Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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I CAN HAZ CROISSANTZ?

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CalCounter

A simple machine to help control weight
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Here's the idea i had just now before going to sleep, imagine a hand-held device with an internal database of millions of bar codes (UPC numbers) and the health information of each (IE daily values and so on). now, all you do is punch in your height and weight, the thing will figure out how many calories per day you should eat in order to lose weight. then all you have to do it pick up a soda and a bag of chips, scan them both into the unit, the unit will add the nutritional information of each of these together, keeping a running total of how much fat, calories, etc you are eating. eat the soda and chips. then lets say you have almost reached your limit of 100% daily value of saturated fat (you are at 98% oh noes!!) the next item you scan (lets say, a greasy bag of chips) the unit will blink, indicating that hey, you can't eat these. it will also have a menu for you to choose items that dont have a upc code (like fastfood > wendy's > spicy chicken sandwich) of course it connects to your computer to downloaded updated database files of upc codes. what do you guys think? i really want one!
Wraith, Aug 27 2004

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       And it works by clamping over your head and mouth and forcing your jaws closed whilst a lever comes out and pushes your plate out of reach. After that, the machine hoists you in the air by your head and plops you onto a treadmill where you are forced to run for hours and hours.   

       Who the frick knows how it works if you don't tell us. [marked-for-deletion] no idea/magic.
Klaatu, Aug 27 2004
  

       Given a wand, and some powers, it might be acceptable.
blissmiss, Aug 27 2004
  

       SORRY GUYS I HIT ENTER BEFORE I WROTE THE DAMN THING :(
Wraith, Aug 27 2004
  

       Would also be helpful if the database contained information about things you might be alergic to or disposed not to eat. That way coeliacs, nut-haters, vegans etc could scan a product and if its not 'kosher' the device could warn you. Given that the database would know alot about product composition this would be feasible.   

       Likewise if it knew about ingredient sourcing and you were currently boycotting products from X it could alert you.   

       Incidentally what would it do with e.g. fruit which (often) comes with no bar code? I'm presuming a menu selection for apple would not cater for the wide variety.
dobtabulous, Aug 27 2004
  

       thanks for the ideas guys, yeah this seems like it could help a lot of people and be really flexible. the thing with fruit is that maybe the device can have a small electronic scale on it which could support maybe 2 or 3 pounds? that should cover any 'normal' portion of fruit. an apple, a slice of watermelon and so on.
Wraith, Aug 27 2004
  

       (-) This isn't how you lose weight. You lose weight by planning ahead, and stocking up on things, and learning how to cook things, that you'll actually want to eat, that make you feel full, and that supply you with nutrients your body needs. While also getting some exercise.   

       So, it's not a spot decision you make - "will I eat/not eat this fatty, nutrition-less piece of junk food in front of me."   

       An ingredient database can help you with meal planning, but the important thing is to *do* some of that - planning - not to own a little device that bleeps at you while you're starving yourself.   

       [admin: Now that the author has supplied the idea text, I don't think the marked-for-deletion tag still applies.]
jutta, Jan 30 2007
  
      
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