Monday, February 07, 2005

Any system can be gamed

I got an email spam message for a similar product, but the website was unreachable. Either it was a bad URL, or it was getting so many hits it was overloaded. I did a Google search and found a website with this picture and text.
PHOTO BLOCKER License Plate Spray, $19.99, Makes Plates Invisible to Cameras! PHOTOBLOCKER, Anti Photoradar, Photo Radar Spray, Red Light Camera Protection, Avoid False Traffic Tickets. …

Reflects photo radar flash. Spray it and make your license plate invisible to cameras. Proven to beat photo radar and red light cameras.
I have no financial interest in this product, which is one reason I'm not including the link. Another reason is that I'm not sure I want to encourage this sort of thing. But I doubt that this extra publicity will have much effect one way or the other.

This intrigues me for two reasons.
  1. It illustrates that as the world changes, we are able to adapt to it.

  2. The other is a bit more sophisticated. The cameras that automatically snap pictures of people running red lights are supposed to provide meta-level functionality, i.e., they are supposed to observe the world and provide information about it. They are not supposed to be part of the world. But of course, everything is part of the world. And once something is part of the world, it is open to being manipulated and gamed.

No comments: