Fido – or felon? Nest rolls out smart 4K security cam with facial recognition

See what the dog sees every day

We’re sure many of you have Nest thermostats out there, the handy net-connected device that was one of the first smart-home gadgets to see widespread consumer adoption. Nest was then scooped up by Google, and since then, some office politics and other factors have slowed the rollout of new products, which have been limited to some fairly unremarkable home security cameras. However, that just changed with the new Nest Cam IQ.

The IQ features a 4K video sensor, and while that might seem to be the natural progression for a security camera, it’s what the camera can do with all those pixels that makes it different. The camera output is actually 1080P HD, but Nest has tweaked the camera for better dynamic range and low light performance for much improved image quality. But the coolest feature: the IQ can zoom in and track whoever walks into your home while also shooting a wide angle shot.

It also features facial recognition and can tell the difference, say, your kid and your dog. There’s a mic and speaker built in, but Nest says two-way audio won’t show up until later this year. The Nest Cam IQ costs $300, or you can get a pair of them on pre-order now for $500 with delivery in about 5 weeks.

‘Round and ’round she goes… quickly

Another day and another record at Germany’s infamous Nurburgring, the racetrack that’s become the de-facto baseline for measuring supercar performance.

The vehicle in question this time? A McLaren P1-LM, a car McLaren made for racetrack duty only. Ah, but this P1 – it’s actually a P1-GTR – has been made street legal by Lanzante, a boutique dealer that converts the race cars into road-legal missiles packing nearly 1,000 horsepower. Indy winner Bräck was at the wheel as the car whistled around the twisting 13-mile-long racetrack in 6 minutes and 43 seconds, which trimmed almost three seconds off the record.

Sound like fun? We think so, and if you hit this link, you can ride along with Kenny on the record-setting lap, so buckle up and hang on.

Self-driving legal traffic jam

Speaking of cars, here’s a quick follow up on a story that’s been in the news a lot lately: A key figure in the Waymo/Uber/Otto self-driving technology lawsuit has been let go – by Uber.

Anthony Levandowski, a former top Google engineer who helped launch that company’s self-driving tech efforts and then jumped for Uber – allegedly with a hard drive full of company secrets – was fired after the New York Times says he missed an internal deadline at Uber to hand over information in the case. Levandowski has taken the fifth in the lawsuit, and is one of just the latest high-profile Uber leaders to hit the road.

Legal eagles say Uber really had no choice in the matter, as keeping him on would have complicated their legal issues with Waymo even more if he was uncooperative. Now, he could end up testifying against Uber in the case. Hit this link for more details on this complicated but rather interesting tech legal saga.

We’ve got more news on our Facebook page and YouTube channel, and be sure to tune in to this week’s DT podcasts: Close to the Metal (computers and such) on Tuesday, Trends with Benefits (general tech shenanigans)  on Thursdays, and Between the Streams (movie and TV topics) every Friday.