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posted by cmn32480 on Monday August 08 2016, @05:21PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the toeing-the-line dept.

Disney Enterprises, Inc. has come up with the stealthiest way yet to track visitors to amusement parks—but Walt Disney Parks and Resorts has no plans to use the new technique.

US Patent 9,393,697, titled "System and method using foot recognition to create a customized guest experience," sets forth a system which would use unobtrusive cameras, machine vision, and a database to bring about "a customized guest experience at an amusement park." The inventors note that "some people have sensitivity to using personal biometrics, such as iris or facial scans, for identification purposes," that a clear view of the face is required by those techniques, and that they can be confounded by dark glasses or other headwear. Instead, they propose that guests may be identified by the appearance of their feet. A guest's feet would be photographed at an "acquisition station" and machine vision techniques would be used to create a "foot model" that would be added to a database along with other information about the guest, such as a name or a favourite food. Later, the guest's feet would be photographed again at the same place, or elsewhere in the park. Images could be captured by the park's employees, robots, or stationary cameras. The guest's feet could be identified by comparing the later images to the foot model. The park operator could then "provide interactions that are personalized to that guest."

A Disney spokesperson said the company has no plans to deploy the system in its parks. Currently it tracks visitors by means of MagicBands, bracelets bearing RFID chips.

coverage:


Original Submission

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Disney Invests $1B on RFID Wristbands for Guests 43 comments

An article in this months Wired details how Disney spent $1 Billion developing, testing, and rolling out their Magicband system that started actually rolling out in 2013.

Disney's Magicband system is based on a wristband containing an RFID chip and a 2.4gHz wifi transmitter. To use the system, the guest simply aligns the Mickey head on the wristband with a Mickey head on the receiving antenna. These antenna are dispersed throughout the park; for example: rides, souvenir shops, restaurants, and on-property hotel rooms. Rather than having to pull out a wallet to pay for something, one simply uses the Magicband and, upon a good read of the RFID tag, your associated credit card gets charged accordingly. It is even used by their FastPass system which allows you to schedule getting on rides.

When everything works, the reader flashes green and emits a pleasing tone; if something goes wrong, it glows blue, never red. Red lights are forbidden at Disney, as they imply something bad happened. Nothing bad can happen at Disney World.

In early 2014, "atdisneyagain.com" did an actual dissection of a Magicband to get a look at the components, complete with FCC look ups to see exactly what was going on inside.

[Update: corrected grammar and phrasing.]

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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 08 2016, @05:33PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 08 2016, @05:33PM (#385380)

    The inventors note that "some people have sensitivity to using personal biometrics, such as iris or facial scans, for identification purposes,"

    So they ignore these people's concerns about their privacy and their children abused by megacorps and states and do it anyways. Err, I mean, no plans to use the new technique. Word.

    • (Score: 3, Informative) by Rosco P. Coltrane on Monday August 08 2016, @05:52PM

      by Rosco P. Coltrane (4757) on Monday August 08 2016, @05:52PM (#385387)

      If you don't want Disney to track your feet, vote with them and don't go there.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 08 2016, @08:40PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 08 2016, @08:40PM (#385445)

        I won't.

        But will they warn all their custmers beforehand when buying the tickets or only at the gate with the kids?

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday August 09 2016, @09:46PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday August 09 2016, @09:46PM (#385986)

        It's easy enough to not go to Disneyland, but what if technology like this (mainly facial recognition) becomes commonplace and even grocery stores start using it to track people? Chances are, they won't allow masks. Now it's not so easy to avoid.

  • (Score: 4, Funny) by BsAtHome on Monday August 08 2016, @05:43PM

    by BsAtHome (889) on Monday August 08 2016, @05:43PM (#385383)

    The Ministry of Silly Walks will be thrilled to accept the challenge to classify, detail, register and control the walking. Fines will be part of the new body, where replicating walks will be treated as copyright infringement. The expression of walking must be protected. Hey, You, get walking!

    • (Score: 2) by Rosco P. Coltrane on Monday August 08 2016, @05:54PM

      by Rosco P. Coltrane (4757) on Monday August 08 2016, @05:54PM (#385388)

      I can't wait to hear about one-legged patrons being denied entrance, or accused of trying to cheat the system or something.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 08 2016, @05:55PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 08 2016, @05:55PM (#385389)

      Don't worry, the Secret Society of Foot Fetishism will liberate this technology for everyone.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 08 2016, @05:58PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 08 2016, @05:58PM (#385392)

    It's racist. Where's the ACLU on this?

  • (Score: 2) by rts008 on Monday August 08 2016, @06:01PM

    by rts008 (3001) on Monday August 08 2016, @06:01PM (#385393)

    Clown-shoes.

    • (Score: 2) by looorg on Monday August 08 2016, @08:40PM

      by looorg (578) on Monday August 08 2016, @08:40PM (#385446)

      So you'll just borrow the shoes from Goofy then ...

      • (Score: 2) by rts008 on Tuesday August 09 2016, @01:09AM

        by rts008 (3001) on Tuesday August 09 2016, @01:09AM (#385574)

        Nah, have my own.

        Traded half a pack of smokes to this unemployed dude...think his name was Ronald Mc something or other. Said he use to work at some burger joint as I recall.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday August 09 2016, @12:31AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday August 09 2016, @12:31AM (#385563)

      Clown-shoes.

      Welcome to Disney World, Mr. Trump!

  • (Score: 2, Interesting) by nitehawk214 on Monday August 08 2016, @06:21PM

    by nitehawk214 (1304) on Monday August 08 2016, @06:21PM (#385403)

    There's a joke in here about Cinderella somewhere.

    --
    "Don't you ever miss the days when you used to be nostalgic?" -Loiosh
    • (Score: 2, Funny) by driven on Monday August 08 2016, @06:39PM

      by driven (6295) on Monday August 08 2016, @06:39PM (#385411)

      Upskirt recognition?

    • (Score: 2) by bob_super on Monday August 08 2016, @07:15PM

      by bob_super (1357) on Monday August 08 2016, @07:15PM (#385423)

      Yep, either she was the only girl in the kingdom to wear size 6 (no witches in that version), or that prince wasn't actually spending all his time staring down. (additional hypothesis, she has a birth mark/mole in her cleavage).

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 08 2016, @11:49PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 08 2016, @11:49PM (#385546)

      Sure. Stay in the park until midnight...and then take off your shoes (alternatively, pull on some bunny shoes, like repair people use inside your house). Then wait to see what security does--joke's on you.

  • (Score: 2, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 08 2016, @08:01PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 08 2016, @08:01PM (#385435)

    After one meeting in end of 90's, the plan was to primary key all records with guest's SSN. Yup, come to the park, stay in our hotels, leave us all your finical records, for both you and your kids! Remember, they collect birthdays, for personalized service like Goofy calling on your birthday. It died about 6 months later, mainly on cost and question what to use for foreign visitors.. What was better was the group wanting to do it, did not do the research to even know that SSN are ALPHA (there are leading A instead of 0-9) and also can change in person's life time.

    Remember the Front-of-House is pretty, Back-of-House is a meat grinder. It is a place instead of improving the interface or even having a lead time to make a change... throw more staff at it. It is cheaper!

    • (Score: 2) by Scruffy Beard 2 on Monday August 08 2016, @09:40PM

      by Scruffy Beard 2 (6030) on Monday August 08 2016, @09:40PM (#385480)

      My understanding is that SSNs are also re-used: another no-no for primary keys.

    • (Score: 1) by anubi on Tuesday August 09 2016, @07:40AM

      by anubi (2828) on Tuesday August 09 2016, @07:40AM (#385672) Journal

      I wonder how much of this is driven by people vandalizing the park. I know a goodly portion is marketing - to find out who the spenders are.
       

      --
      "Prove all things; hold fast that which is good." [KJV: I Thessalonians 5:21]
  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 08 2016, @10:21PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 08 2016, @10:21PM (#385507)

    The inventors note that "some people have sensitivity to using personal biometrics, such as iris or facial scans, for identification purposes," that a clear view of the face is required by those techniques, and that they can be confounded by dark glasses or other headwear. Instead, they propose that guests may be identified by the appearance of their feet.

    You're still identifying, you fucking bastards. We take issue with the identifying part, not with the face, biometrics or anything else, the identifying part!

    • (Score: 2) by maxwell demon on Tuesday August 09 2016, @06:44AM

      by maxwell demon (1608) on Tuesday August 09 2016, @06:44AM (#385662) Journal

      Also, isn't the size of your foot also biometric?

      --
      The Tao of math: The numbers you can count are not the real numbers.
  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 08 2016, @11:39PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 08 2016, @11:39PM (#385541)

    Why not a THC release bracelet for adults which slowly transfers THC into the adult's skin?

    It's obvious a lot of people go stoned if you offer alcohol you should offer THC.

    I object to alcohol being sold at the parks anyway, it's more dangerous than THC and it
    often leads to violence.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday August 09 2016, @02:02AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday August 09 2016, @02:02AM (#385590)

    Those are the ones that won't get within 50 miles of one of their resorts.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday August 09 2016, @05:32AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday August 09 2016, @05:32AM (#385645)

    I'll test it by planting my boot in Mickey's face

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday August 09 2016, @06:55AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday August 09 2016, @06:55AM (#385664)

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bhCR0UbW13Y [youtube.com]
    https://www.newscientist.com/article/mg21528835-600-cameras-know-you-by-your-walk/ [newscientist.com]

    You can recognize many people by the way they walk. Assuming they are not trying to disguise it (the usual put stone in shoe etc[1]).

    It's probably not very unique, but it might be good enough for some purposes.

    [1] I think many people might limp differently too...

  • (Score: 2) by LoRdTAW on Tuesday August 09 2016, @11:45AM

    by LoRdTAW (3755) on Tuesday August 09 2016, @11:45AM (#385721) Journal

    I assume this is for identifying missing limbs removed by alligators.