The Intellistreets system has finally come to the corridors of Las Vegas. So what is Intellistreets?
On its website, the system is described as “the only wireless information and control network for sustainability, security and entertainment.” Even more amusing, the company that owns the Intellistreets system is rather appropriately called Illuminating Concepts. The best part is that city officials claim “right nowour intention is not to have any cameras or recording device.”
This is far from the first time we have learned about the installation of devices that can record audio and video being surreptitiously put in public places. I covered this late last year with regard to how the Department of Homeland Security was using grants to fund the placement of such devices on buses in my piece: Public Buses Adding Microphones to Record Passenger Conversations.
Now from CNET:
Las Vegas, you see, has invested in Intellistreets. These aren’t streets that carry you along, so that you don’t have to put one foot in front of the other.
Instead, this is a lighting system that, as MyNews3 reported, enjoys “all sorts of fancy features.”
These lights can broadcast messages and play music. Which sounds very Vegas.
However, they have other aspects: they can shoot video and record sound.
This being Vegas, you will understand the words of Neil Rohleder of the city’s Public Works Department: “We want to develop an experience for the people who come downtown.”
But what kind of experience are they truly developing? The company behind Intellistreets, Illuminating Concepts has as its motto: “Assisting in the Creation of Memorable Environments since 1981.” The word “memorable” might interest some.
Las Vegas public works Director Jorge Cervantes told MyNews3 that this was all entirely innocent: “Right now our intention is not to have any cameras or recording device. It’s just to provide output out there, not to get any feed or video feed coming back.”
Indeed, the explanatory video of how the system works spends most of its time presenting a compelling case for its excellence.
Near the end, however, there is this phrase: “Intellistreets also enables a myriad of homeland security features.”
This is what they look like.
Enjoy Big Brother Vegas.
Full article here.