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Lyle Zapato

ZPi Glare: The Anti-Glass

Lyle Zapato | 2013-06-15.8810 LMT | Technology | Fashion | Mind Control | General Paranoia

Diagram showing Glare features

Introducing ZPi Labs' newest innovation, Project Glare, the pro-privacy anti-Glass for paranoids and smarter orthonoids. Glare will protect users from NSA tracking by blocking facial-recognition software, while also jamming psychotronic mind-control with embedded MindGuard.

The Threat

Google Glass is a head-mounted-display computer that includes a camera that can surreptitiously record anyone the user looks at. Glass also requires an Internet connection to Google for continuous processing of user queries and sharing data on social media -- both heavily promoted uses of Glass. Combined, these two features open the possibility for mass surveillance and tracking of individuals.

A burgeoning sensor-network of Glass users will provide a constant stream of data that can be mined. To sift through it all, automatic systems such as facial-recognition software will be needed. By just looking at you, a Glass wearer may unknowingly send your faceprint to the Google Cloud, where it will be identified and a data-point about your location at a certain time will be recorded. Collated over many data-points from many Glass users, a complete picture of your movements and actions can be rendered, allowing both the gathering of information to use against you and predictions of your future behavior.

Although Google has claimed they won't approve third-party facial-recognition software in its "Glassware" app store -- but it's being developed regardless -- that doesn't mean they won't pre-install such software developed by themselves or run it on their own servers. It also doesn't mean they won't allow the installation and running of government-created software, since they may have no choice.

But will facial-recognition tracking by Glass really be a threat? Consider the NSA's recently revealed PRISM program, which collects private user-data "directly from the servers" of Internet service providers, including Google. Is it just a coincidence that Glass uses a prism to project images into the user's eye, or that the most prominent feature of the Glass logo is a prism-shaped "A"? Of course not. Glass is the next phase of public surveillance, where everyone will become an unwitting prism for the NSA, refracting information directly to Fort Meade.

The Solution

So, how can paranoids protect themselves from being identified and tracked by the NSA's ubiquitous facial-recognition network made up of Glass users? By glaring their cameras.

The Glass camera, like all consumer digital cameras, uses a charge-coupled device (CCD) to collect light. These imaging devices are sensitive to near-infrared (IR) light that's invisible to the naked eye. You can see this yourself by taking any old TV remote, aiming it at whatever digital camera you have at hand, and pressing some buttons: the IR LED at the front will show on camera.

This is where ZPi Glare comes in. By placing an ultrabright IR LED near the wearer's eyes on a wearable device designed to look exactly like Glass, Glare will dazzle the Glass CCD, befuddling any facial-recognition software, and keeping your faceprint out of the Cloud:

A paranoid as seen by CCDs with Glare off (left) and on (right). (No actual paranoid
was willing to model the off picture, so this simulated photo-illustration uses Google co-founder Sergey Brin instead.)

Glare will also come in XL sizes for those needing privacy from cryptozoologists.

Glare will work not only against Glass, but also any other CCD-based facial-recognition system found in smart phones, security cameras, traffic cameras, drones, video game consoles, DTV converter boxes, Barbie dolls, cats, and really pretty much anything around you at any given moment. Cameras are everywhere and you need to hide your face from them.

Unlike previous attempts at anti-paparazzi light devices pitched to the celebrity market, Glare is designed to blend into the coming technoscape. A Glare wearer will appear to be just another hipster-cyborg member of the Google Collective, unlikely to illicit accusatory pointing and inhuman wails from their increasingly Glassed contemporaries.

Glare also improves upon the work of Isao Echizen and Seiichi Gohshi, whose anti-surveillance visor uses 11 conspicuous, low-power LEDs compared to Glare's single ultrabright LED disguised as a surveillance-society-acceptable camera. Glare subverts the normalization of surveillance to hide in plain sight. The camera is the anti-camera.

Anti-Psychotronic Too

Another important feature that will set Glare apart is the computer running MindGuard, providing mobile active-anti-psychotronic protection when passive AFDBs might draw attention (the whole point of Glare, after all, is to be seen without being noticed). The integrated aluminum headband will both receive mind-control signals for pre-processing and emit the jamming anti-signals directly into the wearer's brain at low power, nullifying any psychotronic effects without being detectable from afar.

Beyond mere protection, Glare's eye-display will discretely show the text of jammed mind-control directives, promoting psychosituational awareness and allowing the user to pretend to be under the signals' sway to better avoid detection.

Since MindGuard was originally written to run on Motorola 680x0 processors from the 1990s, running it on the multi-core ARMs readily available today for mobile computing should be no problem, especially since for security all other Glass-like features won't be included. (However, we are considering models with infrared communication for Nemester integration, enabling a wearer to Glare at their enemies.)


Currently Glare is in development with private backers. We considered crowdfunding, but our target market is largely cash-, gold-, MRE-, and ammo-based, which makes using Kickstarter problematic.

End of post.