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Eavesdropping On A New Level
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David F. Carr
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David F. Carr,
User Rank: Author
8/5/2014 | 11:35:30 AM
Practical, non-evil applications?
What did the researchers say motivated them to undertake this project? Are they trying to reverse engineer things likely already used by spy agencies? Or is there a commercial application?

I imagine a video system peering through the windows of passing cars to see what the driver and passengers are talking about, then triggering billboard displays with adwords-style promotions driven by keywords. A step beyond Minority Report?
Thomas Claburn
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Thomas Claburn,
User Rank: Author
8/5/2014 | 1:23:27 PM
Re: Practical, non-evil applications?
Funding for the research comes from the National Science Foundation and the Qatar Computing Research Institute. I don't see what the commercial applications would be. 
Lorna Garey
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Lorna Garey,
User Rank: Author
8/5/2014 | 1:27:42 PM
Re: Practical, non-evil applications?
This is often true of scientific discoveries -- first we find new things out just because we can, then the commercial use follows, or not. And that's fine.
JakobS797
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JakobS797,
User Rank: Apprentice
8/5/2014 | 11:45:15 AM
Eavesdropping
Where do they find these sickos that come up with these ideas? Trolling looney bins?
Laurianne
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Laurianne,
User Rank: Author
8/5/2014 | 12:02:22 PM
Fascinating
Puts talking to your plants in a whole new light. Seriously, you do have to wonder how the technology could be applied in Big Brother ways.
kharrison212
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kharrison212,
User Rank: Apprentice
8/6/2014 | 1:16:31 PM
Re: Fascinating
All you are doing is looking at a speaker, when sound hits something the force causes movement, if you capture the movement with another medium then you can re-create the sound that was required to move the object.  It was noted here that a teapot didn't respond, the teapot doesn't vibrate as much to low level pressure waves.  Non porus surfaces will move the most because they have to reflect all of the energy, a porus material will allow some (or more) to leak through.  Research into this dates back to World War II and the acoustic theories are taught in engineering courses worldwide.  The only thing new here is people think the plants are understanding what is said.  When the plant responds with a new sound to acknowledge an understanding then it becomes newsworthy.
DarioI887
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DarioI887,
User Rank: Strategist
8/5/2014 | 12:21:08 PM
So now...
In addition to dumping our cellphones outside, we have to remove all the plants and bags of potato chips if we want to have a private conversation.  Lovely.
AndrewE937
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AndrewE937,
User Rank: Apprentice
8/5/2014 | 12:29:19 PM
Re: So now...
With all this high resolution, high frequency, LIDAR, chemical sniffers; etc. why don't we have a way to detect IDE's? Are we really only concerned with invading privacy? It is the right of everyone to practice what they believe until it harms others. That was the founders definition of freedom. We have troops dying and all the government wants to do is chill everyone's speech. Yes, extremists are awful. They launch rockets and invade each other but this is the American experiment is it not?
DarioI887
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DarioI887,
User Rank: Strategist
8/5/2014 | 1:05:36 PM
Re: So now...
I get the impression we left America behind somewhere in the last 13 years.  Whatever it has become now is not what it used to be.

 

In a sense, the terrorists won after all.  They didn't change America themselves, they just brought a few buildings down.  But they indirectly changed America through the proxy of our own government.

 

And.  Worst of all -- we let them.  Tragic.
TerryB
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TerryB,
User Rank: Ninja
8/5/2014 | 1:23:08 PM
Old News?
Didn't the movie Eagle Eye, which was 2007 if I remember right, have a scene which showed this technology idea?

In the scene people were in shielded room intended to limit eavesdropping. The renegade computer used it's cameras thru a window to capture vibrations in a glass of water and used it to listen in. Until now, I didn't really know you could do that.

Now I'm worried the rest of movie is true.  :-)
mak63
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mak63,
User Rank: Ninja
8/7/2014 | 6:03:00 PM
Re: Old News?
I was thinking the same. Actually, the movie Eagle Eye came out in 2008.

I believe fiction, once again is ahead of its time.

If I understand the science behind the recovery of sound from video, at least a little, I believe we're talking about similar technologies, even though the audio on the video -that the computer gets- it's a live transcription

 Here's the clip


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