File under "Engineers with wa-a-a-a-y too much time on their hands."
A new service being tested by Tokyo-based NTT Communications Corp. sends out smells according to data received over the Internet.
Users attach a device to their laptops that resembles a crystal ball with a nozzle. The device receives aroma data from the central server and exudes fumes from the nozzle in accordance with that reading.
NTT is considering the system as a commercial product for aromatherapy, testing incense or just plain fun.
In a test version, shown at a Tokyo electronics store this week, the crystal ball sends combinations of 36 scents — natural oils, such as eucalyptus, sandalwood and basil — as horoscope readings.
Just imagine what this could do for Internet dating. You're online, chatting with some hottie, and she/he sends you a IAM (instant aroma message) of sandlewood and musk...or, or...ah, who am I kidding...this is just dumb.