Publication Details

This conference paper was originally published as Michael, K and Masters, A, Applications of human transponder implants in mobile commerce, in Proceedings of the 8th World Multiconference on Systemics, Cybernetics and Informatics, Orlando, Florida, 18-21 July 2004, 5, 505-512.


When the ENIAC was launched in 1946, no one could ever have imagined that the giant thinking machine would one day find itself inside the anthropos. However the continuing quest for miniaturisation has made this possible: from luggables to wearables, and now, ultimately to implantable devices. This paper explores the potential for RFID transponder implants in humans for emerging mobile commerce applications. Three usability contexts have been defined to explore the applications which are projected to become mainstream service offerings. This paper is significant because it dispels the common misconception that microchip implants for humans are still some time away. In fact, the findings indicate that implants are set to make a universal entry into the marketplace due to the additional convenience and level of control they promise. Owing to this, a point of urgency is made at the conclusion of the paper that more cross-disciplinary discourse has to now take place to ensure that adequate considerations have been made for the longer term especially given the inherently controlling and invasive aspects of the technology.