Using Technology To Spread The Load

By | May 2, 2005

Is this the future of shared machinery. BBC reports of a Spanish washing machine called

“Your Turn”, which will not let the same person use it twice in a row.

It uses fingerprint recognition technology to ensure the job of loading is not dumped on just one individual.

Nice idea. But why stop at washing machines? Bathroom doors that won’t let you go back in if the other folk in the house haven’t had their morning shower; dishwashers, trashbins and cookers; even the household computer. Dog leashes; garden hoses, leaf blowers, lawn mowers.

In the office, one could use it for the paper trays in printers and photocopiers, so one poor sod doesn’t always have to do it. The office canteen microwave; the office coffee maker.

And why not variations on the theme, so, say, lifts won’t work if people have entered the lift before allowing people to get off first? Lift doors that won’t close if users try to shut them before everyone who wants to has gotten aboard? Escalators that stop if users don’t stand to one side to allow others to pass; cars that won’t start if they’re not parked properly between lines so that other cars can park next to them?

The possibilities are endless, as are our peeves. A Monday morning fantasy…

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