RealSnailMail With RFID-Chipped Snails
RealSnailMail is a performance art piece currently under development by Boredom Research. The intent is to harness the power of gastropods to deliver email messages across short distances using special waterproof RFID tags glued to their shells.
(Real Snail Mail from Boredom Research)
In the above illustration, a typical messenger snail has been chipped by using a waterproof glue to affix an RFID tag to its shell. The project will focus on a suitable snail environment (like a fish tank) with several RFID readers installed at different spots.
The project begins with a website that accepts short messages from people on the Internet. These messages are placed into a queue for snail mail delivery.
As a tagged snail first crawls into the range of a reader, the reader will pull a message from the queue, and encode a message onto the chip. The snail then oozes away and eventually comes within range of another reader; at this point, the message is read and transmitted, and another message is taken from the queue for delivery. The very slow speed of snails and flat bottomed tank should eliminate the read problems associated with RFID tag collision.
In creating this project, Boredom Research hopes to contrast the lightspeed artificial world of RFID and Internet technology with the natural world.
"...These contrasting images of a snail moving at snails pace and the promised efficiency and speed increase of RFID tagged products, being rushed to their destination, converged to become snail mail or 'real snail mail'."
Science fiction writer Frank Herbert was also fascinated with the contrast between the artificial technological creations of people and the organic world. See this article on the distrans, a method of communicating with bats over a distance in his 1965 novel Dune.
If this performance art project caught your interest, check out this real-life experiment using pigeons to deliver digital information - Digital Squab Line (DSL) Has High Bandwidth, a project to demonstrate the high data transmission speeds possible with carrier pigeon delivery in Israel.
Read more about RealSnailMail; found this one thanks to Reg.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 10/11/2006)
Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.
| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion ( 2 )
of related articles:
What is RFID?
How RFID Works
How is RFID used inside a living body?
What can RFID be used for?
Is RFID Technology Secure and Private?
Are There Concerns About How RFID Will Be Used? (Update)
Next-Generation Uses of RFID?
What Are Zombie RFID Tags?
RFID Information Technology Articles
Problems With RFID
Advantages of RFID Versus Barcodes
Contactless Credit Card Advantages
Contactless Credit Card Disadvantages
Related News Stories -
Prufrock The Newest Boring Machine
'It sounds to me as though you had invented a kind of metal earthworm...'
Stratuscent Electronic Nose
'It's picking up diphenyl compounds and tetra hydrocarbons.' - Michael Crichton, 1985.
Smart Contact Lenses Charges With 3D Printed Antenna
'He realized that it was not quite a clear lens.' - Vernor Vinge, 2001.
Physicist Inspired By SciFi And Seeing Back In Time
'Here is the chronoscope... Scansion depends upon a special curved field...'
Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!)
is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for
the Invention Category that interests
you, the Glossary, the Invention
Timeline, or see what's New.
Prototype Robotic Masseur Has The Touch
'The automatic massager began to fumble gently...'
Trash Sorting AI Robot Presages Skynet, Thanks A Lot
Keep your head down, Kyle Reese.
Electric Unicycle Is A Tumblebug
'A tumblebug does not give a man dignity, since it is about the size and shape of a kitchen stool, gyro-stabilized on a single wheel.'
Another Soil Bacterium Eats Plastic
'...the plastic was dissolved before his eyes.'
reLive Memorial Come Back As A Tree
'It was time - time to go again. She touched the leaf. She was wanted.'
Engineered Living Building Materials
'... it was the cheapest building material known.'
Draw Circuits With Conductive Ink
'It's rewiring things... squeezing silver toothpaste in a ribbon along the printed circuitry.'
Arkangel: Automatic Visual Censoring
It's whatever the Party says it is, Winston.
NASA Competition To Design A Bucket Drum For Moon Mining
'There was a heap of discarded ore where Grantline had carted and dumped it...'
Medical Assistant Robot May Roam The Halls Of Hospitals
'Take care, sir.'
No Autonomous Trucks? Wait, What?
'...it resembled conventional human-operated transportation vehicles, but with one exception -- there was no driver's cabin.'
As Big As A Biltong - World's Largest 3D Printer
'Huge and old, it squatted in the center of the settlement park... On the concrete platform... lay a heap of originals to be duplicated.'
Drones Used To Smuggle Contraband Into Prison
'And some mega chip inside so it never runs into anything and no cop ever sees it.'
Are You Ready For Commercial Space Travel?
'It wasn't a pleasant trip; it was a miserable trip on a miserable, undersized tourist rocket...'
Amplified Nerves Lead To Mind-Controlled Prosthetic Hands
'The electrical impulses generated by your brain command everything...'
FlyCroTug Micro Drones Do Heavy Lifting
'It extended three of its tiny arms sideways to lock on...'
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories