"This is going to change the way the bar industry runs."

This douchebag's startup is actually getting bars to pay them for this:

Wow. Just wow.

Facial detection cameras that will keep track of the number of people in a bar, including a running tally of ladies.

Cameras are set up at the bar's exits and entrances, says SceneTap CEO Cole Harper. The software is not savvy enough to, say, be linked up with Facebook and detect identity; it's just able to detect a face and its gender.

"This is going to change the way the bar industry runs," says Harper.

While the software can tell you the gender ratio, it unfortunately doesn't rate attractiveness.

This post is part of an ongoing effort to identify the people, places, ideas, products and companies that are poised to become central to the global conversation over the next six to nine months.

Cole Harper, may you never have sex again.

And you stay klassy, Forbes.

This idiotic idea is not even an original idiotic idea: there's a twitter feed called "yo bro, where the wimmins at" (it's not actually called that but I'm not telling you its real name because I don't want them getting the hits) who have been doing this by mining the gender field on Foursquare checkins for years. Every time they at-spam us on the Twits I mark them as spam, but the account is still there, despite being a pretty clear violation of Twitter's ToS. (Though actually it looks like they haven't updated in a while, so maybe their douchebro investors finally sobered up.)


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28 Responses:

  1. Jim Sweeney says:

    That dude may actually be the Douchebag Poster-Child.

  2. No way, Jim, his t-shirt's neckline is not mancleavagey enough.

  3. Otto says:

    "Assisted Serendipity" (google it) does the same sort of thing using Foursquare checkins. Basically you tell it a place and it monitors that, and when the ratio changes to a preset setting, it will email you. I set it up for a few places I go to regularly to see how it worked. It works fine, but only really at places that get a lot of Foursquare checkins, and those places are mostly populated by friends of mine anyway.

  4. Jon Konrath says:

    So how well does this identify transgender individuals? I see a potentially huge bug here.

    • Rick C says:

      Where, outside of San Francisco, is the percent of the population that is transgendered high enough for this to matter?

      • Jon Konrath says:

        Where, outside of large cities, is it useful to have a product like this anyway? If you live in Possum Pouch, Arkansas and there are exactly two bars and they're across the street from each other, you don't need an app to see which one is a sausage fest or not.

      • tkil says:

        Where, outside of San Francisco, is the percent of the population that is transgendered high enough for this to matter?

        One might be surprised.

        • Matt says:

          I remember reading an article about that town, an urban legend said he was so good one of his patients was married to a gynecologist and he didn't know.

  5. Mike Hoye says:

    If I were a bar owner I'd buy into that in a heartbeat. And then I'd put both cameras over the door to the men's room to keep the sort of fuckhead who uses that shit out of my bar.

  6. Huey says:

    I was wondering if the RFID tags on people were enough to identify them, figured I could put a scanner at the doors, ping everybody as they walk in, and then find a way to correlate tags to identities, so I could tie that into the POS, get some easy customer data as well as be able to tell the bartender "That guy who just walked in is John, he drinks vodka tonics rocks no fruit", be able to re-identify walkoffs, and so on.

    But the bar manager assures me that good bartenders don't need this. ...so now I'm back to my original problem, trying to find more good bartenders.

    • Roger says:

      As a proxy for RFID many people carry a phone with Bluetooth enabled and you can use the id from that to tell if you have seen a particular phone before.

      A good bartender is always going to beat any computerized system, while such a system would beat a bad bartender. The solution is to use good bar tenders!

    • jwz says:

      Or in this case, "how to make women, and oh also men, stay away from your business in droves."

    • Lloyd says:

      The 22-year-old should skip college, and forget about relying on other people's software for this. If he wants to get laid, he should aim to own a nightclub.

      • DFB says:

        ....a nightclub that doesn't use the video stream of its customers for commercial purposes.

  7. Soon women will have to scuttle from venue to venue in small numbers ... or avoid walking feminine to keep the spycams from tagging them ... this has the making of a dystopian future plot element.

  8. devon says:

    that guy has such a naturally punchable face. the more I look at his picture, the more I want to punch it.

  9. gryazi says:

    Not impressed until they make one with gaydar.

  10. Not quite sure I understand your post. You blindly call people "douchebags" and ideas "idiotic" without actually giving any reason or justification for doing so.

  11. Chris says:

    As with calc texts, trivial proofs are left as an exercise for the reader.

  12. tnv says:

    On my first visit to this blog, thanks for your response to this idea (I am a woman); it has rekindled a bit of my faith in humanity after a long week.

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