Butt-Based Logins

Wednesday, September 04, 2013 - 02:00 PM

There should be a specific word for the moment when you're reading an article and your curiosity about a small aside completely overwhelms your interest in the broader article itself. 

The Economist has a piece today about various proposed replacements to computer passwords. It's sort of an evergreen idea -- passwords are clunky, and they're unsafe, and the systems that are supposed to make them safer, like two-factor authentication, make them clunkier. And then, in a little sidebar paragraph about proposed alternatives to traditional passwords, they casually mention this: 

The Advanced Institute of Industrial Technology in Tokyo, for instance, has developed a chair which detects the unique shape of a user’s bottom—with 99% accuracy.

And then they just move on. Like that's not a big deal. Anyway. Your intrepid correspondent has a picture of the butt sensor demonstration from the AIITT labs in Tokyo. It's actually designed for cars, as a different form of keyless start-up. Behold:

We are living in a beautiful and Jetsonian age. 

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TLDR is a short podcast and blog about the internet by PJ Vogt and Alex Goldman. You can subscribe to our podcast here. You can follow our blog here. We’re also on Twitter, and we play Team Fortress 2 more or less constantly, so find us there if you like to communicate via computer games from six years ago.

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