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Coupled cups create communication

Linked Glasses

Let's raise a glass to toast the computer scientists who have developed the 'connected cup'. Researchers at MIT in the States have developed drinking glasses that are linked by computer. The cups are covered with sensors that detect when the cup is moved, tilted or when you take a sip from it. The cups also glow; they have different colours produced by small light emitting diodes built into them, and they also have a small motor in them to make them shake. But the clever twist is that the cups are connected by a wireless radio link. This means that when a distant friend drinks your health you will know, as your cup will glow as they take a sip. It also means that you can share a toast with friends from different parts of the planet. Other applications of this new technology also include being able to monitor the elderly to ensure they are drinking enough water, or a mother at home can cause their children's cup at school to glow and shake when its break time just to show how much they care.

It's just one of the fascinating research projects worldwide looking at how the connectedness of the Internet combined with computers built into the things we use can change our lives. It's something to think about when you're supping your next glass of water.

If you want to find out more about this intriguing new way to interact by computer you can read the scientific paper.