The Electronic Nose

from the can't-wait dept

Some researchers are working on an electronic nose that can smell out certain types of bacteria. There are obvious uses in medical testing, though, those are a long way off. However, there are some commercial possibilities as well. Starbucks is apparently interested in having the system sniff coffee. Some people are also talking about the “smart fridge” that will tell you when food has gone bad, before you eat it. I don’t even want to know what sort of alarms would be set off if it ever got near my fridge.

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Comments on “The Electronic Nose”

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mhh5 says:

overhype alert...

A lot of different “electronic noses” have been around for a long time… The idea of quantifying smell has been tried a bunch of times – to detect everything from landmines to aldehydes in rum… I haven’t heard of any widespread commercial successes with a ‘general purpose’ nose b/c in general, when you get an artificial nose to smell something really well, that’s about all it will smell really well….

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