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Future iPhones may smell, taste, and touch (as well as see and hear)

Mark Hattersley | Dec. 26, 2012
IBM futurology report describes a generation of computers that will use all five senses.

Apple Daily Report says "By being trained to discriminate what to look for in images such as differentiating healthy from diseased tissue and correlating that with patient records and scientific literature, systems that can "see" will help doctors detect medical problems with far greater speed and accuracy."

Hearing: Macs will listen and understand the world around them

Computers are already starting to understand the human voice with greater clarity. According to IBM a distributed system of sensors will detect elements such as sound pressure, vibrations, and sound waves. Such a system will "listen" to our surroundings and measure movements, or the stress in a material, to warn us if danger lies ahead.

Smell: A smelling computer will be useful in medicine

What possible use could a computer have for smelling your surroundings? According to IBM by analyzing odors, biomarkers and thousands of molecules in someone's breath, doctors will have help diagnosing and monitoring the onset of ailments such as liver and kidney disorders, asthma, diabetes and epilepsy by detecting which odors are normal and which are not.

Taste: Some computers will have it.

What nobody seems to be able to suggest is a use for a sense of taste from a computer. Although it may be able to provide suggestions for your cooking skills, as well as identify world objects (such as ingredients) by taste.

We find it hard to believe a Windows-PC could ever have a sense of taste, however.

 

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