Thinking Tech

Can't miss! Smart wastebasket moves to catch your trash

Can't miss! Smart wastebasket moves to catch your trash

Posting in Design

The Smart Trashbox can anticipate the trajectory of a piece of trash and automatically re-position itself to ensure a clean toss each and every time.

He shoots. He... makes a mess. Happens everyday, with each piece of crumbled paper that clanks to the ground a depressing reminder of why your typical office worker is making a living at a desk instead sinking three pointers at Madison Square Garden in front of thousands of screaming fans.

But now with the Smart Trashbox, we all can feel like a champ. Designed and built by a Japanese modder who goes by the codename of FRP, the motorized wastebasket can anticipate the trajectory of launched trash and automatically re-position itself to catch it each and every time.

As clever as it is, the technology is actually quite simple. It starts with a Kinect motion sensor that's set up in the room so that it can detect the movement of a tossed object. Once the sensor calculates where a piece of trash will land, it transmits the data so that the garbage collector can chase after it.

Luckily, this isn't one of those garage inventions that was conceived as a way of showing off on the internet. FRP plans to patent the device in hopes of eventually developing a product for consumers. He's currently working to improve the Smart Trashbox's accuracy -- which is something we'll also have to do in the meantime.

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Tuan Nguyen

Contributing Editor

Contributing Editor Tuan C. Nguyen is a freelance science journalist based in New York City. He has written for the U.S. News and World Report, Fox News, MSNBC, ABC News, AOL, Yahoo! News and LiveScience. Formerly, he was reporter and producer for the technology section of He holds degrees from the University of California Los Angeles and the City University of New York's Graduate School of Journalism. Follow him on Twitter. Disclosure