Monday 12 November 2018

This man was locked out of home when his smart doorbell thought he was Batman

The facial recognition software identified the superhero and, not recognising the visitor, promptly locked the doors.

(BJ May)
(BJ May)

By Nicola Irwin, Press Association

A homeowner wearing a Batman T-shirt was automatically locked out of his house when his security system detected the superhero’s face and thought it was an intruder.

BJ May was at home in Georgia, where he uses a Nest smart doorbell coupled with Yale locks.

The security system “automatically locks the front door when it sees a face it doesn’t recognise”, he wrote on Twitter.

But he couldn’t figure out what was wrong because it was himself at the door when the system locked so he checked the app to work it out.

That’s right. Nest mistook the Batman face on May’s T-shirt for a visitor, and not recognising it, took action.

“When I saw the facial recognition, I laughed and showed my wife, then posted it to Twitter and started working on some chores around the house, installing new shelves,” the 39-year-old web developer told the Press Association

“A few hours later I looked at my phone and had many hundreds of notifications.”

In subsequent tweets, May explained that the door had been unlocked because he and his family were at home and passing in and out.

With the door locked, he used a pin code to enter. Had the door been unlocked it wouldn’t have opened automatically.

For anyone super curious about the tech on display, here goes.

Press Association

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