Wednesday, May 07, 2008

New Digital Tattoos Use Blood as Ink

The art of tattoo returns to the year 2000B.C, have been always used as a form of self representation; a visual language communicating personality and status, and been ever in a permanent development of tools, means, purposes, meanings and different body location concepts.
Till finally the merging of technology and body art has began. At the recent one-day-conference of Greener Gadgets Design Competition that usually features the key representatives from some of the largest consumer electronics companies in the world, innovators from academic thinktanks, members of startups focused on renewable energy, and some of the leading minds in the word of sustainable design and business. An engineer demonstrated a subcutaneously implanted touch-screen that operates as a cell phone display, with the potential for 3G video calls that are visible just underneath the skin.

The 2×4 inch Digital Tattoo Interface is a Bluetooth device made of thin, flexible silicon and silicone. It’s inserted through a small incision as a tightly tolled tube, and then it unfurls beneath the skin to align between skin and muscle. Two small tubes on the device through the same incision are attached to an artery and a vein to allow the blood to flow to a coin-sized blood fuel cell that converts glucose and oxygen to electricity. After the blood flows in from the artery to the fuel cell, it flows out again through the vein.
On both the top and bottom surfaces of the display is a matching matrix of field-producing pixels. That enables a touch-screen control through the skin. The display uses tiny microscopic spheres, somewhat similar to tattoo ink.

As long as your blood’s flowing the device is always on, the tattoo communicates wirelessly to other Bluetooth devices both in the outside world and within the same body. But you can always turn the display off and on by pushing a small dot on the skin. And when the phone rings all you have to do is to turn the display back on, then the tattoo will come to life as a digital video of the caller. And when the call ends, the tattoo disappears.
Some concerns have grown about if the digital tattoo could be harmful with unhealthy effects. But again it has proven otherwise of health benefits for it also continually monitors for many blood disorders, alerting the person of a health problem.
Now can you imagine if this tattoo been distributed in the markets?


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