Wi-Fi mosquito killer coming to a porch near you | CNET News.com
Wi-Fi mosquito killer coming to a porch near you
By Stefanie Olsen
Staff Writer, CNET News.com
Published: November 21, 2005, 4:00 AM PST
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A biotechnology company with a specialty in killing mosquitoes is turning to wireless technology and computers to make a killing for itself.
American Biophysics, a small private company based in North Kingstown, R.I., runs a healthy business selling the "Mosquito Magnet," a system to rid American backyards of biting insects, according to its new CEO Devin Hosea.
Simply described, the magnet emits a humanlike scent that includes carbon dioxide and moisture to attract bloodsucking insects. When the bugs flutter past, they're sucked into and suffocated by a vacuumlike device.
Now AmBio, as the company is commonly called, is upping the ante with a "smart" mosquito net, or computerized defense system, to serve the corporate and public health sectors. By the first quarter of 2006, AmBio executives hope to have finalized sophisticated software to control a network of magnets--forming a kind of wide-scale fence--which will be able to communicate with a central network through wireless 802.11b technology.
It's unbelievable the lengths people will go to, to get rid of mosquitoes.
--Devin Hosea, AmBio CEO
That way, the system will be able to efficiently ward off bugs from golf courses and resorts, or even help mitigate cases of malaria in third world countries, according to Hosea.
"We got the idea from institutions that were jury-rigging our technology to computer networks and mesh networks, with PC panels, to see how many mosquitoes they'd caught or how much propane they had left...It's unbelievable the lengths people will go to, to get rid of mosquitoes," said Hosea, a former National Science Foundation Fellow in artificial intelligence.
"We've meshed a great mosquito-catching machine with a computer technology on top of it, and wireless network technology on top of that, and then turned it into a great defensive shield against mosquitoes coming into your habitat," he said.