High Tech, Under the Skin

RFID Implant

High Tech, Under the Skin By ANNA BAHNEY Published: February 2, 2006

This Blog post is a bit of a blast from the past, but some of you may have not seen this article yet. Back when the first few people were implanting RFID chips into their hands a flurry of articles came out. I must have given seven or eight interviews myself to reporters and passed along just as many to Amal that I didn’t talk to. I know he gave dozens of interviews and it was the same with the other guys like Mikey Sklar. Amal is the author of RFID Toys book we sell. The starter kit with the book is still one of our best sellers.

Anna’s New York Times article was one of the best written on the subject. Many other reporters just couldn’t resist resist dragging the topic down to titles like, “The cyborgs are coming!” or lending a voice to those mark of the beast nut cases.

For those of you in a time crunch here’s the best part of the article, it’s the part where she talks to me :)

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At least one supplier of RFID chips, Matt Trossen, owner of PhidgetsUSA Trossen Robotics in Westchester, Ill., is skeptical about the ultimate appeal of implants. “Think about how many people have never gotten their ears pierced,” he said. “A lot of people just don’t want to stick themselves.”

Mr. Trossen sells his chips to people who use them for education and robotics and his Web site includes a disclaimer stating that the company does not advise consumers to implant them in humans or animals because the tags are not sold as medical products and are not sanitized.

He said that one could use an RFID chip just as easily for turning on computers and opening doors by putting it on a key chain or card. Although he could see a day when society would deem it acceptable for babies to be tagged at birth with chips bearing their Social Security number, now the technology for making the chips useful for home applications is beyond most people’s reach.

“For a kid to say, ‘Mom and Dad I need this implant,’ ” Mr. Trossen said, “it would be like me running out and buying an atom collider. It is a nice conversation piece, but I can’t really use it.”

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And there goes my 15 minutes… thank you for having me.

Matt

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