Skip to comments.Webdriver Torso YouTube mystery clips' French connection
Posted on 05/01/2014 11:07:28 AM PDT by Theoria
On 23 September 2013 at 14:45, YouTube user Webdriver Torso quietly uploaded a video.
The mysterious 11-second sequence of red and blue rectangles could easily have been lost, unexplained and unappreciated among YouTube's plethora of kittens and music videos.
But 28 minutes later Webdriver uploaded an almost identical video, and another an hour after that, and another, until eight months later - apparently happy with nearly 80,000 clips - they fell silent, with 236 hours of video to their name.
Almost all of the uploads follow the same pattern - 10 slides, each with a red rectangle, a blue rectangle and a computer-generated tone.
The shapes change size and the notes change pitch. Each video appears to be unique, but the format stays the same.
Wired magazine first stumbled on the clips in February as part of a feature on obscure YouTube uploads.Spy messages?
People have since started to wonder what it could all possibly mean. Who is Webdriver Torso? What do they want from us?
The Boing Boing blog suggested Webdriver could be the next generation of number stations.
(Excerpt) Read more at bbc.com ...
I know what it means. But “they” won’t let me tell.
From the Comments Section:
Comment number 85.Amit Goenka
14 Minutes ago
This is the work of a research scientist at google. His name is Matei Ciocarlie. No wonder you didn’t get a reply back when you enquired about the google + page.
Its a Cook Book!!
number sequences from Google? but there’s 80,000 of them. If it’s a game that doesn’t make sense.
Guess: Daily uploads plus tones = stock tickers buy/sell?
Don’t look at me for answers, I couldn’t even understand the article.........
After going to the link, I think I understand what this guy is trying to find out.
'Isaul Vargas, a New York-based software tester, spotted the videos in a post on BoingBoing and recognised them from an automation conference he had been at a year ago. They were being shown by a European firm that made streaming software for set-top boxes, the kit that sits under a TV and connects to services such as Sky or Netflix.
The company needed to be able to quickly and reliably upload digital video, a capability which it tested by uploading short, randomly generated snippets to its YouTube channel and running image-recognition software on it. "Considering the volume of videos and the fact they use YouTube, it tells me that this is a large company testing their video encoding software and measuring how Youtube compresses the videos," says Vargas.'
Googling him shows that he works on research for robotics and robotic sensing. I would guess these are automatically generated patterns to test those sensors.
However, when the BBC spoke to Mr Vargas he acknowledged he had been mistaken: “I found the video and when I re-watched it I found that wasn’t the case, it had a different test pattern.”
However, he added that he still thought that the patterns could be the result of some sort of automated tests.
What a flashback. It seems like just yesterday I was reading about AYBABTU right here on FR. I think it was actually A.D. 1998, though. :(
It was during the giddy days between GWB’s start of term 1 and 9-11, IIRC. Pretty dang silly stuff.
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