeron (2015538) | more than 2 years ago | (#41205047)

Yes and the courts in East Germany also defined where you have a "reasonable expectation" of privacy.

I'm looking for a moral argument, not a layman's restatement of the law.

Re:If you're worried about this... (1)

ultranova (717540) | more than 2 years ago | (#41205043)

It's none of your damn business. If you happened to be there to see me, then fine.

And if I follow you 24/7 and record everything you do, is that fine too? Because that's what this is about: technology is changing the situation from me seeing you by accident to me being able to get an automated report of your actions after the fact with a simple Google query.

It used to be impossible to keep everyone under constant surveillance, even police states had to prioritize. Thus you had de facto privacy even in public, unless you drew attention to yourself. But the limits set by resource requirements are quickly disappearing. Thus we either re-enforce them through law, or we accept that we have less privacy than Soviet citizens of old.

So, are you okay with being stalked 24/7 every time you set foot outside your door, and the report being given to everyone who ever asks for it, from friends to neighbours to potential employers? Because I sure as Hell am not.

Re:If you're worried about this... (1)

Gordonjcp (186804) | more than 2 years ago | (#41205125)

And if I follow you 24/7 and record everything you do, is that fine too?

You can if you want. You're not getting inside my house, though. I suspect you'd get bored of it pretty quickly. I can give you some GPS co-ordinates to start you off, if you're *that* interested.

Re:If you're worried about this... (1)

VortexCortex (1117377) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204621)

Why don't you provide a list where you were last time you went out?

I need to know all persons you talked to, all addresses you visited, the routes you took, and how long you stayed in each place.

Since you're not worried, I'm sure you'll provide this information ASAP.

Thanks.

No problem: The last time I went out was to the grocery. I used the self checkout and talked to no one. I took the fastest route as proposed by my GPS, I stayed there for 33 minutes according to my router's traffic log. The list of people's addresses I visited is empty -- this is Slashdot you fool.

Re:If you're worried about this... (1)

horza (87255) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204627)

Eh? If you upload a Youtube video then you are providing this list. The Google algorithm is not gleaning any extra information you can't get by watching the video, only cataloguing it better. For instance if you have video of you having lunch under the Eiffel Tower it will automatically be tagged "Paris".

My guess is that it will be used to pre-fill a "Suggested tags" box.

Phillip.

Re:If you're worried about this... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204629)

Somebody might see me, but it used to be unthinkable that someone could record your every move and store the results. Do not equate random bystanders seeing you with cameras or surveillance technology.

Alzheimer's (1)

Sqr(twg) (2126054) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204371)

What I want is a little webcam that I can put on my shoulder, and which records everything (without uploading it anywhere). Then, when I want to know where my keys are, it'll show me the last recorded images that have keys in them.

privacy implication FUD (5, Insightful)

dell623 (2021586) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204385)

What exactly are the new privacy implications of this system? Governments in western democracies are deploying facial recognition systems at street corners and license plate recognition systems to track vehicle movement, what does this bring that makes things significantly worse?

That last link is particularly egregious. It points to Chromebooks as a device that is dependent completely on Google services. How about also mentioning devices that already do the same, except that they have about a 100 times more users - iPhones and iPads. And even Windows devices are going the same way. What on earth does with ave to do with this patent, and how about mentioning that this isn't specific to Google. I am tired of this FUD implication that Google can steal all your data while others can't? What Google could do theoretically all other 'cloud' providers could do too, theoretically. How about comparing their actual records? Has Google turned on face recognition without your consent? Has Google changed your email contacts and personal email address on your profile and wiped your phone contacts? Do you really think Apple can't access the same stuff in theory from your iPhone the way Google can from their devices? Or the Facebook app that installs with just about every permission available?

And again, what does any of it have to do with this patent. If you upload a video to youtube for the whole world to see, is it really a big deal that Google knows that you use a Macbook?

the article says "Google's own vision for the future of computing is a Chromebook/Chromebox that's completely dependent on their own services for everything". Really? What's Apple's vision of computing? Amazon - ever used a Kindle Fire? In fact, Google sells very few Chromebooks, and most Google affiliated devices sold are Google Android devices, which offer far more freedom. You can use it with non Google accounts. You can disable and remove Google services, and Google allows apps that compete with Google services (Apple bans those - reproduce the functionality of an Apple service or app and you get banned). Amazon is equally restricted if you've ever used a Kindle Fire.
And there are several unlocked Android phones and devices where you can install Google free versions of Android like Cyanogen, and do whatever the hell you want without the privacy implications. How about raising awareness of those for people who are really concerned about privacy instead of spreading all this 'Google will steal all ur dataz oh noez' FUD. That ship bolted, the horse has sailed etc. ALL current device makers do that or are moving towards that model. Go to all the trouble of using and informing about Linux or De-Googled Android devices, or shut up and talk about real disasters when they happen like Facebook's several privacy booboos or the Google Wave fiasco. Not this FUD.

Re:privacy implication FUD (2, Insightful)

BSAtHome (455370) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204443)

The question is not whether this is a useful technology. The real question is whether that what /can/ be done /should/ be done. The technology is without any feeling; it is us who bring feelings into play when we use technology.

Access to information, be it local or global, is not inherently bad. We can use it to learn and promote. However, not everyone has the same intentions and that is where it gets problematic.

If we make all information readily available in a way that we all become transparent, then not only can we use this for a positive benefit for us, but it can and _will_ be used against us. That is why it is so important to think about the consequences of any (technological) creation before it is actually made.

Re:privacy implication FUD (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204467)

Do you work for google? Nice strawman post going wildly off topic to spread your own positive FUD about google

Re:privacy implication FUD (0)

PixetaledPikachu (1007305) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204497)

How about also mentioning devices that already do the same, except that they have about a 100 times more users - iPhones and iPads. And even Windows devices are going the same way. I am tired of this FUD implication that Google can steal all your data while others can't? What Google could do theoretically all other 'cloud' providers could do too, theoretically. How about comparing their actual records?

I think that Google might be in a slightly different position since Amazon and Apple already get money from you from selling their devices and services. Google and Facebook on the other hand, will only get money by selling us (and our data) as a target for their real customers, the advertisers.

Re:privacy implication FUD (2)

dell623 (2021586) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204601)

Amazon sold the Kindle Fire at zero profit or a small loss according to most accounts, they get their money from you purchasing apps and content from Amazon, they want to know your habits just as much as Google does. Also remember, Google owns Motorola Mobility now, they are a hardware company too.

Also there is an unfair underlying implication in all this that just because Google is an advertising company it makes it more likely that they will violate their policies than other companies. That's not necessarily true. There's nothing to suggest that your private data is safer with one big company than another. If it will be lucrative for Google at some point to consider selling personal data about you, you can be damn sure Apple will have the same incentive to share the data it gathers from Apple maps and Siri and your contact list and iCloud and everything else. The only effective remedy is legal safeguards to keep all companies on their toes about privacy knowing there will be hell to pay if they screw up, rather than some vague idea notion that if you don't use Google services you'll be safer.

Privacy concerns with current technologies isn't just a Google issue. Raising alarm over a vague patent application is just stupid with so many real things to worry about, like TrapWire and INDECT.

Re:privacy implication FUD (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204531)

Just in case you have not noticed all the Google=evil shit started about the same time as the Washington DC lobby based screw google campaign. At the same time microsoft shills that thrive on posting Google is evil crap on slashdot started showing up in large numbers. And you are 100% correct services associated with the Bing thing are just about the same as those offered by Google. I predict the whole cloud thing will essentially flop as micro sd storage and usb thumb drives have become so cheap. So essentially Microsoft still has Google, Android, Samsung and all the other Android device manufactures by the balls because of the fat and ntfs patents.

Of much greater concern is the fact that with these stupid file system patents Microsoft has succeeded in extorting everyone on the planet, obviously there is some serious money under the table going to the chip and drive manufactures to not show people how easy it is to use other file systems with usb. It is high time for Sony, Samsung and all the other manufactures to put the assholes in Redmond in their place and include software to use file systems other than fat and ntfs on on pcs with simple storage devices. Then tell Microsoft to go fuck itself once and for all and stop allowing them to extort manufactures.
 

Re:privacy implication FUD (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204555)

More strawman stuff. What thehell has this article got to do with MS patents? Nothing that's what. Except of course you think google can do no wrong

Prior art (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204403)

n/t

Re:Prior art (1)

SwedishPenguin (1035756) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204533)

Yeah that was my first thought, how can they patent something that the research community has been doing for years?

Re:Prior art (1)

dell623 (2021586) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204671)

You can patent anything these days. It's slightly less worrying to see Google patenting stuff because they have only used patents defensively. I am sure these days Google patents absolutely anything they can think of.

Re:Prior art (1)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204833)

Sigh. They're not patenting the recognition, they're patenting a specific method of doing so. You need the read the claims.

Re:Prior art (1)

leptogenesis (1305483) | more than 2 years ago | (#41205103)

they're patenting a specific method of doing so.

There is nothing specific about the methods they're patenting. I just worked on a very similar project [cmu.edu] , and after reading the patent, I see very little separating what they patented from what we did. Indeed we don't use dimensionality reduction the way they suggest (although we did use it for a while), and we don't provide specific names for the objects we discover (though we have talked about doing so via crowdsourcing). Indeed our work is more recent than the patent filing, but people have been attempting similar things for ages (e.g. [1] [springerlink.com] , [2] [ieee.org] ...they are very easy to find). Worse, the two papers I cite provide enough detail to actually produce a working system, whereas the patent provides little detail beyond a few references to well-known machine learning and computer vision techniques. And even when they suggest methodology, it's always "maybe we'll use this, maybe not", and further they tend to list several potential methods without any indication that they've researched which ones work.

Porn videos??!? audio description?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204429)

Both?

AD: There is white room with a dining table and a few chairs
AD: A blonde haired girl with large breasts is bent over the table
creaking
AD: A well endowed man is stood behind her
moans
AD: the man is thrusting faster
AD: the mans hands grab the girls breasts
moans increase
AD: the girl is moving her head back and forth, flicking her hair.
"ah ah"
AD: She looks at the camera, now we can see that she has a mans face ...

Hmm. Well Google good to see you moving accessibility technology forward,,,,,

Oh! So Google invented neural network algorithms? (1)

Deus.1.01 (946808) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204457)

Rad.

OK, my beef is that it sounded to me that Image Recognition on a certain application got its own patent...

Re:Oh! So Google invented neural network algorithm (1)

Deus.1.01 (946808) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204463)

That is application using image recognition..

Image recognition towards a certain applicaiton... ...

bah
sleep is for the weak.

Google Jungle View (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204461)

I'd like to see a radical expansion of their Street View, where someone carries a similar camera but smaller than their car uses, but walks, or uses a dune buggy or motorcycle and goes off road to collect even more data through places their cars wouldn't be able to access.

A more likely use (2)

robvangelder (472838) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204495)

Is landmark identification within Google Street View

Re:A more likely use (1)

ChinggisK (1133009) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204965)

Or Project Glass.

Who would be the lesser of two evils? (3, Insightful)

pinkushun (1467193) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204525)

This is bound to happen. The question is:

Would you prefer Google to patent this, or someone like Apple?

Personally I would trust Google to consider user rights a little bit more, but the exploitation of such a system is damn scary.

Re:Who would be the lesser of two evils? (1, Interesting)

MrMickS (568778) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204547)

Personally I would trust Google to consider user rights a little bit more, but the exploitation of such a system is damn scary.

I'd be interested to hear your reasoning behind that.

Google still have WiFi data that they collected when creating street view. Google and privacy aren't too things that go too well together, the overall impression I have is that they don't care about it at all.

Re:Who would be the lesser of two evils? (0)

Henriok (6762) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204561)

Personally I would trust Google to consider user rights a little bit more, but the exploitation of such a system is damn scary.

So you'd rather trust a company who's business model is to sell information collected from and about you to who ever is willing to pay than a company with a reparation to not share any collected information about anything to anyone, no matter what the price?

Re:Who would be the lesser of two evils? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41205003)

You mean because Google, which, in case you chose to ignore that, is just a giant advertising company that sells you as their product, has somehow maintained to retain a better corporate image?

Yeah, because in comparison to Stalin, Hitler was a lot better.
And that tooootally means, it's OK for Hitler to kill Jews...
(If you now knee-jerk to "Godwin's Law", read up on the concept of a hyperbole [wikipedia.org] to emphasize and highlight the crucial key point of an argument so even blind idiots get it.)

WHY THE FUCK IS THIS PATENTABLE!?!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204537)

I've been going to lectures and seminars on people trying to do this for years. How in hell is it not obvious, or logical progression, or any of the other things that should prevent a patent?

Re:WHY THE FUCK IS THIS PATENTABLE!?!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41205077)

Doing this is obvious, I'm guessing that the methods they're employing aren't. It's sort of like barbed wire, people had been making fences for centuries, but nobody had come up with that particular type of fence before then.

Privacy Issues Aside... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204545)

There are some real world military applications for a patent such as this. Say someone takes a video that is less than kind to a particular government. That government can then learn where that video was take, who it was taken by, and where that person lives. Big brother indeed, with a darker twist.

All your privacy belong to us! (5, Insightful)

CuteSteveJobs (1343851) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204551)

The problem is you don't have a say over this: Even if you're not a iPhone-weilding Youtube-uploading Instagram-snapping Facebook-addicted Gmail-enabled Twitter-junkie, you will have friends that are and upload information about you without thinking about it. I'm Privacy aware, but many non-technical people aren't. Now add to that webcams and surveillance video and there is no escape. No wonder they've been dragging their heals on privacy legislation with real teeth: Corporations will love it for data-mining and government will love it for surveillance.

Take this girl: She had a photo snapped of her at a friend's BBQ. They uploaded it to Flikr without thinking, and next thing she knows she's on advertising billboards: http://www.flickr.com/photos/sesh00/515961023/ [flickr.com] http://www.theinquirer.net/inquirer/news/1047772/virgin-mobile-sued-virgin [theinquirer.net]

Re:All your privacy belong to us! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204559)

> you will have friends that are and upload information about you without thinking about it

Do not have friends - problem solved

Update on Allison Chang case (1)

CuteSteveJobs (1343851) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204565)

Here's an update on what happened with that case: Even though she was only 15 years old when the photo was taken *and* it was used in a for-profit advertising without her permission, the courts sided with the phone company (Virgin) who did this and dismissed her case. Virgin was unapologetic

http://blog.internetcases.com/2009/01/22/no-personal-jurisdiction-over-australian-defendant-in-flickr-right-of-publicity-case/

Re:Update on Allison Chang case (1)

TranceThrust (1391831) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204883)

It does seem a bit odd to sue in Texas. Did they file a case in Australia as well?

Re:Update on Allison Chang case (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204913)

that's what you get for using some shitty open source license like Creative Commons...

Re:Update on Allison Chang case (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41205091)

And people wonder why so many choose to release works as CC-NC.

Re:Update on Allison Chang case (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41205441)

Virgin was unapologetic

Are you surprised? Virgin associated itself with Phorm. Yet another reason to avoid VM.

Re:All your privacy belong to us! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204719)

OMG WTF BBQ

Hello! TLD! This exists, with code - HERE! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204569)

http://info.ee.surrey.ac.uk/Personal/Z.Kalal/tld.html [surrey.ac.uk]

TLD

TLD is an award-winning, real-time algorithm for tracking of unknown objects in video streams. The object of interest is defined by a bounding box in a single frame. TLD simultaneously Tracks the object, Learns its appearance and Detects it whenever it appears in the video. The result is a real-time tracking that typically improves over time.

Due to its learning abilities, TLD has been advertised under name Predator. The video to the left introduces Predator and proposes several potential applications.

TLD has been developed by Zdenek Kalal during his PhD thesis supervised by Krystian Mikolajczyk and Jiri Matas. The main contributions of TLD have been presented at international computer-vision conferences. For his work on TLD, Zdenek Kalal has been awarded the UK ICT Pioneers 2011.

Key Features

        TLD tracks currently only a single object
        Input: video stream from single monocular camera, bounding box defining the object
        Output: object location in the stream, object detector
        Implementation: Matlab + C, single thread, no GPU
        No offline training stage
        Real-time performance on QVGA video stream
        Ported to Windows, Mac OS X and Linux

Free Version

TLD can be downloaded for testing. We provide a precompiled demo (Windows) and a source code that is released under GPL version 3.0. In short, it means that any distributed project that includes or links any portion of TLD source code has to be released with the source code under the GPL version 3.0 license or later.
Commercial Version

A license has to be purchased for using TLD in closed source projects. The licencing is managed the University of Surrey. Please contact the Technology Transfer Office at the University of Surrey for further information.
More Information

        High-level description of TLD
        Components of TLD
        Learning component of TLD
        Application of TLD tracker to faces
        Detailed description is in the following papers: ICCV'09 (w), CVPR'10, ICIP'10, ICPR'10
        Many technical questions (e.g. installation) are being discussed in the following discussion group.

FAQ

        How do you manage the number of templates in TLD?
        For the moment, we do not put any constraints on the number of templates in memory. The number of templates typically stabilizes around 100, depending on the appearance variability of the object and background.
        What kind of hardware is TLD running on?
        TLD has been tested using standard hardware: webcam, Intel Core 2 Duo CPU 2.4 GHz, 2 GB RAM, no GPU processing is used and runs in a single thread. The demands of the algorithm depend on required accuracy of the algorithm.
        To what degree is TLD invariant to light levels?
        We use illumination-invariant features for detection. So as long as the changes in illumination are global, the performance does not change. If there is a strong local illumination change, the system is learning the appearance changes thus created.

Re:Hello! TLD! This exists, with code - HERE! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204581)

MOD PARENT UP! wtf google someone contact this guy who made TLD.. STAT!

99% of all videos on the internet is porn (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204573)

The algorithm shouldn't be too hard if it has a 1% chance of error. Technically it's anything that ISN'T porn that it can't scan for.

O Tempora o Mores (1)

SimplexBang (2685909) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204591)

Did the Gauls worry about their privacy when Caesar wrote his "Commentarii de Bello Gallico" ? Could they have done anything about it ? Did it matter ?

They'll get it (1)

thetoadwarrior (1268702) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204617)

I'm sure the government will see to it that they get this so Google and provide them information about brown people in return.

People should host their own content or find a company not interested in takin gall their data to sell advertisements and quit handing their life to google.

google is far worse than apple (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204637)

apple just wants to make your life easier by selling you fantastic workstations and mobile devices. google wants to spy on you and track everything you do!

Augmented Reality (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204647)

We all knew it was coming. Not really a new concept, smart move to patent this since everybody is suing everybody.

Surrender my privacy (4, Insightful)

collet (2632725) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204651)

Look, I really don't care what Google knows about me. I don't care if they know every single website I visit, how many steps it takes me to get to a McDonalds, or what color my toothbrush is.

If their targeted advertising means I'll never have to see another ad for tampons and lipstick, or a bar in Austria (a place where I don't live), then I'm happy.

Re:Surrender my privacy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204801)

Ad blockers, it works wonders and you get to keep your privacy (or what's left of it, anyway)! (at least for the most part of the internet anyway)

Re:Surrender my privacy (1)

cheekyjohnson (1873388) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204871)

Why wouldn't you care? Do you also not care if the government has access to all that information? If the government lacks information, and they know a privacy company has it, I'd say it's highly likely that they'll go after that information (and they'll probably get it, too).

Re:Surrender my privacy (1)

dzfoo (772245) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204919)

Fair enough. To each his own, I always say.

I, on the other hand, do care, and I expect my opinion to be just a valid as yours.

Then, if we agree on that, would you also agree that such a system should be strictly opt-in, so that those--like you--that do not care about their privacy may take advantage of whatever added value Google offers with this service?

So, why hasn't this been the case so far with other similar technologies that have the potential to threaten personal privacy--especially from Google?

          dZ.

big brother runs linux so it's all good! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204767)

sure google is an out of control monstrosity that wants to spy on you and you and sell your personal information to the highest bidder but hey they used linux in their phone so it's cool!

Turns out they were wrong (2)

way2trivial (601132) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204809)

the Revolution will NOT be televised, or it's never gonna get off the fucking ground....

too easy to identify the participants now....

Prior Art (1)

Bizzeh (851225) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204813)

doesnt BMW's, and Porsches rear parking cameras already do this, and do it in real time too?

This has already been done (1)

gatkinso (15975) | more than 2 years ago | (#41204859)

A patent search will not turn up this patent. This particular patent holder can retroactively exercise their patent rights. They are the only patent hold that can do this.

Google , Facebook .. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41204915)

All the same .. they are fantastic law enforcement tools , FBI , CIA , NSA information hungry organisations
love to track and know everything about you. They dont give a donkey's tail whether or not it suits you.
It suits the needs of their masters. Spying tools for spies.
As long as idiots are jumping in " social networking " and posting their lives and letting themselves be tracked even by GPS
and the governments and law enforcement know every minute what they do and where they are , why should they stop ?

Go ahead , share your data. You feed the beast.

My life (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41205235)

How will this affect my puny little life exactly?
Oh, it won't in any way, shape or form?
Ok, carry on.

I'm sure I've seen something similar... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41205333)

that might be considered prior art. Let me just search for that. Hmm.... what could possibly go wrong.

Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?