Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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aluminum can protocol

Ubiquitous computing meets urban decay
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In the future, when ubiquitous little computing devices broadcast their happy little bluetooth clouds into the empty space around them, I think there should be a protocol that lets people with little money (or lots of time and a hunger for electronic appreciation) do little helpful deeds for small sums of money.

You know, like picking up litter, searching garbage land fills for valuables, or turning in aluminum cans for change.

A device that has gotten lost in the bushes and needs to be found and returned to its owner, say, could broadcast a low-range distress signal saying, "find me, and I'll probably pay you such-and-such an amount of money for taking me to a drop-off point."

Things that are genuinely recycleable could work that way.

Publicly installed devices that need batteries could get them by offering money to anyone willing to listen, on that protocol.

A car could want to be washed while its owner is gone.

jutta, Apr 10 2000

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       The dogs collar could ask for a ride home, the kids backpack could say,I've been forgoten, please leave me with the principal......etc etc
scotty1969, May 29 2000
  

       Please DO keep thinking of ideas for bluetooth applications, meanwhile I'm working on an aerial, that uses all your useful RF energy to power my notebook, calculator, digital watch - Thanks for the free power!
philosphus, Jun 27 2000
  

       Ok, I've seen it several times here, and I give up. What means 'bluetooth'?
StarChaser, Jun 27 2000
  

       StarChaser, it's a little module for your computer, that transmitts data to anything else that is "Bluetoothed", using low power microwaves.
philosphus, Jun 28 2000
  

       This would be even better if it could be done passively (like an access card). That way disposable items (like aluminum cans) would only have to incorporate an antenna and diode (both of which could be built into the can) to provide resonance on a Bluetooth frequency - turning your Bluetooth device into a detector.
phoenix, Oct 26 2001
  

       I thought this would be the communication protocol used by the old 'two-cans-and-a-length-of-string' system.
angel, Oct 26 2001
  
      
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