bob metcalfe has just written in comm week about how a bunch of academics at cambridge university have hooked up a video frame-grabber pointing at a coffee pot to see whether there is still coffee in the machine.
it captures pictures of the coffee pot every few seconds at various resolutions and then a program connected to their server displays a small image of the the pot in the corner of the screen.
of course this leads to intriguing questions about how cameras could be connected to servers
and via various computer programmes the images shared with others on the same network.
but i can't see what people will use that for
mark my words - it will never catch on.