Smart Diapers, a Lie Detector in Your Mouth and Elon Musk's Crazy-Fast Way to Travel
Here, we've collected some of the most interesting examples of far-out technologies. From smart diapers that can detect a child's ailments to a sensor implanted in your mouth that can tell if you've been overeating or smoking cigarettes even though you're supposed to be quitting.
And, yes, they're all for real. Some are in varying phases of development but keep your eyes peeled for how these gadgets could shake things up.
Diapers that give parents real-time health info on their babies.
Talk about the next phase in wearable tech. A New York City-based startup called Pixie Scientific has created a diaper that it says can detect possible urinary tract infections, kidney dysfunctions and dehydration in babies -- all by using sensors to analyze what junior leaves behind.
A system that scans your face -- not your credit card -- at the check-out line.
Leave your cash and credit cards at home. But do make sure your face is looking fine. A Finnish startup called Uniqul has created a payment system that is built on facial-recognition technology, without a need for cash or credit cards.
Translation: This thing will let you pay with your face.
An outrageous way to travel between Los Angeles and San Francisco in just 30 minutes.
Tech entrepreneur Elon Musk has released the initial plans for his much-anticipated Hyperloop -- a high-speed way for people to travel between nearby cities. The basic idea: Transport people via aluminum pods enclosed inside of steel tubes. Whether or not he or anyone else can pull it off is another thing altogether.
Elon Musk and His Outrageous Idea to Travel Between Los Angeles and San Francisco in Just 30 Minutes
Elon Musk's Hyperloop Vision: High-Speed Pods in Steel Tubes
Why California Can't Be Home to the Hyperloop
Why the EPA and FAA Are Killing Musk's Better Idea
Using gold particles to treat movement disorders.
Engineers are working on a way to combine tiny pieces of gold, called nanoparticles, with an elastic polymer to create a stretchable, conductive material. The gold-polyurethane material could someday be used in the form of implantable electrodes in the brain for treating movement disorders or in the heart to help regulate cardiac activity.
Yes, it's shiny and playfully stretchy, but the intention is to improve your health.
Disney's big idea for making motion-controlled devices more immersive.
Disney Research in Pittsburgh is developing a new technology called Aireal that would enable users of hands free, motion-controlled devices such as the Microsoft Kinect or Leap Motion to actually feel the virtual objects they're manipulating. So, if you touch or hit an object virtually, you should be able to have some time of real-world reaction to further engage you in the game or program you're using. The technology still seems a ways off but, still, a pretty cool idea.
A Bluetooth-enabled device that keeps tabs on valuable items.
Tile is a Bluetooth-enabled tag that users can attach to valuable items. With the Tile app, users can locate said items should they mysteriously go missing. Keys, wallets, tablets, children -- you name it. This can be particularly awesome for busy entrepreneurs and others who can be just a little forgetful.
A device that can read your vitals all by a simple touch to your forehead.
A new gadget called Scanadu Scout promises to act as a handheld scanner that can read your vital health signs -- such as temperature, heart rate and more -- in just a matter of moments after touching it to your forehead. The device then connects wirelessly to an app on your smartphone to provide you with analysis of the data it collected.
For all of you Star Trek geeks, it's sort of like the tricorder scanner used by the crew of the Starship Enterprise.
A smartphone operating system like you've never seen before.
The people behind the Ubuntu Edge call it "the next generation of personal computing: smartphone and desktop PC in one state-of-the-art device." It essentially can function on any high-speed wireless network, run all your favorite Android apps and double as a fully functional computer when connected to a monitor and keyboard. Crazy, right?
With a week left to go on its Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign, the Ubuntu Edge is still far off its $32 million goal, but it has managed to raise $10.2 million from more than 20,000 funders. That's impressive.
Samsung's plan to make mobile hands free.
Forget motion control. Or even voice-activation technology. Samsung is said to be testing a tablet that users can control with their brains. The tech giant is working with an assistant professor of electrical engineering at the University of Texas, Dallas, to develop a way for a person to do things like launch an app, play a song or power up or down a Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 simply by thinking about it.
Right now, that means wearing a cap on your head that's covered in EEG-monitoring electrodes, so this technology is also a ways off.
A sensor in your mouth that can tell if you've been lying.
Chew on this: Scientists at the National Taiwan University in Taipei have developed a sensor that can be placed into a tooth -- whether through a crown or even a cavity -- and collect data about the person it's implanted in. Data such as how much time he or she spends chewing, drinking, speaking, coughing or smoking.
With technology like this, you better watch your mouth.