For your smartphone – Science triumphs again! If you’ve got a “smartphone,” which is the “Swiss Army Knife” of cell phones, you’re probably constantly looking for new “apps” to buy for it. Here’s one you didn’t expect: an app that detects toxic chemicals in the atmosphere.
Homeland Security has an application which does just that, and their aim is to equip cell phones with a sensor capable of detecting deadly chemicals. A chip costing less than a dollar is embedded in a cell phone and programmed to either alert the cell phone carrier to the presence of toxic chemicals in the air, and/or a central station that can monitor how many alerts in an area are being received. One might be a false positive. Hundreds might indicate the need for evacuation. A phone with the Cell-All app would regularly sniff the surrounding air for certain volatile chemical compounds.
A chemical sensor in every cell phone in every pocket, purse or belt holster: It’s seems to be an idea that’s way out there, until you stop to think that just a few years ago, no one believed that there would soon be a computer in every home. The only problem: There’s no mention of an app that could sense nuclear material in the atmosphere, in case a small nuke is detonated in a major city in a scenario out of Whitley’s novel Critical Mass, which we recently sent to all our new subscribers.
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