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Environment, Science, and Technology

Huntn

Misty Mountains Envoy
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There is what looks like by its description, a computer tech forum. Could we fit in a Environment, Science, Tech forum? As it is now where would you put an environmental thread? I don’t care for it in as a current event. Thanks.
 
The Vision Pro looks pretty cool. I understand that if you have the latest greatest iPhone, the phone will use two of its lenses to record stereoscopic video which you can see in 3D on the Vision Pro.

(How do they do that? The two lenses are not nearly as far apart from each other as a pair of human eyes, so how do they get a 3D effect that realistically mimics human vision?)

Anyway, that feature got my attention, as did the commercial where they show somebody using the Vision Pro as a big big screen TV.

The latter use sounds inviting, and I really want to like this, but will you really sit though a two hour+ movie with a helmet on your head? And unless someone else sitting next to you has a VP and they are synced, you really cannot share that movie viewing experience with them.

Or am I missing something?
I binge watch movies every few weeks. This past weekend I watched the two Tom Cruise Reacher movies and a few Mission Impossible movies. So I would absolutely watch movies solo with the VP. But most movies I watch with my husband when I'm in Virginia (or during Summer break) and I was wondering if there's a way to sync a pair of VPs in order to watch with someone else.

At this point unless I hit a lottery jackpot for $1million+, I would resist getting the VP. Just can't see myself tossing down several grand for single device that would offer limited enjoyment and several drawbacks. My neck hurts just thinking about wearing that more than an hour at a time.
 
Knowing Musk, he has no clue how/if this would even work. Hyperloop 2.0, another attention grab that won’t happen.

Also, I don’t know anybody who would want to implant something like this in their brain. Do you?
I’m not defending Musk, who I detest, but he probably funded a corporation with some expertise in this field.

Now if you are a fan of Cyberpunk, I’ll use Cyberpunk 2077 the game as an example, I can easily imagine implants in the future, but it would have to be much less invasive then full blown brain surgery at least for me, and I admit, it might be a stretch for people as a matter of routine to give up body parts such as their natural eyes for enhanced eyes, or voluntarily have limbs removed for enhanced mechanical replacements. In the CP2077 environment, it seems to be completely normal. 😉

Realistically I’d have to see many examples of such implants, their benefits, minus medical complications, and even then I might not be convinced, because you’d have a body more subject to mechanical malfunctions, at least the perception of that.




I’ll diverge into the game for some purely speculative science fiction. First thing I got as a matter of routine was Kiroshi Optics eye upgrades that give me a visual connection to the network and myself, all sorts of information. Granted this was mostly for a life of urban combat, but for this environment, it seemed perfectly natural. When it came to arm implants/replacements there are “gorilla arms” and at first I was concerned they’d make my character look like a freak, but these are strengthened mostly normal looking mechanical arms. What is unrealistic about them, is that you‘d probably also need an augmented skeleton to make use of them to the full extent, which the game goes hog wild and has that too, although it’s not required for full gorilla arm functionality. Mantis blades, in the game was a bridge too far, where blades unfold from your arms, similar to what you may have seen in Alita, Battle Angel. The environment offers a smorgasbord of enhanced external organs which improves your characters physical performance. .:)

IMG_3109.jpeg
Eyes, routine appearance

IMG_3108.png
Grotesque appearance

IMG_3106.jpeg
Hand Augments for smart weapons, direct connection to your brain.
 
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Given the appalling potential for grotesque abuse, on the part of both irresponsible governments and ethics free individuals, such as, for example, possible compulsion with the use of this technology, - unless very strictly regulated, with exceptionally extensive oversight - this report fills me with horror.

Irrespective of the potential for good in that technology, I must say that I find that man to be downright sinister, and the use of such technology in the hands of a man who holds the views he does on race, and on women, deeply disturbing and profoundly unsettling.

Yes, there is potential for good in the use of such technology, but, in the hands of an egomaniac and ethics free individual such as Musk, whom I not only detest but profoundly distrust his bona fides, I would give this technology (in the absence of regulation, and, to be clear, I mean regulation by bodies such as the EU) a very wide berth.
Regarding abuse and grotesque, you’ll love the post I just made featuring Cyberpunk 2077. :D
 
The Vision Pro looks pretty cool. I understand that if you have the latest greatest iPhone, the phone will use two of its lenses to record stereoscopic video which you can see in 3D on the Vision Pro.

(How do they do that? The two lenses are not nearly as far apart from each other as a pair of human eyes, so how do they get a 3D effect that realistically mimics human vision?)

Anyway, that feature got my attention, as did the commercial where they show somebody using the Vision Pro as a big big screen TV.

The latter use sounds inviting, and I really want to like this, but will you really sit though a two hour+ movie with a helmet on your head? And unless someone else sitting next to you has a VP and they are synced, you really cannot share that movie viewing experience with them.

Or am I missing something?

Apple might need to tighten up its data privacy or data collection protocols. Or so I gather from having read this WaPo analysis of the Vision Pro's functions as currently understood. As usual, Apple has gone out of its way to consider privacy issues and provide options for restricting access to data streams, but that doesn't mean there aren't privacy risks ahead in terms of the refinement of location data and content of surroundings. In this case, the risks may well extend to people just in the "near neighborhood" of someone using a Vision Pro. Some of the issues will be similar to those raised when Google Glass came out. Others may be newer thanks to parallel higher tech since then including assorted AI tools already released to the public.

Apple’s new Vision Pro is a privacy mess waiting to happen


On some issues, Apple has drawn a line in the sand — at least initially. To combat people being surreptitiously filmed with the Vision Pro, there’s an indicator on the device’s front screen when it's shooting a photo or video. Apple also isn’t allowing third-party Vision Pro apps to access the camera to capture photos and videos. That would, in theory, also prevent third-party apps from doing creepy things like running facial recognition algorithms on people while you’re looking at them.

The new problem is what else the device is gathering: a map of the spaces around you. The device needs to know the contours of the world around you so it can know where to insert digital things into your line of sight.

Understanding what’s in the room around you can be even more invasive than having a photograph of it, says Joseph Jerome, a visiting professor at the University of Tampa and the former policy lead on sensor data at Meta’s Reality Labs.

On a basic level, the Vision Pro might know it’s in a room with four walls and a 12-foot ceiling and window — so far, so good, Jerome says. But then add in that you’ve got a 75-inch television, suggesting you might have more money to spend than someone with a 42-inch set. Since the device can understand objects, it could also detect if you’ve got a crib or a wheelchair or even drug paraphernalia, he says.

Advertisers and data brokers who build profiles of consumers would salivate at the chance to get this data. Governments, too.

Think of it as an extension of the kinds of issues we know can come from someone tracking your location. A phone alone, Jerome says, might be able to report that you’re generally near a hospital or a strip club. “These devices know where you are down to the centimeter, and then they’re combining it with a bunch of other sensors to know exactly what you’re looking at at the same time,” he says.

Apple didn’t answer my questions about what visibility it has into what apps do with this data, or how it plans to vet them. On a website for Vision Pro developers, Apple warns, “It’s your responsibility to protect any data your app collects, and to use it in responsible and privacy-preserving ways.” So users just have to trust them?

This is one of those developments that makes me think I'd not be an early adopter. I'd like someone else to be the person letting Apple know hey this or that is a bridge too far in terms of revelation of personal data. The piece goes on to describe studies done that reveal identifying characteristics of people just based on observation of a stream of thousands of their particular little body movements while dancing or walking... I suppose in theory this is no more aggravating in terms of data brokerage than when you get junk mail from vendors after reading some online article about real estate, baby showers, medical issues or sales on pasta... but on the other hand if it comes down to people buying the fact that you have expensive art on the walls of where you spend a lot of time, well, that could be something else again. A bonanza for sellers of electronic security devices, theft insurance, etc.
 
Apple might need to tighten up its data privacy or data collection protocols. Or so I gather from having read this WaPo analysis of the Vision Pro's functions as currently understood. As usual, Apple has gone out of its way to consider privacy issues and provide options for restricting access to data streams, but that doesn't mean there aren't privacy risks ahead in terms of the refinement of location data and content of surroundings. In this case, the risks may well extend to people just in the "near neighborhood" of someone using a Vision Pro. Some of the issues will be similar to those raised when Google Glass came out. Others may be newer thanks to parallel higher tech since then including assorted AI tools already released to the public.

Apple’s new Vision Pro is a privacy mess waiting to happen










This is one of those developments that makes me think I'd not be an early adopter. I'd like someone else to be the person letting Apple know hey this or that is a bridge too far in terms of revelation of personal data. The piece goes on to describe studies done that reveal identifying characteristics of people just based on observation of a stream of thousands of their particular little body movements while dancing or walking... I suppose in theory this is no more aggravating in terms of data brokerage than when you get junk mail from vendors after reading some online article about real estate, baby showers, medical issues or sales on pasta... but on the other hand if it comes down to people buying the fact that you have expensive art on the walls of where you spend a lot of time, well, that could be something else again. A bonanza for sellers of electronic security devices, theft insurance, etc.
I read that article. It’s pure speculation.

First off, there is no reason to believe Apple would have radically different privacy rules on its visionOS apps. Second, a VR device used for a couple hours per day at most, used in the home almost exclusively… vs a smart phone, which can collect vastly more information about you? This author is telling people to look out for the bicycle coming down the road while ignoring a Mad-Max style caravan flying 100 MPH at them from the other direction.

Pure fear-mongering from an author whose byline includes this: “writing from San Francisco about how to navigate the confusing, occasionally scary and deeply personal world of tech.” Ah yes, a tech expert to mansplain the “scary“ world of tech to us plebes.

Here‘s a perfect example of the dishonesty of the above article. Regarding this paragraph:

On a basic level, the Vision Pro might know it’s in a room with four walls and a 12-foot ceiling and window — so far, so good, Jerome says. But then add in that you’ve got a 75-inch television, suggesting you might have more money to spend than someone with a 42-inch set. Since the device can understand objects, it could also detect if you’ve got a crib or a wheelchair or even drug paraphernalia, he says.

One can easily go to Apple’s Vision Pro website, and see this note:

Data from cameras and sensors is processed at the system level, so individual apps do not need to see your surroundings to enable spatial experiences.
So… the author claims Apple didn’t give him a comment, but he clearly didn’t even read the most basic privacy information right on the Apple.com website. Come on.

Also, check out thus guy‘s past review of Meta’s quest pro, in which he doesn’t consider the privacy issues much at all, other than a 1-paragraph nod to the idea that it MIGHT be a concern.

Review of Quest Pro
(Paywall removed)

Unlike Apple, which gets most of its money from selling physical products, they make most of their money selling your personal data to advertisers. Hmm, if it’s made by Apple, then it’s big news, so if you can write a scary article about it, you will get huge amounts of clicks for the Washington Post. Congratulations to the author for flushing his scruples down the toilet in exchange for $$$. He has reached the coveted level of Elite Clickbait Master.
 
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I read that article. It’s pure speculation.

First off, there is no reason to believe Apple would have radically different privacy rules on its visionOS apps. Second, a VR device used for a couple hours per day at most, used in the home almost exclusively… vs a smart phone, which can collect vastly more information about you? This author is telling people to look out for the bicycle coming down the road while ignoring a Mad-Max style caravan flying 100 MPH at them from the other direction.

Pure fear-mongering from an author whose byline includes this: “writing from San Francisco about how to navigate the confusing, occasionally scary and deeply personal world of tech.” Ah yes, a tech expert to mansplain the “scary“ world of tech to us plebes.

Here‘s a perfect example of the dishonesty of the above article. Regarding this paragraph:



One can easily go to Apple’s Vision Pro website, and see this note:


So… the author claims Apple didn’t give him a comment, but he clearly didn’t even read the most basic privacy information right on the Apple.com website. Come on.

Also, check out thus guy‘s past review of Meta’s quest pro, in which he doesn’t consider the privacy issues much at all, other than a 1-paragraph nod to the idea that it MIGHT be a concern.

Review of Quest Pro
(Paywall removed)

Unlike Apple, which gets most of its money from selling physical products, they make most of their money selling your personal data to advertisers. Hmm, if it’s made by Apple, then it’s big news, so if you can write a scary article about it, you will get huge amounts of clicks for the Washington Post. Congratulations to the author for flushing his scruples down the toilet in exchange for $$$. He has reached the coveted level of Elite Clickbait Master.

Wow. Thanks for that link, and your remarks as well. I'm still not gonna be an early adopter but now that might more because of my investment in that submersible pump I just had installed in my cellar!

In general though I do get concerned about all the privacy-related issues of smart devices, and the more useful they become, the more extensive the damn settings become... and "even with" Apple gear, it's tempting to 1) let settings on new features sit on the default, or 2) in the middle of some app's function when a permission request pops up, act impatiently and possibly with too narrow a focus and grant the permission.

For instance, sometimes I grant the "while using app" option when location permissions are asked for, like with streaming subscriptions for live TV etc. It's tempting to use that with requests from other apps as well, but I tend to decline until and unless I then see a performance / function issue.

Anyway the settings options are extensive and tiresome to deal with. They are a kind of default toll for riding the info highway, so one must put up with them. I just get concerned sometimes that even the privacy-minded software companies don't work as hard as hackers (or more to the point, "legit" data brokers") do when trawling for new data points sprung loose by new apps or a new feature in an existing one.
 
Wow. Thanks for that link, and your remarks as well. I'm still not gonna be an early adopter but now that might more because of my investment in that submersible pump I just had installed in my cellar!

In general though I do get concerned about all the privacy-related issues of smart devices, and the more useful they become, the more extensive the damn settings become... and "even with" Apple gear, it's tempting to 1) let settings on new features sit on the default, or 2) in the middle of some app's function when a permission request pops up, act impatiently and possibly with too narrow a focus and grant the permission.

For instance, sometimes I grant the "while using app" option when location permissions are asked for, like with streaming subscriptions for live TV etc. It's tempting to use that with requests from other apps as well, but I tend to decline until and unless I then see a performance / function issue.

Anyway the settings options are extensive and tiresome to deal with. They are a kind of default toll for riding the info highway, so one must put up with them. I just get concerned sometimes that even the privacy-minded software companies don't work as hard as hackers (or more to the point, "legit" data brokers") do when trawling for new data points sprung loose by new apps or a new feature in an existing one.
I do agree that it’s correct to be concerned. But I wish the author had been honest about the concerns, instead of coming up with bogus worst-case scenarios, some of which were extremely unlikely to happen, according to Apple’s own documentation.

I think Apple can protect customers to a point by limiting the app developers. But there will be some use cases where the extra data is needed to make the experience happen. It’s those apps where I think the worries are legitimate. I default to saying no to every permission an app asks for. Then, if I notice it’s not working, I’ll consider the risks and benefits of allowing the app to get more of my data.
 
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