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cvandewater
User Rank
Gold
Re: Bluetooth Gadgets
cvandewater   3/6/2012 4:56:06 AM
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I guess "unavoidable" is a matter of opinion, unless someone is putting a firearm to your head to force you to drink... I will gladly take a beer if I am traveling by bus or bicycle, but when I have to drive then even if every one of my colleagues is drinking alcohol, I will still order a non-alcoholic beverage.

My simple reasoning is: I don't want to be able to say to myself "it would have been different if I had not been drinking" in case something would go wrong. So, I don't drink when I know I still need to drive, or I make sure I don't need to drive. It is very simple actually.

Mydesign
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Bluetooth Gadgets
Mydesign   3/6/2012 4:34:29 AM
NO RATINGS
1 saves
Cvanderwater, that an ideal situation and more preferable. But due to some common commitments and business networking we may force for a sip in parties. I mean unavoidable circumstances, otherwise we are very cautious about it.

cvandewater
User Rank
Gold
Re: Bluetooth Gadgets
cvandewater   3/6/2012 4:21:27 AM
NO RATINGS
Hi Mydesign,

How about *not* drinking before you must drive? I am always amazed that people try to find how close they can get to breaking the law and putting others in danger before actually murdering someone. I don't see the value in that behavior.

Charles Murray
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Sensor problems
Charles Murray   3/5/2012 7:10:49 PM
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Even as a novelty device, Al, this is a great application. Not many novelty devices offer the real possibility of saving lives. Kudos.

Al
User Rank
Iron
Re: Sensor problems
Al   3/5/2012 4:08:46 PM
NO RATINGS
Hey Jon, you are absolutely correct, semiconductor based alcohol sensors are not accurate as one may think. As such, this project is marketed and should be used as a novelty device only. I purposely stayed away from adding a specific Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) reading to the app for this very reason. There was recently an independent study done on the accuracy of consumer semi-conductor based breathalyzers here, it's quite interesting.

Rob Spiegel
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Loss of revenue
Rob Spiegel   3/5/2012 1:15:14 PM
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I think you have a point, Absalom. But I think it may be because this device -- while valid and perhaps accurate -- would not meet the criteria for devices used by law enforcement. Even so, it this device discouraged a drunk from driving, it provides a real service.

Jon Titus
User Rank
Blogger
Sensor problems
Jon Titus   3/5/2012 12:54:29 PM
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In the early 1970's my brother Chris experimented with several similar sensors manufactured by the Figaro Engineering Company in Japan. He found the sensors could detect various chemicals but didn't offer enough sensitivity or selectivity to alcohol in the presence of other chemicals to yield a quantitative result.  I bet the same holds true for the sensor in this project.  The data sheet for a similar sensor (MQ-3 from Hanwei Electronics) shows a predominate response from ethanol, closely matched by the responses to methane, propane, and hexane.  Also, response varies with respect to relative humidity.

So, the project might offer a qualitative measure of alcohol, but I wouldn't trust it to detect alcohol well enough to avoid a drunken-driving arrest. It's best to not drink and drive.  So, treat this project as a novelty to share with friends.

Also, breathalyzers use a fuel-cell arrangement in which the oxidation of alcohol at a platinum electrode produces a current than the instrument can convert to a parts-per-million or other value.  The platinum-based sensors can last for a long time, but the semiconductor sensors last only for a year or two.  Perhaps micro-engineering technologies will one day yield a surface that produces a selective response for ethanol. That type of sensor would not react to other chemicals. 

Absalom
User Rank
Gold
Loss of revenue
Absalom   3/5/2012 12:50:03 PM
NO RATINGS
I wonder if this device will be outlawed in some areas as are radar detectors. Both are devices that reduce the revenue generated by fines and traffic laws are designed to be money generators.

Rob Spiegel
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Bluetooth Gadgets
Rob Spiegel   3/5/2012 12:04:20 PM
NO RATINGS
I guess the advantage of the Android is that it is open source. Seems like a wise decision on Google's part to develop the technology, and then give it away. So you product -- as with thousands of others -- is more likely to be developed for the Android.

Rob Spiegel
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Great for Safety
Rob Spiegel   3/5/2012 11:55:00 AM
NO RATINGS
I agree, Chuck. I believe people are very conscious about avoiding drunk driving convictions. While this device has no legal endorsement, it may let party goers know they could run into trouble if they drive. Good device.

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