Students at MIT Media Lab have paired up with the team from Microsoft Research to develop a temporary ‘smart’ tattoo - which can be used as a touchpad to control your smartphone, or even share data using NFC.
Called DuoSkin, MIT plans to present this technology in full at a wearables symposium next month.
Interactive tattoos? How the hell does this work!?
Well, DuoSkin works by using gold leaf - which is conductive to electricity - to create said tattoo. This means circuits can be made using any graphic software and printed onto the body (hopefully not with a robotic tattoo arm).
With this gold leaf circuit, users can then apply other components and materials to make an interactive tattoo.
Sounds cool! What would I use it for, though?
It’s a common problem with flashy work like this. It looks great, but what real-life uses would there be? The team have thought about this, and their paper presents three key use cases:
- Turn your skin into a trackpad - control your phone or (indeed) any piece of hardware with just a few swipes on your skin.
- Change colour based on temperature - This one would be more of a visual trick, but it would be cool to transform your arm into an interactive thermometer.
- Pull data from the tattoo - Imagine having your full medical records tattooed onto your skin, so if emergency services are needed they could just scan you to see blood type/medicine allergies/etc. Pretty cool, right?
Awesome! When can I get it?
Don’t hold your breath for too long… It’s going to be a while I’m afraid.
Research like this usually takes five years tops to get into the hands of consumers.
Now in terms of cost and technological capability, researchers are pretty much already there with it! Working just like a temporary tattoo: Just stick it on your skin and go.
But if this is where people are thinking the future of wearables is going - it’s a lot easier on the eye than the garish smartwatches of today. Have a scroll through some of their weird and wonderful creations below!
Remember 3D Printers? Those curious cubes that were poised to take the planet by storm with promises of a printer in every home? Turns out that didn’t happen - but after going to this year’s TCT show, I learnt where the real future of this industry lies.
Twitter has not had it easy over the past couple of years. From the flat growth of new users to a torrential storm of abusive tweets, the social network has been dragged through the mud a fair few times.
But now, things are starting to look optimistic, as it’s been widely reported that Twitter is going up for sale with some interesting companies looking to buy…
Who are these companies? Why would they want to purchase a social network in an almost purgatorial state? Let’s take a look.
Amazon, Facebook, Google, IBM and Microsoft have formed the 'Partnership on Artificial Intelligence to Benefit People and Society.' I'm seriously doubting the last part of that mission statement...
There was a time when Blackberry was relevant. Today, unfortunately, is not one of those times as CEO John Chen announced plans for the company to stop making their own phones.
The representation of politicians has always been a tricky issue, but recently we’ve seen social media become more and more important as an influence on public opinion, especially relating to the US presidential campaign and the Labour leadership row here in the UK.
Snapchat just dropped some huge news - rebranding to Snap Inc. and revealing their first piece of hardware named Spectacles. I'm struggling to understand the point of some sunglasses with a video camera attached to them, but surely it can't be just because I'm not a millennial...
For years, developed countries have accepted and almost forgotten about the privilege of Internet access – while 4 billion people across developing nations live without it.
Well, here we are... The fifth anniversary of New Rising Media. It's been a journey quite like that of a TV sitcom relationship - falling in and out of love with this place.
There have been highs and lows, as the landscape of blogging has changed. And just like any birthday celebration, I want to reminisce in the history of things around here.
Unless you've been living under a rock, Apple launched their AirPods... Turns out there's a lot wrong with them!
While a robot may never be capable of feeling emotion, artist Erica Scourti’s bot “Empathy Deck” has the potential to pretend well enough to offer comforting help.