Do you spend a substantial amount of your day looking for things like your keys, pen etc. around your house? If yes, then this article is going to interest you a lot.

Microsoft, the software giant recently demoed a tech using which one can find their things around their house within a click of a button on their smartphone and save themselves precious time. The tech, which is being deemed as the real-world search engine, was unveiled during the recently concluded Microsoft Build 2017 conference, which is the giant's annual conference for developers in Washington State Convention Center, Seattle.

What is interesting to know is the fact that Microsoft conceived the tech by combining things that have been usage in the tech world for quite sometime. It melded the power of machine-learning powered image recognition and consumer-grade cameras with the computing horsepower existing in the cloud to provide people the power to index things as well as people in a room in real time. This means, if you can easily point a camera at it, you can easily search it within a few seconds rather than roaming cluelessly around the place you think you last kept it.

In order to make the tech work for your house, you will have to feed your computer images of the things that you need to get indexed so that the computer can learn and understand what each of those things look like. In fact, the real-time search engine even allows the user to apply a framework of rules and triggers on top of the real world. For example, one can set rules like, only [Certified Employees] can carry the [Green File] and [Rhea] is a [Certified Employee] so [Rhea] is allowed to carry the [Green File]. According to the details revealed during the conference, the limits to what kind of rules one can make are quite arbitrary.

While using the tech at home for finding your important possessions sounds good, but when it comes to using the tech in hospitals and factories, it is another story altogether.

Microsoft has completely shied away from discussing the privacy implications of the tech they have developed, especially using it in a factory, hospital or any other workplace. While, we agree that the system would work smoothly in ensuring that no patient in the hospital ever collapses on a floor when they're out of sight of their doctors/nurses or that no new trainee starts messing around with important medicines and equipments. But, it will also make it extremely easy for the employer to know how a particular employee spent their say down to each second of their work time. Though, this would of course offer efficiency, but it will also on a whole lot of levels end up betraying the private information about the employee like their interpersonal relationships or heath conditions, that too with razor sharp precision and with just a click of a button. Further, the concerns of outside snooping cannot be ruled out either.

One of the most scary scenarios is using the tech in the public space, where privacy is result of obscurity. One can be alone in a mall because it is a difficult task to look for one tiny person in a sea of hundreds of people. However, if the tech is applied to security systems and other live video feeds, it will give the technology users the ability to search through it within a blink of a second, and give that person god-like omnipotence. This is just one of the chilling scenarios that might just come true. In addition to this, ad-targeting by companies can go to another level altogether using the tech.

While during the demo, Microsoft decided to stick with the tech's positive implications, but if the giant really aspires to make this tech a humongous success, it will have to spend time on working out all the negative implications that we have discussed here.

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