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Harvesting Energy from the Human Body

CmdrTaco posted more than 7 years ago | from the thats-nothing-compared-to-what-i-harvest-from-mine dept.

Biotech 160

Late-Eight writes "Scientists at the Georgia Institute of Technology are working on a new type of nanogenerator that could draw necessary energy from flowing blood in the human body. The hope is to incorporate the new nanogenerator into biosensors, environmental monitoring devices and even personal electronics that will require no fuel source, internal or external. Once completed, this new cellular engine could find various applications, even beyond medicine."

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Hmm... (2, Funny)

Maxhrk (680390) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945709)

My laptop is running out of bloods... hmm.. Be right back, i will need refill my laptop with my bloods. bbl.

Re:Hmm... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19946083)

You moms lives off of salty protein and it works fine. Slashdotters, line up at the powerplant!!

Queue the "Matrix" references.... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19945717)

and Copper Top jokes.

Where is it Coming From? (5, Interesting)

Eddi3 (1046882) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945721)

In the end, this isn't just harvesting unused energy; There's no such thing. It has to come from somewhere. In this case, doesn't it come from the energy the heart is exerting to pump blood? Is it possible that this could have some long term side effects, due to slightly more stress on the heart?

Re:Where is it Coming From? (1)

ookabooka (731013) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945811)

More like it could develop into a new weight loss program. Realistically though, the power that it would end up draining is probably negligible.

Re:Where is it Coming From? (2, Insightful)

Eddi3 (1046882) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945849)

You seem to feel very confident in saying that, However that's exactly what I'm wondering: Is is negligible? Really?

I just think we should be sure about it first.

Re:Where is it Coming From? (4, Informative)

ookabooka (731013) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945967)

Ugh, fine. . make me RTF :-p Yes I'd call it negligible, they say that their current design can do a few nanoamps at below 0.5v but hope to get a design that can pump out a microamp at 0.5v. Lets assume they perfected their "high-power" design and look at what it does. 0.000000001A is 1 microAmp, multiply that by 0.5v and you get 0.0000000005W or 0.5 microWatts. Having this thing run for 24 hours would give us 12 microwatt-hours which according to google is 0.0103250478 calories. So if it were 1% efficient (I'd be sure its quite a bit higher) it would draw about 1 calorie a day. . .or about 1/4 of a gram of sugar.

Are you confusing calories with Calories? (2, Insightful)

benhocking (724439) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946081)

Just remember that a food calorie is actuall a kilocalorie. Assuming you made that mistake (maybe you didn't), that means you need 1/4000th of a gram of sugar. Excellent weight-loss program indeed! (OTOH, one could imagine a whole fleet of these in your system. It'd still have to be a pretty big fleet for it to matter too much.)

Re:Are you confusing calories with Calories? (0, Offtopic)

DJPenguin (17736) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946283)

I think you might be confusing kilocalories with kilogram-calories :)

Re:Are you confusing calories with Calories? (0, Offtopic)

weicco (645927) | more than 7 years ago | (#19947231)

1 gram of carbohydrates contains 4 calories, so does protein. Fat contains 9 cal per gram. But I've read that you need to burn 6000 kcal in order to lose 1 kg of fat from body so I say your fleet must a really big one :)

Re:Are you confusing calories with Calories? (1, Offtopic)

toQDuj (806112) | more than 7 years ago | (#19947341)

Actually, I think you're confusing the calorie with the Calorie (see the capital C there? see? see? there's a huge difference there).

Apparently some whizz-PR-kids thought it would be good PR if they lost the Kilo-multiplier in their energy description, so they decided that the Kilo- be replaced with a capital C. Well, all in all, if you're dealing with calories, you know you're in trouble. Check out the Wikipedia page on the Calorie. You'll see there are about a zillion different definitions for the calorie.

B.

Re:Where is it Coming From? (2, Interesting)

constantnormal (512494) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946927)

yeah ... 12 microwatt-hrs per day is about 36 kWh per month per billion people. Compare that to your own monthly electric bill.

Either the Matrix has much, MUCH more efficient technologies, or here is yet another fine bit of fiction that has slid down the fantasy side of the fork in the road between science fiction and fantasy.

"Coppertop", indeed. :-(

Re:Where is it Coming From? (1)

Phase Shifter (70817) | more than 7 years ago | (#19947387)

Either the Matrix has much, MUCH more efficient technologies, or here is yet another fine bit of fiction that has slid down the fantasy side of the fork in the road between science fiction and fantasy.
That was one thing that always bothered e about the matrix--supposedly the machines began harvesting their energy from humans after we blacked out the skies to end their solar power.

That always seemed like a suicidal (and futile) tactic to me. I mean, it would be trivial to adapt machines to run on electricity drawn from geothermal, nuclear, tidal, or wind power to name a few...but all energy that keeps us humans alive is solar energy harvested via photosynthesis.
So basically in The Matrix, the humans assured their own destruction while barely slowing the machines down...then the machines switched to one of the few energy sources that were guaranteed to be depleted soon after.

It's a story about a war where both sides are afflicted with terminal stupidity.

Re:Where is it Coming From? (1)

RxScram (948658) | more than 7 years ago | (#19947519)

0.000001 Amp is 1 microAmp. You have a few extra zeroes. Also, that is 0.01 calories, not (kilo)Calories... Considerably less than 1/4 gram of sugar.

Calories to Watt-Hours (1)

oneiros27 (46144) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945985)

Calories = 1.163 watt-hours

So, if we assume the 1cm^3 device generates up to 4 Watts, that's 111.648 Calories / day.

That is significant when compared to the 2000 Calorie recommended by the FDA, but it might not be as siginificant when compared to the trademen, military or athletes whose bodies use much more energy in the course of the day.

Now, I don't know for sure that they'll actually insert devices this large (if they're working towards 0.5V, this would be 8A) Personally, I'm more worried about how the human body would react to the device -- would you have to supress immune response you use it? If it's in the blood, would you have issues with fatty plaque buildup?

Re:Calories to Watt-Hours (1)

ookabooka (731013) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946017)

You misinterpreted the article, they were using the watts per cubic centimeter as a way of expressing energy density, their current design can do a few nanoamps and they hope to get it up to a microamp which after my calculations [slashdot.org] comes out to about 1 calorie a day at worst. Yes the reaction your body has to the device is a much more relevant concern IMO.

Re:Where is it Coming From? (1)

kestasjk (933987) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946495)

More like it could develop into a new weight loss program. Realistically though, the power that it would end up draining is probably negligible.
Pfff.. Forget weight loss. Combined with a form of fusion (the red-goo form of fusion), this can give us all the energy we ever need.

Re:Where is it Coming From? (3, Informative)

dido (9125) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945919)

They're talking microamperes and like 0.5 volts so that makes it about microwatts of power; one microwatt of power over the course of one day is something 0.0864 joules, or 0.021 calories, and those are normal calories, not the food calories (which are really kilocalories). Doesn't look like a whole lot, compared to the energy an average person consumes in a day (2000 kcal, that's two million calories!).

Re:Where is it Coming From? (1)

Yvanhoe (564877) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946761)

I prefer the R&D made in order to draw energy from sugar inside the blood. It was largely inefficient (1% of efficiency maybe) and had a cute nickname "Dracucell".These were taking energy from regular sugar coming from food. Given that most people in industrialized countries eat more than necessary, this could prove interesting.

After all, in winter I get warmth from my electronic devices, it is only a way to pay them back :)

Re:Where is it Coming From? (1)

DFDumont (19326) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946979)

The article claims 4W, not micro watts, per cubic centimeter, which is four orders of magnitude more than your calculations.

I agree with Eddi3, leave my heart alone. I think we should rather focus an nano-fuel cells, say for something like consuming low-density lipoprotiens (LDL). That way both the organism and the device benefit.

Dennis Dumont

Re:Where is it Coming From? (1)

dido (9125) | more than 7 years ago | (#19947315)

4 watts per cubic centimeter is their projected power density. 1 cm^3 is awfully big, about the size of the tip of your pinky. I imagine that the generator they're talking about is a helluvalot smaller than that; a generator of that size hardly deserves the epithet of 'nano', and would probably only fit in major arteries and larger blood vessels. More like cubic millimeters. They're still talking about half a volt and something of the order of micro-amperes of current. Remember some basic electricity: volts times amperes is watts. If they wanted 4 watts straight out, they would be talking about a whopping 8 amperes of current at 0.5 volts, or if you want it the other way, 1 micro-ampere of current would require something like 4 million volts (!) to make 4 watts of power! They're thinking low-power biosensors and other similar things that require only small amounts of power.

Likely Medical problems of this device (5, Interesting)

G4from128k (686170) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945927)

As much as I love new medical R&D, I think this on is probably a non-starter.

First, we'll ignore the risk of infection on the assumption that we're implanting a device anyway and its just a matter of what power source we pick for the implant. The most serious general problem would be blood clots that form on surfaces of the device. These pose a sever risk if they break-off, migrate downstream and cause heart attacks, strokes, or blockages in the lungs or extremities. Even drug-eluting stents (which are coated with anti-clotting drugs) have now been found to cause clotting after the drugs dissipate from the coating.

Then there are the mechanical/hydraulic problems associated with impaired blood flow (the upstream blood pressure will need to be higher that the downstream pressue -- that pressure differential times the flow rate defines the amount of power extracted). If implanted in an artery this device will increase the back pressure on the heart (leading to an enlarged, inefficient heart) and impair circulation on downstream side (increasing problems with infections and function). If implanted in an vein this device will impair circulation on upstream side and probably lead to fluid build-up on the upstream side.

Cool idea, but I doubt it's compatible with the human body.

Re:Likely Medical problems of this device (4, Informative)

E++99 (880734) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946139)

According to TFA, this should not be impairing blood flow, regardless of where it is installed. It is not some sort of hydroelectric... er, vitroelectric dam, rather, if I understand correctly, it is powered by harnessing the vibrations of the pulse itself, that are otherwise just absorbed by the vein walls.

Re:Likely Medical problems of this device (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19946475)

Reading the article would have prevented him from trying to sound intelligent by naysaying an idea he didn't come up with.

Re:Likely Medical problems of this device (2, Insightful)

MMC Monster (602931) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946535)

People have artificial devices implanted all the time without worrying about infections and clots. Some of them are even in the circulatory system, such as permanent pacemakers, tissue artificial valves, metal artificial valves (in which you do worry about clots), and vena cava filters.

Having something in the venous system, like a vena cava filter, may be relatively safe and still produce usable energy. Other places that are not in the circulatory system that might still be used to produce energy may be something attached to the diaphragm or other muscle and produce energy while the muscle is contracting.

Re:Where is it Coming From? (1)

in2mind (988476) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945943)

"Energy can only be transfered from one form to another "

Going by that,the energy that powers the generators (blood flow)) has to come from somewhere...
So,It does look like we are merely going to expend our own energy powering this generator.

Re:Where is it Coming From? (1)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945949)

beating a drum like the energizer bunny.

Re:Where is it Coming From? (1)

aszaidi (464751) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945951)

My guess is that this energy is too small to put any additional stress on the heart. Even if it did, it is already a very strong muscle and should easily be able to compensate for this amount of extra work by growing just a little bit stronger.

BAD idea. (1)

Ungrounded Lightning (62228) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946111)

My guess is that this energy is too small to put any additional stress on the heart.

Not if it's scaled up to any practical size - even to power very tiny stuff.

Pulling energy from the flow or the vibrations in it raises the backpressure. The pressure has to rise or the pressure in the veins downstream collapse in the lower-pressure part of the cycle, which causes all sorts of havoc, such as floating blood clots that produce strokes and heart attacks.

Pulling energy from the flexing of the vessels due to the pressure cycle resists the pressure cycle, much like "hardening of the arteries". Again either the amplitude of the cycle must increase - leading to both overpressure on the high side and a positive feedback crash of the system over time - or the vessels leading to or from the constriction suffer problems, leading to stuff like floating clots...

Best option would be to splice the genny in like it was additional tissue with a normal blood supply and a normal reaction to blood flow. But you'd still need to have the heart expand and do more work, which would still be likely to lead to shortened time before old-age style circulatory problems set in.

There are several other ways to pull power from the body that don't involve screwing around with the load on the heart. So this one seems to me to be a non-starter.

Re:BAD idea. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19946623)

I'm sick of fucking idiots repeating what has been said over 3 times already

Re:Where is it Coming From? (1)

jdh41 (865085) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945987)

Excellent, we finally have a way for geeks to burn off all that fat without having to emerge from their mother's basements.

Re:Where is it Coming From? (1)

Alien Being (18488) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946071)

Yeah, but Chief Scientist Hannibal Flecter claims that they can overcome this obstacle by supplementing the subjects' diets with something called Soylent Green.

Re:Where is it Coming From? (2, Interesting)

E++99 (880734) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946187)

In the end, this isn't just harvesting unused energy; There's no such thing. It has to come from somewhere. In this case, doesn't it come from the energy the heart is exerting to pump blood? Is it possible that this could have some long term side effects, due to slightly more stress on the heart?

Since it's powered by the vibrations from the pulse, the energy used would presumably otherwise by converted to heat by the mechanical dampening of the pulse by the vein walls. Since this is not a way that the body purposely generates heat, I'd argue that it qualifies as "unused energy." Worst case, it would require a minuscule amount of additional heat production from available fat or sugar stores. It doesn't seem like it would have any direct effect on the heart, as it shouldn't effect the actual flow of blood.

Re:Where is it Coming From? (1)

ozmanjusri (601766) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946691)

Is it possible that this could have some long term side effects, due to slightly more stress on the heart?

Would turning the crank on a generator terrify you? That's another way of harvesting energy from your body that places more stress on your heart.

Re:Where is it Coming From? My beer gut. (1)

siriuskase (679431) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946869)

I can't think of a better use for my excess calories. The fatter I am, the more personal devices I can power. If that's not enough, I can drink more beer. Isn't science wonderful

Re:Where is it Coming From? (1)

timeOday (582209) | more than 7 years ago | (#19947611)

In the end, this isn't just harvesting unused energy; There's no such thing.
'cause heaven knows too many Americans are on the brink of starvation.

I honestly think you could make good money on an implant that does nothing but burn calories.

Re:Where is it Coming From? (1)

GunFodder (208805) | more than 7 years ago | (#19947629)

Depends on the machine. My new laser hand might draw considerably more power.

They've had this idea before... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19945723)

Burbage dies, pg. 12
Hedwig dies, pg. 56
Mad-Eye dies, pg. 78
Scrimgeour dies, pg. 159
Wormtail dies, pg. 471
Dobby dies, pg. 476
Fread Weasley dies, pg. 637
Voldemort kills Snape, pg. 658
Voldemort kills Harry, pg. 704
Harry comes back to life, pg. 724
Neville kills Nagini, pg. 733
Tonks, Lupin and Colin Creevy's deaths confirmed, pg. 743
Hagrid, Malfoy and Neville survive.
Nineteen years after the events in the book:
Ron marries Hermoine
Harry marries Ginny
Their children attend Hogwartz together
Ron's children are named Rose and Hugo
Harry's children are named Lily, James and Albus Severus
Draco Malfoy has a son named Scorpius
The final two sentences are:
"The scar had not pained Harry for eighteen years. All was well."

Re:They've had this idea before... (1)

Dragon By Proxy (1063904) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945773)

I'm kind of curious; have these been verified yet?

Re:They've had this idea before... (1)

ZombieWomble (893157) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946255)

Close enough. Give or take a few page numbers (which may be down to editions) and a typo in the quote of the final sentences.

Re:They've had this idea before... (0, Offtopic)

jb.cancer (905806) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945975)

if had mod points, i wud mod you -1/0 {Troll,OT}

Cue the Matrix comments... (4, Funny)

dfetter (2035) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945729)

coppertop ;)

Oblg Matrix Reference... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19945735)

Mr. Anderson,

  Welcome back! We missed you...

Great! (2, Interesting)

jsse (254124) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945737)

That's one step toward the Matrix, thanks a bunch!

Tell me where you're so that I could spot you and eliminate you in order to divert myself away from the inevitable future.

Re:Great! (1)

thenymph (984077) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945957)

Yeah, and the Borg wrapped into one. Naturally, we will want to accessorize with lasers and shit.

Kung-Fu (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19945743)

[insert Matrix joke here]

Follow the white rabbit. (-1, Redundant)

imstanny (722685) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945757)

Is this article real, or did they just steal the synopsis for The Matrix?

HemoElectric Dams (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19945771)

Finally a way to power animated tattoos!

Harvesting Energy (1)

imstanny (722685) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945801)

We've been harvesting human energy for electronic use for years: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Watch [wikipedia.org] Kinetic Watch

Re:Harvesting Energy (2, Informative)

Saurian_Overlord (983144) | more than 7 years ago | (#19947441)

Not exactly. Kinetic = motion. If you'll read the Wikipedia entry you linked to, it explains it quite simply. You could put a kinetic watch on a frequently-used doorknob and it would work just as well.

Next step - feeding on human blood ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19945825)

Next step in the development - machine would feed on human blood, not only on its movement.

Not a matrix reference (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19945843)

This post is not a matrix reference.

Where is it coming from (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19945845)

Dune the Stilt Suit

Lipo? (1)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945847)

Hm, no mention of my idea to solve the obesity problem AND energy problem by streamlining the liposuction process so people can regularly have their body fat sucked out and used as energy...

Re:Lipo? (1)

PrimeWaveZ (513534) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945863)

I wonder if the adipose tissue would be a good source of biodiesel? Would that mean that tubby folks like myself would be contributing more to a green world than skinny vegan tree huggers?

Re:Lipo? (1)

Eddi3 (1046882) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945929)

Not really. The conversion of Food > Sugar > Fat, etc. in the body is very inefficient. It would be much more efficient to just get it from the source in the first place.

Re:Lipo? (1, Funny)

aliquis (678370) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945947)

No, you will still be fat ugly unwanted pieces of humanity.

Re:Lipo? (1)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945971)

What Eddi3 said. Lipo can only salvage energy that would otherwise be wasted. But getting fat *for the purpose* of providing energy would be less efficient than applying the energy from whatever made the food, directly into the economy. It would almost be like Homer's plan to get rich by selling grease from the fatty foods he eats ;-)

Thank you! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19945855)

I always wanted to be part of a electric circuit but the sockets I tried didn't feel the same way.

I'll finally have a relationship with someone. I just hope my dearest won't squeeze the life out of me.

Some good can come from this (1)

dragonrouge (1059352) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945901)

What I get from the article is that this technology doesn't have any application today but can be used to fuel implants in the future. If the body can produce it's own energy, at least partially, that's probably better for you than having to install batteries which would otherwise be the case (and is the case now although I don't know if this an issue today).

Re:Some good can come from this (1)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946385)

It is for devices like pacemakers and implanted defibrillators ... they have to be replaced every so often.

Awesome, if this means that... (2, Funny)

TomatoMan (93630) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945913)

...I can burn off the love handles by hooking them up Super Mario on my DS.

Where do I sign?

Re:Awesome, if this means that... (1)

danlock4 (1026420) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946749)

Your Wiimote might be more effective, or maybe more fun!

Porn perputual motion machine (4, Funny)

antifoidulus (807088) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945925)

think about, you have a portable video player loaded up with some porn. The user starts watching, the heart starts pumping faster allowing for more porn to be viewed. Repeat ad naseum(or until the user needs a towel)

Re:Porn perputual motion machine (1)

notanatheist (581086) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946087)

Repetition is the killer. You see, the batteries only hold a charge for so long and can only be recharged a limited number of times in a day. Of course Slashdotters probably have enough pent up energy that you could feed back into the grid.

Re:Porn perputual motion machine (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19947409)

I'm going to trademark PornPentual Motion and register the domain right now!

A question of space (1)

kalayq (827594) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945939)

To power anything of consequence you would need quite a few of these in your blood stream. Also to deliver energy to a specific device, all of these machines would have to be clustered together. Now my question is whether or not these would be a health risk. Our arteries and veins are not very big, and having a lot of nano machines in one place could cause a coronary or a heart attack. In the U.S. people already are having way to many problems with plaque buildup preventing proper blood flow. What would this do?

Desperate? (2, Insightful)

ynososiduts (1064782) | more than 7 years ago | (#19945955)

Are people that desperate to have their smartphone on at all times that they need to harvest the energy their heart generates to power it? Maybe that's a little drastic, but they mentioned personal electronics. Do people really need to have their devices charged by blood flow? I understand pacemakers or things of that nature because they keep you alive. If it isn't necessary, why POWER it with YOUR HEART? The fact that people even thought that is a little appalling.

Re:Desperate? (1)

MMC Monster (602931) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946573)

Actually, if you could create one of these that can power a pacemaker, that would be a world-changing event. The number of pacemaker and defibrillator changes would dramatically decrease. At ~$40,000 a pop for a defibrillator and ~$5000 for a pacemaker, egging out an extra year or so by using a battery that can be recharged by the person would be an incredible savings overall.

Stroke, Heart Attack, and Brain Damage (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19945969)

I wouldn't want it inside my bloodstream. From heart valves to stents to heart bypass, we've seen how well the inside of veins and arteries preserve the blood flow without causing flow changes that lead to clotting and debris creation. We have lots to learn and engineering to do before we could put generators inside.

All matrix jokes aside (1)

Delecron (1012817) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946039)

Why couldn't this work? I see the ramifications of using the blood stream as water dam style power plant but that could have issues with the heart when it is under extreme distress. I can't see why the massive amount of heat the body produces can't be used to power these devices. At the nano level I have to believe no one will freeze to death at the minor loss in heat. As long as I don't have a bunch of tubes hooked up to my nipples, I'm all for it.....

Re:All matrix jokes aside (1)

arpad1 (458649) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946779)

Matrix jokes aside? Bullshit!

I wonder how much power they'll be getting? Probably something in the neighborhood of 120 volts of bio-electric power which, if I'm not mistaken, is enough bio-electric power to run an entire civilization of self-aware, artificial-intelligence, anti-gravity, lasers-on-their-heads, robots.

It's also enough power to propel six hours and forty-three minutes of incoherent techno-babble, pretentious, pseudo-religiosity and a plot that makes sci-fi serials from the thirties look positively Shakespearean. If only the forces of good could harness such power!

What if Neo had chosen the red pill?
What if Morpheus had told him they were suppositories?
What would the snotty French guy have been called if the Da Vinci Code hadn't brought "Merovingian" into the popular lexicon?
What's the Oracle do besides bake cookies? She sure isn't needed to help out when the river of pretentiousness starts to run dry.
Why do the dumb-ass robots have to have big effing drills to get into Zion when there's doors that an ordinary ship can bash through?
Why are they called "Armored Personnel Units" when they don't have any armor and a guy with a .22 rifle and a good place to hide could drop 'em all?
What's the big deal with the EMP if every friggin' ship is pulling thirty foot high voltage arcs as part of business as usual?
Why don't the dumb-ass robots develop some defense against the EMP?
Why don't the dumb-ass humans develop a "Reset" for when they get killed in the Matrix?
Why is the dialog more offensive then the gratuitous, not to mention spectacularly ineffective, use of firearms?
Why are the least interesting characters in the movies the humans and the most interesting the programs?
Where's the food come from to keep all those pod-people alive?

Well, that clears my sinuses a bit.

Re:All matrix jokes aside (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19947117)

120 volts of bio-electric power
A volt is a unit of electric potential. A watt is a unit of power, soon to be replaced by units of "humans."

Gas? (1)

hero_or_what (245446) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946065)

The article may just be a fart, but I'll just gas up anyways..

Re:Gas? (1)

booch (4157) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946353)

I think the parent poster is on to something. I can guarantee you that I have plenty of energy available in the gases escaping from my body. Reducing that energy would not be a problem -- for me, or for those around me.

Re:Gas? (1)

danlock4 (1026420) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946775)

Maybe you should buy a wind turbine... [just a suggestion; trying to help!]

Re:Gas? (1)

Tablizer (95088) | more than 7 years ago | (#19947157)

The article may just be a fart, but I'll just gas up anyways..

I saw the main title and immediately knew it would be fodder for fart jokes. Sure enough...

I for one welcome our gasious overlords.
       

This will not become viable until .... (0)

3seas (184403) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946079)

... the US food industry stops polluting our diets with blood vessel clogging poisons like HFCS and such.

Ultimately what they are talking about here would put more work on the heart, the energy source of blood flow.

What the formula or law regarding conversion of energy?

Then again I suppose if you cut off your arms and legs your heart can then take on more work without shorting your life ????

What ever happened to the wind generators? I heard that someone made a computer system with such a generator built in.

 

Re:This will not become viable until .... (1)

danlock4 (1026420) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946837)

What ever happened to the wind generators? I heard that someone made a computer system with such a generator built in.

Are you referring to devices that generate wind, or to devices that generate electricity using wind?

and the best part is... (1)

j.a.mcguire (551738) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946109)

the additional energy taken from and stress placed on your heart only reduces your lifespan by an average 5 years!

Skin Contact (3, Insightful)

notanatheist (581086) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946113)

Surely this can be done from outside the body. A couple pods taped to the right places and wired to a charger of some sort should be adequate. I used to have issues with my bicycle computer (cyclometer) when I kept in in my pocket. Typically the material in the pocket isn't that thick and the contact points on the bottom of the unit would be close to my leg. Occasionally I'd pull it out and it'd be giving me erratic reading like I was going 70mph though I wasn't on my bike. Since then I no longer keep the cyclometer in my pocket so as not to skew my averages when I'm tracking my rides.

They are having a major problem though (3, Funny)

LM741N (258038) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946133)

Sex tends to burn out the electronics.

Welcome to rabbit hole (1)

TheCybernator (996224) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946311)

Now there is a Blue Pill and a Red Pill.

A disruptive technology (2, Funny)

ThatsNotPudding (1045640) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946381)

This could kill the joke that features the punchline: "No Doc I don't want you to remove it, I just want you to change the batteries."

No thanks (2, Insightful)

nsayer (86181) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946413)

In the past, the idea of harvesting energy from living tissue has centered on chemical reactions - attempting to use the glucose in the bloodstream or what not. That's fine (so long as it can be done safely), because the systems that regulate glucose availability probably have the overhead capacity to spare (at least by comparison). But when you talk about tapping the bloodstream's KE, I start to get nervous, because then you're talking about the heart. That's where the energy you're tapping is going to come from. When your heart wears out, you're more or less done. I'm already doing enough bad things to my heart (vis diet and exercise) - I don't want to make it work any harder.

Re:No thanks (1)

TeknoHog (164938) | more than 7 years ago | (#19947101)

When your heart wears out, you're more or less done. I'm already doing enough bad things to my heart (vis diet and exercise) - I don't want to make it work any harder.

A little extra exercise hardly hurts. Or do you think top athletes die young due to their heart wearing out?

hmmm (1)

mrcvp (1130257) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946419)

the matrix anybody? nano technology alwas disturbs me.

Re:hmmm (1)

david614 (10051) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946447)

I was wondering when I was going to see the first Matrix reference -- sure, with a few billion bodies to spare this might be an interesting power source -- to some rogue AI....

So... (1)

Dragon By Proxy (1063904) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946579)

How do they intend to actually use the energy? I doubt a little machine floating around in your body a la "The Magic School Bus" would transfer anything out very easily.

(and, no, I didn't RTFA}

Too bad (1)

Derek Loev (1050412) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946599)

All my energy went into my new Gentoo install last night, I'm spent.

yeah, but wouldn't that slow down your (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19946653)

bloooooooooooooood....?

Heart implants (2, Interesting)

Edgester (105351) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946701)

To bad this won't power heart implants or artificial hearts.

A better way (2, Funny)

iminplaya (723125) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946789)

Just capture all the methane coming out of the exhaust pipe.

Just to be on the safe side (1)

thc4k (951561) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946971)

I, for one, welcome our new nano robotian overlords.

Can you imagine what tech support will be like? (1)

brunnock (18853) | more than 7 years ago | (#19946989)

Caller: My cell phone won't turn on!

Support: Can you check your heart and make sure it's beating?

Re:Can you imagine what tech support will be like? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19947493)

It would probably go more like the old joke...

Caller: "My buddy and I are out hunting and he just collapsed! My friend is dead, what do I do?"

Support: "OK. OK, calm down. First we need to make sure he's dead."

Caller: "Uh, hang on..." (silence, then a loud BANG! then silence)

Caller: "OK. Now what?"

No fuel source? (0, Troll)

vidnet (580068) | more than 7 years ago | (#19947079)

The hope is to incorporate the new nanogenerator into biosensors, environmental monitoring devices and even personal electronics that will require no fuel source, internal or external.

Ehm.. There would be an external fuel source: the body.

Inductive Gadget Belt (1)

siriuskase (679431) | more than 7 years ago | (#19947487)

You've read about it here first. With my copyright (refer to bottom of the page). Someday, you will all want an inductive girdle implanted around your waist paired with an inductive gadget belt where you can hang all your electronic doodads. They can stay charged all day long while you gab continuously or listen to music on your choclear implants, while chatting with your electroni molars. That mental picture I've just drawn? We will call it prior art, and now I'll just sit back and wait for the money.

This will cause the following (1)

Token_Internet_Girl (1131287) | more than 7 years ago | (#19947559)

Headline: "Nerds everywhere find fault with new body energy technology, discover fault is they're too fat for it to work"
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