Smart ideas can turn city into a better place, here’s one. The dancing traffic light.
Later this month, Oliver says he’ll start taking pre-orders for Cyborg Unplug, a gadget no bigger than a laptop charger that plugs into a wall and patrols the local Wi-Fi network for connected Google Glass devices, along with other potential surveillance gadgets like Google Dropcams, Wi-Fi-enabled drone copters, and certain wireless microphones. When it detects one of those devices, it can be programmed to flash an alert with an LED light, play a sound through connected speakers, and even ping the Cyborg Unplug owner’s smartphone through an Android app, as well as silently booting those potential spy devices from the network.
Oliver says Cyborg Unplug will also offer an “All Out Mode.” With that more aggressive setting switched on, the plug will seek out and disconnect nearby surveillance devices on any network it connects to, including Glass’s wireless connection to their owners’ phones. That’s a more legally ambiguous use of the gadget that Oliver says he doesn’t recommend. “Please note that this latter mode may not be legal within your jurisdiction,” reads a disclaimer on Cyborg Unplug’s website. “We take no responsibility for the trouble you get yourself into if you choose to deploy your Cyborg Unplug in this mode.”
The privacy wars are escalating. The alarm feature is interesting. But I find it most interesting that the device is capable of scanning and connecting to non-owned networks. I assume those networks will need to be open. If this is somehow able to block devices on secure connections that would be really interesting from a rights perspective. And of course, this does nothing for people storing pictures and media locally without being connected to Wi-Fi.
A family-medicine doctor recent saw a 13-year-old with a weird, unidentifiable rash. It wasn’t itchy or painful, and the teenage boy hadn’t traveled anywhere recently. So the the doctor did what any modern physician would do: he took a photo and…
This MUST be a TRAP
A few things to explore ahead of today’s Apple announcements:
- Mobile tech indicators
- How the internet has woven itself into American life
- Expert predictions on the rise of wearables
As of January 2014:
- 90% of American adults have a cell phone
- 58% of American adults have a smartphone
- 32% of American adults own an e-reader
- 42% of American adults own a tablet computer
Note that tablets have the fastest rise of any of these innovations (and ebook readers could be considered as a minimal subset of tablets, which would make the rise of tablets even more steep).
Dispassionately, we know that cheating on our diets or procrastinating on our stupid deadlines isn’t worth it, but our stupid brains treat most future consequences as if they’re worth nothing, while treating any present-moment benefits as though they were precious beyond riches — so how do you get the “hyperbolic discounting” part of your brain to shut up and listen to reason?