Wearables and other tracking applications that feedback detailed data on almost every aspect of our lives have today become commonplace. This technology has given rise to a new phenomenon called “biohacking” in which people collect data on their bodily functions in detail in order to promote wellness. While this level of self-monitoring is more than enough for most people, in the margins of society there is a growing number of people known as “grinders” who want to take things a step further. Here are some of the most bizarre examples of biohacking technology being used by grinders today that may take off in the near future.
1. Near Field Communication (NFC) Chips
Present in most modern smartphones, NFC chips are the hardware that supports technologies like Google Pay and Apple Pay. One of the most common body modifications for grinders is to insert one of these personalized NFC chips under their skin. Doing so allows the possibility of paying for things without money, a card or a phone. The implant can also be used to unlock devices as well as locks on buildings and vehicles.
2. Night Vision Eyedrops
A crack team of Californian biohackers have created eyedrops that give a person the temporary ability to see in the dark. Made from a chemical that is found in algae and some deep-sea bioluminescent fish, the technology is still in its infancy but could soon become commercially available for those people who like living their lives after the sun has gone down.
3. Dermal Biosensor Tattoos
The brainchild of a group of scientist from MIT, the Dermal Abyss is a novel interface that renders the body’s surface an interactive display. It involves a tattooing technique that replaces traditional ink with biosensors which change colors as the body’s pH and glucose level rise and fall, giving the wearer a real-time update of what is happening inside them.
4. Blood Test Implant
The blood test implant is best described as a tiny laboratory that operates beneath a person’s skin. Measuring in at just a few centimeters, the device analyzes the concentration of substances in the wearer’s blood and instantly sends them to a mobile device. It is chargeable through the skin and has huge potential for diabetes sufferers as well as for biohacking enthusiasts who are keen to track changes in the composition of their blood.
5. Grindhouse Northstar V1
Developed by the biohacking technology company Grindhouse Wetware, the Northstar V1 is a device that is designed to be implanted under the skin on the back of a person’s hand. The implant lights up when it comes into proximity with a magnet, shining it lights through the wearer’s skin in a strange red circle shape. The device currently has no other utility than looking strange.
Biohacking with implant technology is getting a lot more popular, and it will surely not be long before cyborg-like devices that look like they belong in the realm of science fiction are considered as trendy as getting a tattoo or piercing are today. You might not be too keen on the idea now, but give it a few years and it may be a case of “If you can’t beat them, join them!”