Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Outside the bag the box came in.

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Real World Search

Search engine for the real world
  (+8, -3)
(+8, -3)
  [vote for,

The 'net is just so much more convenient than Real Life (TM), 'cos if I forget where I saw something I can just use a search engine and find it again. But if I lose my car keys or wallet, or that book I wanted to take back to the library, I'm stuffed! A search engine for the real world, with a plain English query, would be great. It could be added to a Palm-type device, but would be much better as an implant - otherwise I'd lose my search engine!
Bravus, Apr 19 2000

Household Localizers http://www.viridian...75/Note%2000068.txt
Vapor-ware pointed in a similar direction [cosma, Apr 19 2000, last modified Oct 04 2004]

remote control http://www.halfbake...ea/remote_20control
how to find lost remote controls... [egnor, Apr 19 2000, last modified Oct 04 2004]

sunglasses http://www.halfbake...20dark_20sunglasses
how to find lost sunglasses... [egnor, Apr 19 2000, last modified Oct 04 2004]

hearing aid http://www.halfbake..._22_20Hearing_20Aid
how to find lost hearing aids... [egnor, Apr 19 2000, last modified Oct 04 2004]

Smart Dust http://robotics.eec.../~pister/SmartDust/
UCB project to develop integrated MEMS sensors/transponders. Could easily be used for localization. [egnor, Apr 19 2000, last modified Oct 04 2004]

Findentity http://www.thax.de/
As baked as it gets. Stamp-sized transponders, locator hardware and software, and even a laser that points at the item in question. Marketed for offices with a lot of paperwork. [egnor, Apr 19 2000, last modified Oct 04 2004]

home inventory system http://www.halfbake...0inventory_20system
Related idea. [egnor, Apr 19 2000, last modified Oct 04 2004]


       I seem to recall Xerox-PARC had a project along these lines in the mid-90s. It involved wearing a camera rig, connected to object-recognition programs, which would at least remember where you'd left things, or last seen them. Can't find anything about it now, though, so maybe it's just a badly reconstructed story from _Analog_.
cosma, Apr 19 2000

       This could work, if you embed everything you own with passive RF transponders...but of course, you'd want to search for places and people too. GPS and directory services can handle that. The World Search Engine can have its own GPS locator, for tracking people and yes, lost search engines. (The locator should have the option of being shut off, of course, for privacy.
quanta, Apr 21 2000

       If this were to be of any practical use, it would have to be designed very differently from Internet search engines. Can you imagine:   

       Real World Search found 3 405 691 582 results for "wallet"
nobody, May 07 2001


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