Ep. 23 - Implanted Identity with Amal Graafstra
In this installment of the Future Grind podcast host Ryan O’Shea speaks with Amal Graafstra, an early pioneer of RFID implants and the author of the book RFID Toys. Amal created the first implantable NFC tag, the xNT, in 2013. He sells these implants through his website, Dangerous Things, and his new company, VivoKey Technologies, promises to implant a cryptographically secure digital identify authentication and payment solution. Amal recently caused a stir when he created an implant-activated smart gun, which would only fire when held by an approved user. We discuss concerns of security and privacy, the FDA and other regulations, safety, and more.
Once again we remind you that the thoughts of the guests on this podcast do not necessarily reflect the views of Future Grind or of Ryan O'Shea. Biohacking is dangerous and things can go wrong. We strongly advise against self-surgery of any kind, and you should consult with a trained medical doctor before moving forward with any type of human augmentation.
This episode is being sponsored by our friends at Kunstwerk Multimedia. Kunstwerk is an immersive science fiction project from R. Nicholas Starr that explores a cyberpunk future through music, visual, and industrial arts. The project features distinct soundtracks telling the story of four different characters, featuring everything from the sounds of medieval-Europe to science fiction-inspired electronic dance music. Want to hear more? You can sample or purchase Tobias Keller - Tranzhuman, Esgal - 1349, Esgal - Strasbourg Concerto, and Borgasm on Amazon now!
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- Amal’s desire to eliminate keys [2:30]
- Kevin Warwick & previous human experiments [5:38]
- The story of Dangerous Things [8:03]
- The creation of the xNT & manufacturing implants [10:55]
- The FDA, the VeriChip, and the xNT [16:22]
- RFID chips & MRI compatibility [18:32]
- Viruses, hacking, & security [20:56]
- Solving the identify problem with VivoKey [26:21]
- Moving from glass to flexible biopolymers [30:32]
- FDA approval for VivoKey [35:17]
- Startup accelerators, investors, & finding a market [38:16]
- Balancing open source & viable business models [41:18]
- Amal’s background; inspiration & influence [43:18]
- Problems & promise of “biohacker” [45:08]
- Doctors, body mod artist, or DIY - how to get implants [47:02]
- Liabilities & risks of performing implants [50:05]
- The future of magnet implants [54:13]
- Powered implants that problem with batteries [59:17]
- Where to find Amal [1:03:48]
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