Flexible electronics are creating all sorts of interesting new ideas. Some of them are clever, some of them are so-so, and some of them are creepy as hell. Like, oh, the lie detector Google can stick to your throat.
Specifically, this is revealed in a patent from Motorola Mobility, Google’s cell phone division. It’s for a device called an “electronic skin tattoo”, essentially a thin, flexible device that can be discreetly attached to your throat. Google has all sorts of benign ideas as to how you might use this; medical monitoring, a microphone on your throat to improve sound reproduction in loud areas, and so on. One neat idea? Opening an app by humming a few bars of a song.
So far, pretty straightforward. But then there’s this…
“Optionally, the electronic skin tattoo can further include a galvanic skin response detector to detect skin resistance of a user. It is contemplated that a user that may be nervous or engaging in speaking falsehoods may exhibit different galvanic skin response than a more confident, truth telling individual.”
Did we mention the patent doesn’t include any method of removal? Of course, this is probably along the lines of a temporary tattoo; you slap it on like a band-aid and pull it off when you don’t want to have your phone riding herd on your neck, and there are ideas like a collar or a piece of jewelry that performs similar functions.
And this isn’t the only socially awkward idea Google has had for it, either: The patent filing includes speculation that you could include a selectable display that others could touch. You know, because it’s fun to go around at parties, poking other people in the throat.
It seems likely that this will be a lot less intrusive than it sounds, at least when it’s first introduced. On the other hand, we also wish Google would maybe not treat cyberpunk novels as shopping lists. How about a cure for cancer or something, guys? We could go for a cancer cure.
(Image courtesy of liquidnight on Flickr)
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