Wednesday, April 20, 2005

A Whole New World

As stated previously, Alias has been one of my guilty pleasures lately. My life is very sad at the moment.

Although sad, the show has gotten me interested in new technologies that the government and other powerful bodies implement in the realm of security. Most people know of “common” biometric scans such as retinal, voice, or fingerprint verifications of identity. But I was shocked to recently learn of a biometric scan that analyzes your hand for the mapping of your veins and arteries. WTF?! That is crazy. What will they think of next?

This also sparks a related topic on the usage of currency. With the technology boom, everything is becoming automated. Every place I know where you can buy something takes credit/debit cards (even fast food restaurants), thus eliminating the need to carry actual cash. People can pay their bills online and manage their money online as well. We have things like direct deposit; special cards that have a balance on them for riding the subway, going through tolls, or even playing video games. The options are staggering with more to come as we progress into the future. Money now floats in cyberspace instead of jingling in your pocket.

Plausibly within my lifetime, the notion of biometric scans might crossover into the realm of currency in which your bank/money is linked to your retina, voice, fingerprint, veins, or some other authentication method to be invented. Life would be free of wallets since the need to carry identification, credit/debit cards, and actual cash would be obsolete.

The ideas and possibilities are both frightening and fascinating. But the thing I find sickly amusing is that victims of identity theft would be highly noticeable upon physical appearance. The market for glass eyes, manufactured voice boxes, plastic/reconstructive surgeries, and prosthetic limbs might potentially boom exponentially. Maybe now is the time to invest in those stocks.

Tune in for another episode of Sick, Sad World.
Weblog Commenting and Trackback by