'conversnitch' eavesdropping lamp tweets private conversations in real time
'conversnitch' eavesdropping lamp tweets private conversations in real time 'conversnitch' eavesdropping lamp tweets private conversations in real time
apr 24, 2014

'conversnitch' eavesdropping lamp tweets private conversations in real time

‘conversnitch’ eavesdropping lamp tweets private conversations in real time
all images courtesy kyle mcdonald and brian house




two artists, kyle mcdonald and brian house, have created ‘conversnitch’, a small device that automatically tweets overheard conversations, bridging the gap between (presumed) private physical space and public space online. using a small microphone with a raspberry pi computer, the ‘surveillance’ system records audio snippets and uploads them via the nearest open wi-fi network to amazon’s mechanical turk crowdsourcing platform for automated transcription.

'conversnitch' eavesdropping LED lamp livetweets private conversations

construction materials: raspberry pi computer, a microphone, an LED light and a plastic flower pot




built exclusively using an LED light and a plastic flower pot, the device screws into any standard bulb socket for power. ‘information moves between spaces that might be physical or virtual, free or proprietary, illegal or playful, spoken or transcribed,’ say mcdonald and house. they argue that ‘conversnitch’ uses a similar approach to surveillance as the NSA, except the government organization doesn’t virtually publicize the data online.


to see the lamps being installed at various locations, watch the video below:



 the device bridges the gap between ‘private’ physical space and public space online

'conversnitch' eavesdropping LED lamp livetweets private conversations
transcription sample from the ‘conversnitch’ – see more examples here



[h/t] wired

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