Let’s invent a dustbin that throws itself away
*Something for the Weekend, Sir?* What the world needs now is an
intelligent dustbin. It would be the pinnacle of achievement for the
Internet of Things sector.
But wait – it already exists! And in common with its robotic,
pseudo-not-actually-AI brethren, it has a suitably daft anthropomorphic
moniker. Instead of labelling it with a gender-presumptive name such as
Beryl or Daryl, they’ve called it *Baryl*.
That’s right: *Baryl*. As in “of laughs”, “of bullshit”, “they’ve got you
over a”, “shooting fish in a”, or, most appropriately for the IoT market,
“scraping the bottom of a”.
Have a look here at Baryl in action
<https://www.pscp.tv/MLMontpellier/1DXGyyeAVzkGM>, unnecessarily trying to
clean up the already spotless passenger concourse at Montpellier train
Notice how insistently Baryl pursues potential bylaw offenders, eager to
chomp their waste and prevent untidiness. It can't be bargained with. It
can't be reasoned with. It doesn't feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And it
absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are relieved of your litter.
Just imagine the fun you could have hacking into Baryl. If you were feeling
small-minded, you could get it to chase people around the concourse while
bleating “om-nom-nom” although as far as I can see, it pretty much does
The key word here is “target”. As the variety of interconnected devices
increases, you no longer have to head straight for the one you’re after.
Instead, you simply break into the device with the worst security and ride
the interconnected surf until you hit gold. Even the most basic two-factor
authentication doesn’t seem to figure in IoT once the little buggers are
talking to each other.
So beware: it’s through the small things that we’ll get targeted. Hang on,
I’ve just thought of a really good use for Baryl.
Youtube Video <https://youtu.be/9Ht5RZpzPqw>
*Alistair Dabbs* is a freelance technology tart, juggling tech journalism,
training and digital publishing. Despite what he has written above, he is
likely to be among the first to buy an IoT-connected home security device.
He welcomes the imminent rerelease of *OK Computer*. He is a paranoid