Apple unveiled the iPhone 5S smartphone with much fanfare a fortnight ago, with one feature standing out above all others – the Touch ID fingerprint scanner.
This is the first biometric technology that has made its way to people at such a mass scale, allowing iPhone 5S buyers to secure their smartphone in a way that it cannot be copied.
Apple fanboys (and detractors alike) are, however, not content with just what the new technology does. They want to also see what all it can possibly do, and how they can bypass the Touch ID. We have seen several hilarious YouTube videos and memes depicting some of the weird questions people ask Siri, and similar is the case with Touch ID.
The way it is built, you are required to enter an impression of your fingerprint in iPhone 5S via the fingerprint scanner embedded into the Home button. However, people have used other body parts – human or otherwise – to challenge this technology and see how far it goes. Of course, some videos of the same have been posted on the internet.
One of the weirdest body part used to imprint upon the iPhone 5S via TouchID has been the nipple. A video shows a man taking an impression of his nipple in the top-end iPhone and using it to unlock the handset.
And with the technology being foolproof, the nipple of another person could not unlock the same device, as shown in the video. Though not a security threat, it is certainly an odd choice of body organ to use in order to secure, or unlock, a smartphone!
Videos showing people using their own as well as the toes of their cats and dogs to unlock their new iPhone 5S are also doing rounds. Apart from that, the nose has been used to open a locked Apple smartphone too.While it may be a boon for those without fingers, or faint fingerprints (including many elderly people), the idea clearly has been carried too far by the mis-users.
Weirder things have been reported by some users in their quest to unlock the iPhone 5S in other ways that doesn’t involve fingerprints. Some YouTube and Twitter users have claimed that iPhone 5S accepts the impression of the human male reproductive organ – the penis – as well.
While we did not find video confirmation of the same, a Twitter user @gruesgripes has tweeted, “Confirmed: You can add your penis as an authorized appendage to log into your iPhone 5S. This actually works.”
On a serious note, fingerprints lifted from a glass or any other object can also be used to unlock an iPhone 5S without users’ permission. And that should be cause for serious worry to not only Apple, but many more who deem fingerprint scans as a foolproof technology. In a way, it is good iPhone 5S has brought this larger debate into focus.
Two days ago, a group of German hackers broke Apple’s new security mechanism effectively this same way, underlining the fact that Apple’s new biometric feature Touch ID might suffer from vulnerabilities that has been known to the public for several years now.
Even though it was launched by Apple with much fanfare and is a great piece-d-resistance for buyers of iPhone 5S, instances like these only go on to show that Touch ID is far from perfect. But then, neither is Siri, despite donning a male avatar in iOS7!
Eyephone! A simple and inexpensive technique that uses smartphone photography can help diagnose eye diseases, scientists say.
Retinal (or fundus) photography is an essential part of any ophthalmology practice.
Commercial fundus cameras can cost tens to hundreds of thousands of dollars, making the technology out of reach for smaller ophthalmic practices and to physicians in third-world countries.
In a recent study, researchers at Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary described the relatively simple technique of fundus photography in human and rabbit eyes using a smartphone, an inexpensive app for the smartphone, and instruments that are readily available.
Smartphones are now being used more routinely in ophthalmology to document patients’, researchers said.
“Our technique provides a simpler and higher fundus,” said .to more consistently produce excellent images of a patient’s
“This technique has been extremely helpful for us in setting, in-patient consultations, and during examinations under anaesthesia as it provides a cheaper and portable option for high-quality fundus-image acquisition for documentation and consultation.
“This technique is well tolerated in awake patients most likely since the light intensity used is often well below that which is used in standard indirect ophthalmoscopy,” Mukai said.
Using the described technique of fundus photography with the use of smartphones, the app Filmic pro, and a 20D lens with or without , researchers were able to capture excellent, high-quality fundus images in both children under anaesthesia and in awake adults.
The best results were achieved in the operating room when a Koeppe lens was used in addition to the 20D lens; however, excellent images were acquired with the 20D lens alone in the clinic and emergency room setting as well as in the operating room.
“This technique is relatively inexpensive and simple to master, and takes advantage of the expanding mobile-telephone networks for telemedicine,” Mukai said.