Two good humored folks posted a video on YouTube demonstrating HP's new webcam with face detection fail on a black skinned man. The camera software is supposed to track the subject's face. Some of the comments on the video indicate some very real feelings, but co-poster Desi Cryer's take is pretty philosophical finding humor in the engineering faux pas.
HP released a corporate statement to CNN saying that the issue is most likely related to lighting, but they are looking into the situation further.
"HP has been informed of a potential issue with facial-tracking software. Consistent with other webcams, proper foreground lighting is required for the product to effectively track any person and their movements," the statement said. "As with all our products, we continue to explore refinements which help to optimize their use."
Consumer Reports had similar issues even with improved lighting conditions. They do eventually get it to work and posted a video of the results here.
This reminds me of Better Off Ted, season one, episode four: Racial Sensitivity. Where Veridian commits a similar tech blunder.