Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), working in conjunction with Microsoft and Adobe, have developed a method of reconstructing sound from a video of an object – letting them use a crisp packet, glass of water, or potted plant as a microphone.
The technology is similar to the laser microphones used by spies around the world to eavesdrop on conversations by measuring minute vibrations in reflective surfaces.
But rather than using expensive, specialist equipment, the researchers were able to extract audio from a high-speed video of everyday objects.
“It is the modern world of power - and it’s incredibly boring… It’s how power works today. It hides in plain sight - through sheer boringness and dullness.
No wonder we find it difficult to tell stories about it.”
“Rather than mystifying the technological advances of “the internet” and expect the generation of “digital natives” to somehow come to grips with its challenges, we need modes of eduction that enable young minds to not only performatively but also critically engage with today’s rapid technological progress. Technological savviness certainly is a necessary precondition but by no means the end of it. Our schools and universities need to become institutions where critical analytical capabilities for the digital age are cultivated.”
Sebastian Olma: Of Thumbs and Heads: A Comment on Michel Serres’ “Petite Poucette”