Comment and analysis on all things Charlotte

At Newark airport, the lights are watching you

Literally, as the New York Times reports:

Visitors to Terminal B at Newark Liberty International Airport may notice the bright, clean lighting that now blankets the cavernous interior, courtesy of 171 recently installed LED fixtures. But they probably will not realize that the light fixtures are the backbone of a system that is watching them.

Using an array of sensors and eight video cameras around the terminal, the light fixtures are part of a new wireless network that collects and feeds data into software that can spot long lines, recognize license plates and even identify suspicious activity, sending alerts to the appropriate staff.

and:

“No one really wanted the smartphone 20 years ago because they didn’t know they could have it,” said Fred Maxik, founder and chief technology officer of Lighting Science Group, which manufactures LEDs. “And I think the same is true of lighting today: No one knows what lighting is going to be capable of.”

OK. And why does this scare me?

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