A Few Notes on Prying Eyes

MosesTheTank

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I sat in a room full of corporate executives as the CFO of a small tech company gave a presentation about how they collected data on individuals from open sources then used that data to build (calculate, really) a list of 150 characteristics about each person. He proceeded to show a variety of charts about the employees of each of these companies whose executives were sitting in the room: how many went to what school, all sorts of demographic info, salaries, etc.

He was using a pretty nifty data visualization tool to scroll through data points and drill in and out of various charts. His aim was to sell this data and the graphics were fairly stunning. There were all sorts of use cases for knowing all kinds of shit about people. It wasn't long before the tough questions started. First were questions about the tech involved, and then about the quality of those 150 data points.

He would not divulge what specific technologies, algorithms, or any methods at all that they used. He only said that they scraped every source that they were legally allowed to and plugged that data into their algorithms. They used whatever popular hosting platform suited them at the moment: AWS, Azure, Sungard... and that they regularly switch platforms for reasons he would not disclose. He said they could move from one platform to the next within 48 hours and for very little cost, something that would take any CIO sitting in the room months and millions of dollars to do. He actually took a shot at big company technology in a way that I thought was insulting.

Such secrecy caused a lot of doubt about what sort of hocus pocus this company performed. The presenter let the doubt build to the point I thought his presentation was bordering on total failure.

He asked the audience to shout out a list of characteristics of someone they would like to find and a geographic location. A few job skills were called out, a particular city center was mentioned, and he was drilling down on these things at conversational speed. In a few moments he had a few subjects on the screen and a lot of information about them includes photos.

Then he asked if anyone would like to have him drill down into their company to get some detail on their employees.

And shit got real...

One executive volunteered. The presenter pivoted to his company and it wasn't long before he zeroed in on the executive himself. The presenter knew so much shit that the exec was visibly uncomfortable... the data was not just about him at work, but about his family, friends, social life, musical preferences, how he voted, culinary like/dislikes, and on and on. The executive demanded he stop. Two other people volunteered, as he zoomed in on one lady, pulled up her pictures from all over the web, what websites she visited, her several email addresses, and all sorts of things she posted under various screen names, she demanded he stop, and the other person did not allow him to even get started.

As for much of what they imputed it was asked how they knew they were right. Turns out they do projects for agencies like the NSA who have everything that would be illegal for this firm to gather. They were able to validate their algorithms.

These guys built this system not for nefarious purposes but to get rich. It will undoubtedly be used for evil.

Recalling the many warnings of @lowlight , be careful. There are several members here who have given similar warnings and know what they are talking about. Listen up.

EDIT: I am not demonizing these guys. They are above board and hold themselves accountable for privacy laws beyond what the law requires. I am impressed as can be by their work, and I think they deserve their eventual ma$$ive payout.

The onus of self-protection is on us. SH is but one of many examples of us exposing ourselves to the web. Caveat Emptor.
 
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powdahound76

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Thanks @MosesTheTank.

Not cool to read and useful information.

ETA: I am not demonizing those bright enough to create this software either. My thoughts stem from your statement "It will undoubtedly be used for evil".
Such as how some medical knowledge that is amazing to discover and create and can be used for evil. Do an amniocentesis, decide you dont want to raise a kid with Down's, so just murder it. Its a simplified comparison and true. So much of what people do or discover while working on great ideas can quickly be twisted and used for evil.
 
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DarnYankeeUSMC

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China is already using a social score for their people using similar if not the same software.
I imagine the EU will not be far behind China with this endeavor. Sure some smaller places will probably follow first but then it will be just north of us when Canada buys into this.
I don't doubt that some alphabet agencies are already using it in a small capacity but as a wholesale social scoring system like China it's going to be decided on the first Tuesday in November as to how long it will take to go mainstream.
 
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pmclaine

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Great.....Ill be dreading it when someone says....

"And it looks like you spend an average of 45 seconds on Pornhub every once in awhile"

If we live in a "free" society that respects freedom of speech, thought and choice this "data" is only weaponized if it causes shame or embarrassment.

What will happen is that people are going to have to admit to those things that were thought of as taboo and remove the power of the information......if everyone is found to be doing something than there is no shame.

The problem is when you live outside a free society and your thoughts, speech and choice are limited than these things become something that can bring sanction on you.
 

Greg Langelius *

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If you ask me, the world needs an EMP or solar flair. Set things back about 100 years.
No offense, but the world does not need an EMP.

There would be a massive loss of life, insurmountable anarchy, and medicine would be set back by about a century.

Very likely, you and I would be included in the first wave of die-offs.

The world depends on electricity for communication, commerce, and many other essential needs.

Greg
 

Greg Langelius *

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Arizona, good place for me...
And how much do they charge to scrub all that info?
Scrub, not scrub; ultimately the same.

It's not the gatherer that's the problem, it's the sources providing the data. All the gatherer has done is to confirm that the Genie is out of the bottle. What can be done once will be done again innumerably.

There is nothing you can do to stem this flood of information, except to encourage it. Like all Genies, this has an evil all its own. The only saving grace, if any, as the information overload it could bring to the intrusive.

But I'm not optimistic; quantum computing will render such overflows innocuous.

Greg
 

M8541Reaper

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Great.....Ill be dreading it when someone says....

"And it looks like you spend an average of 45 seconds on Pornhub every once in awhile"

If we live in a "free" society that respects freedom of speech, thought and choice this "data" is only weaponized if it causes shame or embarrassment.

What will happen is that people are going to have to admit to those things that were thought of as taboo and remove the power of the information......if everyone is found to be doing something than there is no shame.

The problem is when you live outside a free society and your thoughts, speech and choice are limited than these things become something that can bring sanction on you.
Look at this guy, over here with his indirect bragging of 45 seconds. Pfft. Who has that kind of time?!

lol

OP,
Great post man. That’s the consequence that most never consider when using the internet. Hell, most people voluntarily give up their personal info and likeness to just find out what brand of white socks they are. Just with someone’s name or email, any knuckle dragger can get basic info about a person for free...and a lot more info for a few bucks with the info they gathered for free. Despite all of that, the worst part of it all are the parents who put their kids info and pictures all over social media. They are creating an internet footprint for a person, without their consent, that will last them until long after they (they child) has died.

I’m all for supporting Boston Dynamics to bring about the end of times with their version of Skynet.
 

MadDuner

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No offense, but the world does not need an EMP.

There would be a massive loss of life, insurmountable anarchy, and medicine would be set back by about a century.

Very likely, you and I would be included in the first wave of die-offs.

The world depends on electricity for communication, commerce, and many other essential needs.

Greg
Regardless of need, or not need, or cost or fear - an EMP will be a reality soon enough.
 

jinxx4ever

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No offense, but the world does not need an EMP.

There would be a massive loss of life, insurmountable anarchy, and medicine would be set back by about a century.

Very likely, you and I would be included in the first wave of die-offs.

The world depends on electricity for communication, commerce, and many other essential needs.

Greg
Ur right Greg, but probably over 50% of the members on here silently disagree with you. When i was younger , i used to think it would b great to go live in the mountains, away from society, etc , etc. Now i dislike cold, more each passing year, i enjoy watching a movie on the tube, i enjoy jumping in the jeep and going where i please. Love a hot shower & cold beer. I still laugh when i hear someone say, if SHTF i'm heading for the mountains. Really?? Have u ever been hunting in the mountains? How much game do u see? Now multiply that by hundreds of thousands, "heading for the mountains" Inside a week or two, the main course on the menu, will b "you". I'm a prepper. My kids think i'm crazy i'm sure, BUT i'm prepping to hunker down right where i'm at. In the meantime, i'm glad i have electricity
 

2aBaCa

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Scrub, not scrub; ultimately the same.

It's not the gatherer that's the problem, it's the sources providing the data. All the gatherer has done is to confirm that the Genie is out of the bottle. What can be done once will be done again innumerably.

There is nothing you can do to stem this flood of information, except to encourage it. Like all Genies, this has an evil all its own. The only saving grace, if any, as the information overload it could bring to the intrusive.

But I'm not optimistic; quantum computing will render such overflows innocuous.

Greg
Facetious, not facetious.

Potato
 
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Mwalex

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The path to hell is paved with good intentions, and we should always keep that in mind.

Who is the largest provider of research funds for grants at colleges? Not so long ago it was the .GOV. ANY new invention can be weaponized.
 

SilentStalkr

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This is why I actively encourage people to put out as much bad/fake info as you can!!!!! and....


Ur right Greg, but probably over 50% of the members on here silently disagree with you. When i was younger , i used to think it would b great to go live in the mountains, away from society, etc , etc. Now i dislike cold, more each passing year, i enjoy watching a movie on the tube, i enjoy jumping in the jeep and going where i please. Love a hot shower & cold beer. I still laugh when i hear someone say, if SHTF i'm heading for the mountains. Really?? Have u ever been hunting in the mountains? How much game do u see? Now multiply that by hundreds of thousands, "heading for the mountains" Inside a week or two, the main course on the menu, will b "you". I'm a prepper. My kids think i'm crazy i'm sure, BUT i'm prepping to hunker down right where i'm at. In the meantime, i'm glad i have electricity
I know who you are! 🤣😂
 

Gunfighter14e2

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No offense, but the world does not need an EMP.

There would be a massive loss of life, insurmountable anarchy, and medicine would be set back by about a century.

Very likely, you and I would be included in the first wave of die-offs.

The world depends on electricity for communication, commerce, and many other essential needs.

Greg
To get something you have to give up something.
If 9-9-99 (many never knew about that date) or Y2K had happened the world would have been better off today. Humans are lazy, selfish an egotistical, only a hard wake up call will prevent the human race for self destruction,...
 

M8541Reaper

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To get something you have to give up something.
If 9-9-99 (many never knew about that date) or Y2K had happened the world would have been better off today. Humans are lazy, selfish an egotistical, only a hard wake up call will prevent the human race for self destruction,...
So are you saying you're willing to join me in my fight to support the work that Boston Dynamics is doing? :love:
 

MosesTheTank

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This is why I actively encourage people to put out as much bad/fake info as you can!!!!! and....

I know who you are! 🤣😂
This is an interesting position I thought of in that demo. They can wander through, digest, and interpret amazing amounts of data. What about using it to write amazing amounts of data... create, literally, groups of individuals, sub-cultures, social movements, even up to entire societies?

There are some who have already started this.

The skill sets, and moreover the combination of skills, these guys have are very rare. But they will become common over time.
 

Akaftermath

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China is already using a social score for their people using similar if not the same software.
I imagine the EU will not be far behind China with this endeavor. Sure some smaller places will probably follow first but then it will be just north of us when Canada buys into this.
I don't doubt that some alphabet agencies are already using it in a small capacity but as a wholesale social scoring system like China it's going to be decided on the first Tuesday in November as to how long it will take to go mainstream.
According to a recent article, USA is just barely second to China in monitoring citizens. If the private sector monitoring systems (doorbells, Alexa, etc) are added in the equation, the USA is the leader by a long shot.
 
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MosesTheTank

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I think the UK is the worst in terms of government monitoring. But I really do think it would be difficult to make an accurate assessment. In terms of tech talent and creative ability the US and UK are far beyond China. I attribute this in large part to a more free and capitalistic society - oh the irony!

Here's the terrible Chinese example that made the news recently, in case you missed it:
Secret papers reveal workings of China's Xinjiang detention camps
 
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MadDuner

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I think the UK is the worst in terms of government monitoring. But I really do think it would be difficult to make an accurate assessment. In terms of tech talent and creative ability the US and UK are far beyond China. I attribute this in large part to a more free and capitalistic society - oh the irony!

Here's the terrible Chinese example that made the news recently, in case you missed it:
Secret papers reveal workings of China's Xinjiang detention camps
Well, I will have to give the Chinese credit on this one for not dealing with the Muslim problem the way Communists traditionally deal with problems....
 
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Threadcutter308

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I sat in a room full of corporate executives as the CFO of a small tech company gave a presentation about how they collected data on individuals from open sources then used that data to build (calculate, really) a list of 150 characteristics about each person. He proceeded to show a variety of charts about the employees of each of these companies whose executives were sitting in the room: how many went to what school, all sorts of demographic info, salaries, etc.

He was using a pretty nifty data visualization tool to scroll through data points and drill in and out of various charts. His aim was to sell this data and the graphics were fairly stunning. There were all sorts of use cases for knowing all kinds of shit about people. It wasn't long before the tough questions started. First were questions about the tech involved, and then about the quality of those 150 data points.

He would not divulge what specific technologies, algorithms, or any methods at all that they used. He only said that they scraped every source that they were legally allowed to and plugged that data into their algorithms. They used whatever popular hosting platform suited them at the moment: AWS, Azure, Sungard... and that they regularly switch platforms for reasons he would not disclose. He said they could move from one platform to the next within 48 hours and for very little cost, something that would take any CIO sitting in the room months and millions of dollars to do. He actually took a shot at big company technology in a way that I thought was insulting.

Such secrecy caused a lot of doubt about what sort of hocus pocus this company performed. The presenter let the doubt build to the point I thought his presentation was bordering on total failure.

He asked the audience to shout out a list of characteristics of someone they would like to find and a geographic location. A few job skills were called out, a particular city center was mentioned, and he was drilling down on these things at conversational speed. In a few moments he had a few subjects on the screen and a lot of information about them includes photos.

Then he asked if anyone would like to have him drill down into their company to get some detail on their employees.

And shit got real...

One executive volunteered. The presenter pivoted to his company and it wasn't long before he zeroed in on the executive himself. The presenter knew so much shit that the exec was visibly uncomfortable... the data was not just about him at work, but about his family, friends, social life, musical preferences, how he voted, culinary like/dislikes, and on and on. The executive demanded he stop. Two other people volunteered, as he zoomed in on one lady, pulled up her pictures from all over the web, what websites she visited, her several email addresses, and all sorts of things she posted under various screen names, she demanded he stop, and the other person did not allow him to even get started.

As for much of what they imputed it was asked how they knew they were right. Turns out they do projects for agencies like the NSA who have everything that would be illegal for this firm to gather. They were able to validate their algorithms.

These guys built this system not for nefarious purposes but to get rich. It will undoubtedly be used for evil.

Recalling the many warnings of @lowlight , be careful. There are several members here who have given similar warnings and know what they are talking about. Listen up.

EDIT: I am not demonizing these guys. They are above board and hold themselves accountable for privacy laws beyond what the law requires. I am impressed as can be by their work, and I think they deserve their eventual ma$$ive payout.

The onus of self-protection is on us. SH is but one of many examples of us exposing ourselves to the web. Caveat Emptor.

I have no doubt this is quite dated by now, but it underscores some important fundamentals.

 

DuneBoer

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Monitor my computer, my doorbell, my Ario, my Alexa. They will find out these things but let just make it easy for them now....

I have 6 different email accounts, burner phones and numerous aliases for the inter webs.
I like big titted redheads.
I like guns, hunting and shooting
I like motorcycles
I like dogs
I got arrested for assault/battery and menacing in 1988.
I have had 7 broken bones all on different occasions
I hate communists, and any other totalitarian forms of government
Social security number? .gov lost ALL my personal shit years ago to China.

In the scheme of things I am nothing. Here you go. Zero shits given.

EDIT: Oh yeah and I have a really really HUGE Dick.
 

DevilDocAZ

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No offense, but the world does not need an EMP.

There would be a massive loss of life, insurmountable anarchy, and medicine would be set back by about a century.

Very likely, you and I would be included in the first wave of die-offs.

The world depends on electricity for communication, commerce, and many other essential needs.

Greg
Agreed. Some people don’t understand the consequences of an EMP.
 
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alpine44

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Little Greta is right. She has a good chance of living in some very ugly times. But not because of climate change.

What's coming down the pike with surveillance/manipulation/control technology and actors/parties already clamoring to exploit that may make Orwell's 1984 look like a sweet fairy tale. There is a very good chance that Orwell was an optimist, just a little ahead of his times.

Living a human/humane life and merely existing are two different things. You can exist without choice, freedom, meaning, faith, etc. but you do not have a 'life' without these.

The people worried about the human cost of a 'reset' (Solar flare, EMP, civil war, etc.) should consider that nobody has escaped death yet on this planet. Not even Jesus. But humans have managed to live in relative freedom and autonomy for significant periods of time. You cannot beat death but can beat oppression and exploitation.

There are other people who are worried that the 'machines' will kill us all once we reach the singularity, when AI significantly outperforms the human ability of reasoning. Again, death is not the worst case scenario on the horizon. Existing as a slave in a never-ending hell is.

Personally, I think that an external event kicking the entire globe back a couple hundred of years will be the best chance for the positive spirit of humanity to survive. We are not running out of people anytime soon but we are running out of sustainable values everywhere in the world at an alarming pace. The bible described the flood as a way to bring humans back on God's path. I think we are way overdue for that.

PS: You do not need religion to understand that last point. Just realize that there is only so much shit you can get away with in this universe before it backfires. We are mass-eroding the very essence of the human condition, free will. That is going to bite us whether you believe in God or not.
 
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MadDuner

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I ordered up a mass-extinction asteroid some years ago.
My PO specifically said it was due on 1/1/2000.
That thing has been on backorder for 20 years.
When it gets here, you’ll know.
Reset button pressed.
 
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myronman3

deez nutz
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I am well aware of the implications of an emp or solar flare.

I’ve been pushed to the limit so many times i lost count. I handed it all off to GOD a long time ago, that’s the only way i was able to let go and live any kind of happy life.

I am firm in my belief that “666” is some kind of reference to the internet/google/tech.
 

alpine44

Sergeant
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I sat in a room full of corporate executives as the CFO of a small tech company gave a presentation about how they collected data on individuals from open sources then used that data to build (calculate, really) a list of 150 characteristics about each person. He proceeded to show a variety of charts about the employees of each of these companies whose executives were sitting in the room: how many went to what school, all sorts of demographic info, salaries, etc.

He was using a pretty nifty data visualization tool to scroll through data points and drill in and out of various charts. His aim was to sell this data and the graphics were fairly stunning. There were all sorts of use cases for knowing all kinds of shit about people. It wasn't long before the tough questions started. First were questions about the tech involved, and then about the quality of those 150 data points.

He would not divulge what specific technologies, algorithms, or any methods at all that they used. He only said that they scraped every source that they were legally allowed to and plugged that data into their algorithms. They used whatever popular hosting platform suited them at the moment: AWS, Azure, Sungard... and that they regularly switch platforms for reasons he would not disclose. He said they could move from one platform to the next within 48 hours and for very little cost, something that would take any CIO sitting in the room months and millions of dollars to do. He actually took a shot at big company technology in a way that I thought was insulting.

Such secrecy caused a lot of doubt about what sort of hocus pocus this company performed. The presenter let the doubt build to the point I thought his presentation was bordering on total failure.

He asked the audience to shout out a list of characteristics of someone they would like to find and a geographic location. A few job skills were called out, a particular city center was mentioned, and he was drilling down on these things at conversational speed. In a few moments he had a few subjects on the screen and a lot of information about them includes photos.

Then he asked if anyone would like to have him drill down into their company to get some detail on their employees.

And shit got real...

One executive volunteered. The presenter pivoted to his company and it wasn't long before he zeroed in on the executive himself. The presenter knew so much shit that the exec was visibly uncomfortable... the data was not just about him at work, but about his family, friends, social life, musical preferences, how he voted, culinary like/dislikes, and on and on. The executive demanded he stop. Two other people volunteered, as he zoomed in on one lady, pulled up her pictures from all over the web, what websites she visited, her several email addresses, and all sorts of things she posted under various screen names, she demanded he stop, and the other person did not allow him to even get started.

As for much of what they imputed it was asked how they knew they were right. Turns out they do projects for agencies like the NSA who have everything that would be illegal for this firm to gather. They were able to validate their algorithms.

These guys built this system not for nefarious purposes but to get rich. It will undoubtedly be used for evil.

Recalling the many warnings of @lowlight , be careful. There are several members here who have given similar warnings and know what they are talking about. Listen up.

EDIT: I am not demonizing these guys. They are above board and hold themselves accountable for privacy laws beyond what the law requires. I am impressed as can be by their work, and I think they deserve their eventual ma$$ive payout.

The onus of self-protection is on us. SH is but one of many examples of us exposing ourselves to the web. Caveat Emptor.
I wish one of the CEO's would have stood up and said:

"Great. But I do not and should not care about what my employees do in their personal lives and their spare time. All I care about is the value they create for our company. I run a business, not a religious or political cult of conformity. Group think is our biggest antagonist to innovation and success."
 

Gunfighter14e2

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Some people don’t understand the consequences of an EMP.
Those who do, have already done something for the day/s, months, years, thereafter. However like always the sheep will just herd up an demand someone else take care of them. A house cleaning will happen via mans hand or mother nature at some point. Just like Insurance, have it or pay threw your nose for running with, the thundering herd,...
 
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deersniper

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Just remember if emp or whatever happens .gov will steal your fuel/food/generator if they know you have it. They have decided in an “emergency” they can requisition whatever they want from you
 

Gunfighter14e2

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Just remember if emp or whatever happens .gov will steal your fuel/food/generator if they know you have it. They have decided in an “emergency” they can requisition whatever they want from you
Well I would guess those who have stores will not need them at some point anyway,... but I'd be sure to test everything before using/drinking/eating it, as someone might leave a surprise or three.
 
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Mr.BR

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China is already using a social score for their people using similar if not the same software.
I imagine the EU will not be far behind China with this endeavor. Sure some smaller places will probably follow first but then it will be just north of us when Canada buys into this.
I don't doubt that some alphabet agencies are already using it in a small capacity but as a wholesale social scoring system like China it's going to be decided on the first Tuesday in November as to how long it will take to go mainstream.
Actualy EU is nowhere close to even US let alone China and unlike US it put in place restrictions (GDPR) on this shit , your personal data is much more freely shared and sold without your knowledge and consent for profit in US, you and your personal data are the product , the algorithms that Chinese state is using are already being used by Corporations but US.Gov is not far behind ,honestly after China US is by leaps and bounds most active in spying on folks.
 
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Bender

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This is an interesting position I thought of in that demo. They can wander through, digest, and interpret amazing amounts of data. What about using it to write amazing amounts of data... create, literally, groups of individuals, sub-cultures, social movements, even up to entire societies?

There are some who have already started this.

The skill sets, and moreover the combination of skills, these guys have are very rare. But they will become common over time.
Absolutely stunning. This will be/is used for control. This along with Deep Fake, the next few years are going to be extremely interesting to say the least. I predict a continued doubling down on trying to steal elections and the packing of illegals and allowing them to vote to finally put “us” into the minority. The globalization agenda will not be stopped on the internet or voting booth.
it will take something much faster.

but that begs the question, what to do?
Take care of yourself and your family.
 

MosesTheTank

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I wish one of the CEO's would have stood up and said:

"Great. But I do not and should not care about what my employees do in their personal lives and their spare time. All I care about is the value they create for our company. I run a business, not a religious or political cult of conformity. Group think is our biggest antagonist to innovation and success."
I am not sure anyone in the room was thinking about anything nefarious at the time. I did get the feeling I had in organic chemistry when I realized the formula for TNT was right in front of me, as were the ingredients and lab equipment to start churning it out. While neither me nor anyone I know did anything they shouldn't have, I knew there would be someone who would.

Consider a marketers point of view seeing all that data. How incredibly tailored I could create a campaign. I know what you do, when you do it, and a bunch of other information that let me know when and how I should communicate with you to get the best result. I can pick the time of day, font style, size and color most likely to appeal to you. If I am targeting a million people I may have a million individual campaigns. This kind of shit makes all that possible.

If I'm an employer looking for a rare skill and can't get anyone to apply to a job posting I can not only find the people who have the skill I want, but those that are likely the best cultural fit for my company. Now I have enough info to try an uproot them from their current employer even though you have no desire to leave. And if anyone is picking off my employees I can find out who and probably how they are being lured away.

The legitimate uses go on and on.

I have not spoken to anyone, and I talk to a shitload of people, that doesn't recoil about how this type of tech is likely to be used for evil. History says that the most likely first really really bad actor in the western world is to be a state entity.

What happened in China may pale in comparison to future events.
 
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alpine44

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I am not sure anyone in the room was thinking about anything nefarious at the time. I did get the feeling I had in organic chemistry when I realized the formula for TNT was right in front of me, as were the ingredients and lab equipment to start churning it out. While neither me nor anyone I know did anything they shouldn't have, I knew there would be someone who would.

Consider a marketers point of view seeing all that data. How incredibly tailored I could create a campaign. I know what you do, when you do it, and a bunch of other information that let me know when and how I should communicate with you to get the best result. I can pick the time of day, font style, size and color most likely to appeal to you. If I am targeting a million people I may have a million individual campaigns. This kind of shit makes all that possible.

If I'm an employer looking for a rare skill and can't get anyone to apply to a job posting I can not only find the people who have the skill I want, but those that are likely the best cultural fit for my company. Now I have enough info to try an uproot them from their current employer even though you have no desire to leave. And if anyone is picking off my employees I can find out who and probably how they are being lured away.

The legitimate uses go on and on.

I have not spoken to anyone, and I talk to a shitload of people, that doesn't recoil about how this type of tech is likely to be used for evil. History says that the most likely first really really bad actor in the western world is to be a state entity.

What happened in China may pale in comparison to future events.
I would take this even further.

While most people consider the explosives you used as an analogy to be inherently bad, there would be no highways, tunnels, gravel, cement, and many other things without them. There are clear, far reaching benefits derived for society from the use of energetic materials.

OTOH, I cannot find many -if any- positive uses for categorizing and manipulating individual interests and choices. Even the current 'filter bubble' and pop-up ads based on searches is outright offensive. The fact that I googled "goldfish" last week does not mean that I want to be inundated with ads about aquariums for the next month. It wastes our time and insults our intelligence, just to get into our wallet.

Do they actually think that I magically have more money to spend or will change my hobbies just because they pop-up crap in front of me? I cannot recall anything I ever bought because of a pop-up ad. Even the banners here on SH make me look for another product. The really good stuff sells itself by word of mouth. Only the the stuff that sucks gets peddled ad nauseam.

And that's before we even get to seriously nefarious uses.
 
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Rthur

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While several levels less sophisticated I've notice things on my FB feed
that I know I've not done searches on my laptop or phone.
They were only mentioned amongst the equipment.
Family has noticed this as well.

R
 
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alpine44

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While several levels less sophisticated I've notice things on my FB feed
that I know I've not done searches on my laptop or phone.
They were only mentioned amongst the equipment.
Family has noticed this as well.

R
When I signed up on reddit a month ago, all of my interests were automatically linked. Fucking scary.

I now do searches for quilting, organic gardening, yoga, tea leaf reading, etc. to make the pigeon hole so large that it becomes meaningless.
 
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GrantB

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Just remember if emp or whatever happens .gov will steal your fuel/food/generator if they know you have it. They have decided in an “emergency” they can requisition whatever they want from you
I lived that one. I was working for an electric utility company during the aftermath of Katrina. Many days before the hurricane hit we had already put our plan into action securing things like fuel supply, food and ways to prepare it, helicopters for surveys, contract help even things like a mobile truck repair and tire center to fix broken equipment. When New Orleans went sideways fema and other alphabets started confiscating our fuel shipments, food, ice and helicopters. We had no choice, they were armed and ready to use it if needed. We got around some of it like running fuel trucks with placards labeled as pcb contaminated oil and running food only at night. We even devised a code to use when communicating with our pilots that let them knew to go land somewhere else because fema was waiting at our regular landing site. We had hired armed private security and they took those guys from us. In the end it’s anything they wanted because it was for the greater good.
 

pmclaine

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I would take this even further.

While most people consider the explosives you used as an analogy to be inherently bad, there would be no highways, tunnels, gravel, cement, and many other things without them. There are clear, far reaching benefits derived for society from the use of energetic materials.

OTOH, I cannot find many -if any- positive uses for categorizing and manipulating individual interests and choices. Even the current 'filter bubble' and pop-up ads based on searches is outright offensive. The fact that I googled "goldfish" last week does not mean that I want to be inundated with ads about aquariums for the next month. It wastes our time and insults our intelligence, just to get into our wallet.

Do they actually think that I magically have more money to spend or will change my hobbies just because they pop-up crap in front of me? I cannot recall anything I ever bought because of a pop-up ad. Even the banners here on SH make me look for another product. The really good stuff sells itself by word of mouth. Only the the stuff that sucks gets peddled ad nauseam.

And that's before we even get to seriously nefarious uses.
Nobel thought his invention would bring peace to the world.

Marketers try to use this shit and claim its "beneficial".

Everyone rejects the real, vivid, bloody history of the analog 20th Century and the literary warnings of Aldous Huxley, George Orwell and Franz Kafka.

The could only imagine a tech world that is just a shadow of what is now reality and look how horrifying their literary worlds were.

Imagine 1943 Netherlands and the SS knocks on the Pieron family residence......"Our records indicate you ordered more food from Amazon than the number of occupants needs....whats up with that?"

Yeah Freedom and technology!
 

8pointer

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wow that's even worse than what i though was capable. wow that must have been something to witness
 

W54/XM-388

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This is why it is hugely important that the people who believe in freedom and rights need to get off their asses and work even harder in the political, legal and public relations arenas than the communists have been doing.

The "good" people are the ones sitting out elections because their candidates are not "perfect" enough or throwing their votes away on protest 3rd parties while the communists don't care how bad their candidates are as long as they are party members.

VA should be a wakeup call that everybody needs to get to the primaries, get to the polls and drag everybody they can out to vote and be as active in the political arena as possible, because the communists have their supporters

If the communists get their hands firmly and completely on the levers of political and police power in this country. The walls will close in on any freedom minded types with amazing speed and the stockpiles you have saved up may not do you as much good as may think if you get their attention.

The political and legal battles need to be fought with as much fervor as folks buying magazines before a ban.
If the communists take over, life is going to get ugly fast no matter how it eventually turns out in the end, the folks in VA are just now starting to hear about all the things Bloomberg bought and paid to be come law.
 

MosesTheTank

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Hi,

......What is/has been shown in the civilian corporate world is about 5-10 years behind the .gov/.r&d world.....

Data scrapping and Data analysis are the keys to both; great things and bad intentions......

Sincerely,
Theis
In large part I agree with this.

I have a bunch of qualifiers that I can't mention, except that in this narrow topic I only have a population of about 10 people to speak of... be it DARPA, NSA, Boeing Defense, or several others... unless one of these folks simply happens to believe in the mission and they stay for that reason, none of these entities can afford to keep the rarest talent around for very long because they can't pay them Feadship $.

I have several examples where Oracle, Google, and others said something could not be done (at the request of the above entities) and 1 or a small number of people went in and did it. This was usually done with the very same Oracle, etc products that were considered in the first place.

Google is as far from the leader in AI as I currently stand from the moon.
 
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Tactical_Tom

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People are over estimating the long term damage from EMP. First of all a lot of data is backed up on tapes still if its on the internet and these are very EMP resistant when they are stored since they are un-powered. A lot of the damage to electronics can be minimized just but not having the device plugged in. There has also been a lot of progress over the last twenty years on making devices more resistant to static discharge. Fabrication plants are intentionally located all over the world in case of a local event. The effect on vehicles is massively over stated test show that "15% of running vehicles may shut down if exposed to an EMP blast at or over 25kV/m over a wide range of area ", and most of those will run after being restarted. There might be accidents, but it wont destroy society's ability to move produce. A lot of electron devices will survive as well. The most likely thing to be damaged on a personal computer are the Ethernet ports since those are not shielded. An EMP is simply not capable of wiping the slate clean or anything like that at this point.
 
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Maggot

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I sat in a room full of corporate executives as the CFO of a small tech company gave a presentation about how they collected data on individuals from open sources then used that data to build (calculate, really) a list of 150 characteristics about each person. He proceeded to show a variety of charts about the employees of each of these companies whose executives were sitting in the room: how many went to what school, all sorts of demographic info, salaries, etc.

He was using a pretty nifty data visualization tool to scroll through data points and drill in and out of various charts. His aim was to sell this data and the graphics were fairly stunning. There were all sorts of use cases for knowing all kinds of shit about people. It wasn't long before the tough questions started. First were questions about the tech involved, and then about the quality of those 150 data points.

He would not divulge what specific technologies, algorithms, or any methods at all that they used. He only said that they scraped every source that they were legally allowed to and plugged that data into their algorithms. They used whatever popular hosting platform suited them at the moment: AWS, Azure, Sungard... and that they regularly switch platforms for reasons he would not disclose. He said they could move from one platform to the next within 48 hours and for very little cost, something that would take any CIO sitting in the room months and millions of dollars to do. He actually took a shot at big company technology in a way that I thought was insulting.

Such secrecy caused a lot of doubt about what sort of hocus pocus this company performed. The presenter let the doubt build to the point I thought his presentation was bordering on total failure.

He asked the audience to shout out a list of characteristics of someone they would like to find and a geographic location. A few job skills were called out, a particular city center was mentioned, and he was drilling down on these things at conversational speed. In a few moments he had a few subjects on the screen and a lot of information about them includes photos.

Then he asked if anyone would like to have him drill down into their company to get some detail on their employees.

And shit got real...

One executive volunteered. The presenter pivoted to his company and it wasn't long before he zeroed in on the executive himself. The presenter knew so much shit that the exec was visibly uncomfortable... the data was not just about him at work, but about his family, friends, social life, musical preferences, how he voted, culinary like/dislikes, and on and on. The executive demanded he stop. Two other people volunteered, as he zoomed in on one lady, pulled up her pictures from all over the web, what websites she visited, her several email addresses, and all sorts of things she posted under various screen names, she demanded he stop, and the other person did not allow him to even get started.

As for much of what they imputed it was asked how they knew they were right. Turns out they do projects for agencies like the NSA who have everything that would be illegal for this firm to gather. They were able to validate their algorithms.

These guys built this system not for nefarious purposes but to get rich. It will undoubtedly be used for evil.

Recalling the many warnings of @lowlight , be careful. There are several members here who have given similar warnings and know what they are talking about. Listen up.

EDIT: I am not demonizing these guys. They are above board and hold themselves accountable for privacy laws beyond what the law requires. I am impressed as can be by their work, and I think they deserve their eventual ma$$ive payout.

The onus of self-protection is on us. SH is but one of many examples of us exposing ourselves to the web. Caveat Emptor.
Thanks for that. I copied the text, not your handle or the site, on Facebook for all to see.
 
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