Chances are you have your mobile phone in your pocket right now – or if not in your pocket, at least within arm’s reach. Well, what if your mobile was so close to you it was actually in your arm?!
The notion of technology being integrated with the human body has been long immortalised in films. From the Six Million Dollar Man in 1973, all the way up to the microchip embedded in Jason Bourne’s arm. But would you actually want technology inside you, even if it did make your life easier?
Social Media Implant – Like a Piercing?
Many of us would be reluctant to have technology embedded deep within our skin, but as tattoos and piercings remain popular forms of body modification, perhaps this could be a good route to go. A patent by Nokia alludes to a thin fabric that attaches to your skin and vibrates when you get a message – it has been dubbed an ‘Electronic Tattoo’!
But if even the thought of attaching something to the outside of your skin makes you squeamish, perhaps this next idea may suit you better. Skinput is a system looking to bypass the public fear of becoming bionic guinea pigs by using a system of projectors to project control panels onto your arm, and using a camera to track where you touch it. It can even distinguish if your finger is touching a button, or just hovering above the controls!
The field of biotechnology has been pushed forward by our quest to equip the human body with replacements in one way or another, and could be used to aid the rehabilitation of people with injuries.
Would You Choose to Modify Your Own Body For Nothing More Than Increased Practicality?
Some of you may be aware of the Phantom Ring Syndrome, when you think that your phone is ringing or vibrating but when you check it nothing has happened. Well, it would be hard to miss a call if that vibration was coming from inside you.
Conventional mobile phones rely on these external alerts to tell you when you have a notification, but with a system such as Nokia’s Electronic Tattoo -patent, the alert would come internally. This eliminates the need for ringtones completely. Imagine a world without the constant ringing of phones on public transport!
Of course, the main opposition to the Social Media Implant technology will be whether it becomes socially acceptable. Those who are against body modification would be likely to object.
Other moral complications caused by the technology, would be the age that you would be allowed to have an implant. A whole generation has grown up with social media from a young age, so enforcing an age restriction could leave this generation feeling a step behind. This would also greatly affect the kind of apps created.
In addition, what would happen when an upgrade was released? Software updates would be fine, but there are always going to be hardware updates too. You would have to have companies running a dedicated managed server to offer technical support for all the people that had accidentally wiped their implant’s memory when they got too close to a magnet!
These implants couldn’t just be popped back in their box and sent back to the factory, and there is always the possibility that the owner’s batteries would run out before the implants! There are a lot of hurdles to overcome before we see such an intrusive application of technology in action, but the main question is: would you have one?
Would You Have a Social Media Implant?
How do you feel about the idea of having mobile phones or social media implanted in your body? Scary or cool? Let us know in the comments.