Imagine if vending machine purchases were automatically tweeted to the world -- would you still opt for that chocolate bar?
A group of UK hackers and craft workers, Nottinghack, created a machine which does just that, as an in-house experiment.
The group purchased a non-functional vending machine from eBay for the experiment, which they then customized with an Arduino microcontroller.
The snack machine communicates with the group's server, Holly, which then automatically tweets purchase details from its social media account. This way, members are aware of who is buying what.
The machine, which stocks electronic parts alongside candy and chips, also lets members pay using a special card with a pre-paid allowance, instead of having to have cash handy. The reader recognizes the amount left on each person's card.
The experiment is an interesting spin on Oreo's recent interactive vending machine experiment at the South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, earlier this year.
The exhibit used incoming social media data to allow customers to choose cookie flavors based on which biscuits were trending on Twitter.