Newsletter: Microsoft Appeal To Limit Facial Recognition Technology & Camera Error On Pixel 2 Will Soon be Fixed

Newsletter: Microsoft Appeal To Limit Facial Recognition Technology & Camera Error On Pixel 2 Will Soon be Fixed

QUOTE OF THE DAY:

“The first rule of any technology used in a business is that automation applied to an efficient operation will magnify the efficiency. The second is that automation applied to an inefficient operation will magnify the inefficiency.” ~ Bill Gates

MICROSOFT APPEALS REGULATION ON FACIAL RECOGNITION TECHNOLOGY

THE STORY

Microsoft has urged to put regulation to supervise the usage of facial recognition software.

WHAT IS FACIAL RECOGNITION & ITS EXTENT OF USE?

Facial recognition is the ability of a computer to distinguish people’s faces from a photo or via a camera and the technology is progressing fast. All the tech giants such as Google, Apple Microsoft and Amazon have been developing and selling the products incorporated with this technology. No matter what industry it is, whether it’s casinos, social media or law enforcement, the technology is being used everywhere.

According to proponents, facial recognition technology is very useful as it helps to improve the safety of customers and companies. Moreover, it can help law enforcement with the chase of criminals or finding lost children. Although, according to civil rights groups, it could violate privacy policy and empower illicit surveillance & monitoring. Also, as the technology is still in the developing phase, you can’t rely on it for accurate results.

WHY DOES MICROSOFT WANTS TO REGULATE THIS TECHNOLOGY?

A lot of people might not know that Microsoft was the one which helped with the innovation of facial recognition software. It is now requesting the US government to regulate the use of technology. Microsoft President Brad Smith stressed on the new laws are essential given the technology’s “broad societal ramifications and potential for abuse.”

He advised legislators to make “a government initiative to regulate the proper use of facial recognition technology, informed first by a bipartisan and expert commission.”

As there are flaws in the technology as of now, and it could mistakenly promote illicit activities, there is a need for regulation to control the technology.

The appeal of the regulation is also a result of all the criticism and blames on tech giants of sharing user data and more.

WHAT ARE THE STEPS TAKEN FOR IT?

In the month of June, Microsoft was under inspection due to the working relationship, the company has with US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). ICE is working against  Trump administration’s “zero tolerance” immigration policy under which many children got separated from their parents when they illegally traversed the US border. The policy has been deserted by the admin since then.

Microsoft advises the administration to change its policy due which families are separated at the border. Microsoft also wrote in a blog, that ICE using cloud technology Azure could aid it “accelerate facial recognition and identification.”

Microsoft had to face the scrutiny under which the US government wanted to know if the technology was used by ICE agents to function controversial border separations. Microsoft called the policy “cruel” and “abusive.”

Smith repeated the company’s opposition to the policy and also mentioned that the contract with ICE is exclusive of facial recognition technology.

Microsoft is not the only one facing this kind of issue due to technology. Amazon and Facebook have fallen prey due to the technology. It would be a great help if these companies could join the league with Microsoft to regulate the technology but both the companies have not responded yet.

Smith also said that companies are responsible to regulate their innovations, manage how they are utilized and make sure that the technology is used in “a manner consistent with broadly held societal values.”

“It may seem unusual for a company to ask for government regulation of its products, but there are many markets where thoughtful regulation contributes to a healthier dynamic for consumers and producers alike,” he further added.


GOOGLE WORKING ON FIXING THE CAMERA ERROR ON PIXEL 2?

THE STORY

Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL is facing a camera app crashing issue & Google is working on fixing it.

WHAT IS THE ISSUE?

Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL are the flagship smartphones which are praised for their stupefying design and good processor. However, they have been facing an issue wherein the camera app crashes while launching it or clicking photos.

Not every user owning Pixel 2 or Pixel 2 XL was struck with an issue. It has been a while and Google has not tackled the issue yet. Until last week, when an annoyed customer wrote the issue on the Twitter account. Finally, Google responded and supposedly the team is working to fix the issue.

WHAT IS GOOGLE DOING TO RESOLVE THE ISSUE?

The Made by Google Twitter first advised the customer to delete the cache of the Camera app. To which she replied that she has already done that and also done a factory reset, but nothing worked.

A few minutes late, the women got a response from the same Twitter account, asking her to put her phone on airplane mode and then take a picture. She tried that and responded that nothing worked. Finally, the Made by Google Twitter account responded that the Pixel team is working to resolve “fatal camera error.”

However, the question is whether it is actually what the Pixel team is doing as it is just a tweet to a customer, not an official statement. The question that arises in our mind that will Google be able to fix the issue before launching the successor of Pixel? Let’s see what happens next!

Srishti Sisodia is a technical content journalist at Systweak Software. Apart from being a capable engineer, her affinity for inscription draws her towards writing interesting content about contemporary technologies and progressions. She is an avid reader and a fare connoisseur. She relishes different cuisines and when it comes to baking, she takes the cake!

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