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"Bureaucracies hide their mistakes, because people's careers are tied to those mistakes. Therefore, bureaucracies are a perfect mechanism for perpetuating mistakes."
- Frank Herbert

Webeye  
  Communications device with a camera, microphone, zoom lens, projector, etc.; can be sprayed on.  

It looks like a spider web with a black spider at the center.

The wooden table was tremendous, the size of a kzinti banquet. A year ago the Hindmost had had to turn down the olfactory gain in the webeye, for the stench of old blood rising from the table. The smell was fainter now. Kzinti tapestries and crudely carved frescoes had been removed, too bloody for the hominids' taste. Some had been moved to Chmeee's cabin.

Their infant daughter seemed happy enough at one end of the table itself. At the other end, the raw half of a huge fish awaited the Kzin's pleasure.

Chmeee eyed the fish. "Your luck was good," he approved. His eyes roved the ceiling and walls. He found what he sought: a glittering fractal spiderweb just under the great orange bulb at the apex of the dome.

Chmeee said, "We have a spy. I thought as much, but now we know it. The puppeteer placed cameras among us."

From The Ringworld Throne, by Larry Niven.
Published by Ballantine in 1996
Additional resources -

See the NYC Surveillance Camera Project. Or, take a look at copseyes from Cloak of Anarchy also by Larry Niven.

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from The Ringworld Throne
  More Ideas and Technology by Larry Niven
  Tech news articles related to The Ringworld Throne
  Tech news articles related to works by Larry Niven

Webeye-related news articles:
  - IP Cameras - Larry Niven's Webeye?
  - MIT Light-Detecting Fibers Create Niven's Webeye
  - Flexible Polymer Fiber Camera

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