The education culture that is China

by on September 15, 2017 at 1:46 am in Education, Web/Tech | Permalink

Students at a major university in Beijing are now required to scan their faces upon entering dormitory buildings, a process that may soon make security guards obsolete.

Beijing Normal University has installed 44 facial scanners on its 19 dormitory buildings, for the 18,000 students on campus.

It is the boldest move taken by a Chinese university so far to apply advanced digital technologies in campus management and has drawn attention from administrators at other universities.

The machines have been placed at all entrances to dorm buildings. Students entering the building will have to pause and look at the sensor for a few seconds. They are then required to swipe their campus ID card. If the face and card match, the machine will open the gate and say “welcome home.”

The machines also come with voice recognition. Students who forget to bring their ID cards can scan their face and say the last four digits of their card number, said Yang Hailiang, general manager of Beijing Peace and Joy Technology, which produces the machines.

The system can recognize 26 Chinese dialects and has achieved an accuracy rate of 98 percent, Yang said.

Here is the full article.

1 Some Guy September 15, 2017 at 2:04 am

98% accurate, eh?

That reminds me of the ‘Better Off Ted’ episode where the sensors couldn’t detect black people:

2 Dzhaughn September 15, 2017 at 2:12 am

Yeah, 98% is too poor. And the hackers have not yet begun.

3 dan1111 September 15, 2017 at 4:40 am

It depends on how critical dorm security is. A system that prevents casual entry and makes it harder (but not impossible) for a skilled person determined to enter might be just fine.

4 kevin September 15, 2017 at 2:28 pm

Its not preventing casual entry 98% of the time thats the issue, its preventing legitimate residents from entering 2% of the time that is.

5 dan1111 September 15, 2017 at 3:13 pm

It depends on the characteristics of the failures. If it fails can you just try again and get in? Or does it consistently reject certain people? Not clear from the information given whether it is a problem.

6 Rick Hyatt September 15, 2017 at 1:28 pm

Or another way, it’s 1 in 50. I remember going in and out of my dorms at least 5 times a day (3 meals, classes, miscellaneous), so one would expect a failure once a week. Perhaps the real question is whether the failure is systematic or random: if you have to say your ID twice once a week or month, that’s not a big deal, but if there is 1 guy in your dorm for whom the system never works then the system is a much bigger problem than the largely hypothetical intruders it is meant to deter.

7 Thor September 15, 2017 at 2:56 am

How many were detected as gay? (Not that there’s anything wrong with that.)

8 dearieme September 15, 2017 at 8:52 am

This blog is just about the faggiest god damn thing I’ve seen since I was at Oxford.

9 Sam September 15, 2017 at 3:25 am

Japan had these more than 10 years ago. I remember visiting Osaka in 2007 and there were face scans on highschool kids who bought concessional tickets to get into Universal Studios

10 dearieme September 15, 2017 at 6:40 am

This website is about the faggiest god damn thing I’ve seen since my time at Oxford.

11 A Truth Seeker September 15, 2017 at 5:18 am

Such that is life under a totalitarian system, where every person is nothing more than a cog of a faceless machine.

12 dearieme September 15, 2017 at 5:28 am

On the other hand if it had been introduced first in the US it would have been hymned as an example of that old Yankee ingenuity.

13 A Truth Seeker September 15, 2017 at 6:36 am

To be frank, it is remarkable how much Americans seem to like totalitarian approaches nowadays. I do not know if it is just vicarious enjoyment or a taste of things to come.

14 dan1111 September 15, 2017 at 6:54 am

What a lot of silliness. Verifying your identity is a key security requirement in many contexts. Having your face scanned is one technical solution to do that, and it is no more intrusive or “totalitarian” than any other solution.

The technology is, of course, the same technology that can be used for things like surveillance. But the application, not the technology itself, is what is relevant. Spies use cameras. So do people taking pictures of their dog to post on Facebook. We shouldn’t consider the latter to be suspicious surveillance activity.

15 A Truth Seeker September 15, 2017 at 7:14 am

Somehow, I doubt the Red regime only intends to use the face scans and voice prints to post dog photos on Facebook.

16 dan1111 September 15, 2017 at 7:43 am

@ATruthSeeker there is already a universal photo ID card in China, so the government already has a picture of each individual. What do you think they are going to do with a lot of extra pictures of the same faces?

17 Art Deco September 15, 2017 at 7:46 am

Ever seen the Nick Cage movie Face-Off? I think this is the scenario we should be worried about.

18 dan1111 September 15, 2017 at 7:52 am

Nicholas Cage movies coming true is indeed a nightmare scenario.

19 A Truth Seeker September 15, 2017 at 7:52 am

“there is already a universal photo ID card in China”

So is there in Brazil, with fingerprints. What we lack, besides an unbreakable will to bend backwards to justify Asian barbarism, is an Orwellian system based on the face and voice recognition of a selected group of peole (say, students of one the most prestigious universities of the country). I doubt Americans would think it normal if America itself weren’t marching towards fascism.

20 dan1111 September 15, 2017 at 7:59 am

Not only is it “Orwellian”, it’s “barbarism” too! Still, you have made no actual argument.

What actual capabilities does this system give the government? How might it be exploited? How is it more intrusive than a non-facial-recognition system consisting of student ID cards and a security guard?

21 A Truth Seeker September 15, 2017 at 8:47 am

You mean how a system geared to recognize people, their faces, their voices, track them can be used for evil by a totalitarian regime?

22 dan1111 September 15, 2017 at 8:56 am

Yes, facial recognition technology exists, and China can use it for evil purposes.

However, facial recognition technology to open a college dorm is not an example of an evil purpose, nor does it increase their (already existing) ability to use the technology for evil.

That was my point. Are we talking past each other?

23 A Truth Seeker September 15, 2017 at 9:22 am

So that’s it. China’s orwellian regime is good… for American investors.

24 dan1111 September 15, 2017 at 9:24 am

Sorry for taking you seriously and assuming you actually were interested in reasoned debate. I won’t make the same mistake again.

25 A Truth Seeker September 15, 2017 at 11:00 am

Maybe you should debate with those under the biots of the Chinese totalitarian regime.

26 A Truth Seeker September 15, 2017 at 11:01 am

Maybe you should debate with those under the boots of the Chinese totalitarian regime.

27 Bill September 15, 2017 at 7:18 am


Someone hacked my face!

Now their asking me to spit in a tube.

And provide a urine sample.

28 Art Deco September 15, 2017 at 7:41 am

Cooock ja caaww cooock ka kaaa cuck ollllddddd

29 Bill September 15, 2017 at 7:51 am

They’re, not their.

30 dan1111 September 15, 2017 at 8:01 am

Also you accidentally inserted a lot of line breaks again.

31 Bill September 15, 2017 at 11:14 am

The problem is with the blog software. I do not like double space any more than you do, and would be happy to do aligned single space./The alternative is to do/slash marks/but/you would probably not like that either/.

Judge a man by his words,

Not his line breaks.

32 TMC September 15, 2017 at 2:03 pm

Can you teach rayward?

33 The Engineer September 15, 2017 at 8:32 am

Wow, AI is getting good, huh? I mean, considering that all Chinese people look the same…

34 Chip September 15, 2017 at 8:49 am

As someone living in Singapore I actually find these kind of “jokes” unacceptable. Tyler or Alex can you please remove this comment.

35 dan1111 September 15, 2017 at 9:41 am

As someone not living anywhere near Singapore, I agree.

36 Chip September 15, 2017 at 9:46 am

This impersonation of me is almost sane.

Maybe the crazy commentator is an AI that was given just one word – cuck – and unleashed on the blog to see how quickly it learns.

37 Art Deco September 15, 2017 at 10:59 am

The sock puppeting is almost certainly an inside job from within Mercatus. This can be seen from how reluctant our hosts are to delete the vulgar comments and how they outright refuse to ban.

38 Borjigid September 15, 2017 at 8:55 am

Sounds bad. 98% accuracy means you’re locked out of your dorm one of every 50 times you try to enter.

That might be worthwhile, if there was any offsetting benefit, but there does not seem to be.

39 John Mansfield September 15, 2017 at 9:51 am

All of a sudden, Audrey Hepburn and Mickey Rooney are running through my mind. I’m not sure if automated face recognition facilitating building entry almost all of the time would be viewed by the parties involved as a benefit or a loss.

40 Andao September 15, 2017 at 11:15 am

What is the cost/benefit of this tech? Is dorm security really a huge problem at this university? A fingerprint scanner could accomplish the same more reliably and without the need for detailed voice and face data.

Either the dean’s nephew works at a facial recognition tech start-up, or this is a ploy to get more detailed info on university students (the riskiest group for activism). I’ll go with the latter.

41 Melmoth September 15, 2017 at 12:07 pm

Sigh, all the girls we used to bring into our foreign students dorm at our Chinese university …

42 A-gu September 19, 2017 at 9:20 pm

Which 26 dialects?

Comments on this entry are closed.

Previous post:

Next post: