Snack Machine Tweet-Shames Its Candy-Loving Users Into Being Healthy [Video]


UK-based creative hackers Nottinghack modified a second-hand machine with Arduino.

Leah Gonzalez
  • 21 april 2014

Nottinghack, a group of creative and crafty hackers in the UK, has modified a vending machine to enable it to tweet their members’ purchases.

Nottinghack bought a second-hand machine off eBay and fitted it with Arduino. They changed the payment system into a reader where members can tap their cards every time they buy something from the machine. Each card has an RFID chip that transmits the card holder’s identity and the user’s cash balance on the card.


The vending machine also communicates with Nottinghack’s server, Holly, who tweets the card holder’s candy purchases, keeping the members aware of what they buy and snack on.

This tweeting vending machine is oddly similar to Safeguard’s Germ Alarm soap dispenser, which has sensors that can detect when a person s about to leave the bathroom without cleaning their hands, and emits a loud beep that can only be deactivated when the soap dispenser is pressed. The Germ Alarm was designed to encourage people to wash their hands properly.

See how the machine works in the video by Computerphile below.

[h/t] readwrite, Computerphile


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