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Uzuki
30th Nov 2010, 07:33
I'm sure many of you have heard the story of John Tyner, recently in the news for telling security at the airport, "If you touch my junk, I'll have you arrested." (see DenverPost.com, or obviously any other mainstream news source).

For those who are unaware (hey I was not aware of this until yesterday, as I don't actually have TV :D), the Transportation Security Administration is now doing palm side pat-downs (only back of hand pat-downs were used before) and they've also implemented scanning technology which gives disturbingly realistic (or so I've heard) naked images of the body of the person being scanned. There have been stories of people being groped, and the reactions while varied are mostly negative.

Does this increase in paranoia and examining our own populace for terrorists remind anyone else of the public bulletins found in Deus Ex? It seems we might get to that extreme of public bulletins asking us to keep an eye on our neighbors for potentially terrorist behavior sooner than the year 2052--perhaps 2027. I don't know if we're supposed to call it Big Brother or Big Sister at this point, but one really common complaint I've seen when people ask our government leaders to be put forced through these searches so they'd supposedly do something to stop them. It's rather disturbing, because as much as I enjoy playing DX, that's definitely not the type of future I want.

K^2
30th Nov 2010, 07:48
You are talking about backscatter X-Ray, and yeah, it basically shows you without your clothes. The images don't look terribly realistic, but only because the false-color system used is intentionally designed to give artificial look. Give it natural flesh tones, and it's basically you standing in the buff.

In the States, this had such a negative reaction that they are pulling them out. Though, personally, if it's a choice between a scan and a pat-down, I'd choose the former.

And yes, it's just government spreading fear so that they can manipulate populus with less difficulty. The security is still pathetic, and anyone who really wants to blow a plane out of the sky will do so with no difficulty whatsoever. I could easily give you a list of legal devices that could bring down the plane, ways of sneaking in sufficient quantities of explosives, or even shooting a plane down without being on it. It's really not that hard to do despite all the security measures.

Even with minimal security, the number of attacks is comparable to crashes, and these are extremely rare. The whole deal is like never leaving home out of fear of getting struck by lightning. People should make a stand against useless security measures, but most are too gutless to do anything about it.

Crane
30th Nov 2010, 18:09
Must be really fun for all those TSA agents, having to look at naked pictures of fat old businessmen every day.

Pinky_Powers
30th Nov 2010, 19:35
And yes, it's just government spreading fear so that they can manipulate populus with less difficulty.

^... This.

It's amazing to me, with books and movies and classic stories of Police State villainy, society is still so easily manipulated into giving away our strength and civil rights.

We really just don't deserve them, do we? :(

3rdmillhouse
30th Nov 2010, 19:56
You are talking about backscatter X-Ray, and yeah, it basically shows you without your clothes. The images don't look terribly realistic, but only because the false-color system used is intentionally designed to give artificial look. Give it natural flesh tones, and it's basically you standing in the buff.

Well, they look realistic enough to give some a bonner.

Cronstintein
30th Nov 2010, 21:33
For myself, I'm not very private, so I don't really care if someone gets to see my naked albino form.
But if I had a hot 16 year old daughter and she was "randomly" chosen to go through the backscatter device, I would be highly displeased.

K^2
1st Dec 2010, 00:47
Well, they look realistic enough to give some a bonner.
That's not the best test of realism. There are people out there with Pokemon fetish. Doesn't make pokemons realistic.

jkruse
1st Dec 2010, 06:31
You know, these scanners were featured somewhere, I want to say Pop Sci, could've been on Discovery Channel, years ago, like, 2003-04. I thought they were awesome. They can run vehicles through larger ones and see what's in the trunk or if there are hidden containers, I think there was work on a handheld version too.

I think the scanners are an amazing piece of tech, but I guess I'm a bit less self-conscious than many other people. The pat-downs on the other hand, that's just unnecessary and inappropriate.

Also, what's with the randomization? That's just stupid, with the millions of people going through these airports the chances of actually catching someone are ridiculously slim. As K^2, it's not going to stop someone determined and smart enough.

K^2
1st Dec 2010, 07:02
Portable would be extremely tricky. One of the biggest problems with X-Rays is that there are no optics that work with these kinds of wavelengths, so you can't really build a lens. Large scanners get around that by simply having a huge detector that takes care of directional discrimination. Portable device would be devilishly complicated to design.

Maybe if you can find a monochromatic, coherent X-Ray source, but then we'd be essentially talking about an X-Ray laser.

Unstoppable
1st Dec 2010, 07:04
The problem with the scanners is they hit you with radiation which causes cancer. If I go to the airport I'm going to request an opt out because I sure as hell don't want skin cancer. The TSA needs to improve their methods instead of treating the U.S. citizens like criminals.

jkruse
1st Dec 2010, 08:40
If I remember correctly the portable idea (I don't think it was working) was to have two opposing paddles connected to a single handle that would pass on either side of a body part, this connected to a small screen. Again, if I remember correctly, they were referring to it as t-ray rather than x-ray, so I'm not 100% sure it was the same thing, the image results were very similar though. I wish I could recall it in more detail, but it was at least five years ago and I haven't exactly been following it.


Ah, nevermind, looked it up, it was about terahertz imaging (hence the t-ray). A bit different, but probably what they should be pursuing instead.

lithos
1st Dec 2010, 08:58
Ah, the joys of not living in the United States (there are billions of people who don't, in fact.)

Senka
1st Dec 2010, 09:14
Ah, the joys of not living in the United States (there are billions of people who don't, in fact.)
Perhaps it's often convenient for them to forget that.

lithos
1st Dec 2010, 09:28
Perhaps it's often convenient for them to forget that.

Makes taking the news of CIA torture sessions on "detainees" easier, I suppose.

Rindill the Red
1st Dec 2010, 16:09
America rules... **** the world, America will spread democracy throughout all the heathen barbarian countries like France and england and portugal and china and korea and japan and india and the evil communist and criminally controlled russia.

TheYouthCounselor
1st Dec 2010, 16:14
These recent developments surrounding WikiLeaks brings up the conspiracy nut that was abandoned within me.

Crimes and abuses of power take place, things that mainstream news media should inform the public on. WikiLeaks steps up to the plate to do the job mainstream media is unwilling to take up, and suddenly face DDOS attacks, their founder is charged with rape allegations that are dropped in a day and whose information is withheld by the State Department, Interpol adds their founder to a most wanted list, and governments try to block the site.

Daedalus and the Echelon project are already here due to the leak information on diplomatic spying.

TheYouthCounselor
2nd Dec 2010, 13:45
That organization is doing a full body scan of the government.

It'll only be a matter of time before the real life JC comes and delivers news so big it'll collapse the institution.

K^2
2nd Dec 2010, 14:20
The problem with the scanners is they hit you with radiation which causes cancer. If I go to the airport I'm going to request an opt out because I sure as hell don't want skin cancer. The TSA needs to improve their methods instead of treating the U.S. citizens like criminals.
Well, that's the main rationale behind millimeter-wave scanners. These things hit you with THz radiation, which is non-ionizing. Id est, can't cause cancer. Many airports use these instead. You can easily tell the difference. If you have to stand with your hands on glass, and a thing rotates around you, that's mm-wave scanner. If you stand in just as idiotic a pose in front of a solid wall-looking thing, that's a backscatter X-Ray.

Though, truthfully, backscatter scanners are reasonably safe. Because unlike luggage scanners and medical X-Ray they do not rely on tissue penetration, the energy is far, far lower. Yes, you are bombarded with ionizing radiation. Yes there is a chance that it will trigger cancer. There always is with ionizing radiation. But with the amount of radiation you are exposed to, this is is negligible compared to other forms of exposure, like sunlight or dust in your room.

If I had to use one or the other for security, I'd go with backscatter. With one of these, people passing by don't even need to know they are being scanned.