[LINK] Airport to tag passengers

Eleanor Lister eleanor at pacific.net.au
Mon Oct 16 13:23:03 AEST 2006

Kim Holburn wrote:
> If you have a look at this:
> <http://canberra.yourguide.com.au/detail.asp?story_id=517002>
> Soon it won't matter because there will be face-recognition systems 
> that can follow you without tags. 

i strongly doubt this ... this furphy keeps popping up every few months, 
but image recognition is one of the classic NP-complete problems, and 
until there is a general solution to the NP-complete problem, it just 
won't work.    at all.   ever.

the limited "successful" trials all relied on people cooperating by not 
changing their hairstyles, wearing/not-wearing their glasses the same as 
the original picture, and so on.   even the most minimal changes 
completely bamboozle the equipment.   good thing that terrorists always 
cooperate, eh?

folks, it's a sci-fi argument for getting hold of government grants, and 
bugger all else.

the best way to scan for terrorists and other criminals is simply to 
have trained people looking at the monitors ... *that* works!

(oh, and by the way, nobody has a solution for NP-completeness, not even 
a secret one ... if they did, so many hard problems would fall before it 
it would be blatantly obvious to even the most casual observer that a 
major breakthrough had occurred.)


Eleanor Ashley Lister
South Sydney Greens
webmistress at ssg.nsw.greens.org.au

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