"This is rocket science level stuff," Xbox's Marc Whitten said during today's reveal.Of course, that's not necessarily a gloom-and-doom situation, and listening doesn't mean recording.
The new Kinect is listening for a specific cue, like ‘Xbox on.’ We know our customers want and expect strong privacy protections to be built into our products, devices and services, and for companies to be responsible stewards of their data.
Microsoft has more than ten years of experience making privacy a top priority.
The debut of the portable Kodak Brownie box camera in 1900 led to photographic self-portraiture becoming a more widespread technique.
The method was usually by mirror and stabilizing the camera either on a nearby object or on a tripod while framing via a viewfinder at the top of the box.
Grand Duchess Anastasia Nikolaevna of Russia, at the age of 13, was one of the first teenagers to take her own picture using a mirror to send to a friend in 1914.
In the letter that accompanied the photograph, she wrote, "I took this picture of myself looking at the mirror."And when someone is staring at you, you have to notice." But will you notice a fixed camera in your living room that's always listening?This isn't the first time Microsoft has dealt with privacy issues related to Kinect.We've asked Microsoft to clarify the technical specifics of how the system operates in listening mode, and if the company has considered any safeguards against potential privacy threats.Update: A Microsoft spokesperson responded to our inquiry with the following statement.Selfies are often shared on social networking services such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.