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LED ice cubes that tell you to stop drinking: video

Posting in Design

Most of us have overdone the weekend spirits at one stage or another, but what if your ice cubes told you when it's time to pack up and order a cab?

We've seen glasses that are able to detect rape drugs to keep drinkers safe from being exploited from outside influences, but that doesn't necessarily mean we always keep an eye on the risk associated with our own consumption of alcohol.

A new design, reminiscent of the fork which tells you when to stop eating, was born when MIT Media Lab researcher Dhairya Dand had a few too many and ended up having an alcohol-induced blackout. The result is "Cheers," LED-lit ice cubes which detect alcohol and flash in multiple colors to record your intake and tell your friend via text when you're reaching beyond a safe limit.

The video explains that each ice cube will "beat" to the pulse of ambient music, sparking off a range of colors -- from green to orange and finally red -- as the ice detects how much alcohol you've consumed.


Each cube, complete with an LED, accelerometer IR transceiver and a battery, also has the capability to be hooked up to your smartphone and text your friends if you've gone over the edge.

Dand's concept ice cubes also monitor the track of time and how many sips you've taken, which can be used to approximate how drunk you probably are. In order to stop you accidentally choking on the device, each detection kit is moulded around into a waterproof cube of jelly, which Dand says is completely "waterproof, edible and tasty."

"If you don't hurry, it would take say five drinks to hit the red color. If you are having a very mild drink, it might hit red on the sixth or seventh," Dand told the Huffington Post. The researcher also said that due to the popularity of his video, a Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign may be in the works.

— By on January 10, 2013, 8:20 PM PST

Charlie Osborne

Contributing Editor

Charlie Osborne is a freelance journalist and photographer based in London. In addition to SmartPlanet, she also writes for business technology website ZDNet and consumer technology site CNET. She holds a degree in medical anthropology from the University of Kent. Follow her on Twitter. Disclosure