.;''-. The lessons I was taught about the things of my thoughts .' | `._ is that if I write until I quit then my thinking becomes quiet. /` ; `'. I write. ,'\| `| | I write to think. | -'_ \ `'.__,J I write quite a lot. | `"-.___ ,' I write almost as much as I've thought. '-, / I write until I quit. } __.--'L I write to get the thing out of my head. ; _,- _.-"`\ ___ Which let's my thinking go on to my next thought when I step out of bed. `7-;" ' _,,--._ ,-'`__ `. |/ ,'- .7'.-"--.7 | _.-' Because there's only so much room up there. ; ,' .' .' .-. \/ .' In that little cramped space inside of my hair. \ | .' / | \_)- '/ _.-'`` _,.--../ .' \_) '`_ \'` Sometimes the thing I think about has taught me a lot about thought. '`f-'``'.`\;;' ''` '-` | And sometimes the thought I have about the thing taught me nothing at all. \`.__. ;;;, ) / / /<_;;;;' `-._ _,-' But I am grateful for the lesson it bought. | '- /;;;;;, `t'` \ I don't think I could think without writing my thoughts down. `'-'`_.|,';;;, '._/| Which gives me a new thought: _.-' \ |;;;;; `-._/ Do I think to write? / `;\ |;;;, `" Or do I write to think? .' `'`\;;, / ' ;;;'| .--. ;.:`\ _.--, | `'./;' _ '_.' | \_ `"7f `) /
Designed a simple little bracket in Shapr3D to hold my hellishly expensive Woodpecker story sticks on the back of the workshop door. It don’t look like much, but it is kinda neat. I modelled it on the Fastcap Track Saw brackets that hold up my Festool track saw tracks. I intend to manually drill a pivot hole through the two parts and use a hex nut and a long bolt, with a couple of washers, to act as the cam.
Time to send to printer.
I have been thinking lately quite a bit about systems architecture, and specifically around databases and message queues. I came across this concept a while ago (quite a while ago) of “database per user” and a central “read only database” that all other data is stored in.
An instance of an application, an instance per user, has direct access only to the database for that user. Another, non-user, process can also access that database, again read-only, which pulls data from the user’s database, and then puts a message on a bus that eventually finds its way to the central database.
The format of data in the per-user database and the format of the central database, and even the type of database, and even what software is running the database, can differ greatly from each other.
I built some prototype test systems a few months ago that seem to have survived a bunch of synthetic stress tests, but I wonder what issues I would run in to in a live environment.
Somebody wrote “You’re writing ability is only as good your willingness to delete sentences, no matter how emotionally attached to them.”
Some other wonk wrote: “You’re writing ability is only as good your willingness to delete sentences.”
And I propose that the LinkedIn “Create A Post” text box, or any text editor aimed at writers, starts at 3,000 characters, and then slowly lowers the character limit as you are writing. When it detects you’ve used some terrible phrasing or a cliche, the text box lowers the character limit faster.
Every time you used delete or backspace, it removes the character you want to delete, but also shortens the amount of text you can write. Every time you move the cursor, it shortens the amount of text you can write. Every time you move the mouse outside of the window, for every second it remains outside, it shortens the amount of text you can write.
You get the idea…
I personally haven’t done any digging in to this subject at this time, but a shower thought I had today was…
Transformers have become incredibly good at image generation (DALL-E 2), NLP (GPT-3), boiler plate code generation (TabNine, Github Copilot, et al), not to mention the massive quantity of style transfer techniques.
NVidia has been tooting their horn about chip design done by AI.
How long until we are using transformers, or similar DL (deep learning) algorithms to generate basic component level electronic circuits? I want to wire up these two ICs (integrated circuits), add in some USB ports, add in power, and so forth. And a few seconds later out pops a reasonably refined prototype of the circuit that I can then tweak and tune to my needs.
Not long at all, I suspect.
I just thought of an absolutely awesome-o idea for a text adventure game. One of those “well that could go viral” moments. Oh boy! Oh boy! Oh boy! Need to find a partner in crime that will help me execute. It’s gonna be one of those weekend projects that takes a week.
It is a text adventure, with graphics, just like The Pawn from the 16-bit era, but with a twist.
I need some place to safely stash the VR headset I am working on at our company, when I am not wearing the headset.
This week I have to get a CT scan (nothing serious) of my head.
I have a large format 3D printer in the workshop (Form3L) that can print a 1:1 life-size skull in bone white resin.
I just realized I have a new 3D print project I can start. 🙂
This is going to be so much fun! *waggles fingers in maniacal excited anticipation*
I will post horrible NSFW pictures when I am done.
I have been thinking of starting a video series where it is a bunch of old farts from the industry (games industry, natch) sitting around bitching about software development, project management and creative nonsense they’ve dealt with over the years.
“Drive-time radio” for creatives and developers with no other agenda than telling old war stories and riffing on past glories.
Couple of cameras, a few good microphones, some backdrop green screens, and we’re in business.
We could call it “Gassy Old Geezers.”
I have figured out how to make a lot of money from an NFT that is, from a legal standpoint, questionable.
“That sounds shady as fuck” my attorney clearly stated after finishing off the bottle of wine at the steak restaurant, “but it would actually work.”
Which means it is really no different to the ponzi schemes run by the rest of the cryptobros I run into these days.
Now, I just need an unwitting patsy and we are good to go.
Oh, on an unrelated note, hit me up if you want to mint some new NFTs…
So what’s up with airline food…?
Every amateur comic goes through that phase, “so what’s with airline food…?”
Here’s my thought about airline food.
Every flight longer than two hours, every passenger in every seat should get a hearty meal high in carbs.
As soon as it is safe for the crew to move about the cabin.
The absolute best tasting, carb loaded meal you have had in months. A meal so good you specifically seek out that airline to fly on. Meals that remind you of home. But loaded with carbs.
And then the flight crew enjoys a quiet, uneventful trip and everyone wakes up at their destination, refreshed and ready for their meeting or the start of their vacation.
When you have the best marketing idea, then realise it will cost you $80,000 to buy the three domain names that you want…
Years past we used to use simple, naive keyword filtering to identify junk email as spam.
But the spammers, driven by profits, got more sophisticated, and software developers came up with fancy Bayesian filtering to solve all that. Clever packages that run at your server to determine spam, massive distributed systems with datacenters to identify patterns, and often worse, paid for, solutions (Norton, Avast, et al) than the problem itself.
Most spammers are
You see, they want to spam, but they also want to appear legitimate. Or at least, just legitimate enough.
Spammers want to offer a way for you to unsubscribe from their crap so they still comply with the law they don’t care about just enough to be able to say “but we gave people a way out!” Each and every spammer, in their cleverness, provides an unsubscribe link.
And everybody knows you shouldn’t click on those unsubscribe links because it will just invite more spam.
But if you add “unsubscribe” to your keyword email filter, 99.9% of all spam suddenly dries up. And if there is a newsletter you legitimately want, it is easy to add to your whitelist.
And so we have come full circle. Back to simple keyword filtering for handling our spam.
When I am browsing Pinterest for whatever latest piece of woodworking jig or furniture design idea I am inundated with utterly useless “Promoted By” spam ads. Not once have I ever been interested in any of these promoted ads. And the number of them, sometimes five or six on a page is ridiculous.
I know there are various plug-ins for Chrome and Firefox that let you block the Promoted By ads on Pinterest. But they always seem to generate a bad user experience, and really, that’s not taking care of the problem, merely hiding it with CSS.
On Sunday I built a little plug-in for Chrome that removes the Promoted By ad by promptly selecting it, flagging it as inappropriate, e.g. gore, intellectual property violation, nudity or pornography, and then hitting that “Block this user” button right afterwards. So far it seems to be working reasonably well.
Finally got around to hooking up my Leap Motion to the HTC Vive (never seemed to find the time).
Starting to tinker with building something in Unity now.
So far I have a virtual sheep shearing toy that lets you shear off the wool.
I am thinking a VR Hairdresser game…
Don’t look at me like that.
It’s better than my first idea that was an for doing VR Bull/Cow Impregnation.
It did not test well with my audience (my wife) who couldn’t stop laughing long enough for me to finish my pitch.
I do wish LinkedIn had a way to turn off the built-in message system.
But not “turn-off” turn-off.
I want something along the lines of “This user never reads their LinkedIn messages. To communicate with them, use the email address in their profile.”
When will children no longer be taught to write by hand?
That’s already deader than a Dodo.
When will the physical act of writing and forming your letters be removed from the school curriculum?
Imagine if every house in your neighbour triggered an hour long alarm every time someone walked past or approached the front door.
How annoying that would be.
I think we should just straight up outlaw car alarms.
Or make it so that they are only allowed to trigger if a window is broken or a door is physically opened with the alarm engaged.
We need a device for VR so that when you’re watching porn it alerts you of somebody approaching you in the real world.
Pulling the Tesla in to the garage and then walking away without plugging the car in to the charger is the metaphorical equivalent of leaving the toilet seat up.
Perhaps the Tesla could play a little warning tune when it recognises you are home but you have forgotten to plug it in.
Pepe looked up from his work, staring thoughtfully at the middle distance.
“I’m telling ya, people don’t write anymore” he stated forcefully, his old voice unwavering. “Was a time when you could read a story and actually make sense of it all.”
“It had a beginning, a middle, and an end. Most of the time. Now it’s just babble to satisfy the machines.”
He returned to re-arranging bright red, Coca-Cola bottle caps on a small work table in front of him, his old eyes scanning their shiny surfaces for the slightest imperfections, his strangely smooth hands and delicately manicured fingernails expertly flipping over entire rows of caps to ensure no edges had been bent or become misshapen.
“They say everyone has a book in them. Well ain’t that the truth. These days everyone does have a book in them, or three, or four. Time now is you can’t talk to anyone, anywhere without them mentioning their latest fancifully imagined tell-all memoir about a life they never had or their ridiculous fantasy trilogy that mines every popular Westernized myth ever posted on our information super highway.” He snorted derisively at the statement, using the expression to show his distaste for everything that the internet had done to his career.
“Don’t just pour them out, they scratch. How many times do I have to tell you not to do that? Those caps are worth money, worth more than my words. People will pay good money for pristine vintage caps.”
“I only ever had one book in me. Never got to find out if I had more. Oh, I wrote, lots of paid for words, never stopped writing right up until the end. It was the end when it all went wrong. People stopped writing to be read.” Pepe sighed at the memory, pulled out several damaged bottle caps to one side, sliding them silently across the green baize of the work table and continued to sort.
“Did you ever read any of the greats?” He didn’t wait for an answer. “Niven, Scalzi, Bear. They were some of my favourites when I was young. Younger, anyway. You can still find them if you look around, though nobody carries them anymore. They just disappeared when people starting writing for themselves.”
“If you can ever find one of theirs, even if it’s illegal, you grab it and you read it.”
“My book? My book had action in it, it was a thriller, very sophisticated, you never knew what was going to happen until the very end. Very important that, in a thriller, keep your readers guessing.”
“Why? Because…. Because! That’s why! You don’t want to reveal what’s going on in your story until its necessary to do so, keeps the reader’s interest. Makes them want to read some more. Makes it a real page turner.”
“No, I guess you wouldn’t know where that expression came from. Page forwarder then.” Pepe sighed exasperatedly at this companion. “Fine, make you want to download the next book.”
“We had editors and proof readers that would make sure the crap stayed out. Most of the time they made sure the crap stayed out anyway.”
“Look, the moment that people could self-publish with ease it began to kill off those kinds of jobs. ‘We don’t need no stinking editors acting as gate-keepers’ they would say. Well, yes, yes you do.”
“Pretty soon we were all acting as editors and proof-readers and who has the time for that? The slush pile growing ever higher. We needed a service where someone could read through the crap, decide what was worth paying attention to, and then tell us what was worth reading.”
More bottle caps. More sorting. Moving to the flat above the pub had its benefits.
“The service? We already had that, it was called the publishing industry. But new writers, always eager to get published, didn’t want those gate keepers. Kept them out of being published is what they would tell you.”
Pepe sat back, wet his lips, the recognizable sign that a long monologue was coming.
“Of course it did, who would want to read their crap! Pretty soon some clever people wrote algorithms that would analyze what had been written, proof read it, edit it, automatically correct it, and then let you publish it to be read. Didn’t matter that you couldn’t write worth shit. The software could fix up your poorly chosen phrases and incorrect word usages. But then people started getting lazy. Lazier than normal I mean. They started writing their words to fit what the machines wanted to see. Writers began gaming the system, making their work match what the machine expected to see, making their work score the highest possible score the machine could give. If your book got a high score by the machine, in the early days, it became an almost instant best seller, even without marketing and promotion. People paid attention to the machines. The brilliant software algorithm was being gamed by the not so brilliant but far more cunning writers. The people in power, the editors, updated the algorithms to prevent the gaming from taking place. The writers adapted to the new algorithms. It didn’t take long. Oh it didn’t happen literally overnight, six months, maybe a year, and now those same bad authors pushing out rubbish were scoring high marks by the algorithms again. Then came the smart adaptive algorithms that could evolve their style to the whims of the market, to pick and choose what was wanted based on a pool of readers and what they were buying. And of course, the writers adapted almost as fast as the software, everyone was looking for an edge. It’s a spiral, its unsustainable, pretty soon everyone who can write has given up and everyone else who wants to write has started composing, and I use that word loosely, ‘composing’ pure drivel to satisfy some adaptive algorithm. And the readers, hah, you blame the writers, but the readers are buying the books. Well, you cannot really call them readers can you? They download and collect thousands of books, more than you can read in a lifetime, on little devices that can store the Library of Congress ten times over.”
“What? Don’t mumble. I hear fine, but mumbling is as bad as bad writing.”
“That was a measurement we had once. A Library of Congress. It was tens of thousands of books and other written works that mattered, all stored in a single place. Now we tote around more information in our hand than an entire generation of people could read or care to read. The readers aren’t reading. They’re collecting. Collecting utterly pure drivel.”
“Here, let me show you what I was working on for the past year. It took me an entire year to write this book. Yes, yes, I know most people do it in a few days at most. What’s wrong with me? Nothing. It took me over ten months to perfect the algorithm, and then the book was written in just a few seconds. I uploaded it to three of the biggest distribution channels in the world just a few hours ago. See these numbers? This book of mine is outselling the closest competitor by a wide margin, almost five to one in some regions.”
“Let me look at the analytics. Well would you look at that, says not only are people buying it, but real people are reading it too. There’s a chap here in Bangor that has gotten up to page 60 already! Now that’s dedication, 60 pages in just a hair under four hours. That’s unheard of in today’s readership.”
“Looks like the automated foreign translations are doing incredibly well. And the machine generated reviews from the New York Times and the Guardian have given me quite a boost in sales too. What’s the book about? How should I know! I never wrote it. Here, let me see what the reviews say: “One of the most powerful exposes on political intrigue in America in this decade.” I guess it’s a political book. Oh, this automated review gave me really good marks, “9.5 out of ten, if Tolkien and George R.R. Martin had a love child book, this would be it.” Um, yes, well, I guess it is sort of a cross-genre fantasy political book. “The first in what will prove to be a deciding trilogy of some of the greatest work this century.” I guess I need to run my application again as apparently I have written the first part of a trilogy.”
“Package those up. Do it carefully. Turn out the table lights when you’re done. I might be a New York Times bestselling author today, but by tomorrow, those vintage bottle caps are still going to be worth more than my words. And will be around longer too. I need to see what my new book is about…”
First draft in October 1997.
First published in print March 2009.
Copyright 1997 Justin Lloyd
The Land Rover I have has a smart key.
The Toyota Camry my girlfriend drives has a smart key.
Little digital devices that just have to be in close proximity to the vehicle to unlock the door or start the engine.
When will the triple-A (equivalent to the RAC or AA in the UK), if they have not already, begin carrying a a few dozen spare watch batteries in their tool kits for stranded motorists who ignored the “low battery” warning on their dash board?
There is a certain class of people who cannot even remember to fill up their petrol tank, car manufacturers expect these same people to replace batteries too?
I’ve never understood why manufacturers of artificial Christmas trees do not sell half-trees or three-quarter trees.
Take a Christmas tree and cut it in half, length-wise, so that it can be placed flush up against a wall or in the corner of the room, which is what most people do anyway.
Hardly anyone decorates the back of the tree, or does a very good job with the back of the tree unless they are putting it in a window or have a huge room that allows them to put the tree away from the wall.
Three quarters of a tree would work for when you need to put it in to a corner.
If they start doing this with real trees they could sell them at a discount (doubtful) but would only need around half the trees to fulfil their customers’ requirements.
I just want my DSLR camera to synchronize with my Dropbox.
Is that too much to ask?
When you wanted to squeeze that little bit of extra speed out of the hard drive data transfers from your workstation the easiest option was to install a RAID array.
Some motherboards have them built-in by default, like the one on my main workstation at the office, or they come as add-in cards such as the ones in our office file severs that can have dozens of hard drives hooked up to them.
The reason to use a RAID card is to squeeze as much performance as you can out of a physical machine, i.e. a spinning hard drive.
But with SSD drives not far off from becoming mainstream is there any reason for parallel RAID systems for most users?
It appears that most SSD manufacturers are still thinking linearly when it comes to creating their devices, trying to make ever faster memory chips to handle an increased data throughput.
My proposal is to create an SSD that is already a parallel array of memory chips that would increase the transfer rate of an SSD drive up to the theoretical maximum of the SATA bus.
To go beyond that speed would require a RAID array and separate controller that would then be able to transfer data as fast as the PCI-E bus could handle.
An internally parallelised SSD could just pop right in to any machine that can take a replacement hard drive.
And of course if the SSD is running in parallel internally and then is used in a RAID array, double bonus!
Less drives are required and there is no need for a very high-end RAID controller to get the full transfer speed of the computer’s bus.
25 places to find eInk in the near future and 10 places that you won’t.
Driving back from a commencement address I had just given I was intrigued by how long it would take for eInk to become so ubiquitous that we will no longer think about.
How long until we start seeing eInk everywhere?
- Bumper stickers on vehicles.
- Road signs, especially freeway signs and construction signs.
- Credit cards and debit cards showing your balance.
- Telephone handsets and cell phones.
- Store rewards cards.
- Virgin Megastores already have a system similar to this with a rewards card that offers a re-writable surface to display your rewards points and what you will get next.
- NASCAR race vehicles.
- Computer keyboards.
- Bus stop bench advertising.
- Restaurant menus.
- Vehicle dashboards for speed, RPM, oil temperature, etc.
- Directly attached to exercise equipment to monitor your progress.
- A simple RFID embedded in an ID badge you wear whilst at the gym could be picked up by a localized sensor in the exercise machine that will then add your repetitions and weights used to your workout total score, and show the score on an eInk display attached to the exercise machine.
- Apartment complex signs indicating apartments for rent.
- Apartment & office directory listings in the lobby showing who occupies which office or apartment.
- Magnetic swipe cards for office buildings.
- It can show your picture, security clearance, room access numbers.
- Though these are adequately serviced by custom printed swipe cards as used by most big businesses.
- Alkaline & NiCad and whatever other technology batteries may use, fuel cells and other types of power sources showing capacity remaining.
- Vehicle tyres showing air pressure and tread wear and the next time you need to have them rotated and serviced.
- Fan run convention ribbons.
- Price tags on items in stores.
- Especially clothing garments or anything not generally displayed on shelving.
- Changing the display of programme items at a conference or convention, changing the names of rooms and the panel listing of what takes place in the room and when.
- Hotel room key cards which can show your name, room number and a map to the room. Though there is a security concern here, but after it is swiped through the door for the first time it can erase the display.
- Gas station pump prices at the large overhead billboards and prices of motel rooms along the freeways.
- Furniture upholstery, drapes and wall paper.
- Furniture can make use of a similar technology to eInk to change colour, patterns, etc.
- The surface of CD-Rs & DVD-Rs to describe the contents.
- Every day wear could well adopt an eInk style technology to change a logo on a t-shirt or the colour of a clothing item.
Some things that it wouldn’t be worth using eInk for:
- Restaurant bills and receipts.
- Business cards.
- Regular street signs.
- Vehicle license plates
- Unless you want to commit a crime or really hide your identity.
- Identity cards or drivers licenses.
- Unless they happen to offer temporary security clearance or other benefits.
- Concert/cinema/event tickets.
- UPC/ISBN/Bar codes on general items.
- Though you may well find them in inventory tracking systems to present human readable version of an RFID tag tied to a database with a display that can be reprogrammed and change as the the item moves from warehouse/storage to final assembly, testing, and then in to stores.
- Government forms or client contracts.
- But having dealt with some companies and clients I swear the contracts change on a minute by minute basis.
- The Constitution of the United States of America.
- Though this point is debatable.
A couple of weeks ago I was pondering this idea whilst cleaning out my ears in the shower.
Is there a way, I am wondering, if it is possible to play a tone through an ear piece, and have a microphone, also embedded in the ear piece, monitor the reaction of the ear as it listens to the tone.
And based on the response, perform an action such as navigating in a three dimensional space.
I am under an assumption here that the ear is not a passive listening instrument but can be directed, however subtly, by the brain to tune in to certain characteristics of sounds.
It is well known that people are capable of focusing in on a single tone amongst a cacophony of background noise.
How much of this processing is done in the brain and how much does the brain alter the “tuning” of the ear to achieve this “tuning in?”
Assuming that the ear is reacting in different ways to different tones, if a monitoring device, such as a highly sensitive microphone could detect the noise of the muscles or small hairs in the inner ear responding to these tones then it would be possible to use that as feedback to a software program to perform some other task.
There are definitely small muscles within the ear that are involuntarily controlled, so how much of them can be voluntarily controlled?
Can a paralysed person make use of these inner ear muscles, which a sensitive, non-invasive monitoring device could pick up the movements of, and then the person could control devices simply by changing how they “listen.”
I’ve been pondering this for a while now.
I think that Microsoft OneNote really needs a wiki like plug-in that allows you to see previous versions of a page.
It’d also be great if OneNote could work with a Wiki. I mean really work with a Wiki properly. I’m not thinking of the so-so solutions that have been thrown together.
I should look in to the OneNote API to see if any of this is even possible.
When will we start seeing eInk displays with a backlight?
And when will we start seeing transparent eInk displays?
And when will we see our first full-size, road-side eInk advertising billboard?
Maybe if you work for a company that keeps shuffling you from department to department you could have an eInk business card created. 😉
And I’ve written about this before, but I think eInk “books” will become most useful when you are able to purchase them with multiple pages and the cost of the book itself drops to such a level you can afford to have several of them.
Will the collectible comic book market disappear when all comics are delivered digitally? Will comic books have very limited print runs?
How can you have rarity in a world of abundance?
If companies like Google and SUN are going to create large data centers inside of storage containers, and my proposal for using breast implants as a means of both storage and a mesh network ever take off, why not combine both ideas together?
That way we can store local cached versions of popular pieces of data in an interesting data storage container.
A small section of society enjoys dressing up in “interesting ways” that generally involves latex, corsets, rubber and other novel clothing items only available at select stores in certain parts of San Francisco.
Some even “enjoy” wearing the modern day equivalent of a chastity belt or other restrictive device.
So why not make the chastity belt, or whatever happens to be your bondage item of choice, RFID controlled?
The belt could contains a detector scanning for a correct signal from a matching RFID “key.”
The belt remains unlocked only when in proximity to this “key.”
A sort of digital leash.
Now you could be boring and wear the key on a key chain, but hey, everyone is getting RFID implants these days, so just stick the RFID key beneath the skin in your hand or your genitalia and you’re good to go.
The strange things I think about when drunk on a Christmas day.
I just got done watching a “Sex in the City” episode.
Okay, I’m addicted to it, I admit it.
However, one thing struck me, when Sarah Jessica Parker’s character, Carre Bradshaw is using her Apple laptop, why doesn’t the Apple logo flip around to be the right way up?
Yes, I’m sure Apple could print the logo the other way round so that it is upside down to the owner of the laptop when they look at it closed up, but it would be so much cooler if it would automatically flip around when you open up the screen.
A perfect use for eInk.
Why don’t modern dishwashers know whether the dishes inside are clean or dirty?
Why can’t a dishwasher indicate clean dish status on the front panel so that your spouse or room-mate doesn’t have to ask?
You could use a variety of methods to determine dish cleanliness.
The simplest, though most error prone, would be to detect whether the door has been opened at least once since the dishwasher was last run.
Of course, if someone goes in to just get out a clean mug, then you have a false negative, the dishwasher detects the door has been opened and so now indicates that the still clean dishes will need cleaning.
The other solution is the dishwasher knows the “dry weight” of being empty, or mostly empty.
The washer can detect how many dishes, by weight, have been removed, and when it detects that the weight has begun to increase, the machine could be reasonably assured you are now loading dirty dishes in to it.
Very few people I can think of would take out clean dishes and then load them back in again.
You might if a few did not get clean the first time through, but generally you would have unloaded the dishwasher first, realised some were dirty, perhaps hand rinsed off the dirt, and reloaded those specific items back in to the washer.
Why don’t razor blades change colour as you use them to indicate how much longer they will last? Or when they should be replaced?
Why don’t hypodermic needles change colour to indicate that they have been used?
We have a diabetic cat that requires a daily insulin injection and one of the things that frustrates me is if my room-mate or I accidentally leave a needle on the side after use, the other person is not sure if the needle has been used or not.
Now this could be a simple matter of, “if in doubt, throw it out” but a simple visual indication to show that the needle has been used would be much more effective.
Plus it adds an extra layer of safety to prevent accidental needle re-use, especially amongst people with memory problems.
Why aren’t razor blades made disolvable in water?
Then you could use the blades for a few times, and when you are done, toss them in the toilet bowl where they dissolve after a few minutes.
The blades could be made out of a bio-degradable material that doesn’t harm the environment.
Why don’t batteries, especially rechargable ones, change colour based on how much power they have left in them?
As society moves more towards elective, cosmetic surgery and breast implants are becoming quite prevalent I propose that we start utilising them for things other than ogling.
We could store vast amounts of data in a regular breast implant and read it out via contact-less radio frequency.
The amount of storage in most implants would be mind-boggling, that babe over there with the over-inflated cleavage may just be carrying around the Library of Congress with her.
Perhaps you could embed a 4G enabled web browser in the implants with a digital e-ink tattoo on the surface of the breasts themselves for optimal viewing.
A simple Bluetooth enabled keyboard and mouse would allow for easy navigation.
Though the page rendering part of the browser may need to distort the final web image to account for the curvature of the breast much like an IMAX cinema needs to do, but in reverse.
Of course, if you start putting communications in them suddenly you could use breasts as a mobile mesh network or walking WiFi hotspot.
Now imagine a Beowulf cluster of these…
Interesting article I just read on advances in inflatable breast implants lead me to wonder if we could control the size of the breast implant via a web browser or SMS. Certain enterprising young women could then allow their breast size to be set for a fee.
You just wouldn’t want your website breast size account getting hacked.
Expect to see this feature taken up by adult porn sites and female users of MySpace.com very soon.
Obviously if the breast size is controlled via the cellular network it becomes possible to triangulate position and orientation too.
I guess in time it will be possible to control other bodily functions through a web browser too.
Speech, arousal level, breast shape, mood.
I wonder if Microsoft will ever have an operating system that runs on a breast…
So the elevators in the building where I have my office now sport LCD panels that play adverts on a continuous loop.
I’m curious, in the future, will elevator operators claim that if we don’t watch the ads that we’re stealing elevator rides from them? Just like the TV execs do today when you record a TV show with your PVR and then skip through the ads. Will there be a camera placed in each elevator to ensure you watch at least your fair share of the ads? The only thing that a TV showing ads in an elevator guarantees is that it won’t kill the conversation. There never is any! Mundanes riding elevators never talk to each other, even if they know everybody around them, haven’t seen them in a long time, have some really important news to tell – like the building is collapsing – or they were having a conversation about some really deep subject just prior to stepping on the elevator.
Put a few mundanes in the stairwell of the same building and they’ll start talking to each other as they take the stairs up to their office – or at least they will for the first few floors, then the huffing and puffing starts and the conversation starts coming in gasped bursts.
What if we were to create a traditional disposable razor that could vibrate the head by a small amount, in an up and down motion?
The amount of movement would only have to be small. Your shave would then be more effective as the same area is covered multiple times by micro-movements.
Why aren’t tattoos made of an ink that can be dissolved by laser light?
There are various inks out there that turn either transparent or break down when subjected to low-intensity laser light.
And the human skin is very good at ejecting any foreign matter that manages to get below the surface, e.g. a splinter.
Let’s make boots either from a substance whose surface friction property changes based on an electrical charge, or from two substances, one has very low friction and the other very high friction.
The high friction one can be disabled remotely to allow the low friction surface to come in to contact with the ground.
Because kids wear boots with little wheels in them that act like roller skates.
So how about a pair of “ice skates” on their feet instead.
These ice skates would work on almost any flat surface.
It would be like sliding around in your socks on a highly polished floor.
You could also create a set of gloves out of this.
It could well turn in to the new extreme sport.
I want my house to unlock when I approach with my phone (from the outside of course).
I want my car to unlock when I touch the door handle and it detects my phone in my pocket.
I want the multi-zone AC to automatically adjust when it detects me and my phone in a particular room. Technically I want the multi-zone AC to adjust when it detects me in the room whether I have my phone or not, but that’s a few more years away.
You know what life is missing?
An inflatable pool table.
Oh, and an inflatable ping-pong table too.
That would really allow me to own both, and not have the storage issues.
Small, compact, high energy density batteries, which are about 15 to 20 years away from a practical reality, coupled with wireless transmission of power, would give you the ability to move a power source or electrical socket to anywhere in the home where you would need it and have the batteries recharge automatically.
Why can’t cat litter be made washable?
The litter could be made of non-clumping, small plastic, bio-degradable, odour absorbing beads, looking much like Fresh Step Crystals, that are washable.
Rather than throwing litter away every day or so, you’d just rinse it off in detergent, let it dry, and put it back in to the litter pan.
Buy a new bag of washable litter once a year to replace the litter that has been lost due to the cats tracking it through the house, or when you were scooping out the clumps of kitty poop.
There could even be special kitty litter pan, much like the automated ones that exist now, that wash, dry and recycle the cat litter automatically.
I’ve been eating a lot of Subway sandwiches recently as that is about the only other place around here to eat that isn’t pizza.
I like their tuna salad sandwiches, but a 12″ tuna sandwich gets to be a bit much after a while.
And I like their grilled chicken breast sandwiches, but that gets a bit bland too if you order a 12″ sub.
So I usually order a 6″ tuna and 6″ chicken breast meal deal.
This gives me a 12″ sub with two different fillings.
I’m not sure why Subway don’t this?
Either way I just sent them an e-mail via their automated form on their website.
I doubt I’ll hear anything back but it is worth a shot.
Who knows, a year from now I wouldn’t have the hassle of trying to make the counter staff understand I want two sandwiches.
E-ink tattoos will eventually happen.
That’s a given.
With e-ink you will be able to have a full-sleeve tattoo, or a facial tattoo, change the design whenever you feel like, and switch it off when you have to go to work at an office that has a dress-code of “no visible tattoos.”
Why aren’t tattoos made out of eInk?
Then you wouldn’t have to pick any one design.
You could just download any design you wanted.
So tattoo parlours would then become just a place where you go to get your skin impregnated with eInk and perhaps download new designs.
Headphones that listen to the audio played through them and determine if they are actually being worn. If the headphones detect that you’ve removed them then they pause your audio player, which will eventually shut itself off.
Could also be used to determine if a person is actually wearing the headphones and the audio is not being piped out to an audio recorder.
Works as a copy prevention device.