Apple Thinks I’m Two-Faced

I’m a self-professed lover of all things Apple. Caveat:Mostly because I do use Amazon Alexa all throughout my house. But everywhere else, it’s all Apple – IPhones, new MacBook Pro, Apple TVs, IPads, IMac, iCloud for all my backups, and Apple Watches.

I’ve loved the iPhone X and, in particular, Face ID. It has worked like a charm reliably and consistently…until today. What happened today? I shaved my beard off. Mind you, prior situations I’ve worn hats or sunglasses and have successfully unlocked the X and apps with Face ID. But today I shaved my beard and Face ID did not recognize me. No worries. I went through the reset process and re-registered my “new” face with Face ID.

I’m intrigued by this for a few reasons.

  • Did it work before with hats or sunglasses due to a vulnerability? Or was the AI of Face ID’s computer vision algorithm THAT good?
  • For the same reason, when I shaved today, did it stop working because it legitimately “saw” a different person?
  • In the broader topic of “explainable AI”, can we mere mortals in fact determine or predict what the true outcome should be for instances like this? Because if we can’t, then I’m sure the hackers will.

If we expand this facial recognition to the larger world around us, will I start getting advertisements, traffic tickets, or be placed on some “watch list” the next time I grow a bear or shave in the future? Many companies, governments, and law enforcement agencies dream of the day of large-scale facial recognition and action ability of that recognition to make more money, surveillance, or arrests. Or is that simply the looming nightmare for the rest of us?

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SocioConnectitis: Addicted to #Connected #Media

Mobile devices and technologies have afforded us mere mortals the ability to communicate with each other, answer practically any question, access practically any media or content available on the Internet, and entertain ourselves in ways never thought possible 10 years ago.  Since the advent of data communications over cellular technologies such as GSM/GPRS, EV-DO, and HSPA enable the immediacy of these desires.  The air interface alone, however, is not enough to allow flesh and blood to engage and interact with the digital media in that virtual netherworld.  We need devices.  Blackberries, Droids, Symbian devices, and my favorite, the iPhone, bridge the chemically and electrically induced emotions and needs for digital “connectedness” and the digital itself.

But the ways our brains are being rewired where we grow accustomed to checking emails in the kitchen, updating our Facebook status in the bathroom (yeah, could be gross), following our Twitter community sitting in front of the TV, or posting a new vid to Flickr standing in front of the BBQ while grilling some steaks (hey, the thick ones take a while) is taking the “attractiveness” of mobility to all-new heights.

BTW, I’ve personally done all of the above on my iPhone while at home NOT sitting in front of my Mac.  In fact I’ve caught myself pulling out my iPhone to open up TweetDeck or WordPress WHILE I’ve been sitting in front of my Mac with TweetDeck or WordPress already open.  WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH ME?!?!

Nothing and everything, depending on your generational or conservative persuasion.  If you’re reading this blog, or especially if you’ve gotten to this post from a bit.ly shortened URL, you are likely also suffering from SocioConnectitis.  Defined as: “the insatiable and irresistible need to engage and interact with our social digital media and content. This is sometimes accompanied by narcissism (how many mentions did I get today?), paranoia (why haven’t those friend requests been accepted yet?) and a false sense of urgency (I really, really need to upload those Flip MinoHD vids to Facebook because I’m sure they’ll be helpful in curing cancer).

Where is all this headed?  For sure this second nature (soon to be first nature) act of interacting digitally won’t even be differentiated from breathing or waking up in the morning someday soon.  This is the case not just for industrialized societies, but even the poorest countries and regions are experiencing this.  Maybe not iPhone-class urges yet, but they get the notion of connectedness and those are the seeds of SocioConnectitis. And the device vendors want to cash in this growing behavior with the QUE, more Droids (someday they’ll be sentient beings), iPhone 4G (whatever that is), iSlate, Kindle DX x 10^8, and so many other windows into this digitally delectable world.

Now what? As Andrea True Connection says, “More, More, More.” Or Britney Spears says, “Gimme More.” I’m loving this disease.