Scientists have been searching for a replacement for electricity for years. Now, two teams of researchers have come up with working prototypes that will spell the end for mains electricity and batteries. One set of scientists have made a small device to replace batteries while another group has come up with a mechanism to get rid of cables connecting electrical items to sockets.
Both of these developments will allow our electrical items to be powered by vibration. This is something that researchers have been working on for several years, but now these practical applications show it is possible to power electrical items without batteries and without any wires connecting the item to the mains power source.
For users of the Internet this will have significant impact. At the moment to connect to the Internet you either need to be connected to the mains electrical supply or you need a battery device that you have to recharge every few hours. With these new “power free” suggestions imagine what might be possible.
Say you are a doctor and you need to keep up to date with information on prescribing drugs. You could have a pocket device that simply had one RSS feed or Blog on it. The device would be constantly updated, always on and you would never need to remember to recharge it. Information, always in your pocket, always up to date; there are thousands of applications where that would be essential.
It would also mean that email and instant messaging devices would become feasible. At the moment you need a handhled PC or mobile phone that needs recharging to do this. But with wireless electricity and battery-free devices developers could produce specific devices to achieve particular objectives. For instance, a simple, tiny machine that is a permanently-on, instant messaging device. This would mean businesses could communicate with field workers no matter where they were in the world.
The possibilities for battery-free devices are seemingly limitless. Combine this with new flexible screen technologies and all sorts of specialist machines could be developed.
What it means for us now is the fact that even more dramatic change to the Internet is being lined up. If you thought the Internet had reached it’s peak potential the arrival of wireless mains electricity will mean we have only just started scratching the surface of what the Internet can do.
Graham Jones is an Internet Psychologist who studies the way people use the online world, in particular how people engage with businesses. He uses this knowledge to help companies improve their online connections to their customers and potential customers and offers consultancy, workshops, masterclasses and webinars. He also speaks regularly at conferences and business events. Graham is an award-winning writer and the author of 32 books, several of which are about various aspects of the Internet. For more information connect with me on Google+