Hello,

We noticed you're browsing in private or incognito mode.

To continue reading this article, please exit incognito mode or log in.

Not a subscriber? Subscribe now for unlimited access to online articles.

Watching Over You

It was the brainchild of a retired police officer-a coin-sized, implantable global positioning system (GPS) transceiver that could help authorities locate an abducted child. The cop patented his idea in 1997, and now Palm Beach, Fla.-based “e-business provider” Applied Digital Solutions (ADS) has acquired rights to the somewhat Orwellian invention, which the company has dubbed “Digital Angel.” Equipped with both GPS and biological monitoring capabilities, the Digital Angel could, in theory, not only find a lost child but also alert a local hospital when an elderly patient experiences cardiac arrest while at home. ADS intends for the device to derive its power from normal muscle movements, eliminating the need for a battery.

ADS is working on a $130 million deal to acquire Destron Fearing-a South St. Paul, Minn., maker of identification devices for pets, livestock and wildlife-and merge that company into a Digital Angel.net subsidiary. Preliminary testing of a Digital Angel prototype could begin by year’s end.

Want more award-winning journalism? Subscribe to MIT Technology Review.
  • Print + All Access Digital {! insider.prices.print_digital !}* Best Value

    {! insider.display.menuOptionsLabel !}

    The best of MIT Technology Review in print and online, plus unlimited access to our online archive, an ad-free web experience, discounts to MIT Technology Review events, and The Download delivered to your email in-box each weekday.

    See details+

    12-month subscription

    Unlimited access to all our daily online news and feature stories

    6 bi-monthly issues of print + digital magazine

    10% discount to MIT Technology Review events

    Access to entire PDF magazine archive dating back to 1899

    Ad-free website experience

    The Download: newsletter delivered daily

  • All Access Digital {! insider.prices.digital !}*

    {! insider.display.menuOptionsLabel !}

    The digital magazine, plus unlimited site access, our online archive, and The Download delivered to your email in-box each weekday.

    See details+

    12-month subscription

    Unlimited access to all our daily online news and feature stories

    Digital magazine (6 bi-monthly issues)

    Access to entire PDF magazine archive dating back to 1899

    The Download: newsletter delivered daily

  • Print Subscription {! insider.prices.print_only !}*

    {! insider.display.menuOptionsLabel !}

    Six print issues per year plus The Download delivered to your email in-box each weekday.

    See details+

    12-month subscription

    Print magazine (6 bi-monthly issues)

    The Download: newsletter delivered daily

/3
You've read of three free articles this month. for unlimited online access. You've read of three free articles this month. for unlimited online access. This is your last free article this month. for unlimited online access. You've read all your free articles this month. for unlimited online access. You've read of three free articles this month. for more, or for unlimited online access. for two more free articles, or for unlimited online access.