Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

RC Meets RL (RoboCop Meets Real Life)

Forget Dashboard Cameras. Today It’s Headcams

From Wired
“Officers: Are you sick and tired of excessive force lawsuits? Well cheer up. Taser has a plan to give your police department its own CYA reality TV show.

The less-lethal weapons company has launched a wearable computer, called Axon, that will let cops record every minute of their day and upload it to a secure website. From there, they can share their favorite memories with friends, family, and jurors.

The camera is head-mounted, so it will record everything the user lays his eyes on. Each

Part Man - Part Machine - All Cop

Part Man - Part Machine - All Cop

headset plugs into a Linux-powered computer that looks curiously similar to a PlayStation Portable, which has an LCD  screen so that officers can watch instant replays of their favorite tackles and shakedowns.”

Um … everywhere they go? The unit also features a “One-Touch ‘Privacy Mode'” which “temporarily suspends recording.”

When I read this.. a line started running through my head — “It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen.”

I have said here before, if you want to see  future tech, just watch Star Trek.

Today’s free link: Expand your Star Trek awareness, and better understand my reference, see What are “the Borg”?

You can read the whole article here.

Copyright 2007-9 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved. post to jaanix

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March 12, 2009 - Posted by | News, tech | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


  1. Any technology that acts to control (monitor) the Police, in my view, is an important adjunct to protecting, and securing, our freedoms which have been under attack since September 11.

    No, not from terrorists – instead, the very people we empower to protect us, are the ones who consistently trample on individual rights.

    If you think the previous statements are an exaggeration, then checkout 18,000+ “Police Brutality” videos on YouTube. Better yet, tune in the News to watch the latest example of the Police beating homeless people, abusing women of all ages, or you can watch a cop murder a man in a transit station.

    In Canada, where I live, we are currently dealing with the case of 5 Mounties who tasered a man to death, as he lay on the ground at Vancouver International Airport. During the Coroner’s Inquest, (currently underway), each of the 5 officers has had to retract their initial statements since a bystander video showed, without doubt, that they were lying.

    Lying is consistent behavior exhibited by the Police when challenged by the Courts regarding their behavior. Despite video evidence of misbehavior, the favorite Police response is always the same – “the video dosen’t tell the whole story”. Huh???

    To sum up – any technology which allows the “watched” to watch the “watchers”, in my view, is not only welcome but critical, in bringing a new sense of fairness and professionalism to policing.


    Comment by Bill Mullins | March 12, 2009 | Reply

    • Mr. Mullins,
      I am aware of the Vancouver airport incident you refer to.. perhaps there is a little irony here, since Taser is the company marketing this technology?

      I am in full accord with your sentiments. I think our surest “security” of our civil liberties and personal rights comes not from police documentation but from bystander testimony (and video) .. such as recently occurred at the Oakland BART station. I am very much frightened by the increasingly popular trend of making it illegal to videotape police activity (civilian taping).

      Who’s watching the watchers, and who’s watching them? Sigh. It’s all getting very complex, isn’t it?

      I would very much welcome and appreciate comments on this “headcam” technology from Law Enforcement officers.. those folks who would be wearing it.


      Comment by techpaul | March 12, 2009 | Reply

  2. Bill and TechPaul,

    I have a background in Law Enforcement and Security and I welcome this type of technology. When dealing with a bad element of people on a daily basis; and I’m talking downright disrespectful and almost animalistic, it affects and changes attitudes. Have you noticed that a great majority of these incidents occur where there are groups of Officers. I have experienced many crisis type incidents in the setting I worked and taught crisis intervention; AND what happens when there are many, it becomes almost like a riot that takes on a personality of its’ own. This type of technology may provide a balance. Robocop… It is almost to that point now. Ever see the arsenal the Police are now wearing, etc… We worry about external terror; the terror is right here on our own streets.



    Comment by whatsonmypc | March 12, 2009 | Reply

    • Thank you, Rick.
      I’d have to think, that having a camera pointed at you while dealing with the officer, that you might change (mollify) your tone. And it is possible that the officer wearing the camera, might just exercise extra extra courtesy, patience, and professionalism as well.

      Mostly, I view this technology as I do any other tool: when used properly, it can be to great advantage; when misused, can do great harm. (Need I mention that, since Photoshop, you can’t really trust photographs?)

      There’s something about the proliferation of surveillance cameras that I am inherently uncomfortable with ..

      BTW — I understand that these systems have been in use in England for some time.


      Comment by techpaul | March 12, 2009 | Reply

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