Identification and verifying that someone is themself should be a seamless and hassle-free process. We know that the human body can behave like a wire when a voltage is passed through it. We created a practical application of this interesting concept to make identity verification a simpler process.
What it does
It allows people to simply make contact with a receiver and they are instantly ID'd, just by the touch. Anyone can use their unique Body ID to be identifiable by all receivers.
How we built it
- We developed a system to emit a binary ID using a square wave that can be interpreted by a receiver.
- We created a wearable device using an Arduino nano to transmit the square wave as a readable voltage through a human's body.
- The human user is now able to touch a surface with receiving capabilities and the user's identity is instantly verified.
Challenges we ran into
- The square wave transmitted as voltage when interpreted is sometimes sampled too often, so we created an algorithm to scale down the received transmission into an interpretable binary string.
- The human body is a complicated system that is loaded with confounding variables. Initially, we noticed that transmission through the human body was resulting in a weakened signal, but then we discovered that simply by moistening our fingers the waves were transmitted perfectly, due to an increased conductance at the input and output locations at the fingertips.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
- That this fun fact ended up becoming an amazing practical application.
- Our scaling algorithm that accounts for all sorts of small transmission receiving issues.
- Developing a fundamentally new interface.
- The friends we made along the way.
What we learned
We learned and developed lots of small intuitions regarding bit processing and signal processing.
What's next for Body ID
We will develop its applications because we proved the technology works and is effective. This interface will allow users to have a seamless means of payment verification, devices and amenities will be able to identify who is using them, we can send information through a handshake (or any form of contact) and using this, people can send contact information and other messages simply by touching someone. Social interactions would be revolutionized, for example at networking events, people can just have a normal conversation without asking for contact information and simply by shaking a person's hand their resume and contact info can be transferred to their device.