The Eyes Have It

Iris Recognition Could Mean the End of Physical Privacy

Security and privacy always seem to be in the balance when we think about emerging digital technologies. Encryption vies with detection. Entire industries are built around the opposite ideas of maintaining privacy and invading it. Ultimately, we have to decide how much we are willing to give up in order to feel safe. Or at least, it seems we have that decision when actually we probably don't. Get ready for a brave new world where someone will likely know where you are at every second, whether it is at the movies with your kids or at the Bide-A-Wee Motel with your neighbor's wife.

Sometimes, terrible events create business opportunity, and that's what happened to Steve Morton after the terrorist attacks on the Pentagon and New York's World Trade Center. Morton quickly repositioned his company, Connecticut-based Oxford Micro Devices Inc., entering the suddenly burgeoning field of homeland security. A fiercely independent engineer and entrepreneur trained at MIT and hardened by years at ITT, Steve Morton runs a fabless semiconductor company -- a company that designs and sells chips, but has other companies actually build them -- in bucolic Monroe, Connecticut. His chips are Digital Signal Processors (DSPs) and were developed over several years primarily through small Department of Defense contracts with no venture financing involved. The chips are devoted primarily to processing images and video, but Morton's initial commercial application was something completely different -- fingerprint recognition.

News source: I, Cringely | The Pulpit

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