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Andre II Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 08:17 AM
Original message
How computer spy in the office will monitor everything you do
Source: London Times

Every aspect of computer users’ lives — from their heartbeat to a guilty smile — could be monitored and immediately analysed under the futuristic system detailed in Microsoft’s patent application.

Details of the planned “Big Brother” system are revealed in an application to the US Patent and Trademark Office, seen by The Times, over seventeen pages of text with ten diagrams.

The systems work not only through desktop or laptop computers but even through mobile phones or handheld PCs, meaning that even out of the office the employee can still be monitored. In its most advanced format, the system will monitor users’ private interests.

The system works by recording and analysing what words and numbers are used or websites visited, and by watching the user’s heart rate, breathing, body temperature, facial expressions and blood pressure. The patent application explains: “The system can also automatically detect frustrations or stress in the user via physiological and environmental sensors and then offer or provide some assistance accordingly.”

Read more: http://technology.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/tech_and_w...



No words for how sick this is.
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zabet Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 08:20 AM
Response to Original message
1. We are the borg.
You will be assimilated
or annihilated, the choice
is OURS.

:puke:
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boricua79 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 08:22 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. Screw that...
Today IS a good day to die! KAPLA!
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bahrbearian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 09:57 AM
Response to Reply #1
15. Resistance is Futile
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Uncle Joe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 08:36 PM
Response to Reply #1
41. More like a Borg/ Ferengi hybrid
Edited on Wed Jan-16-08 08:36 PM by Uncle Joe
Health care for profit, prisons for profit, mercenaries for profit, where is the profit in that? :shrug:
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snagglepuss Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 08:35 AM
Response to Original message
3. K & R
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LynzM Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 08:41 AM
Response to Original message
4. Please tell me this is a joke.
It's gotta be a joke. It's so absurd and disgusting, they've gotta be kidding. Come on, I already rent myself out to a company 8-10 hours/day, that's not good enough yet? It boggles my mind how much they want to own every aspect of you, damn.
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Andre II Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 08:45 AM
Response to Reply #4
5. Looks pretty serious ...
The Times has seen a patent application filed by the company for a computer system that links workers to their computers via wireless sensors that measure their metabolism. The system would allow managers to monitor employees’ performance by measuring their heart rate, body temperature, movement, facial expression and blood pressure. Unions said they fear that employees could be dismissed on the basis of a computer’s assessment of their physiological state.
Technology allowing constant monitoring of workers was previously limited to pilots, firefighters and Nasa astronauts. This is believed to be the first time a company has proposed developing such software for mainstream workplaces.
Microsoft submitted a patent application in the US for a “unique monitoring system” that could link workers to their computers. Wireless sensors could read “heart rate, galvanic skin response, EMG, brain signals, respiration rate, body temperature, movement facial movements, facial expressions and blood pressure”, the application states.
The system could also “automatically detect frustration or stress in the user” and “offer and provide assistance accordingly”. Physical changes to an employee would be matched to an individual psychological profile based on a worker’s weight, age and health. If the system picked up an increase in heart rate or facial expressions suggestive of stress or frustration, it would tell management that he needed help
http://technology.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/tech_and_w...

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LynzM Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 09:44 AM
Response to Reply #5
13. This is absurd, though.
Personally, I do my best work under some amount of pressure/stress. I could be upset because I just received a stressful phone call from a friend. I could be facing issues at home that the company does not need to know about, that may make me more stressed. I could be going on a date tonight. None of that, NONE, is my company's business, so long as I can do my job effectively. Just because someone is under stress or frustrated, does not mean they need to be spied on. Gah. I agree that it's good to keep an eye on the stress levels of employees, because if everyone is always stressed and frustrated, something needs to change. But not like this.
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Wednesdays Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 10:26 AM
Response to Reply #13
22. And since we're talking PRIVATE companies, and not government
It's all perfectly Constitutional. :puke:
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ElboRuum Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 09:11 AM
Response to Reply #4
7. No, probably no joke.
Edited on Wed Jan-16-08 09:12 AM by ElboRuum
Of course since this is a Microsoft technology, it will only provide marginal advertised operation after the fifth service pack.

Personally, I'm waiting for MicroBorg XP. :evilgrin:
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Heywood J Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 09:22 AM
Response to Reply #7
9. Damn right.
"How can Paperclip Assistant detect your emotions today?"
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dkofos Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 08:47 AM
Response to Original message
6. It's microsoft, will it ever really work??
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hootinholler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 12:07 PM
Response to Reply #6
34. By the third release it should be useable.
MS Rule of Thumb.

-Hoot
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Javaman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 09:21 AM
Response to Original message
8. So, Winston, do you love Big Brother? nt
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OneBlueSky Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 09:27 AM
Response to Reply #8
11. this is beyond even Orwell's worst visions . . .
"ALL of you belongs to US!" . . . US being the corporate/government oligarchy that controls everything we see, hear and, ultimately, do . . .
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DavidDvorkin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 09:23 AM
Response to Original message
10. There's a simpler and cheaper alternative
That our ancestors used. You throw the person in a stream and see whether they sink or float. And you examine them for insensitive spots.

Oh, and the bumps on their head. Those have to examined and cataloged, as well.
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B3Nut Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 09:41 AM
Response to Reply #10
12. Don't forget the duck.
You have to compare their weight to that of a duck, in order to determine whether or not they're a witch.

;)

Todd in Cheesecurdistan, who had been turned into a newt, but got better
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DavidDvorkin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 11:54 AM
Response to Reply #12
32. Oh, right!
Plus, if the duck is included in the burning at the stake, there's roasted duck afterwards.

It might be hard to distinguish the roasted duck from the roasted witch -- I mean, disgruntled employee -- but our system eats its workers anyway, so that's all right.
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muriel_volestrangler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 09:45 AM
Response to Original message
14. "automatically detect frustration"
The system could also automatically detect frustration or stress in the user and offer and provide assistance accordingly


Well, it's easy for Microsoft to develop this, without high-tech stuff.

Are you currently using Microsoft software? If so, then you are frustrated. Assistance? an 'off' button.
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Wednesdays Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 10:28 AM
Response to Reply #14
23. Yeah, they'll offer "assistance"...
Some men in white coats will come get you in the middle of the night. After that, they will never hear another complaint from you again. No one else will, either.
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Lone_Star_Dem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 10:34 AM
Response to Reply #14
25. Exactly!
Point well made. :thumbsup: :rofl:
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Barrett808 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 10:02 AM
Response to Original message
16. Panopticon
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Fovea Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 10:12 AM
Response to Original message
17. Microsoft seeks patent for office 'spy' software
Source: Times Online (UK)

Microsoft is developing Big Brother-style software capable of remotely monitoring a workers productivity, physical wellbeing and competence.

The Times has seen a patent application filed by the company for a computer system that links workers to their computers via wireless sensors that measure their metabolism. The system would allow managers to monitor employees performance by measuring their heart rate, body temperature, movement, facial expression and blood pressure.

The US Patent Office confirmed last night that the application was published last month, 18 months after being filed. Patent lawyers said that it could be granted within a year.

Read more: http://technology.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/tech_and_w...



Welcome to the new level of social control.
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hobbit709 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 10:12 AM
Response to Reply #17
18. They would read my sensors as pissed 100% of the time.
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lynnertic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 10:12 AM
Response to Reply #17
19. and mine would be full of gum.
Edited on Wed Jan-16-08 10:08 AM by lynnertic
the pointy-haired taskmasters will be thrilled at this.
Very glad I'm not subjected to that kind of treatment.
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tridim Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 10:15 AM
Response to Reply #17
21. I call BS, this sounds like an Onion article..
How the hell does heart rate, temperature and blood pressure measure "performance"? Is high blood pressure considered good or bad performance? I know my boss doesn't rest until he raises my blood pressure off the charts, he loves seeing me suffer to please the investors.

Does the system do drug testing too? :eyes:
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Kolesar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 10:32 AM
Response to Reply #21
24. "With ya" ... eom
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WinkyDink Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 10:55 AM
Response to Reply #21
27. Follow the links. No "Onion" about it.
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acmavm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 10:14 AM
Response to Original message
20. This is an invasion of privacy of the most serious and sensitive
Edited on Wed Jan-16-08 10:17 AM by acmavm
type. Someone needs to sue.

edit: To add that Bill Gates is a whore of the lowest form. He never had an original idea of his own, the crap he produces is junk, and he's gotten away with blackmailing the computer industry for years. His 'foundation' makes money off the businesses that cause the worst pollution and disease on this planet. Check the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation investment portfolio.

He's a slug. And that's an insult to slugs everywhere. Even the really big slimey ones.
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tridim Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 11:39 AM
Response to Reply #20
31. Bill Gates is retired.
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bvar22 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 10:36 AM
Response to Original message
26. At time like this,
I'm glad I'm old, and living in the woods.
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ladjf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 11:18 AM
Response to Original message
28. Office workers are already slaves. This new software just
deepens their slide into total bondage. That is an awful trend in our descent.
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LanternWaste Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 02:33 PM
Response to Reply #28
36. We can leave of our own free will...
We're not slaves. We can leave of our own free will with the only consequences being those of our own making... actually, I think I'll take off early today :)

While it's dramatic copy, it really does minimize the true horror that slavery was (and still is in many parts of the world).
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ladjf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 03:04 PM
Response to Reply #36
38. If I weren't so lazy, I would have written a longer post, substantiating
my definition of "slavery" so that you would have probably agreed with my point.

Obviously, I know the difference between literal, physical slavery and the sort of partial slavery to which I was referring to with the office workers.

In my mind, anyone who is laboring all day every day except for weekends with no intellectual input to the process, no creativity, all just carrying out the orders of others is a "slave". Yes, they can leave that job but, when they take another one, they just have a different master.

The fact that the "slaves" have a home, pay for their food,transportation and medicine is nothing but a plus for the employers. In the old days, the slave owners we required to take care of all of that for the slaves. The new system is even more profitable for the slave owners. They don't have to worry about all of those personal needs.

Free will is not as "free" as it might sound. Yes, you could take off work this afternoon, but if the boss ever decides that you are profitable, you are out of there. When I was on the corporate treadmill I noticed that we were referred to as "resources".

For 30 years I worked hard as an educator. Yes, the hours were long and the pay wasn't all that great but I was never a "slave". Why? Because I spent my time using my mind in creative ways to help other people. It was fascinating work and very rewarding. But, at one point I decided that it would be better to work as a computer programmer in the corporate world. I did that, made three times as much money and was a slave the entire time. As a database administrator, most of my work orders came via pager from various computers that were automatically informing me that something needed attention. I took my working orders from computers. Not good.

By the way, I wrote a dissertation relating to the history of the Southern U.S. during the 19th Century. I am well informed on slave issues and information. (In 1855 a young male field worker would cost about $250.00 while a blacksmith might go for $1,200 or more.)


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LanternWaste Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 03:24 PM
Response to Reply #38
39. Well... anyone who wrote a dissertation
Well... anyone who wrote a dissertation has a little more upstairs than I do (college drop out here). :)

This is my perspective-- I simply sell my labor to the highest bidder.

"anyone who is laboring all day every day with no intellectual input to the process, no creativity, all just carrying out the orders of others is a "slave""

Sounds like the housework I do every night... :rofl:


No-- I'm not being snarky. I just don't think I'm a slave...and having read quite a bit on the subject of the history of unions and labor-management relations, I not only don't think I'm a slave, I take a minimal exception to being called one as it's a choice I make (I'm sure we all take a bit of exception when our choices are denigrated, yes?).

Having said that (and I guess my actual point), it's my opinion that calling a cube-rat a slave (even a lower management cube-rat like myself) does, to an extent minimize actual slavery in much the same way that calling a merely uncomfortable situation a 'holocaust' minimizes the wholesale slaughter that happened in Europe '36-'45.

But you seem to know what you're about, and that's a pretty good thing. I'm absolutely not taking (or attempting to cause) offense. :hi:
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ladjf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 07:26 PM
Response to Reply #39
40. LanternWaste- A couple of more thoughts on the subject of
"slavery";

For 30 years I worked as an educator. Even though the hours were long, the work difficult, I never felt that I was a slave because an educator's job is to help people and there is no one looking over your shoulder all the time. There were lots of opportunities to be creative, to think about values and share them with the students.

I quit the teaching business to go into IT in the corporate world. The difference between the two was huge. While I made three to four times more money, the was very little creativity or freedom involved. My job was to make sure my databases were running correctly and that no one stole or corrupted the company data. I felt like a slave. The companies referred to their employees as "resources". We were just dots on the organization chart.

But, what is important now is that you are comfortable with what you are doing and if you are, I would say that you aren't a "slave". Further, you might have assignments that allow freedom of thought, while working with good colleagues.

Don't take me too seriously. I have developed such a bad attitude about big corporations that it might be skewing my views too much.
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alfredo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 11:22 AM
Response to Original message
29. And I thought Back Office was bad.
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Bonobo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 11:24 AM
Response to Original message
30. Thank god it's Microsoft. I know it won't work right.
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electprogdems Donating Member (271 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 11:58 AM
Response to Original message
33. So they are developing the technology to own us at work.
How long till they develop this type of tech that will follow us home.
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suffragette Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 02:17 PM
Response to Original message
35. This looks like the patent application
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Andre II Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jan-17-08 03:40 AM
Response to Reply #35
42. Great!
Many thanks for the finding!
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riverdeep Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 02:42 PM
Response to Original message
37. And what are people gonna do about it?
They'll complain for a little while, and then they'll settle down like the good corporate cattle they are. Especially when faced with a tough job market the cry won't be 'viva revolution!', but rather 'Thank you Sir, may I have another!'

It all started with drug testing in the workplace, this was their first 'in'. But hey, if you don't have anything to hide, right? Ah, drug war-is there any hell you won't spawn?
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