The daily grind

September 15, 2009 at 2:00 am 2 comments

Having grown up watching countless re-runs of Star Trek and scary movies full of aliens with death rays, I love to hear about the technology and world of the future (despite the fact I hold grave fears for humanity because of climate change and a growing world population).

A ThinkingShift reader from Hong Kong sent me a link to an article about “life recorders”. I hyperventilated over the privacy implications of this device. The notion of a “life recorder” is that it’s a device you hang around your neck and it takes daily photos of things around you and records sound all day long. It uploads all this data, including GPS data, to the cloud and photos are then tagged, people are identified, everything is searchable and so on.

Basically, your whole life is recorded. Talk about a life blog! Or should that be life log? I admit there’s some attraction to this (having a love of history). How cool to locate your 2-year old self cavorting in the plastic swimming pool or watch your ancestors conversing over the family lamb roast. The article asks – would you wear such a device?  I know many of you will say yeah, bring it on. I of course would say no. But then again, it might be useful in protecting us – recording our version of what happened during an incident for example. I can imagine courts could subpoena life logs.

Apparently, Microsoft are already on the case and have produced SenseCam, which snaps photos every few minutes and records phone conversations (hello? privacy!). Camera phones have this ability so we are already into lifelogging and recording the daily grind of ourselves and those around us.

And then I came across another article, which talks about an augmented eye lens or computerised contact lens that overlays the eye. Say you’re lost in a city. You could call up a map of the vicinity and it would, quite literally, appear before your eyes. This is a little creepy for me; a little too Borg-like. Would you wear such a lens?

Image credit: University of Washington


Entry filed under: Technology. Tags: , , .

Water and food security Depression-era photography

2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Brian Bailey  |  September 15, 2009 at 11:00 am

    I’ve often reflected on the narcisstic element of social media tools like FaceBook where people turn themselves inside out, capturing the minutae of their lives and sharing it. The step to recording your whole life is in it’s way a ‘logical’ extension of the videos parents take of their kids and pets. The topic is covered in quite a scary fashion in the 2004 movie ‘The Final Cut’ starring Robin Williams in a role where he plays a cutter – someone who edits the life camera file, cutting out the mundane (and interesting) bits of the lives of the recently deceased so the family can have the sanitised POV ‘highlights’ of their dearly departed. Life imitates art once more.

  • 2. thinkingshift  |  September 17, 2009 at 12:12 am

    yes, I remember that film Brian. I guess the good thing about this lifelog is – I can always cut out the bits that show me having cat fights with fellow workers, or looking less than my best in the morning!


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