Your phone is listening to you! Environmental impacts of spyware backed cryptocurrency

We’ve all been there, you’re hanging out with your friends and you’re talking about something random. Like how awesome nerf’s Soakzooka is or how excited you are for the next Great British Baking Show season. Next thing you know, you turn on your phone all you can see is Noel Fielding staring at cakes and kids shooting massive amounts of water at each other before reloading with 55 more fluid ounces of summer fun. The only logical explanation is that your smart phone is listening to you. And that’s not even the worst part.

It’s also destroying the environment.

No one in their right mind would believe that it’s “just a coincidence”. It would be even more insane to believe that your behaviors follow a predictable pattern or that you are suffering from the extremely rare Baader-Meinhof phenomenon. Algorithms alone, built from spending habits, frequency of purchase and customer interests, could never predict wildly unrelated behavior such as whether or not a woman is pregnant. Jeff Bezos and Mark Zuckerberg are definitely listening to you to sell you more things. The worst part about your phone listening to your everyday conversations and in some extreme cases interpreting your thoughts…it’s absolutely contributing to the destruction of the environment – landslides, forest fires, you name it.

Jeff Bezos revealing a new data center for NLP powered targeted advertising powered by coal plants in Nigeria
Jeff Bezos revealing a new data center for NLP powered targeted advertising powered by coal plants in Nigeria (Photo credit Seattle City Council from SeattleCC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons Changes were made)

A brief history on how your smart phone is listening to you

Here’s a little background on smartphone spyware, without all the technical and academic BS. With voice assist technologyTM added to your everyday electronics, one simple software update transformed innocent communication devices into highly sinister spy instruments. Long ago in the early 2010s, rudimentary algorithms using Siri, Alexa, Cortona or whichever sexy, electronic femme fatale with whom you’d disclose your deepest, darkest secrets, would funnel the information to live, realtime web auctions. This golden age of unregulated targeted advertising was unfortunately short lived. The algorithms were too taxing on the device batteries and everyone started complaining. That’s when apple pulled the plug.

The problem with ad-motivated spyware is that natural language processing (NLP) is extremely difficult — and not many people are aware of this! Even worse, is when you have to deal with exotic accents and the shrillness of female voice. The sheer amount of processing power required to determine whether or not you’re on your currently menstruating through simple conversation is immense. Unfortunately it’s not vast enough to stop the 0.5 percents’ insatiable lust for selling you things that don’t spark joy or, that are filled with carcinogens.

Mark Zuckerberg hyping the new method for your phone to listen to you
Alessio Jacona from Rome, Italy, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons Changes were made to image

Just before online marketers were about to get desperate and release an army of spam bots into the worlds web forums in a massive gorilla marketing campaign, they got an idea. Outsource the processing to third world countries. With the massive amount of cheap, unregulated power and the space for enormous data centers, the algorithms can constantly retrain themselves so they can even understand you mumbling to yourself in your sleep about how you’re thinking about meal replacement smoothies. It might be a little bit more overhead but it gets the job done without draining your battery in order to send you an ad for the nextgen Vitamix.

How your phone is listening to you and sending your data to targeted advertisers
How your phone is listening to you and sending your data to targeted advertisers

The Billionaire Class Pushes for CryptoCurrency

You may have noticed a recent influx of billionaires heavily pushing for the adoption of cryptocurrency. This is no coincidence. Bitcoin, particularly, has come under a lot of scrutiny recently for its environmental impact. Unfortunately for your privacy, it’s not because Block-Chain is the most inefficient data structure ever invented. It’s something far more conniving.

Elon Musk on the power of Cryptocurrencies to power NLP spyware
(Heisenberg Media, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons Changes to image were made)

The only feasible way to fund the effort to outsource our smartphone spyware processing is to attach it to a made up currency like Bitcoin or Dogecoin. By pushing existential fears of inflation and a hyping up crypto, the power consumption of the outsourced NLP can be easily hidden in costly block-chain processing.

Our Environmental experts at Cranberry-Lemon ran the numbers based on social media use and crypto currency exchange rates. The estimated power use is astronomical. As seen in the figure below, while the raw bitcoin processing alone has increased to one Argentina of power, the NLP ad network has multiplied the damage by a factor of at least 5? Over six, maybe seven years?

Cranberry-Lemon Environmental Department Estimate of Bitcoin Power Consumption
Cranberry-Lemon Environmental Department Estimate of Crypto Power Consumption

The environmental impact is unfathomable. Most of the third world country data centers are powered by unregulated coal plants — think “wild west”. The JABDE global warming experts believe that if this scheme continues on its current trajectory the environmental damage will be irreversible. The extrapolated models estimate that Atlanta will become the underwater lost city of Atlanta within the next decade.

Without a change, ATL international airports’ days are numbered. It is up to the consumer to avoid clicking targeted advertisements and to complain enough to your local officials to do something, ANYTHING. Write your congressman now! Outlaw the crypto-backed NLPs from destroying our planet! Stop your phone from listening to you! Save the planet today!

If you enjoyed this garbage conspiracy please like, share, and subscribe with your email, our twitter handle (@JABDE6), our facebook group hereor the Journal of Immaterial Science Subreddit for weekly content. I also have a feeling this might end up on some conspiracy pages and if you didn’t pick up on the sarcasm, it is extremely unlikely that your phone is listening to you. But if you’re still worried, turn off your microphone and app permissions.

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Published by B McGraw

B McGraw has lived a long and successful professional life as a software developer and researcher. After completing his BS in spaghetti coding at the department of the dark arts at Cranberry Lemon in 2005 he wasted no time in getting a masters in debugging by print statement in 2008 and obtaining his PhD with research in screwing up repos on Github in 2014. That's when he could finally get paid. In 2018 B McGraw finally made the big step of defaulting on his student loans and began advancing his career by adding his name on other people's research papers after finding one grammatical mistake in the Peer Review process.

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