Each week, we spotlight a cool innovation recommended by some of the industry's top tech writers. This week's pick is a machine that can taste.
IBM is developing a flavor-identifying "e-tongue" that can identify exactly what you're drinking, said Luke Dormehl at Digital Trends. When the Hypertaste device is dunked in a glass of something wet, it uses an array of electrochemical sensors to work out the liquid's composition. That information is then sent to the cloud, where an artificial intelligence program compares the "chemical fingerprint" to a database of known liquids.
In a recent demonstration, the device was sensitive enough to accurately distinguish between different brands of bottled water. The tongue could prove useful in the food and drink industry, potentially to identify counterfeit wines and whiskeys. But it might also have medical applications, quickly "tasting" unsavory biofluids — such as urine and blood — "to make health-related diagnoses."