Wed. Oct 27th, 2021


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Pictures: Amazon / Gizmodo

“Cute.”

Again that was the word, it took over my feed on Tuesday when Amazon released it bevy Data collection, Always an observer Device On a confused and public. “The Amazon robot has finally arrived here, and I’m forced to admit that it’s beautiful.” Tweeted Bloomberg technical editor Nick Turner, with a link Their story About the “Alexa on Wheels” robot, Called Astro.

“Why?” I think. “Why on earth are you forced to admit that it is beautiful? Why aren’t you as scared as I am? The disconnection between what I was feeling and this “clever” feeling bothered me. It should be taken seriously and it should be considered what we want in our lives, walking around our hallways, scanning our kids ’faces, running on our dog’s tail.

Of course, this banned coverage contained cursed mention of privacy and the growing chorus on Twitter echoed my visceral reaction against the Amazon robot. But from those early stories, there was concern about how the device would have a negative impact on our lives. A whisper is screaming in my head and in my gut rather than “Hell, it’s bad”. “Didn’t we learn anything?”

My fear is not just that Amazon has invented a new way to invade our privacy and enrich the process, although I am also scared and angry about it. It’s that caring Offensive technology Makes me weird. Much more people than me fall into the perpetual conflict between security and privacy. This do-eyed little robot is the embodiment of everything that divides us and a new catalyst. That person – most people – wants it.

Just hours after the Amazon event, my privacy concerns were apparently proven. Motherboard Published The leaked documents clearly reveal: Astro, which will be priced at ০০ 1,500, with a starting price of জন্য 1,000 for Amazon-selected primary recipients, is “the first and foremost … a surveillance device that tracks you and everyone who enters your home.” By. ” What does Amazon mean when it does advertises Astro as a “household robot for home monitoring, with Alexa,” that gives you “peace of mind,” whether you’re keeping tabs remotely on a home-bound loved one or just want to check if you turned off the stove. At least, that’s what it promises—one day, perhaps. As a developer who had the chance to toy around with the robot pre-release told Motherboard, “Astro is terrible and will almost certainly throw itself down a flight of stairs if presented the opportunity.”

Amazon, of course, promises that Astro is “designed to protect your privacy” because it allows you to easily “turn off mics, cameras, and motion with one press of a button and use the Astro app to set out of bounds zones to let Astro know where it’s not allowed to go.” This assurance ignores the history of Alexa-enabled devices invading our privacy, Makes one of the company’s ring cameras (which is built into Astro) Personal surveillance network Spying on our neighbors and sending information to the police. These devices failed to address the possibility of being hacked. And it highlights the fascinating reality that Amazon is actively creating a ubiquitous surveillance system that controls our privacy – as a verge. ReportAmazon’s clear goal is to establish its dominance over the future of “ambient computing”. And it’s doing it by flooding the zone with “beautiful” internet-connected devices.

What Amazon’s Astro Pitch says directly (albeit implicitly) is that a lot of people just don’t care about any worries in front of their minds for me and my suspicious elk. Amazon has consistently ranked in Fortune’s annual Top Three.The most acclaimed company“List. Last year, a survey by Verge Found That 91% of respondents had a favorable opinion about Amazon – more than any other big tech company – and 73% said they would trust the corporation with their data, second only to Microsoft.

This is all reflected in the actual purchase: until January 2020 – almost two years ago – Amazon Said It has sold “hundreds of millions” of Alexa-enabled devices, at least twice as many as a year ago. The privacy debate around smart speakers, which once a topic of discussion, has faded into virtual existence, save moments like this week when a new device awakens our memory. If there is still controversy, it is clear that my side is losing.

In fact, my strong choice for privacy is a privilege. I am physically able to monitor every room in my home without help, and none of my loved ones currently need remote monitoring. I live in areas where crime rates are low. Owners of my expensive computers and phones are able to do most of what smart speakers (or smart microwaves or stupid robots) can do. As far as I know, no one is actively pursuing me or trying to harm me. I do not Required Which of these devices makes my life better because my life, right now, is fine without them.

And yet, I’m also a hypocrite: I own a security camera (a Google-owned nest) that I use to keep tabs on my pets when we’re away from home. It is otherwise unplugged and offline, but still, I use it. More importantly, I understand why people want to observe the camera inside and outside their home: anxiety and control. Going out of town and not knowing if your home is safe and still standing can be nerve-racking. Being able to pull a feed whenever you want at any time in your front door or living room reduces the anxiety of something happening that is beyond your control.

But I fear that it always increases our sense of observation that we are Required Always watch – that disaster is absolutely near the corner, even if it is not. Polling is done Regular Found That Americans believe that crime is actually more prevalent than that. And while having security cameras Can reduce Chances are someone broke into your home, the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting Program Found The property crime rate is the lowest since 1985, the earliest date for which the agency provides public information.

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I also fear that self-imposed surveillance may legitimize our fears of other people. When your doorbell keeps a constant watch on your front porch, everyone passing by becomes suspicious, Especially if someone People of color. It’s not the fault of Amazon or Google, but it’s a dynamic that seems to be expanded or legitimized by the products that these companies provide. In an era when we are growing Live in our own little bubbles, It’s hard for me to imagine that constant eyeing on each other only exacerbates our worst instincts and weakens our sense of shared community.

With any Internet-connected device আমার my phone and computer and nest camera বাইরে beyond my privacy concerns সত্য it’s true that with the release of Amazon, Astro is again forcing us to decide what kind of society we want to be in. Want to be able to patrol from anywhere at any time, so that we can breathe a little easier, or is it creating a toxic mobility that we should avoid? I know how to answer this question, at least in principle, and I have a pretty good idea of ​​how most people will answer – and the two will be radically different. What I’m most frustrated with is that Amazon is forcing us to make a choice again so that it can make money. I hope Amazon will give us a place to fight the technological choices we have instead of making new decisions on our plates, even knowing what we’re eating. Ultimately, I wish it would leave us alone. Wouldn’t it be nice?





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