Resistance watch

Charles Cooke writes,

Any network of self-driving cars would, by definition, necessitate total and unceasing tracking of their occupants. . . The car, far from serving as a liberator, would become a telescreen on wheels — an FBI-approved bug, to be slipped beneath the chassis in plain sight of the surveilled.

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13 Responses to Resistance watch

  1. collin says:

    I am still of the opinion that once Self-driving cars are functional, an over-whelming number of people will move to these cars. Look how quickly smart phones have taken over the people’s interest and think about how much that potentially monitors people movements. Or much a person movements are monitored by private security whom more than happy to turn records to the authorities. Just think how many companies have a picture of your license plate in a parking lot right now? I bet your license plate is in ~50+ different private databases as I write this. And how much will ‘Smart Cars’ make a difference here? (I still believe it will take awhile for fully self-driving cars to elbow out all human driving but it will happen.)

    I’d say the problem here is 20% of the resistance will lose because the 80% of the people will gain a competitive advantage follow the tech global economy.

    (FYI I was on a jury ten years ago for a murder trial and it was literally He Said/She Said situation which would have been hard to give a “Guilty’ without phone records that put the defendant exactly 3o minutes from the scene of the crime.)

    • collin says:

      I think a lot of conservative thinkers are forgetting how much monitoring is done by the private sector and how much it benefits companies to monitor their employees and customers. I bet most modern commercial real estates locations have cameras in the parking lot monitor the employee and customer license plates and movements.

    • Moo cow says:

      Did you vote to convict?

      • collin says:

        Yes and it took the jury half a day to convict. As stated it was she said / defendant took the fifth that would have testimony from a less than credible witness. The defendant took the fifth and the defense lawyer argued the prosecution did not evidence of him at the scene of the crime. Note the below the defendent lived 60 minutes away from the scene of the crime: However with cell phone touches and private cameras the prosecution showed:

        1) The defendant was hitting every cell tower on the way to the scene of the crime two hours before. (This all fits the exact crime timing details of the witness.)

        2) Seen walking into a grocery store and their car license plate recorded on the way to crime with the store 15 minutes away about 2 hours before the crime. (This is why assume every significant commercial real estate has parking camera and record everybody licence plates.)

        3) After the crime, there was cell phone touch exactly 30 minutes after the crime and perfectly on route to their home.

        Again, without the cell phone evidence it would have been a lot harder for the jury to convict but with it the defendant appears to perfectly driving to and from the crime scene. Now we have witness testimony and evidence of the defendant around the crime scene.

  2. Handle says:

    There is nearly total and increasing tracking of cars and occupants already via smartphones, telematics, and pubic monitoring. What does “self driving” add to the existing picture? Not much.

  3. Massimo Heitor says:

    The opposite argument sounds almost as convincing: Anonymous payment technologies and anonymous taxi services could provide enhanced untraceable travel options.

  4. Matthew Young says:

    The FBI does not know who you are.

    This was what the processor ‘bug’ was all about the past few days. A microprocessor that is counterfeit proof can represent you, anonymously, when you order a taxi. If the microprocessor is secure, the the payments industry has no humans looking, remains honest; we get the equivalent of anonymous, paper cash.

    We get the equivalent of watermarked paper cash, becoming watermarked with digital pulses and uses silicon rather than cellulose. Easily done, half the price of paper bills, a simple adaptation of our ATM chip card.

    All of us should ep3ect, and damen, the ability to carry watermarked digital cash inside out ATM cards.

  5. Slocum says:

    Well, autonomous cars don’t have to be always-connected cars. They could download the maps and run disconnected. And, in fact, they’ll certainly have to be able to operate that way at least some of the time in order to be able to go to places where mobile data connections are unavailable or unreliable. Autonomous cars would also not need to know who was in the car or to maintain a log of where the car had been. And that’s not new or specific to autonomous vehicles anyway — it’s already an issue with ‘black boxes':

  6. David Gonzales says:

    We already have autonomous cars and people are using them abundantly. They are called public transport / taxis. The autonomous driving is done by a paid human. It is working out well and is popular at all levels of society.

  7. Jeremy, Alabama says:

    The panopticon state is here or nearly here. Cars are/will be an increasing part of that.

    I think the sensitive data are, not what you are doing in the car, but where you are and where you are going. On our current cultural glide-slope, going to Chik-Fil-A or a Tea Party meeting might become actionable. And we don’t need car-occupant monitoring to track this already.

    It is traditional to say “I’ve got nothing to hide” – but this is no longer true. Being a conservative, perhaps, or several other “pro-” or “anti-” denominations might bring repercussions.

    But in this case, car-occupant monitoring, I think I really do “have nothing to hide”. If there is a wreck, I think I would want all available data in resolving liability.

  8. ColoComment says:

    I wonder what effects this would have in the realm of 4th A search law? There was a recent case revolving around what has been termed the “mosaic” theory of S&S, which have tried to differentiate between a single search via tracking device and what may be described as a series of tracking searches collected over time.
    As Jeremy, Alabama notes, most of us believe that we have nothing to hide. I used to believe that, too. However, spend ~50 minutes watching Howard Root describe his experience with federal prosecution and you may be persuaded to change your attitude.

  9. Butler T. Reynolds says:

    “I may know how to get to the local liquor store without a map, but my car most certainly does not.”

    His car won’t be driving to the liquor store. That bottle of liquor will be delivered to his home.

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