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Added 24 March, 2014

Finding lost stuff keeps getting easier

Before the digital era, it was much harder to find items you lost or misplaced. With the advent of mobile technology and all the software that goes with it, only the seriously disorganized should now be permanently parted with their things. Today, parked cars are easily found in parking lots with apps that pinpoint them on a map. Keys now hang on fobs embedded with easily locatable RFID tags, and mobile devices and laptops themselves are fitted with tracker software that lets owners see where they are, even when they are halfway across the world. Some goods need slightly simpler solutions, however. Take children's clothing, hats, musical instruments, uniforms and backpacks, for example. Fact is, kids leave things lying around at school, at camp, and elsewhere. Now an Australian company called StrayHat is applying a contemporary solution by creating clothing nametags with QR codes. In addition to being printed with the owner's name, these tags are also embedded with digitally-secure contact information. Each StrayHat label is different and unique. When an item is found, the finder only needs to scan the label's QR code which automatically sends a private message to parents or owners. In the future, will lost-and-found offices finally go out of business?

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