Maybe you’ve heard about what Texas University genius researchers have been busy with for the past months. They were designing a chip that would give smartphone owners the superman capability of seeing through papers, walls and yes, clothes.
There are several things that should be discussed regarding this discovery but before we deliberate the privacy and security issues related to this research, let’s look into the “how’s” and the “why’s” of the design first. The most notable aspect of this design could be the fact that this super ability has been designed not from a super expensive material but rather from an economical microchip that can go through and separate a wide range of electromagnetic spectrums. Another notable element in thus discovery is the fact that the design works really well with the usual semiconductor chips that can be found in PCs, game consoles, TVs and yes, smartphones, making it rather easily accessible to regular smartphone owners.
This means that the already present chip on smartphones can be complemented with this microchip and a transmitter which will ultimately convert any smartphone into a superman-powered device. The design even extends to night-vision capacity. Amazing huh?! But why do we need this capability anyways? Well, some agencies like airports would really need to see though luggage to make air transportation safe and secure and medical people can certainly use this to easily check their patient’s body for early detection of skin cancer among other illnesses. But is it really necessary for regular individuals who own a smartphone?
True, the chip could help individuals see through walls to solve current and future problems like cracks and even help them authenticate some documents. Apparently, the researchers of this chip can enumerate numerous applications in different fields but it seems they’re yet to determine its application to the lives of millions of regular smartphones owners. Instead, the design and discovery news spurred debates on privacy and security. Numerous discoveries are really helpful in this highly-advanced world but some can be detrimental to one’s privacy rights. Undeniably, a chip that would allow people to see through walls and other objects is a cool discovery but it definitely comes with a downside. At least computer optimization tools like PC Speed Up don’t threaten its users’ privacy and security but this superman-powered chip can.
Though researchers from the University of Texas try to alleviate privacy issues by limiting the chip’s capability to a specific distance like up to four inches, this doesn’t solve the entire issue. True, one should be as close as 10 centimeters or less (that’s very close) to someone to be able to see through his or her clothing but in this crowded world full of creative and resourceful people, that proximity is not impossible to create. This is not a surprising discovery at all. We expect this superman x-ray vision capability in this highly modernized world. It is just sad that it comes with somewhat creepy applications that can be used by numerous malicious individuals to the dismay of other smartphone or non-smartphone users.