Small Town Eyes / Streetview Rejection / Beetle + Machine = ?

Pendleton, Oregon, a small town in Northeastern Oregon, is installing police-monitored surveillance cameras. The Oregonian's Richard Cockle puts it nicely when he writes, "But despite the specter of '1984'-style government monitoring, the system has stirred little debate among Pendleton's 17,000 residents."

The best part: "The first camera -- and the only one expected to have public Internet access -- will be installed in June at a new skate park. Residents, Graham said, will be able to make sure their kids are behaving."

Man, parents just don't understand.

Seriously though, using surveillance to check up on your kids is eerie -- baby monitors aside. I'm relieved I came of age during the pager era.

In other surveillance news, residents of Broughton, England chased away the Google Streetview car, fearing that would-be criminals would use the internets to case their luxurious homes. (Word to criminals: there are a lot of valuables in Broughton, England, according to many news stories which are much more prominent than Broughton's Streetview debut ever would have been.)

Early readers of this blog are aware of my love affair with Streetview.

And in a combo of two of my favorite topics -- cyborgs and surveillance: cyborg surveillance beetle. I am not kidding. I just read about it in Discover, one of my favorite mags. And here I link to the Science Channel's article about the topic. Check out this link for a photo. Serious kudos to Al Jazeera for reporting this story back in June 2008 -- and much more thoroughly than I've seen elsewhere.

These are the ultimate swarm bots.

It is incredible to consider a bio-mechanical creature that actually exists. I am a cyborg enthusiast, but... of course it would be the Pentagon, home of the predator drone, that gets there first.

See you at the singularity. (See also.)