Popular blog BoingBoing has highlighted an article from the EE Times about Skinplex, technology from German startup Ident Technology that uses the skin as a data highway. The article suggests devices worn about the person and external devices such as, say, a digital car ignition system, could use Skinplex to communicate. As BoingBoing notes, the ideas will seem familiar to fans of MIT's Media Lab, which had "BodyNet" projects as far back as the late 1980s, and in the mid-90s demonstrated Nike-sponsored shoes that could exchange 100kB of data between two wearers in the time it took to shake hands. Odd, then, that Microsoft managed to secure a patent on very similar-sounding technology in June this year. Anyway, sooner or later skin-to-skin networking is bound to catch on and every touch will bring the possibility of data interchange. So, of course, it will be good news for antivirus makers, who will have yet another platform to safeguard from malicious malware-mongers. Sneak predicts a profitable future in digital soap, integrated into bathroom handwash dispensers, to let people clean up after an unsavoury handshake. Or, given that prevention is better than cure, perhaps washrooms will in future feature wall-mounted vending machines dispensing digital prophylactics...
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