Tattoo Technology

 

Getting a tattoo is usually a special event for a person, often commemorating something important, or a mile stone of sorts. From black and grey, to full on tattoos consisting of over 25 colours, like myself, a tattoo can come in all shapes and sizes.

But, what if I told you that you could use a tattoo to control your phone, or use that same phone to listen to a tattoo?

Well, good news, folks! You can do both!

In April of 2017, Nate Siggard created the first playable tattoo that you can listen to with the use of his now popular app, Skin Motion.  With this success he created a company with the same name and created the now popular Soundwave Tattoos. The idea is that you get the sound wave image of the sound that you want tattooed onto you by a specialist. With the help of the Skin Motion app, you can then play it back as many times as you want.

Another interesting, and slightly strange, new tech coming out in the tattoo world is Duo Skin. Created by MIT Media Lab and Microsoft, a custom, functional device attaches to a person’s skin and can interact with your technology. The way that it is made is the design is created in any design software, then sent out and printed with a film cutter. This is then traced on to tattoo paper and layered on with gold leaf (used as a conductive material), where the electronics are placed. Then you apply, or “install” this onto your skin.  Some of the designs can even have LED lights put into them to enhance the look of the tattoo. There are three different types of uses for this: input devise which act like a track pad or controller; output display which changes colour based on your temperature or emotion; or communication devices, which include NFC tags so you can read data with your skin.

There are many more advances coming out in the tattoo industry, including helping in the medicine field and longer lasting temporary tattoos, because commitment is hard.

Will you take any of these new advances into consideration when you plan your next tattoo?

For more information check out these links:

https://skinmotion.com/

http://duoskin.media.mit.edu/

Resources to Better Your Coding

If you’re like me, you’d like a little advice and guidance when it comes to improving your coding skills. Here I have compiled a list of a few popular resources to help you code better in the future:

  1. Scratch

Scratch is aimed at a younger audience about 8-16 years old, but don’t let that deter you if you are a bit older.  Scratch has a bright, colourful website that is easy to manipulate and navigate; which makes this a great starting point for anyone. You can visit them create and explore pages where you can learn to animate, make music, create basic games and many other activities to develop your skills.

  1. Code. org

Code.org provides tools for grades K-12 for some of the largest school districts in the United States. Some of it’s supporters are Microsoft, Facebook and Google. Annually, code.org organizes an “hour of code” which engages 10% of all student’s in the world. They offer tools for educators and much like Scratch, they have activities that the user can create with code.

  1. Codeacadamy.com

Codeacadamy.com offers a large online community where a user can go to discuss problems that others may be experiencing. Code academy is an education company that seeks to rebuild how things are taught. They offer help with the commonly used languages, such as: HTML/CSS, Python, Ruby, Java and many more popular languages.

  1. W3Schools.com

W3schools.com is an absolute must have recourse for a beginner, or even a veteran programmer. It gives lessons, tips, and a vast knowledge of coding for all levels expertise. You can choose from various types of programming languages, just like the other examples. They offer a bit of “try it yourself” where you can test what code they provide for you. This way, you can see what works and what doesn’t and apply it to the work you are doing.

  1. Other resources

I use an app called SoloLearn. It is useful because it gives small “drill” like activities or quizzes and it’s easy to use. I use it when I have a few extra moments. I also use Coding for Dummies. It sounds silly, but it has helped me a lot and really breaks down what is what.

Some of these sources are repetitive, however, you can’t get better at something if you don’t practice. And practice is just reputation by a different name!

 

Resources:

https://scratch.mit.edu/

https://code.org/

https://www.codecademy.com/

https://www.w3schools.com/

The Ultimate Test

 

Ah, yes to determine if you are a human or a robot cleverly disguised with what the humans think is “skin”.  The topic of determining who is who and what is what is common in science fiction. Often painted in a bleak dystopian future, where society is dark and filled with dim neon lights; or been destroyed by an atomic bomb or two; the thought of Artificial Technology being an enraged enemy trying to destroy all that is flesh and bone. Because robotics and AI technology are coming up as a big society game changer, it is addressed in different forms. From novels to movies, and even video games, it’s touching our lives in hypothetical ways on real fears.

In movies and novels like Do Robots Dream of Electric Sheep? (Blade Runner, 1982) the Void-Kampff test is developed to determine human from machine, or Replicant in this case.  Using questions to stimulate a strong emotional response. This theory of tough emotional questions is also applied in a more recent story line of Fallout 4, a recently released video game in 2015. Unable to detect the difference between human and robot, one community develops a test like the Voigt-Kampff test, calling it the “Safe Test”; asking the visitor to answer the questions as honestly as possible. When all is said and done, they really are not any closer to determining if you are a robot or not.

So will we one day be this dimly lit dystopian future, searching for rogue robots or questioning our neighbours about their authenticity? If one day we were to have indistinguishable humanoid machines around us, what sort of tests will be devised to know what’s what; or will we even need one? What sort of questions does one need to ask for successful determination of human or machine? Emerging technology of computer chips in humans, cybernetic limbs and prosthetics are becoming a new frontier for us humans. Do we eventually categorize these people in the same as these AI?  Where is that line of “no longer human” drawn? Indeed, more questions about our morals as a society may be put to the test, rather than the machines.

So when asked:

“You are approached by a frenzied scientist who yells, ‘ I’m going to put my quantum harmonizer in your photonic resonation chamber!’

What’s your response?” (Fallout 4, 2015)