San Jose Mercury News: How technology has redefined privacy

December 15, 2013 | Coverage

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By Lisa Krieger

Cameras increasingly serve as protective eyes and ears when we’re not present. A camera in an Oklahoma City nursing home recorded an aide stuffing gloves into a 96-year-old dementia patient’s mouth. Police who use cameras have fewer complaints against them and fewer false allegations of brutality.

But technology has moved up a notch to search out faces. No longer is it necessary to watch hours of surveillance video for a suspect or car. A computer program developed by the San Francisco company 3VR can quickly search huge quantities of video to find a specific face — matching gender, age and facial characteristics. It also can detect suspicious behavior — such as lingering — that the human eye might not notice.

3VR Queue Line Derrick Low

3VR software engineer Derrick Low pulls test video for a queue line analysis. The retail analytics help store managers figure out how many cash registers to keep open. (Lipo Ching/Bay Area News Group)

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