Do you love the ease and convenience of using your smartphone s camera to identify paper money, but hate the thought that your hard work doesn t pay? A team of researchers studying the topology of circulating currency has found a way to monetize the time you spend identifying paper money with a new app for iOS, Android and Echo Spot and Show.
Cash Commander, available in the various app stores beginning April 2, resembles classic currency identification apps like Eye-Note and Money Reader, but with a twist: in addition to audibly identifying currency for you, the app captures a low-resolution video feed of your currency identification workflow, along with 10 high-resolution still images per second. Simply opt in to share this data with the expert currency topologists behind Cash Commander, and you ll receive a dollar back in Cash Commander Credit for every hundred unique bills you scan, regardless of denomination. By leveraging the power of the blind and visually-impaired community, a population that s already highly motivated to take frequent close-up pictures of our money, Cash Commander s inventors hope to advance the entire field of currency topology by building a large data set of circulating paper money images. Over time, these images can be used to track trends in how and where bills tend to fray and wear, whether the degree of wear influences a bill s frequency of circulation, and whether bills of larger denominations are handled with more respect than small bills. And who knows!?: if research made possible by CashCommander can prove that repeated exposure to tight folds shortens the life expectancy of paper money, maybe the Bureau of Engraving and Printing will finally design some accessible currency!
A few caveats: Cash Commander only recognizes and compensates based on US currency (for now). Cash Commander Credits are redeemable at Circuit City and your neighborhood bitcoin ATM. Please remember that Cash Commander will capture and upload live video and still images whenever it is open, so conserve your data by using it while connected to wifi; and please, be mindful of field of view and nearby reflective surfaces if you plan to capture your cash while indisposed. Now start counting down to April 2 and make your money pay!
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Risky Ships is an occasional Blind Bargains contributor, especially around early spring.