A Camera Worth the Words it Prints Out

The Descriptive Camera works a lot like a regular camera—point it at subject and press the shutter button to capture the scene. However, instead of producing an image, this prototype outputs a text description of the scene…

The technology at the core of the Descriptive Camera is Amazon’s Mechanical Turk API. It allows a developer to submit Human Intelligence Tasks (HITs) for workers on the internet to complete. The developer sets the guidelines for each task and designs the interface for the worker to submit their results.

{via this tweet from clay shirky}.

The guy with a video camera implanted in the back of his head

Wafaa Bilal‘s latest performance piece is an extreme commentary on a culture with limited privacy. Beginning this Wednesday, the camera in the back of Bilal’s head will take a photograph every minute for an entire year.

This project is really raising awareness about surveillance. Our image is being taken probably hundreds of times a day, yet that [phenomenon] remains invisible. So acting as a mirror, as an artist, I’m trying to make that invisibility visible by having a camera very visible, implanted in my head.
—Bilal on On the Media

A couple of thoughts: I like that the camera is on the back of his head and not the front, which takes a way from the narcism and looks less creepy. The rear-facing camera puts more emphasis on his surroundings and the passivity (or not) of the environment around him rather than his personal experience.

It’ll be interesting to see how his life is changed during the year, how his relationships change and to see some of the photos that are captured.

{via on the media}