That inconspicuous brown box above is reportedly a new kind of laser-based molecular scanner that can collect spectroscopic information from more than 150 feet away. It can instantly probe your clothing and luggage for chemical traces of anything--explosives, drugs, biological matter--and you will never even know it.
So says Gizmodo in a mildly terrifying piece posted this morning about Genia Photonics’ laser scanning device, contracted by an entity called In-Q-Tel, which is basically a group of private technology incubators working for the CIA. The idea, reportedly, is to install this molecular scanner in airports and border crossings and the like, where it can deliver instantaneous (it analyzes in just 50 picoseconds) spectroscopic analysis of people and cargo from a distance--and likely from an unseen location. Authorities could scan everyone passing through an airport terminal, sports stadium, or customs check.
Or it could scan everyone simply walking down a street. It’s supposedly portable, so it could be deployed anywhere from far enough away that the subject wouldn’t have to know about it.
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