October 25, 2016 | Written by: Jen Clark
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Halloween’s a-coming and soon it’ll be time to dig out the old costume, carve your pumpkin and revisit your favourite horror flicks. Below we have some suggestions for IoT-flavoured festivities.
Cognitive couture for a show-stopping costume
“What if the IoT did costumes” we hear you say? Well imagine no more, my friends, such a thing has already come to pass. OK, it’s a little more high-end than your traditional witchy get-up, but cool nonetheless. Earlier this year IBM and womenswear brand Marchesa unveiled a cognitive dress at the Met Gala that changes colour to reflect mood. LED lights woven into the fabric respond to what Twitter users are saying about the dress, changing colour to reflect the tone of their messages. Sadly, so far it’s one of a kind, but you can bet no one else will have one.
Smart route planning
Trick-or-treater safety is always a consideration at Halloween. For those in the U.S. where the practice is widespread and expected, it may not be so worrisome, but for folk across the pond, there’s a chance you’ll be roaming streets and ringing doorbells without much company. So how do you reconcile tradition with stranger danger?
One answer is to visit only people you know. If you’ve a digital address book, you can auto-create a multi-destination route within a given area, where you set the stopping points to match the homes of friends. Apps like Route4Me optimise a route automatically based on multiple destinations, provide a map (which you can send to Google maps) and share your planned route with others, so you can go it alone or in a group.
What if you’re the one receiving potential tricksters? A connected doorbell could come in handy here. WiFi-enabled and video-linked doorbells connect to a smartphone to alert you when someone’s at the door and show you who it is – all without you having to move from the comfort of the sofa in the next room. If it’s a bunch of charming wee kiddies, up you get with your bag of treats. If it’s Freddy Kreuger, you can hide under the bed. Not that it’ll do much good if your assailant’s a supernatural bad-ass, but it will deter your run-of-the-mill wannabe criminals.
Cognitive candy dispensers
Once trick-or-treaters are happily and safely under your roof, it’s candy time. For a fun way of doling out the good stuff, there’s Cognitive Candy – a 3D-printed candy dispenser with a sweet personality who rewards you with candy when you ask nicely, say please and thank you, and take the time to get to know her. Sweets and a little lesson in humanity – what’s not to like?
Connected candy bags
There’s always one kid who tries the old “you missed me out” routine in the hope of a second helping. To this kid I say, let IoT add a little sophistication to your greediness, my mendacious chum, and try a connected collecting bag. Such a gadget would recognize the weight of each sweet deposit and share that data with your friends. When Mrs Jones cheerfully doles out the jelly beans and Mr Miser at the next house along gives you squat, your collecting bag will know it, share that information and help trick-or-treaters know which houses will offer them the best reception. And there you have it: IoT-enabled sneakiness. Just don’t blame us for the cavities.
Do you have any Halloween-themed IoT ideas? We’d love to hear them, so give us a shout in the comments below.