Wednesday, 15 July 2009

Tracking Trash, and Watching Waste

3,000 pieces of rubbish, donated by volunteers, will be tagged in New York, Seattle and London. In order to monitor how rubbish moves around the cities and beyond, a MIT team has developed a small mobile sensor. Basically a miniature cell phone with limited functionality. They say that the system should be able to track rubbish around the globe.

I will be interesting to see the results.

The team also says that it hopes that the technology can be miniaturised and made cheap enough that the tags could one day be attached to everything.

But does that mean that we might en up throwing even more away? I remember a company I worked for asking that when photocopies were made, a copy was to be set to an administrator. This was so that excessive copying could be tracked. Of course there was then outrage from the admin department that the use of the photocopier had doubled.

Also in the article it says that the MIT team has previously revealed the movements of people around cities, such as Rome and Copenhagen, by analysing mobile phone signals.

Perhaps a bit scary that - Who is able to do this monitoring?

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