Régine Debatty blogs on we-make-money-not-art.com, contributes to several European design and art magazines and lectures internationally about the way artists, hackers and interaction designers (mis)use technology.
Meghan Neal: Google's Internet of Things Now Includes Your Body
Source: „Google announced its latest moonshot project yesterday, and like most of the ideas cooking in the secretive GoogleX lab, it's crazy futuristic. The company is developing smart contact lenses with sensors that monitor glucose levels for diabetics. That's right, a tiny wireless electronic chip attached to your eyeball.
The tiny chip and a mini glucose sensor are embedded in the contact lens material. Google describes "chips and sensors so small they look like bits of glitter, and an antenna thinner than a human hair." The device, which sits to the side of the pupil and iris so you can still see, is powered by harnessing energy from radio frequency waves. To send alerts, tiny LED lights that could light up to indicate that glucose levels are too high or low. The future is now.
Impressive as the technology is, Google took care in its blog post announcement to stress the project's health implications, not the hardware. Diabetes is a growing problem, with some 382 million people diagnosed worldwide, and one that's very difficult and time-consuming for patients to manage. Researchers have been looking for a better way to monitor glucose other than blood, and tears are a promising solution, if you can collect them. That's where contact lens sensors come in.”