July 26, 2010
IBM’s Predictive Crime Software Reflects Minority Report
Recent technological developments from IBM may have author Philip K Dick calling for remuneration. Their latest Criminal Reduction Utilising Statistical History (CRUSH) software is being used to predict crime before it happens, just like in his novel-cum-movie: Minority Report, which starred the infamous shorty we all love-to-hate: Mr Tom Cruise. IBM’s latest software is estimated to have cost some $11 billion and will be trialed by police in the UK following its recent success in the States. It works by analyzing past and present patterns of crime and crime reports, intelligence briefings, offender behavior profiles and even weather forecasts – it is the UK after all – to predict crime before it happens. IBM claim CRUSH can identify potential hot spots, so police forces can better allocate resources. In Memphis, Tennessee, trials of CRUSH are being credited for a 31% reduction in overall crime and a 15% fall in violent crime.
Personally, I reckon the police would saved a lot of money and got similar, if not more accurate, results by simply slipping a local London resident a twenty pound note and asking them for the same information.