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  • Admin 1:36 pm on May 19, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: biometrics security, Face, Joseph J. Atick, Remember, Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center, Science   

    Never Forgetting a Face 

    Joseph J. Atick cased the floor of the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center in Washington as if he owned the place. In a way, he did. He was one of the organizers of the event, a conference and trade show for the biometrics security industry. Perhaps more to the point, a number of the wares on display, like an airport face-scanning checkpoint, could trace their lineage to his work.

    A physicist, Dr. Atick is one of the pioneer entrepreneurs of modern face recognition. Having helped advance the fundamental face-matching technology in the 1990s, he went into business and promoted the systems to government agencies looking to identify criminals or prevent identity fraud. “We saved lives,” he said during the conference in mid-March. “We have solved crimes.”

    Thanks in part to his boosterism, the global business of biometrics — using people’s unique physiological characteristics, like their fingerprint ridges and facial features, to learn or confirm their identity — is booming. It generated an estimated $7.2 billion in 2012, according to reports by Frost & Sullivan.

    Making his rounds at the trade show, Dr. Atick, a short, trim man with an indeterminate Mediterranean accent, warmly greeted industry representatives at their exhibition booths. Once he was safely out of earshot, however, he worried aloud about what he was seeing. What were those companies’ policies for retaining and reusing consumers’ facial data? Could they identify individuals without their explicit consent? Were they running face-matching queries for government agencies on the side?

    Read more on the new york times: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/05/18/technology/never-forgetting-a-face.html?_r=0

    The New York Times

     
  • Admin 9:35 pm on May 18, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Brain, Science   

    Inside the Science of an Amazing New Surgery Called Deep Brain Stimulation 

    Like most people in need of major surgery, Rodney Haning, a retired telecommunications project manager and avid golfer, has a few questions for his doctors. He wonders, for example, exactly how the planned treatment is going to alleviate his condition, a severe tremor in his left hand that has, among other things, completely messed up his golf game, forcing him to switch from his favorite regular-length putter to a longer model that he steadies against his belly.

    “Can anyone tell me why this procedure does what it does?” Haning asks one winter afternoon at UF Health Shands Hospital, at the University of Florida in Gainesville.

    “Well,” says Kelly Foote, his neurosurgeon, “we know a lot, but not everything.”

    The vague answer doesn’t seem to bother Haning, 67, an affable man who has opted for the elective brain surgery. And it’s hard to fault Foote for not going into greater detail about the underlying science, since he is, at that very moment, boring a hole in Haning’s skull.

    Smithsonian

     
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