Not to be alarmist, but all current evidence suggests we’re moving towards a dystopian society presided over by activity trackers.
We have wearable tech that administers electric shocks when the wearer fails to complete a task, belts that tighten when you’ve eaten too much food, and apps that tell you to step away from the fridge.
There are also fitbits that reward your vagina for exercising and count how many times your partner thrusts during sex, and vacuum cleaners that tell you how many calories your cleaning session just burned.
And now we have a necklace to judge our eating habits. Excellent.
A technology company over in the US have created a necklace that tracks how much food you're eating and kindly informs you when you overdo it on the calorie front. It's called WearSens, and the developers describe it as a "food diary you wear around your neck" — but it's also been nicknamed "the diet choker", which makes it sound like a torture device.
Before you freak out: no, the WearSens doesn't automatically tighten if you eat too much. We haven't reached Game of Thrones-level masochism just yet.
The necklace, which resembles a fancy collar, uses piezoelectric sensors to monitor several things: how much food or liquid is being consumed, how long it takes to eat, what kind of food it is, and the duration of time between meals, including whether a meal has been skipped.
This information, drawn from vibrations in the neck when something is chewed and/or swallowed, is then transmitted to an app that's synced up to the device. Based on your height, weight and age specifications, the app will determine whether you've eaten too much or too little, and whether you're dehydrated.
According to a small trial of 30 people, the necklace is 90 per cent accurate. Apparently it can distinguish between hot and cold beverages and soft and solid foods. Okay, so that's pretty clever.
"Many nutrition methods are based on writing down what you eat. But this method has low compliance, so we wanted to overcome these issues and wanted to do something that a pedometer does for activity," co-founder Majid Sarrafzadeh explains.
Food intake aside, the developers also claim WearSens could offer support for people who regularly use medication, by letting them know when they miss a dose. According to Popular Science, they're also working towards a collaboration with a lung transplant surgeon, which will use the device to monitor the breathing patterns of transplant recipients.
Would you use a diet tracker like this? Or do you think it's a ridiculous idea?
If you like the idea of fitness trackers that serve less intrusive purposes, try one of these on for size: