Google’s Project Tango built a prototype phone that tracks your location and makes a 3D map of the environment. Be afraid. Be very afraid.
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Though Google sold off Motorola, it retained many of its patents, as well as Motorola’s innovation lab: ATAP. Project Tango’s prototype hardware uses sensors to detect the environment and render a 3D view of the area. The bulky smartphone is now in the hands of developers.
A Privacy Nightmare
In the project’s YouTube video (see end of post), Eitan Marder-Eppstein with computer software company, hiDOF, discusses the technology as it maps a stairwell. “We have created a prototype phone containing highly customized hardware and software,” Marder-Eppstein states, “designed to allow the phone to track its motion in full 3D, in real time, as you hold it.”
Google’s Project Tango prototype phone can create a 3D rending of your environment.
In other words, instead of the cops, NSA or any other government agency pinging your phone for its location, recording all of its audio, and using its camera to record your life whenever it’s not shoved in your pocket, adversaries will now have access to a 3D rendering of your house, work, car, and the locations of your friends, family and other loved ones.
…adversaries will now have access to a 3D rendering of your house, work, car, and the locations of your friends, family and other loved ones.
Chris Anderson, the CEO at 3D Robotics, considers “navigation indoors” a “problem.” Marder-Eppsteins responds that the solution is how the Project Tango mobile device “tracks your position as you go around the world — and it also makes a map.”
Technology is cool. It’s our present and our future. But these technology companies that keep adding sensors and software that take all of our personal data (without recompense to us, though they are becoming wealthy off of our data) avoid, shy away from, and deflect answers about individual privacy. It’s a major problem, but until people start giving a shit, nothing is going to change.
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Originally published at www.governmentfishbowl.com on January 6, 2015.