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Smartwatch with a Slime Mold Powered Heart Monitor

 |  |  |  |  |  February 2, 2023

By hite

Because the future nears (and it’s weirder than you expected), researchers at The University of Chicago have developed a smartwatch with a heart monitor that’s powered by slime mold. And you have to nurture that slime mold in order for its heart monitor functionality to work. It’s like a Tamagotchi, but with your own heart health on the line.

In order for the smartwatch’s heart monitor to function, you have to feed the Physarum polycephalum slime mold an oats mixture every two days and water it a couple of times a day so that it creates a ‘living wire,’ crossing a gap and completing a circuit. If the slime mold isn’t cared for, it dries up and goes dormant, breaking the circuit and preventing the heart rate monitor’s functionality. Well, isn’t that… something.

The watch was created to see how people would react to a device if they knew there was an actual living organism inside. The researchers found that people wearing the watch became incredibly invested in them, even naming their mold and giving the watch to somebody to take care of in the event they wouldn’t be able to. So I was right, it is like a living Tamagotchi. Speaking of – have you seen mine anywhere? I feel like I haven’t fed it in 20 years.

[via OddityCentral]