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Mark of the Beast: man has microchip implanted into hand

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
August 28th, 2013
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

A man in Brooklyn has had a chip implanted in his hand as an ultra-modern tattoo. The chip, which is implanted entirely inside his hand, displays an animated rainbow pattern.

BROOKLYN, NY (Catholic Online) - Anthony Antonellis , who says he's an artist, had a body modification specialist cut open his hand and insert a grain-of-sand sized RFID chip, encased in glass under his skin. When a person with a cell phone that can read these chips places their phone over his hand, it now displays an animated GIF with a moving rainbow pattern.

This story and images were originally reported by ANIMAL New York.

For Antonellis, the pain and effort is intended as modern art. For the rest of us, it may seem bizarre that anyone would create a work of art that remains inside the body and is otherwise invisible unless you choose to share it with someone.

The implications of such chips are also of concern. Animals are already implanted with RFID chips to reunite them with their owners and the technology has been available to humans for a long time as well. Yet, it has never been used for art.

Instead of implanting chips, both businesses and the government have found that cell phones do a better job of serving as a virtual mark of the beast. Who needs a tattoo or even an RFID chip anymore?

Antonellis' chip stores a kilobyte of data and displays an animated GIF. Others may soon choose their own chips and artwork to go with them. Antonellis is marketing himself, but the new attention may increase the desirability of the chips for people who want something unique to share privately with others.

Still, there is nothing remaining to prevent the implantation of similar, larger capacity chips in the hands of ordinary people. Such chips could act as keys to cars, unlock doors, safes, and even guns. The chips could store credit card and bank account information, allowing a person to get paid and buy goods with a swipe of the hand.

While such convenience would also bring significant security risks, the use of biometric markers to confirm identity could easily be used in conjunction with the chips.

Over time, futurists predict that humans will implant and integrate more technology into their bodies as it becomes easier and cheaper to do so. Already, people implant pacemakers, hearing aids, and contraceptive devices into themselves. Implantation of artificial objects into the body is considered entirely normal in our age.

As Antonellis proves, it's a small step to something more.

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