Spied by technology

Chicago-based startup SceneTap is providing bar hoppers a real-time snapshot of their cities nightlife via their “invisible trip line” and “facial detection” cameras installed at the entrances of local clubs and bars.

The technology uses pattern detection algorithms to scan real-time feeds, looking for patterns that match the software’s understanding of faces. It then accurately predicts “what you appear to look like” based on age and gender.

Currently the service is operating in Austin, Athens, Bloomington, Chicago, Gainesville, Madison, and San Francisco with additional cities in the pipeline.

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Why it’s Cool

I’m not sure if I think this is a Cool thing or not. First I thought it was funny and valuable to know how many people are at a bar, giving insights in clubbing trends can help you choosing where to go out. But on the internet I read some reviews from people who thought the app was spying on them and they field a little bit creepy.

In my opinion those people are judging the app way too negative.

The team was inspired to create the product after “spending more money in cabs than in bars” trying to find the good places to land in Chicago on a Saturday night. For end users the app provides a glimpse into the male-female ratio, average age, and the total number of patrons of the bar before they arrive. For establishment owners installing the cameras gives them the potential for an increased number of customers and the ability to more effectively gauge the impact of their latest marketing campaign efforts.

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