A little late for gift giving season, but maybe you know someone who has a birthday coming up. I ran across a great gift idea on Instructables recently for making a tablet out of $2 bills, the idea being that you nonchalantly pull the pad out of your pocket and start tearing bills off to pay for your lunch. If you’re lucky you might find a young enough cashier who doesn’t know there is such a thing. It’s simple enough to make, you need a stack of crisp bills, a couple clamps, and some rubber glue.
Reading the Instructable stirred up a long dormant memory about Steve Wozniak carrying around sheets of $2 bills and paying for things with them. I had forgotten, but of course Google remembered it. Google never forgets anything. It’s a great story. He buys $2 bill from the Treasury in uncut sheets. You can apparently do this for $1, $2, and $5 bills. Sometimes he snips a few off with scissors to pay for something, sometimes has has them perforated and made into pads. In this story he tipped a waitress in a casino from his $2 bill pad and ended up being interviewed by the Secret Service. The agent accepted his ID without noticing that it said he was a “Laser Safety Officer” from the “Department of Defiance”. Read the whole story on his blog.
If you make one, and you get interviewed by the Secret Service, and you try to pass off a fake ID for grins, then please don’t say you got the idea from Gadget Freak.
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For industrial control applications, or even a simple assembly line, that machine can go almost 24/7 without a break. But what happens when the task is a little more complex? That’s where the “smart” machine would come in. The smart machine is one that has some simple (or complex in some cases) processing capability to be able to adapt to changing conditions. Such machines are suited for a host of applications, including automotive, aerospace, defense, medical, computers and electronics, telecommunications, consumer goods, and so on. This discussion will examine what’s possible with smart machines, and what tradeoffs need to be made to implement such a solution.