A View from Mara E. Vatz

Mind or Microsoft?

CNET reports that “Microsoft has been awarded a patent for using human skin as a power conduit and data bus.” This means that your PDA (in one hand) can send a phone number to the cell phone (in your other…

  • June 23, 2004

CNET reports that “Microsoft has been awarded a patent for using human skin as a power conduit and data bus.” This means that your PDA (in one hand) can send a phone number to the cell phone (in your other hand) without any effort on your part. (Here’s the patent.) With a “personal area network,” or PAN, Microsoft aims to reduce the redundancy of carrying multiple mobile devices, many of which have overlapping hardware, software, and data. Eventually, all your data could be stored in a chip (embedded discreetly in an earring) and retrieved at will by any mobile device in your posession. This concept reminds me of a process most people used to use–which involved storing a phone number in our mind, transmitting it via the nervous system to our hand (either one!), and dialing the phone ourselves.

Uh oh–you've read all of your free articles for this month.

Insider Premium
$179.95/yr US PRICE

Want more award-winning journalism? Subscribe to Insider Basic.
  • Insider Basic {! insider.prices.basic !}*

    {! insider.display.menuOptionsLabel !}

    Six issues of our award winning magazine and daily delivery of The Download, our newsletter of what’s important in technology and innovation.

    See details+

    What's Included

    Bimonthly magazine delivery and unlimited 24/7 access to MIT Technology Review’s website

    The Download: our daily newsletter of what's important in technology and innovation

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