by Michael Snyder
June 2, 2013
Would you wear an electronic tattoo if
you couldn’t log on to the Internet without one?
That may sound crazy to many of you, but
the technology for such a system already exists.
RFID tattoos have
for quite some time, and they are already being used on animals.
But now an entirely new generation of
electronic tattoos are being developed that can monitor your vital
signs, interact with your mobile phone and even communicate directly
with your mind. These new electronic tattoos are thinner than a
human hair, and they are going to fundamentally transform the way
that we think about human identification.
Right now, the Internet is being
absolutely plagued by hackers and identity theft has become a
multi-billion dollar enterprise.
It is becoming increasingly difficult to
determine if someone is actually who they say that they are. And as
even more of our commerce gets conducted through the Internet,
identity security is going to be absolutely critical. Without a
doubt, there will continue to be a push for more secure forms of
identification than we have today.
But there is also a very dark side to
this kind of technology.
What if someday a tyrannical
government decides to make a permanent electronic tattoo for
identification purposes mandatory for all citizens?
What if you are not able to buy,
sell, get a job, have a bank account or log on to the
Internet without “proper identification”?
What if the price for receiving
your tattoo is to swear absolute allegiance to that
The truth is that technology is always a
It always brings with it the promise of
progress, but it also always has a dark side that could potentially
be abused. The latest generation of electronic tattoos is quite
They are called “Biostamps”, and they
were originally developed for medical purposes.
However, as a recent
Daily Mail article detailed, Motorola believes that these
Biostamps could potentially replace passwords and make the Internet
a much more secure place…
MC10 originally designed the
tattoos, called Biostamps, to help medical teams measure the
health of their patients either remotely, or without the need
for large expensive machinery.
Motorola claims that the circuits,
which also contain antennae and built-in sensors, could be
adapted to work with mobile phones and tablets.
The mobile devices could then be
used to confirm the owner’s identity and log them in to accounts
This would prevent thieves and other
people from being able to access a phone, or individual apps on
the device, if it is stolen or lost.
These Biostamps are extremely, extremely
thin. As I mentioned above, they are actually thinner than a human
The following description of Biostamps
was taken from a
Wired Magazine article…
The development takes wearable
technology to the extreme, designed as a non-invasive diagnostic
sensor that could be used to measure hydration, activity, and
even infant temperature.
It bonds to the skin, somewhat like
a temporary tattoo, flexing and bending in sync with your skin
the way you wish a Band-Aid would.
How? Researchers at the University
of Illinois, Dalian University of Technology in China, and the
University of California at San Diego made it really, really
With a thickness of 0.8 micrometers
at the widest - around one-thousandth the diameter of a human
hair - the thin mesh of silicon actually nestles in to the
grooves and creases in your skin, even the ones too small to
Being small helps, but it’s also
important that the silicon is laid out in a serpentine pattern
and bonded to a soft rubber substrate, allowing the stiff
material to flex, a little bit like an accordion.
But why would such technology be needed
on the Internet? After all, don’t our passwords work just fine?
Actually, we are rapidly getting to the
point where passwords are a joke.
Hackers are becoming so sophisticated
that they can crack even very long passwords with
A team of hackers, commissioned by
technology website Ars Technica, recently managed to crack more
than 14,800 supposedly random passwords – from a list of 16,449
– as part of a hacking experiment.
The success rate for each hacker
ranged from 62 percent to 90 percent, and the hacker who cracked
90 percent of hashed passwords did so in less than an hour using
a computer cluster.
The hackers also managed to crack
16-character passwords including ‘qeadzcwrsfxv1331′.
Were you alarmed when you read that? I
know that I was.
Obviously we need a better system.
But personally I never plan to wear an
electronic tattoo. That crosses the line in a big way.
Unfortunately, this kind of technology is going to be heavily pushed
in the years ahead.
Wired magazine, even the U.S. military is devoting resources to
developing electronic tattoo technology…
In its ongoing quest to measure
every aspect of U.S. troops’ physiology, Pentagon researchers
are looking to develop a durable, unobtrusive device that can
track the body’s physical response to stress.
Military scientists believe that
using the device - preferably a tattoo - to track heart-rate,
temperature or bio-electric response during various training
situations will help them crack the code of combat fatigue.
Another significant trend is the
development of electronic devices that we can control directly with
our minds. In the past, such technology was the stuff of science
fiction novels, but now even the
New York Times is writing about it…
Soon, we might interact with our
smartphones and computers simply by using our minds.
In a couple of years, we could be
turning on the lights at home just by thinking about it, or
sending an e-mail from our smartphone without even pulling the
device from our pocket. Farther into the future, your robot
assistant will appear by your side with a glass of lemonade
simply because it knows you are thirsty.
Researchers in Samsung’s Emerging
Technology Lab are testing tablets that can be controlled by
your brain, using a cap that resembles a ski hat studded with
monitoring electrodes, the MIT Technology Review, the science
and technology journal of the Massachusetts Institute of
reported this month.
The technology, often called a brain
computer interface, was conceived to enable people with
paralysis and other disabilities to interact with computers or
control robotic arms, all by simply thinking about such actions.
Before long, these technologies
could well be in consumer electronics, too.
So what if you could combine the two
trends discussed above?
What if an electronic tattoo would allow
you to operate your tablet computer, send an email, fly a drone or
even “speak” telepathically using only your mind?
Actually, researchers are already
working on such technologies.
The following comes from a recent
by Charles Q. Choi…
But brain implants are invasive
technologies, probably of use only to people in medical need of
them. Instead, electrical engineer
Todd Coleman at the University of California at San Diego is
devising noninvasive means of controlling machines via the mind,
techniques virtually everyone might be able to use.
His team is developing wireless
flexible electronics one can apply on the forehead just like
temporary tattoos to read brain activity.
“We want something we can use in
the coffee shop to have fun,” Coleman says.
The devices are less than 100
microns thick, the average diameter of a human hair.
They consist of circuitry embedded
in a layer or rubbery polyester that allow them to stretch, bend
and wrinkle. They are barely visible when placed on skin, making
them easy to conceal from others.
The devices can detect electrical
signals linked with brain waves, and incorporate solar cells for
power and antennas that allow them to communicate wirelessly or
Other elements can be added as well,
like thermal sensors to monitor skin temperature and light
detectors to analyze blood oxygen levels.
You can read that rest of that article
right here. Some of the things that our scientists are working
on right now are absolutely mind blowing.
We live at a time when technology is
advancing at an exponential rate. Sometimes I have a very hard time
believing some of the technological advances that I am writing
about. The world is going to look very, very different ten years
But will the changes be for the better?
Technology is advancing at a faster pace than we have ever seen
before, but at the same time the world is becoming an increasingly
Could technology that enables us
to interact with our environment using our minds actually be
turned around and used to control our minds by a future
Could technology that helps us
identify one another on the Internet someday be used to
brand us all like cattle and force all of humanity into a
dark system of control and enslavement?
Don’t think that such a dystopian
society can never exist in our modern world. Freedoms and liberties
are being taken away from people
all over the globe right now even
though things are still relatively stable.
So what is going to happen when the
world goes crazy someday and the planet is absolutely ravaged by
economic collapse, pandemics, crime, rioting, natural disasters and
That is something to think about.