Tattoos have a long and distinguished history among humans. In ancient times, they represented power or spiritual authority. Today they have special significance to the people who wear them. But in the future, a tattoo may be more than just body art. It could also serve a practical purpose.
Nokia recently patented a special magnetic material that can be “tattooed” onto your skin. This material would vibrate when you get a call on your cell phone. This could be especially helpful in a future where tiny cell phones might be implanted in our ears. It could also be the first step in turning the human race into cyborgs. For more on Nokia’s cell phone tattoo, click here.
Even if you don’t want cybernetic tattoos, your doctor might give you a prescription for one. Researchers have developed a medical tattoo that can monitor glucose levels as they rise and fall. For people with diabetes, it certainly sounds better to get a glucose monitoring tattoo than having to stick yourself with a needle multiple times per day. For more on medical tattoos, click here.
No one said tattoos have to be on your skin. You can also tattoo your teeth, and with a sophisticated dental tattoo made from graphene, your tooth tattoo can monitor the bacterial levels in your mouth. Graphene is a carbon structure similar to graphite, but much stronger and capable of some unusual electrical properties. At the moment, it’s ridiculously expensive, but as graphene production gets cheaper you can expect your dentist to offer this product in the future. However, I doubt I’d ever get one. Something about combining tattooing with dentistry is just too scary. For more information, click here.
Cybernetics is an uncomfortable topic. No one wants to end up like the Borg from Star Trek, with complex, artificial limbs and weird devices stuck to our heads. But the cyborg revolution might be a little more stylish with the help of a few good tattoo artists. Maybe you could have your glucose monitor in the shape of a butterfly and your cell phone vibrator could be a Celtic cross.