RealSnailMail With RFID-Chipped Snails

RealSnailMail is a performance art piece currently under development by Boredom Research. The intent is to harness the power of gastropods to deliver email messages across short distances using special waterproof RFID tags glued to their shells.


(Real Snail Mail from Boredom Research)

In the above illustration, a typical messenger snail has been chipped by using a waterproof glue to affix an RFID tag to its shell. The project will focus on a suitable snail environment (like a fish tank) with several RFID readers installed at different spots.

The project begins with a website that accepts short messages from people on the Internet. These messages are placed into a queue for snail mail delivery.

As a tagged snail first crawls into the range of a reader, the reader will pull a message from the queue, and encode a message onto the chip. The snail then oozes away and eventually comes within range of another reader; at this point, the message is read and transmitted, and another message is taken from the queue for delivery. The very slow speed of snails and flat bottomed tank should eliminate the read problems associated with RFID tag collision.

In creating this project, Boredom Research hopes to contrast the lightspeed artificial world of RFID and Internet technology with the natural world.

"...These contrasting images of a snail moving at snails pace and the promised efficiency and speed increase of RFID tagged products, being rushed to their destination, converged to become snail mail or 'real snail mail'."

Science fiction writer Frank Herbert was also fascinated with the contrast between the artificial technological creations of people and the organic world. See this article on the distrans, a method of communicating with bats over a distance in his 1965 novel Dune.

If this performance art project caught your interest, check out this real-life experiment using pigeons to deliver digital information - Digital Squab Line (DSL) Has High Bandwidth, a project to demonstrate the high data transmission speeds possible with carrier pigeon delivery in Israel.

Read more about RealSnailMail; found this one thanks to Reg.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 10/11/2006)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 2 )

Index of related articles:

What is RFID?
How RFID Works
How is RFID used inside a living body?
What can RFID be used for?
Is RFID Technology Secure and Private?
Are There Concerns About How RFID Will Be Used? (Update)
Next-Generation Uses of RFID?
What Are Zombie RFID Tags?
RFID Information Technology Articles
Problems With RFID
Advantages of RFID Versus Barcodes
RFID Glossary
Contactless Credit Card Advantages
Contactless Credit Card Disadvantages

Related News Stories - (" Engineering ")

Zero Mass 'Vaporators' Pull Drinking Water From The Air
Did you think of Star Wars?

Integrated Circuits Printed Right Onto Fabric!
'...a shirt that displayed email on its sleeve. - Margaret Atwood, 2003.

Drones Guided By The Mind Alone
'His treads left no tracks upon the floor...' - Clifford Simak, 1961.

3D Printed Artificial Muscles Are Stronger Than Yours
Bots don't need to work out.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

Orwell's Memory Hole Looms Larger Thanks To Nvidia
'All history was a palimpsest, scraped clean and reinscribed exactly as often as was necessary.'

Pipefish Robot Checks Pipes Cheap
Just like capsule endoscopy, but for bigger pipes. That go underground.

Nifty New SDS Space Debris Sensor For ISS
'Their radars... could easily pinpoint the debris of the early Space Age.'

NanoRacks Space Station Module Concept Validated
Space junk into space architecture.

Nuclear Drones Could Fly For Years
'I sent my eyes on their rounds and tended my gallery of one hundred-thirty changing pictures...'

SciFiQ Science Fiction Writing Aid
'Books were just a commodity that had to be produced, like jam or bootlaces.'

Robot Only Faster, Not Better, At Recycling
'Whenever a robot finds something it can't identify straight off... it puts whatever it is in the hopper outside your window.'

Poland Starts With 1000 Warmate 'Suicide Drones'
'Royal Security had told the pods to electrocute you or blast you into chum.'

Dream Of Building Your Own Rocket?
Fiorello Bodoni, you inspire all of us.

Zero Mass 'Vaporators' Pull Drinking Water From The Air
Did you think of Star Wars?

Elon Musk Fears A 'Fleet-Wide Hack' Of Autonomous Vehicles
'Khan grinned. 'It's alive! Bu-wahhahahah!''

China Melts Tibetan Permafrost To Plant Forest
'Can you give us a microwave spotlight?'

iFlytek Doctor Robot First To Pass Medical Exams
Doctor shortage? No problem, we'll just use the autodoc.

Slaughterbot AI KIller Quadcopter Drones
'The real border was defended by... a swarm of quasi-independent aerostats.'

Do We Really Want Backflipping Robots?
Also includes wonderful blooper reel.

RNA-Based Biocomputing Device
Living things can sense and analyze complex signals in living cells.

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.