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Can a Computer Identify Your Urban Tribe?

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 23, 2013 @01:45PM (#45767953)

    Urban Tribe: Neckbeard

    • I shudder to think of what this tribe would look like, and how it would be characterized.

      • by Trepidity (597)

        Alas, the Slashdot tribe, whatever its merits or faults might once have been, no longer survives as an independent tribe. Through a complex intriguing, its once-leader, Cmdr. Robert "Taco" Malda, committed treachery and sold the tribe into slavery. After changing hands at several slave markets through a series of owners dissatisfied with their purchase, the entire tribe is now, believe it or not, owned by a pair of dice.

        • So... this is para-dice? Not quite what I thought it would be.
        • What about all the other "tribes"? (And of course, few are mutually exclusive, so you have all the combinations, too.)

          Stalker, geeker, tweaker, gangbanger, bible thumper, petitioner, voter, and dentist?

          Pollster, telemarketer, fraudster, newscaster.

          And frog.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      Urban Tribe: Terrorist. All of you.

      Love and Kisses,

            The NSA

  • by chthon (580889) on Monday December 23, 2013 @01:46PM (#45767957) Homepage Journal

    I sent the tribe an e-mail stating, "Please accept my resignation. I don't want to belong to any tribe that will accept people like me as a member".

  • Oh, goodie. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by kheldan (1460303) on Monday December 23, 2013 @01:51PM (#45767991) Journal
    Many of us are disturbed by the idea of automated facial recognition being coupled with all the video surveillance that's becoming more and more prevalent in public places, to track us wherever we go, and that's bad enough. Now you're telling us that they're taking it to the next level and developing automated video profiling software? Is the world of Minority Report just around the corner?
    • by CanHasDIY (1672858) on Monday December 23, 2013 @01:59PM (#45768031) Homepage Journal

      Is the world of Minority Report just around the corner?

      We knew you were going to say that.

      • God damn it, I had zounds of mod points until yesterday, and when I finally read a very funny entry... they're gone.

        Yes, yes, you knew I was gonna say that :)

        • by Dunbal (464142) *
          "Funny" doesn't add to karma anyway.
          • Who cares. I don't care whether it adds millions to his bank account or gives an alien a heart attack.

            • Who cares. I don't care whether it adds millions to his bank account or gives an alien a heart attack.

              And now you know why they invade us in all the movies. Every time you mod funny, you give an alien a heart attack

        • by unitron (5733)

          God damn it, I had zounds of mod points until yesterday, and when I finally read a very funny entry... they're gone.

          ...

          I wanna see the "posts from the mysterious future"-predicting algorithm they use around here to give you lots of mod points but never when you're really going to want them.

          How can they possibly know ahead of time?

    • No, the next step is they will predict what your face looks like by just looking at your social data.

    • The subculture weirdoes dress in a certain common way exactly to be easily identifiable. It's about as subtle as holding a blinking "I'm a goth." sign over their head. So while I think that the software is impressive, I wouldn't worry about the privacy implications much, it's only able to profile extroverts who want to be noticed.

    • by icebike (68054)

      Many of us are disturbed by the idea of automated facial recognition being coupled with all the video surveillance that's becoming more and more prevalent in public places, to track us wherever we go, and that's bad enough. Now you're telling us that they're taking it to the next level and developing automated video profiling software? Is the world of Minority Report just around the corner?

      People "pigeon hole" other people on first glance, and have since the cave dwelling days.
      This is just doing it by computer, and should come as no surprise to anyone, (even though it will probably be patented by tomorrow morning).

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Right now, it's correctly indentified every one of the students who sat down in front of it as "overweight nerd"

  • Everybody is unique. Just like everybody else...
  • by Anonymous Coward

    I am E) a gothic surfer hippie hell's angel wannabe !! Now all I need to do is wear black, learn to surf, where a flower on my scalp, and kill some motherfucker !!

  • by puddingebola (2036796) on Monday December 23, 2013 @02:07PM (#45768117) Journal
    I ran it myself and it said, "Loser."
  • by nurb432 (527695)

    Someone has too much time on their hands.

    • I suspect that if run against my picture, I'd be classified as either Biker or Hipster (although I'm neither). The algorithm probably fails against anyone who doesn't live in an urban environment, so I guess the results would be inaccurate anyway.

      Why is so much effort placed on classifying a person. You belong to X group, or Y group or Z group - what if I don't like or associate with any of those groups? What if my long beard has nothing to do with motorcycles? I suppose it's marketing related - but I'm

      • by chthon (580889)

        Indeed, that is why I posted the Groucho Marx quote above.

      • by sumdumass (711423)

        I would suspect the effort to associate might be more along the lines of identifying gang members, likely drug users/pushers , terrorists, or ghe ability to target adds.

        I suspect it will be used to avoid breaches of peace before it will be used to sell things. Governments and the surveilance state has more ability to take advantage of it currently and most police opperations activly look for tech that allows them to not think as much so cheaper less inteligent people can fill positions without second guessi

      • by nurb432 (527695)

        Why is so much effort placed on classifying a person.

        Its easier to conquer and/or control a divided people than a united one.

  • I tried it (Score:3, Funny)

    by tomhath (637240) on Monday December 23, 2013 @02:08PM (#45768129)
    It says I'm a terrorist...Hold on...Someone is at the door
  • whether you're a goth, surfer, hipster, or biker

    As often happens, I was placed in "none of the above" when social classification came around.

    • by Guppy (12314)

      As often happens, I was placed in "none of the above" when social classification came around.

      Ah yes, the Picked-Last-For-Kickball-Team non-tribe. We know of it.

  • called Quest.
  • I am not a Hynerian!
  • by NotSanguine (1917456) on Monday December 23, 2013 @02:28PM (#45768305) Journal

    It seems to me that the only application for this sort of this is attempting to attract venture capital to create a "business" that can be sold to Facebook/Google/Yahoo/whatever to aid in their quest to give marketers even more information which they think might help them sell more stuff.

    While this is unsurprising, it's also pathetic. Sigh.

  • So some people with (arguably) too much time on their hands have come up with an "algorithm" that will place me in one of several arbitrarily defined groups. BFD.
  • Several options (Score:4, Interesting)

    by jklovanc (1603149) on Monday December 23, 2013 @02:36PM (#45768373)

    I would consider myself a member of at least five different tribes. While there is overlap between these tribes the overlap is nowhere near complete. For example I am a crafter and a gamer. While there are many gamers who are also crafters there are at least as many who are not.

  • I don't belong to one, plain and simple, i am self inflicted loner. And no, you, my slash dot co readers aren't it, as i dont agree with many of you on many different topics.
    • by MacTO (1161105)

      Welcome to the tribe of loner, where everyone thinks that they're unique and that everyone else is the same.

      I have a surprise for you: you are probably less unique than you think and other people are more diverse than you think (even when they are a part of a group).

      In all likelihood, algorithms such as the one mentioned in the article can bin you just like it can bin anyone else. In all likelihood, the bin will accurately profile you within statistical uncertainties. Chances are that those statistical un

      • by unitron (5733)

        There are no degrees of unique, so one cannot be more or less so than someone or something else.

        You either is or you ain't.

        But that doesn't mean that two unique things or persons cannot be almost exactly the same.

      • by dimko (1166489)
        I am affraid I don't agree with yoou on that. I never said i am something special. :*
    • I don't belong to one, plain and simple, i am self inflicted loner.

      You and a whole bunch of other people.

  • by Quila (201335) on Monday December 23, 2013 @02:42PM (#45768431)

    I love goth and industrial music, have been to hundreds of concerts, met and was friends with many band members. But I look decidedly regular. I'm looking back at my old photos, and I see one of a standard geeky guy with regular hair and glasses, wearing an admittedly hideous blue windbreaker, partying with Nik Fiend.

    So this algorithm shouldn't only associate your face with your culture, but use the faces of those around you to establish your culture. But then I have friends who are in a death metal/industrial band, and their mainstream family members come to concerts to show support. So we'd have regular people labeled as being in the death metal culture if we did that.

    • Future US TV Journalists will not have to risk error or waste their time stereotyping the people in their reports! They can spend their important time investigating celebrities!

      Police cameras can profile people without bias so they know who to abuse and who not to abuse! No more frivolous lawsuits over police prejudice!

  • I'm impressed they were able to identify all 4 urban tribes in America and Europe! That's usually a job for anthropologists, and not all of them get it right either.
  • by Chris Mattern (191822) on Monday December 23, 2013 @02:52PM (#45768501)

    Those aren't the Urban Tribes I learned in history class. Aren't they supposed to be Collina, Esquilina, Palatina and Suburana? [wikipedia.org]

  • or biker goths...
    or biker surfers
    or goth surfers
    all four of which would be "tribes" I've hung out with over the years.

    at one point in the 80's and 90's if you had to pin me down to a "tribe" then "biker goth" would be about as good (and not a particularly good "good") and you could narrow it down to.

    Now I just belong to that tribe called "boring old farts who love to tell the youth how much more authentic we were back in our day"
    • by DarkVader (121278)

      Sure, I could see biker goths. Makes perfect sense. And well, yeah, kinda been there done that.

      I could see biker surfers, I suppose, but wouldn't transporting the gear be difficult?

      But goth surfers? Such a thing exists?

      I'm not quite a boring old fart yet, or at least I'd like to think I'm not.

      • by marxzed (1075971)
        do goth surfers exist? oh hell yeh (or at least they did in the 80's when Goth was a lot less narrowly defined than it is now days) ... not a big sub culture but they exist/existed within the ever so slightly larger sub group of "happy goths" ;)

        as for biker surfers transporting boards.... they have a whole customising sub culture that solves that problem the most famous of which revolves around Deus ex Machina's shops in Sydney, Bali, LA and now I believe Milan (I think that last one's more a "fashion
  • As a cyberneticist, who grew up playing Shadowrun instead of D&D, [wikipedia.org] I'm perfectly fine with being defined as a member of the non-human tribe. [cvdazzle.com]

  • Reminds me of the interiew snippet in A Hard Day's Night.
    reporter: Are you a Mod or a Rocker?
    Beatle(Ringo IIRC): I'm a Mocker.

    So much for tribes.
    Me? I'll go w/ Zoot Suit, with side vents, 5 inches wide!

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