IBM Patents A Way To Help People Lose Weight


Photo: Flickr/Tony Alter

IBM has been awarded a patent for a game that will pay rewards to people who eat right.IBM researcher Michael Paolini is the inventor of the game and says he lost 18 pounds by playing it, reports the New York Times. Paolini says the idea is to give people immediate rewards for doing the right thing.

So, choose an apple instead of a slice of apple pie, and, ca-ching!, you could get 50 cents awarded to your account.

The game was inspired by a hybrid car, the Honda Insight, that instantly tells drivers how their driving is affecting their gas mileage, Paolini told the Times.

The inventor thinks that companies or insurers may want to use the game to encourage employees to lose weight and reduce their risk for obesity-related disease. That sounds nice but there is a drawback. The game relies on people honestly recording what they’ve eaten.

OK, so anything that makes dieting fun and instantly rewarding is a cool idea. But the idea that USPTO actually granted IBM a patent on this game, that makes us want to choke.

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