Created a device that tracks every movement of a person

Every morning, going to work, warehouse worker Jack Westley wears a belt on which is fixed a black device the size of a smartphone. It monitors his every move and sends data about it to the employer. And this is not the beginning of a fantastic story in which “big brother” watching us. This is real life, because such devices are already used Walmart. Manufacturers say that such a tracker can improve security and reduce the number of injuries. But not so simple.

A new gadget to monitor workers

Why follow the workers?

The device, developed by startup StrongArm Technologies (and appropriately named StrongArm) that collects and sends information about work and productivity to employers. The creators of Gazeta say that trackers can complement existing programs at the software security by identifying employees who need additional training or help to find places that need to be refurbished to reduce the likelihood of injuries and improve productivity.

The principle of the device StrongArm is quite simple — it captures the performance of the muscles and how effectively they work by reading electrical impulses. During a series of tests on various objects, StrongArm revealed, for example, that a warehouse was a place where workers are often too much turned back. Employees were standing there next to the conveyor belt, watching the movement of the objects and sending them down the belt, which is twisted by 90 degrees. The software is StrongArm advised to change the angle the tape at 45 degrees. Trauma was much less.

See also: AlterEgo - a device that can hear your thoughts

In another test the StrongArm was to examine high rates of fatigue among temporary workers. During preliminary conversations, the managers of the warehouse said that I suspect that the workers just being lazy. However, the system StrongArm found that they horse around, dragging the box 4 times faster than regular staff to finish the work faster. This allowed us in the short term to do a lot of work, but if you had to put in extra effort, endurance workers is simply not enough. The result was a revised remuneration system, which does not make people hurry. Now StrongArm is used by more than 30 companies, including Heineken NV and Toyota.

The StrongArm device on the charging dock

The unions, however, fear that employers will start to collect data about the employees, will be able to use this information against them. First and foremost, they believe that workers can be fired or punished if their performance will decrease. The opacity of the data analysis tools may hinder understanding why it happened. What do you think? A progress or an additional element of surveillance? Write about it in our chat in Telegram.

The creators of StrongArm at the same time claim that its products are designed exclusively to enhance security and performance. The company also claims that the device does not track individual performance, and all employers receive the data in depersonalized form.

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