On Bits, Nick Bilton explains how he's come to replace his bulky wallet -- filled with cards, memberships, business cards, photos -- and does everything with his smartphone instead. And for those that question his sanity, he points out that "if I lose my phone, there is a password to stop someone from opening it. My wallet never came with a password."
Printed photos, which once came in "wallet size," have been replaced by an endless roll of snapshots on my phone. Business cards, one of the more archaic forms of communication from the last few decades, now exist as digital rap sheets that can be shared with a click or a bump.
As for cash, I rarely touch the stuff anymore. Most of the time I pay for things -- lunch, gas, clothes -- with a single debit card. Increasingly, there are also opportunities to skip plastic cards. At Starbucks, I often pay with my smartphone using the official Starbucks app. Other cafes and small restaurants allow people to pay with Square. You simply say your name at a register and voilà, transaction complete.
But wait, what did I do with all of the other cardlike things, like my gym membership I.D., discount cards, insurance cards and coupons? I simply took digital pictures of them, which I keep in a photos folder on my smartphone that is easily accessible. Many stores have apps for their customer cards, and insurance companies have apps that substitute for paper identification.
|Stretchy Electronic Skin|
|Mind-Operated Bionic Leg|
|Power Pallet: Carbon-Negative Biomass Power Generators|
|Monsanto's dream bill, HR 875|
|The Vaults Are For Real, Not Just in Fallout|
|Fake Name Generator|
|“A machine meant to hurl rockets into space.”|
|“The only thing worse than assuming that carbon removal will save the day is assuming it will save the day.”|
|Japanese Robot Serves Ice Cream From Inside a Vending Machine|
|“Are the puppets coming for our jobs?”|
|How to Avoid Jury Duty|
|What Computers See When They Watch a Movie|
|Chinese warehouse organises, packs, and fulfills 200,000 orders a day with four people|
|The (Very Scary) People of Public Transit|
|David Reeves' Paper Cutouts Inspired by Classic Cult Movies|
|CaptchaTweet: Write Tweets in Captcha Form|
|Recycled Vacuum Lamps|