Hugh Pickens writes: "Steve Johnson writes in the Mercury News that microchips are going into a staggering array of once decidedly low-tech items — from grave-stone markers and running shoes to fish lures and writing pens. In the future, "where won't we find chips?" asks analyst Jordan Selburn. "The answer is pretty close to nowhere." For example one company sells a coin-size, stainless steel-encased microchip for grave stone markets that tells the dead person's story in text, photos, video or audio histories, which visitors can access by pointing their Internet-enabled cell phones at it. The company says it has sold thousands of "Memory Medallions." There's AquaOne Technologies who sell a toilet containing chips that automatically shut off the water when it springs a leak or starts to overflow, but Japanese company Toto goes one better with an intelligent toilet that gathers health-related data from the user's urine. Pro-Troll puts chips in its fish lures that "duplicates the electrical nerve discharge of a wounded bait fish," prompting other fish to bite it. "The term 'embedded' used to refer to a low-level, limited-function semiconductor and nobody needed to pay attention to it," says Shane Rau. "Now these devices are taking on more intelligence. They're becoming more programmable, they're getting faster and they're getting communications functions built into them.""
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