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Intelligent carpet can autodiscriminate

Watch your step! Your weight, your pace, your age and even your gender could now be analysed whilst walking along the office hallway to meet your future employer. Well, that depends if the employer is looking for an overweight, middle aged, semi fast paced male or rather a bulimic, underweight teenager.

The Inquirer refers to this as a new form of automated prejudice, to make business decision-making far more efficient.

Experts predict that in business recruitment, especially in the City of London, the process of snap decision-making could be streamlined to achieve faster judgements.

The intelligent carpet, invented in Japan, can tell bosses or market researchers the age, sex and weight of the person walking across it. The prototype carpet can differentiate between people in their 20s and 60s with nearly 100 per cent accuracy, according to a story on Nikkei.net. The carpet can determine a walkers gender with up to80 per cent accuracy, the inventors claim, since males and females have different centres of gravity.

The research team developing this carpet hopes to improve on its prototype so it can be used in such places as shops to analyse shopping patterns or entertainment venues to provide audience data.

A layer of silicone rubber with built-in electrodes embedded in the carpet measures the changes in electrical resistance and current flow caused by a person walking across it. Analysis of the data collected can determine foot size, stride, walking speed, weight and centre of gravity of those ambling innocently along.

Happy striding!