by Geoffrey Grinder, Now The End Begins:
The Next Hub Max can serve as a security camera, letting you peek in on a stream of what’s going on at home. And like other Google Nest cameras, you can opt in to having the Hub Max send alerts when it identifies familiar faces. With this, you could always know exactly what time the kids got home . . . until they figure this out and unplug the darn thing. Is all of that cool, or just creepy? The Hub Max reminded me, at times, of a baby HAL 9000 from “2001: A Space Odyssey.” The extra step of the Assistant knowing you’re there even when you don’t interact with it shifts the power balance in a subtle but important way.
With the new Nest Hub Max, Google is adding an eye to its talking artificial intelligence. When I flash my palm at the device, a camera spots me and immediately pauses my music. Talk to the hand, robot!
The oldest Christian end times movie I can ever recall watching after I become saved back in 1991 was ‘A Thief In The Night‘, first released in 1972, the original ‘Left Behind’ movie. From there I watched a whole slew of these movies up to and including the great ‘Apocalypse‘ series from the LaLonde brothers featuring the 1999 release of ‘Revelation‘. In that movie, there is a great scene where they show the Mark of the Beast being administered through VR, virtual reality goggles. Say hello to Google’s new Nest Hub Max.
“And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live. And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed.” Revelation 13:14,15 (KJV)
So here we are in 2019 and guess what? The Mark of the Beast system, while the world waits for the arrival of the Beast, is crazy popular and in right now the homes of untold hundreds of millions of people and growing by the day. Turns out, it wasn’t such a hard sell for them to do after all. In fact, the people demand it, and when the latest and greatest version is rolled out, it is eagerly snapped up. Fun fact, Christians buy just as much of this stuff as non-Christians do. So tell me again, all your post toasties, how brave you would be in the Tribulation, and how much you would stand up to Antichrist while refusing his Mark? 🤔 Yeah, good one.
Google is always listening. Now it’s watching, too, with the Nest Hub Max
FROM GULF TECH NEWS: When I walk by a Hub Max, the Google Assistant greets me on its screen, “Good afternoon, Geoffrey.” This wizardry is made possible by facial recognition. The $230 Nest Hub Max offers a glimpse of how this controversial tech might be used in our homes – if people aren’t too turned off by the privacy implications.
Living with Google’s latest creation for a few days embodied the cognitive dissonance of being a gadget guy in 2019. You can appreciate the fun and wonder of new technology that you also know brings new concerns. I kept wondering: Do any of these camera functions make it worth bringing face surveillance inside my home? Despite some applaudable privacy protections from Google, my family never got to a yes.
The Hub Max is a larger 10-inch version of Google’s popular Nest Hub countertop computer, which people (including me) use as a digital picture frame, speaker, kitchen TV and smart home controller. It’s a solid upgrade for those functions, with a sharp screen and impressive sound for such a small box.
But it’s the addition of a wide-angle camera that everyone will be talking about. When the smaller Hub debuted in 2018, Google crowed about how it didn’t include one – unlike Facebook’s poorly received Portal and Amazon’s Echo Show, which raised eyebrows with a feature that lets you “drop in” via camera any time on select friends. (Amazon chief executive Jeff Bezos owns The Washington Post.)
The Hub Max takes those camera controversies and says, “hold my beer.” Rival Amazon Alexa can recognize different people’s voices, but not faces. What made Google think now was a good time to go there? It’s a sign both that Google thinks it has better privacy protections – and that consumers are, incorrectly in my estimation, more trusting of Google than of other tech giants.
What do you get out of letting Google watch you through a Hub Max?
First, the camera can be used for basic video calls. Say, “OK, Google, video call James,” and it connects via Google’s Duo chat app on a phone, laptop or another Hub Max. Like the Facebook Portal, the Hub Max’s wide-angle camera pans around to track your movements and tries to keep everyone’s faces in the frame.
Next, the camera powers gesture commands. While it’s looking for faces, the Hub Max is also keeping an eye out for your hands, which can serve as nonverbal, non-touchscreen commands – in other words, sign language. For now, these are limited to “play” and “pause” music by flashing a palm, but Google says it’s exploring more.