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Cryo Chamber

Playing the ‘Race PCI-Card’

Hewlett-Packard is investigating a claim that Webcams built into its PCs are incapable of tracking the facial movements of black individuals and only function properly when Caucasians or people of other lighter-skinned races are in the frame.

The probe was prompted by a YouTube video in which a black man named Desi demonstrates the problem. The camera, which is designed to follow individuals’ head movements, fails to track Desi as he moves in and out of the picture.

But when Desi’s white co-worker, Wanda, enters the scene the camera follows her. “As soon as my blackness enters the frame, it stopped,” says Desi. “Black Desi gets in there, no face recognition anymore buddy,” says Desi.

“I’m going on the record and I’m saying it, Hewlett-Packard computers are racist,” adds Desi, who says he’s using an HP Media Smart PC.

HP officials posted a blog Sunday indicating that the company is taking the claim seriously and investigating if technical issues are behind the problem. – [OMG]

1 comment to Playing the ‘Race PCI-Card’

  • Dave Hardy

    Once spoke to a fellow who had some expertise, and said that a black guy couldn’t get one of those “automatic on” faucets in an airport men’s room to work. He waved his own hands in front of it and it came on. The reason was that the faucet controls project an infrared beam and react when it is reflected back. Caucasians reflect back more than blacks, ergo the beam works better with them.

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