On Monday, Aug. 24, 1998, Professor Kevin Warwick, director of cybernetics at the
University of Reading in the United Kingdom, became the first man to be implanted
with a silicone-covered, human-implantable microchip. According to the August 28th
edition of CNN on-line, " The ultimate aim of this technology, said Warwick, would
be to connect humans more closely with computers. A simple example is responding to e-mails with the move of a finger, or ultimately connecting the computer to the human nervous system. "You then really have a direct connection from the brain to the computer. That has been a science fiction idea, but maybe technically this is step one," he said. "
From the beginning, the human implantable chip has been controversial. The
controversy does not so much center around the ability to open doors and interface
with computers at a wave of the hand, but it centers on the ability to make what
was once a passively interactive microchip, (one that needed to be activated by an
outside 'interrogator' or scanner) to one that is active and generates it's own signal
due to built in antennae. These latter types can put out a signal some distance
away, up to 100 feet in some cases and may utilize other sensors to draw electrical
power. These can be read without so much as a sneeze from the bearer. Thus, the
technology has evolved to the point that a human being can be easily tracked
without his/her knowledge either through an implantable chip or through some item
which is using RfID in order to track product movement.