The Wisdom Door Knows You

The Wisdom Door is a prototype created by students at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina. We're all familiar with key-card doors and other devices that require a special password. The Wisdom Door, however, uses specific biometric information to decide who enters.


(Wisdom door prototype in lab)

This sensor-intensive door doesn't make you stop and identify yourself. Nine different sensors work together to find enough information for identification.

At the top of the door, an ultrasonic sensor beams a signal downward. Bouncing off the top of the head, it comes back, and provides the height of the person.

Four infrared sensors mounted in the door jambs provide a measurement of girth (side-to-side and front-to-back). When a person walks through, the beams are broken at specific points that can be determined. The same sensors find the delay involved in first encountering the infrared sensor beams, and then passing through the door.

Finally, four load sensors in a panel in the floor determine weight. Over time, the system can build up a database of characteristics that identify individuals.

Obviously, this prototype has limits; what if a woman wears high heels, or if a guy wears an especially bulky coat.

Science fiction writer Philip K. Dick had a better idea. In his 1965 story The Zap Gun, one of his characters improves security with a cephalic pattern door:

The doors of Mr. Lars, Incorporated, shut, tuned as they were to his own cephalic pattern.
(Read more about Dick's cephalic pattern door)

The "cephalic pattern" refers to the unique patterns revealed in the electrical signals of a person's brain. Dick was fascinated by this idea; see also his Cephalochromoscope (Cephscope), a fun consumer device.

Read more about smart door that recognizes people.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 2/16/2007)

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 ( 0 )

Index of related articles:

Biometric security overview
Biometrics Glossary
Characteristics of successful biometric identification methods
Biometric identification systems
Biometric technology on the leading edge
Biometric identification - advantages
Biometric security and business ethics
Biometric authentication: what method works best?
Iris Recognition
Iris Scan

Related News Stories - (" Engineering ")

Nuclear Batteries Based On Diamonds Last Millennia
'they just package it and ship it around to wherever people want it...' - Robert Heinlein, 1982.

MIT Researchers Predict The Future From Still Photos
'What I have in this camera is not a record of what you did just now but what will go on here in the next half hour...'- Philip K. Dick, 1964.

Artificial Muscle Material Is Self-Healing, Super Stretchy
Battletech!

Arctic Cities Crumble As Permafrost Melts
'The tapes stretch several kilometers in each direction.' - Robert Silverberg, 1970.

 

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

Life In Detroit's 'Agrihood' - The First In The U.S.
'countless tiny brown circles in the green fields ...occasional ruins of ancient cities...'

Artificial 'Hairs' To Enhance Senses Of Robots
'Migul had extended from each of the fingertips an inch-long filament of wire...'

The Point Of View Of An Autonomous Car
'It is safe to say that the new model almost revolutionized America in more ways than one...'

You Can't Lose The Travelmate Autonomous Suitcase - It Follows You
'...follow him as faithfully as a well-trained hound.'

ibotn Toddler-Care Mini-Robot
'She's not like a machine. She's like a person. A living person.'

Nuclear Batteries Based On Diamonds Last Millennia
'they just package it and ship it around to wherever people want it...'

Eighth Sense Emotion-Responsive Cloak
'This sensitivity to mood explains the real popularity of bio-fabrics...'

British Airways To Offer An Ingestible Sensor To Passengers
The modern way to get feedback from passengers.

Unique DNA To Foil Parts Counterfeiters
'... the only molecule, a unique protein amino acid, which could not be duplicated.'

MIT Researchers Predict The Future From Still Photos
'What I have in this camera is not a record of what you did just now but what will go on here in the next half hour...'

Mini Robot Uses 2 mm Surgical Tools
'... surgical tool - blades, tweezers, probes - so fine you could just see them with the naked eye.'

Childhood Dreams Of Space Realized! Space Junk Problem Solved!
'Give the noble daydreams a rest, you preachy rookie. Astronauts are wage slaves like everyone else!'

Writhing Robotic Tentacle Uses Laser To Chop Nuke Hardware
'... long, flexible, glittering tentacles... swinging and rattling about its strange body.'

LBNP Device Not Quite 'Artificial Gravity'
'Joe got out the gravity-simulator harnesses..'

China's XPNAV 1 To Use X-Ray Pulsars For Navigation
'For a hyperspace jump, you need at least four beacons for an accurate fix.'

Artificial Muscle Material Is Self-Healing, Super Stretchy
Battletech!

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.