Kickstarter Project Finds Exciting New Way to Screw Its Backers

Here is a good idea: A coffee machine that roasts, grinds, and brews all in one go—raw, green beans to a hot cup of coffee on your countertop. Hell yeah. Freshness. » 12/09/14 11:00am 12/09/14 11:00am

Will This Watch-Controlled Smart Pistol Really Make Owning a Gun Safer?

Last week, a gun shop in California introduced a new addition to its stock: A .22-caliber pistol that only works when the user is wearing the accompanying RFID-enabled watch. It's being heralded as the "iPhone of guns." » 2/23/14 5:00pm 2/23/14 5:00pm

Should We Really Be Tracking Our Children Like Wildlife?

Many New Yorkers are still mourning the news that the body of Avonte Oquendo, a non-verbal autistic boy, was found on the banks of the East River. To meet—and partially assuage—the grief, Senator Charles Schumer has an idea: let's put tracking chips on autistic children. » 1/27/14 6:20pm 1/27/14 6:20pm

Australia Is Outfitting Thousands of Bees With Tiny Tracking Backpacks

Bees populations are mysteriously dying worldwide, and that's a problem: one-third of the world's crops are pollinated by the black and yellow fellows. To try and figure out what's causing the bee decline, Australia's national science agency is strapping RFID tags on bees' backs to detect changes in their movement.… » 1/16/14 4:00pm 1/16/14 4:00pm

GM's RFID Engine Bolts Prevent Assembly Line Screw-Ups

Threaded fasteners haven't changed drastically since they were invented ages ago. But now, General Motors has put RFID tags in the bolts used on engine assembly lines, turning simple hardware into tracking devices that make sure everything gets assembled properly. That bolt's got a (2kb) brain! » 1/03/14 12:14pm 1/03/14 12:14pm

Can Radar and RFID Stop Drivers From Killing Cyclists?

Last month, London reached a grim milestone: Six cyclists were killed within 14 days, sparking a massive "die-in" protest. London isn't alone; 176 cyclists or pedestrians were killed in NYC last year. The rapidly rising death toll is spurring a race to build a technology to warn drivers before they hit someone on foot… » 12/31/13 2:30pm 12/31/13 2:30pm

Simply Shaking Two Devices To Pair Them Makes NFC Look Old-Fashioned

There's a flood of new smartwatches and other wearable devices coming just around the corner, and every one of them will require a connection to your smartphone. Wireless NFC technology has already made things a little easier when it comes to pairing, but researchers at Disney want to make things even easier by just… » 12/09/13 9:20am 12/09/13 9:20am

E-ZPass Is the Best Tracking Device That's Already in Your Car

E-ZPass is probably the best thing that's ever happened to paying tolls. Those plastic funnels you toss coins into are a close second. But E-ZPass has a bonus feature. It can be used to track you everywhere you go. » 9/13/13 3:20pm 9/13/13 3:20pm

Forget Your Farecard and Use One of These Hip RFID Rings Instead

Farecards are annoying. They're usually flimsy and easy-to-lose, and depending on what city you live in, they can be impossible to swipe. Why not integrate a more high-tech solution into the system? And hey, why not make it a little bit fashionable too? Well, that's exactly what these MIT students did. » 8/26/13 4:40pm 8/26/13 4:40pm

Who Needs a Breathalyzer When a Urinal Can Tell How Drunk You Are?

Here's a brilliant idea that could prevent countless drunk driving-related deaths from occurring. Working with a marketing agency called DDB, Zouk, a popular nightclub in Singapore, installed a series of urinals that are able to monitor a patron's blood alcohol level and warn them if they're too drunk to drive. » 7/18/13 1:20pm 7/18/13 1:20pm

RFID Parcel Sensor Knows If Your Delivery Has Been Dropped

When I was a Christmas postman, many years ago, some of the bored guys in the sorting office's loading bay liked to play a boisterous game of "catch" when parcels marked "video recorder" and "fragile" arrived. How they guffawed when one landed in the bottom of a skip with a sickening crunch, ruining somebody's… » 2/07/13 8:34am 2/07/13 8:34am

Will a No-Money, Wireless-Payment System Make Disney World More Magical?

Some time soon, you'll be able to go to Disney theme parks and pay for stuff using nothing but wireless bracelets. It's magic! Or uh, is it laid-bare commercialism desensitizing visiting families from the wads of cash they're spending? » 1/11/13 4:40pm 1/11/13 4:40pm

Does Your Bottle Cap Fire Off a Cannon When You Open It?

UK booze brand Strongbow has designed what it's touting as the world's first digital bottle cap that doubles as a rudimentary remote. Using RFID technology, the StartCap can do everything from turning off the lights to powering up your stereo when you crack open a cold one. » 11/19/12 10:30am 11/19/12 10:30am

Thanks to RFID, You'll Never Lose a Sock Again

Pushing war and world hunger to the back of the line, the next important issue that technology is tackling is mismatched and missing socks. A company called Blacksocks has developed what it's claiming are the world's first smart socks that make them virtually impossible to mis-match, and incredibly easy to find in a… » 9/24/12 6:20pm 9/24/12 6:20pm

Will Trash Cans That Charge Per Use Just Encourage Littering?

The Netherlands is rolling out some 6,000 smart garbage cans that can only be used when residents scan an RFID-enabled ID card. Besides monitoring just how much trash someone disposes of, the cans will also measure and charge the user based on how much refuse they tossed. » 9/12/12 4:20pm 9/12/12 4:20pm

Bio-Acoustics, Haptic Steering Wheels, RFID Everywhere: This is the…

For most, AT&T is simply seen as the company that delivers phone and internet and TV service to the masses. But they also have a full-fledged R&D program, which spans multiple countries. Today they offered a glimpse into the fruits of those AT&T labs, with innovations ranging from clever to "OMG I WANT THIS NOW."… » 4/19/12 7:38pm 4/19/12 7:38pm

Tooth Tattoo Diagnoses Illness and Alerts Doctors

Scientists at Princeton University have developed a sensor that could be tattooed onto your tooth, diagnose an infection, and transmit that information to medical professionals. » 3/29/12 7:00pm 3/29/12 7:00pm

The Simple, Brilliant Way to Stop RFID Robbers

The money of the future won't be cash, or even sliding plastic—it'll just be a wave of the hand, we're all told. RFID-enabled credit cards sound great, but add an unprecedented theft risk. So how about an on/off switch? » 2/19/12 3:00pm 2/19/12 3:00pm

MythBusters Was Banned from Talking About RFID Chips Because Credit…

RFID chips are super cool because those little buggers can beam things wirelessly. The guys at Mythbusters totally thought so too and wanted to make an episode about how trackable and hackable RFID chips were. Sounds amazing! Everyone would've learned more about the technology that's invisibly invading our lines.… » 2/03/12 5:40pm 2/03/12 5:40pm

How to Secure Your Beer Stash Against Freeloading Friends

Every circle of friends has one—the guy who's only willing to chip in "a couple of bucks" for the night's keg but double fists his brews the entire evening. Well, no longer! This suds security system will only pour for authorized imbibers. » 11/05/11 2:20am 11/05/11 2:20am