Smartwatches come in all different shapes, sizes and price ranges yet they all suffer from an inherent flaw: they don’t solve a problem or fill a need. A group of researchers from Carnegie Mellon University may have come up with a practical application that’d make the common smartwatch truly useful.
As the researchers explain, most everyday electrical and electromechanical objects emit small amounts of electromagnetic (EM) noise during operation. When a person touches such an object like a laptop, a motorcycle, a ladder or an electric toothbrush, the EM signals pass through the user’s body. The signals aren’t strong enough for humans to detect but can easily be picked up by special a small, low-cost software radio.