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Electrical Engineering

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Tremendous advances in wearable computing and storage technologies enable us to record not just snapshots of an event but the whole human experience for a long period of time. Such a \life-logandamp;quot; system captures important events as they happen, rather than an after-thought. Such a system has applications in many areas such as law enforcement, personal archives, police questioning, and medicine. Much of the existing eandamp;reg;orts focus on the pattern recognition and information retrieval aspects of the system. On the other hand, the privacy issues raised by such an intrusive system have not received much attention from the research community. The objectives of this research project are two-fold: andamp;macr;rst, to construct a wearable life-log video system, and second, to provide a solution for protecting the identity of the subjects in the video while keeping the video useful. In this thesis work, we designed a portable wearable life-log system that implements audio distortion and face blocking in a real time to protect the privacy of the subjects who are being recorded in life-log video. For audio, our system automatically isolates the subject's speech and distorts it using a pitch- shifting algorithm to conceal the identity. For video, our system uses a real-time face detection, tracking and blocking algorithm to obfuscate the faces of the subjects. Extensive experiments have been conducted on interview videos to demonstrate the ability of our system in protecting the identity of the subject while maintaining the usability of the life-log video.