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Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Verizon's New DVR Patent

Has anyone noticed Google Ads? WIFLI utilizes a Google Ad service currently and you might have noticed that many of our ads are about computers or other things in the same genre. If you look at my other blog,, you'll notice that it too has some relevant ads. Since I talk about politics and religion a lot there, much of my ads are political or religious. This is due to Google's ability to read what a site's content is and gear ads relevant to that webpage. The changes are automatic without I actually being able to change the individual ads that show. Verizon has asked for a patent that does something similar to this but takes it one step higher.

"In Russia, you don't watch TV, TV watches you!"

Some say that it's an invasion of privacy, others say it's an innovation, while others say that it is yet another way of reaching what's read in George Orwell 1984 novel. I am in between each side. As a tech-enthusiastic  I get excited about new inventions and innovations like this. But, as an advocate for smaller government, I get uneasy about things like this with the threat that it could be used for invasion of privacy.

The new DVR has the ability to see and hear what it's listeners are doing and saying. For instance, if a couple is arguing in front of the television, and the DVR picks up on it, the next commercial may be of something to help the marriage. Others may silently watch as you watch the box and notice which commercials you pay attention to and which ones you don't which would allow it to narrow down a list of commercials to show and which ones you may not be interested in. For me, the television may notice that I pay no attention to commercials for Viagra or chick flicks and may remember in the future for future commercial picks.

I like it from that standpoint. I realize that television isn't free and that it has to be paid for by someone whether that be me, corporations, or a combination of the two. If I am forced to watch ads, I'd at least like to see some ads that are interesting to me rather than sit through a number of uncomfortable ones time and time again.

The technology is fascinating. I wonder if it utilizes anything from Microsoft's Kinect or if this is a completely separate piece of technology. But then again, there is the possibility for something like Big Brother.

Maybe I'm just paranoid. What do you guys think? Interesting? Scary?

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