jm + new-york   5

NYC cops now using Chinese "Sky Net" video surveillance systems
This is absolutely scary. Systematic surveillance:
The surveillance tools are identical to those used in Sky Net in China, the largest video surveillance system on Earth, Chinese government research institutes and a company involved in the project said.

At a time when China and the United States are locked in a rivalry on several fronts including trade and technology, Hikvision – the world’s largest surveillance technology company, which is state-owned and based in Hangzhou in eastern China – has supplied the equipment and software used by an American force that polices a population of about 8.6 million people.

It has been claimed that Hikvision’s system can accurately identify faces regardless of race, whereas some Western-developed technology had previously been more accurate for white people than for black citizens – although the NYPD has not discussed its reasons for using the Chinese technology.

The Sky Net programme, now renamed Pingan Chengshi, or Safe Cities, claimed to have connected 170 million cameras across China last year. By 2020, another 400 million units will be installed, it said, casting a watchful eye on every two citizens. Beijing plans to be able to identify anyone, anytime, anywhere in China within three seconds.
surveillance  new-york  nyc  skynet  china  cctv  hikvision 
22 days ago by jm
173 million 2013 NYC taxi rides shared on BigQuery : bigquery
Interesting! (a) there's a subreddit for Google BigQuery, with links to interesting data sets, like this one; (b) the entire 173-million-row dataset for NYC taxi rides in 2013 is available for querying; and (c) the tip percentage histogram is cool.
datasets  bigquery  sql  google  nyc  new-york  taxis  data  big-data  histograms  tipping 
july 2014 by jm
NYC generates hash-anonymised data dump, which gets reversed
There are about 1000*26**3 = 21952000 or 22M possible medallion numbers. So, by calculating the md5 hashes of all these numbers (only 24M!), one can completely deanonymise the entire data. Modern computers are fast: so fast that computing the 24M hashes took less than 2 minutes.


(via Bruce Schneier)

The better fix is a HMAC (see http://benlog.com/2008/06/19/dont-hash-secrets/ ), or just to assign opaque IDs instead of hashing.
hashing  sha1  md5  bruce-schneier  anonymization  deanonymization  security  new-york  nyc  taxis  data  big-data  hmac  keyed-hashing  salting 
june 2014 by jm
Vitamin T: Hold the Salsa, New York Times! We've Got Something to Taco ‘Bout - Digest - Los Angeles magazine
ouch. some serious slagging here, along with taco science. (BTW we have the same problem with carne asada in Ireland, our taquerias use the cheater method too, sadly)
la  tacos  mexican  food  new-york  slagging  burritos  taquerias  carne-asada 
october 2013 by jm

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