Tiny, networked, open source gadgets are the future. I love the concept of the Twine – a self contained mini computer designed to integrate into a custom created sensor network. Able to work with its own built in sensors, external sensors built for it, or hacked to work with whatever else you can imagine. I wish the current generation of workout tracking gear was built like this – currently there are competing products from Nike, Polar, Garmin, Fitbit, and a range of other devices – and all of them are relatively closed off. Use open standards, get all the devices talking to eachother.
TWINE, A PUCK FILLED WITH SENSORS, DETECTS ANYTHING FROM MOISTURE TO MAGNETISM: STICK IT ANYWHERE, AND IT’LL TWEET STATUS UPDATES AT YOUR COMMAND. AND THERE’S NO CODING SKILLS REQUIRED. … Here’s the basic idea behind Twine: Software and physical stuff should be friends. You can program webpages, data, all kinds of apps to do whatever you want them to–and even use awesome tools like IFTTT.com to hack them together without knowing how to code. But making that software talk to stuff in the real world–especially stuff that’s just laying around your house, and not pre-designed to be a “smart product”–takes PhD-level skills. And that, according to Twine creators David Carr and John Kestner, is just plain wrong.