A set of smart vending machines at the University of Waterloo is expected to be removed from campus after students raised privacy concerns about their software.

The machines have M&M artwork on them and sell chocolate and other candy. They are located throughout campus, including in the Modern Languages building and Hagey Hall.

Earlier this month, a student noticed an error message on one of the machines in the Modern Languages building. It appeared to indicate there was a problem with a facial recognition application.

“We wouldn’t have known if it weren’t for the application error. There’s no warning here,” said River Stanley, a fourth-year student, who investigated the machines for an article in the university publication, mathNEWS.

  • @OpenStars
    link
    English
    273 months ago

    The definition of pretty much every word these days has been hijacked to mean the exact opposite - like Google lets you “search” for things you “want”, and Reddit would “connect” you to “humans people”, FaceBook will steal all of your data share “news”, again from “people”, and so on.

    I pretty much think of “smart” as now meaning “tactically weaponized to maximize corpo profits” - you know, “for your convenience”!:-P 🤮

      • @OpenStars
        link
        English
        23 months ago

        I should probably read that - I figured that I get the gist having read Animal Farm but hey, if we are going to live out the irl version then it might be good to at least say that I read about it first!:-P

        It is fascinating how some people see far (ahead), by virtue of seeing clear (to the soul/center of the human condition) - technology may change but we don’t seem to. Asimov, Jules Verne, George Orwell, they are like techno- or cultural prophets, not that we listened, sadly:-(.

        C.S. Lewis (Chronicles of Narnia) in addition to being a christian apologist also wrote philosophy about how Hitler was able to influence Europe during WWII, and I found that just fascinating e.g. if you avoid ever saying a thing but instead just act as if it is true then it is a way to avoid it being questioned. Evil people have access to so many tricks that a free & just society would never condone using (another big one lately is misinformation), nor would it even so much work in the other direction b/c getting people to question things is a major bonus in such a society so it’s at best an anti-pattern there, and yet I wish we were much more aware of them b/c otherwise it is like facing a pathogen with no immune system.

        Anyway thank you for reminding me of those quotes:-).