Big Brother Now Watching George Orwell's House

Big Brother, the ever-watchful leader in the novel 1984, has popped up all around George Orwell's former home in London.

If you haven't had your daily dose of irony yet, here it is. Within 200 yards of George Orwell's flat 27B overlooking Canonbury Square in Islington, North London, there are thirty-two CCTV (closed circuit television) cameras.


(1984 finally arrives in London)

Orwell's view of the tree-filled gardens outside the flat is under 24-hour surveillance from two cameras perched on traffic lights.

The flat's rear windows are constantly viewed from two more security cameras outside a conference centre in Canonbury Place.

I have to say, the Brits are going on a bit of a CCTV surveillance binge lately. Britain now has over 4.2 million cameras - that's one for every fourteen people. A typical citizen is caught on camera an average of 300 times per day.

Just like in 1984, watchers have the opportunity to talk to you anywhere you might be by attaching speakers to CCTV cameras - see Big Brother Would Like A Word With You. Some of them are even using children's voices to chide adults - see 'Baby' Brother Cams.

The next steps? There is a proposal on the table for a national standard for CCTV cameras; this would make it possible for all images gathered by individual cameras to be accessed by authorities.

Alistair Darling, transport secretary, has outlined a proposal to charge UK drivers in a "pay as you go" tax to pay for roads. In order to implement the plan, all cars would carry a device that would be tracked every minute by satellite. The UK already uses ANPR (Automatic Number Plate Recognition) cameras placed every 400 yards along major roadways to create a national vehicle movement database (see ANPR Cams - Britain's Roadside Big Brother).

Just to give you a little taste of the novel, here's a snippet on BB:

The black-moustachio'd face gazed down from every commanding corner. There was one on the house-front immediately opposite. BIG BROTHER IS WATCHING YOU, the caption said, while the dark eyes looked deep into Winston's own... In the far distance a helicopter skimmed down between the roofs, hovered for an instant like a bluebottle, and darted away again with a curving flight. It was the police patrol, snooping into people's windows.

Read more at The Daily Mail.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 4/14/2007)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 3 )

Related News Stories - (" Surveillance ")

Cities Detect Gunfire Acoustics With ShotSpotter
'Sound trackers on the roof...'- Greg Bear, 2007.

PredPol Predicting Crime As It Happens
'All day long the idiots babbled...'- Philip K. Dick, 1956.

CUPID Intercept Drone Like Niven's Copseye
'Copseyes floated overhead... each a sonic stunner... they were there to enforce the law...'- Larry Niven, 1972

Is Privacy Too Expensive?
'It was not a large office, but it was quite spy-proof and quite undetectably so.'- Isaac Asimov, 1951

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

NASA's Highway In The Sky For Drones
Traffic is everywhere.

Palcohol Powdered Alcohol - Try Or Ban?
'I had a small can of powdered alcohol disguised as tooth powder...'

pd.id Personal Drink ID Device Like Dune 'Poison Snooper'
'The jeweled hands clutching drinks (and the unobtrusive inspections with tiny remote-cast snoopers)...'

Monsieur Bartending Robot
'He poured the liquids into his maw...'

Cities Detect Gunfire Acoustics With ShotSpotter
'Sound trackers on the roof...'

Cruise Automation's 'Highway Autopilot' For $10K
'It cut her out of the stream of vehicles and reduced the speed of her car...'

Pengheng Space Capsule Hotel Staffed Entirely By Robots
'A planet-wide chain of hotels that specialized in non-human service.'

Electric Bacteria That Live On Pure Energy
'April 5, 1977; that was the night the waveries came.'

EXACTO Smart Bullet From DARPA
Nicely visualized in what 1984 movie?

Neural Implant To Treat Memory Loss
'You've got remote storage. How regular is the update?'

MIT's Shape-Shifting Robot Materials
The T-100, an advanced prototype, is made of liquid metal. Not quite ready.

LS3 AlphaDog Robot Marine Corps Video
'He admired the fast-plodding, articulated legs, so necessary since roads had degenerated...'

Vantablack Is Blacker Than Your Black
'Well, we have a black coating now thatís ninety-nine percent absorptive...'

Remotely Operated Gardening Rover - Student's Space Agricultural Robot
'There were things growing all over the place, not just in some domed enclosures blasted some millions of miles out in to space.'

Revisiting A Cloud City On Venus
Lando Calrissian, are you still available?

'Windowless Cockpit' Like Star Trek's Patent Applied For
Mr. Sulu, take us out.

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.