Lemonade stands are already accepting Bitcoin, but they might be about to get way more high-tech than anybody ever imagined. Scientists say they’ve managed to “teleport” lemonande over the Internet by digitally sending color and flavor into a glass of plain water.
According to Food Navigator, scientists at Japan's Keio University and the National University of Singapore Connective Ubiquitous Technology for Embodiments created “virtual lemonade.” First, they take a glass of real lemonade, and submerge sensors to detect the color and PH level of the lemonade inside it.
The sensors then wirelessly transmit the color and PH information to a special glass filled with water. A color-emitting LED in the bottom of the cup makes the liquid look like the lemonade. Metal strips in the top of the cup transmit electrical currents that stimulate a person’s tastebuds and simulate the flavor of the lemonade. A person drinks it and tastes the original lemonade, but all they’re really drinking is a big glass of water.
The scientists say they started with lemonade, because it’s relatively easy to simulate the taste of sourness with electric currents.
The project is still a way from becoming a commercial reality, but the researchers suggest some uses of this technology could include weight loss, curbing food waste, and allowing people to have the experience of sharing a meal, even if they are not at the same table.
Scientists are still working on transmitting the scent of the lemonade, which will really make the virtual lemonade experience authentic. Then maybe they’ll really be able to make a glass of water taste exactly like one of the 15 best lemonade recipes of all time.