Friday, May 2, 2008

German scientists invent scented text messages - Could downloadable food be next?

It was reported this week that two German companies have patented the technology for sending scented text messages via cell phone. So like, you know, you could send someone the smell of a rose (as an expression of love), or the ocean (if you're standing on the beach staring at the sea), or the aroma of the urinal biscuits at your local dive bar (if you've spent the night out drinking alone and want to share the experience with your friend who stood you up).

Don't believe me? See story here:

While your first reaction to this news is likely, "JIGGA WHAAAA????!!!," your second reaction should be, "hey didn't Dan Lurie (of Erasable Pen fame) come up with a similar idea years ago? Something involving emailing food, or something?"

Yes, that's right. Not long after the advent of electronic mail, and the internet, I started thinking about how glorious it would be if you could instantly access a snack, or even a full meal of food, with the click of a mouse.

This idea of using computers to prepare food was also partly inspired by the fact that the George Foreman Grill looked a heckuva lot like an iMac.

The gist of my notion centered on the concept of sending food as an email attachment, or downloading your favorite dish just as you would an MP3. I shared this idea with a number of friends and colleagues but it never really went anywhere. The technology didn't exist yet (or so everyone thought), and, to be honest, I'm not so sure the world was ready for my idea.

But now that it's possible for us to send and receive smells on our cell phones, my concept can no longer be considered "far-fetched." Mark my words. Within months, you will be able to use your computer, or Palm Pilot, to instantaneously download a fried-bologna sandwich, either using bit torrent or some other newfangled file-sharing program.

Soon you will be able to access this sandwich from your home computer.

The saddest thing about all of this is I'm sure someone else has already patented my idea by now. So instead of being able to take credit for its brilliance, I will simply have to enjoy the delicious convenience of downloadable food like all the rest of you average citizens.

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