Biometrics: The Means To Do Away with Useless Crap

My wife and I have been hopping around from country to country within the past few months (which is why I am mostly to blame for not posting more thoughts to you out there).  During one of our stops I was required to scan my fingerprints in order to verify my identity.  While this may set some people fuming as they mistakenly believe they are important enough to be constantly watched, on the contrary, this set my futurist mind racing with one great question: why can’t biometrics (personal identification through fingerprints, retinal scans, etc.) be used instead of all the crap I am required to keep in my wallet and pockets?  Frankly, I hate having to lug around what feels like a rock [wallet] while sitting on the leather hemorrhoid that makes my butt numb and my seating awkward.  Why can’t I simply store all of my information on my body since I always have my fingers and eyes attached unless I defaulted on too many loans from multiple loan sharks?  Luckily, in this case, I don’t have a gambling addiction. 

I was one of the few people that were happy during the procedure as I scanned my identity and basked in the hope that maybe I could eventually do away with my passport, that document that could prove quite useful if deviants or terrorists were able to steal it from me.  Then I started to ask myself why biometrics should stop at visas or passports.  Why couldn’t I use my fingerprint and retinal scans to do away with credit cards?  Much like my traveling information, my debit card has a barcode that is scanned every time I purchase a product or service.  So why couldn’t I use my biometric identity to make purchases since that information is like a unique barcode in itself?

Now, I’m sure one of the questions you are asking is this: do you mean to do away with cash, altogether?  Of course I do!  To me, cash is only a monetary value used to make purchases, trades, and etcetera.  So why can’t I elect to have my bank load all of my financial information onto my biometric identity rather than be forced to continue keeping all of this modern crap on my person?  The biometric system could essentially operate in a similar manner like a credit card except minus the plastic.  Simply put, money could be renamed ‘labor points’.  That is essentially what cash could transform into, a unit of measurement for labor performed.  So, in my ideal biometric system the more you work then the more labor points you could accumulate.

I will leave my idea at that final point (for now) but I will end on this note.  This idea is nothing new if you are a Trekkie like me.  For more information on this form of labor points and biometrics, I would suggest researching the economics of Star Trek or taking in (revisiting) a season of Star Trek: The Next Generation.

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About Manny Garza

After serving 8 years in the U.S. Army as an Intelligence Analyst, Manny departed the military in order to pursue his B.A. in Philosophy from American Military University. Aside from college, he writes short stories and essays in the realm of philosophy and science fiction. Manny's short stories are heavily influenced by who he refers to as The Trinity: Isaac Asimov, Arthur C. Clarke, and Jack Williamson. He is married to his lovely wife, Melissa, and has two dogs named Koopa and Goomba. Aside from being an editor and contributor of Nerd Trek articles, his hobbies include playing guitar, singing, and both tabletop and video game RPGs. Manny currently lives in Charlottesville, VA.