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Have RFID (radio-frequency ID) tags attached to all my important things: my bookbag, my PalmPilot, my notebooks, my clothes, etc.
An easy way not to lose stuff would be to wear an RFID tag reader on me and activate the system whenever I am away from my home and from my office (which is where I could
REALLY lose things). If any of the things that were with me when I activated the system leave my vicinity, the system will warn me immediately (I still don't know what would be the best way to do this).
This has problems, however. Suppose I leave my dorm with a book, with the intention of going to a computer lab. I want the system to warn me if I am about to lose
So I arrive at the computer lab, and I sit down at a computer, next to which I lay down my book.
If I go pick something up from the printer, the system will go off, because I am too far from my book.
Solution: you carry a second reader with you. When you go to the lab, you put in on your station, which means that it's ok for your book to be far from you, as long as it is close to the other reader. In other words, your book must be close to either reader.
BUT, What if you lose the second reader?
Well, you put tags on your readers. At home you keep a Finder, which will work like a metal detector, except it will only go off when you find what you were
looking for. No... A better solution would be to have your tags be equipped with a little (but loud) beeper that will go off when remotely commanded (like a
telephone's handset locator feature: it has a range of at least 50m). Actually, this alone would be good enough for some people. For them, it's ok to lose stuff as long
as you can find it easily.
Of course, you could have GPS's instead of tags on everything, but let's not take it too far.
I tell the system that my stuff can stay either there (so I leave some kind of reader on my desk) or near me (I would be wearing another reader).
Basic Introduction to Tags
Some interesting research at the MIT Media Lab. This page is very scant, but gives you an idea. [GusLacerda, May 01 2001, last modified Oct 04 2004]
Thought I'd lost this. [angel, May 01 2001, last modified Oct 04 2004]
Real World Search
I think we need a category for this sort of thing; they're currently spread out all over the halfbakery. [egnor, May 01 2001, last modified Oct 04 2004]
||Why not just tie a string to all the stuff you don't want to lose and connect them to your belt. If you want to leave your stuff you could just take off your belt (be carefull not to let your pants fall.)
||Something like a pager on my side.
it will beeb me when i am walking away from my Pen, Glasses, Wallet, Keys, Purse.
This would be somthing i would be interested in purchasing.
||I tend to put things in a *sensible* place and then I forget where that *sensible* place was. I think everyone should have a designated cardboard "sensible place" box that they carry around with them or store in a sensible place.
||this idea has been lost for 2 years.
||Where the hell did I put my mind? (rummages through papers on desk)
||When your ready to join me in my quest to design this item call me,
[Telephone number - incorrect by now; I don't know whether it ever was correct - censored. Do not publish real telephone numbers on the halfbakery; use email. --jutta]
||Found this by searching Google with "RFID Tags Losing Things" (no quotes in actual search). My 12 year old son suggested I need something like this because I keep losing my glasses, keys, and the TV Remote Clicker
||a few of these around now, best seems to be "loc8tor" (www.loc8tor.com), but its pricy and bigger than one would like. Should be cheap and small in 3 years.