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Pushing the Limits of Personalization

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Pushing the Limits of Personalization
Scott Berinato

The Magazine | HBR | September 2014

Google’s newly acquired Nest thermostat tracks people’s movements around their house and “learns” how warm they like to keep the rooms. Facebook offers an app that turns on the microphone of a person’s device and listens to the sounds it picks up, apparently to better target music and TV choices. Amazon’s new smartphone has cameras that not only track pupil and head movements but also can use facial recognition data to estimate the gender, age, and ethnicity of the person looking at the screen. (Amazon says it hasn’t enabled that feature yet.) The recent rearchitecture of Disney World is centered on RFID bracelets that monitor the wearer’s actions and transactions in the park.

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