back to article Squeeze the banana to log into this office Wi-Fi

In some offices, you have to ask around for the Wi-Fi password, or find it written down on a bit of paper. In others, you do it by poking a banana. Danish network engineer Stefan Milo constructed his fruity authentication system by wiring a piece of fruit to a Makey Makey board and a Raspberry Pi mounted on acrylic glass. The …

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    1. frank ly Silver badge

      All bananas in any kind of office go mouldy and funny after a couple of days. It's good to get some use out of them.

    2. John Bailey

      "Surely the banana will go all mouldy and funny after a couple of days, though?"

      Yes. But it is classed as a consumable.

      "But it's a nice idea."

      And high in potassium.

      1. Roq D. Kasba

        Corporate fruit bowl bananas are so underripe, a chance for the starches to break down into sugars is not a big obstacle - it then becomes more pleasant to eat, and you can replace it with another inedible one.

    3. JeffyPoooh Silver badge
      Pint

      "...small piece of paper that someone printed out on an A4... ...I cringe"

      It perfectly obvious that the total environmental footprint of the banana-based system is at least a couple of orders of magnitude higher than the paper-based system. Just the banana-to-paper ratio makes it obvious. Let alone the continuous power consumption, even sans-banana.

      Planet killer.

      1. Danny 14 Silver badge

        Re: "...small piece of paper that someone printed out on an A4... ...I cringe"

        The bananas given in our staffroom are green and crunchy. They have a really fine balance as you need to keep on in your pigeon hole for precisely 2.25 days. If you wait longer they instantly turn black and mushy.

      2. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

        Re: "...small piece of paper that someone printed out on an A4... ...I cringe"

        The real problem, as I see it, is the well-known banana genetic bottleneck.

        Banana plants are asexual rhizomatic herbs; the banana fruit is a vestigial berry. So you basically have a closed-source system here with a single point of failure from an unreliable supplier.

        Should've gone with a tomato, if you had to have a berry. (Handy rule of thumb: Sexually-functional berries are more reliable.) Or skipped the berries entirely and used a strawberry, which of course is a fleshy stem.

  2. TechnicalBen Silver badge
    Joke

    I think...

    The idea is bananas.

    In a few weeks the security on that might be a bit stale.

    With all the multiple users it has a high risk of catching some bugs.

    They may have taken "code monkeys" too literally.

    Finally, his project was never "Finnished"... it was "Danished".

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: I think...

      Dear TechnicalBen, I think you should Split!

    2. Darryl

      Re: I think...

      I thought it was a pretty good way to "Dole" out WiFi passwords

  3. Alister Silver badge

    I'm sorry, but why pick a banana, surely their MTBF is the lowest of just about any fruit.

    1. ZSn

      Surely you mean mean time between eating?

    2. Zarno

      Better a banana than a durian!

    3. TeeCee Gold badge

      Yes, but the banana provides a simple visual check of how close to failure it is. Change when >25% covered in brown spots.

      For a real problem fruit for this rig you can't beat a pear. Those little fuckers go from inedibly hard to overripe while your back's turned. A bowl of pears is a waste of space, unless you can scoff the lot in the brief few seconds while they're perfectly ripe.

  4. Ugotta B. Kiddingme
    Coffee/keyboard

    I read the sub-headline

    whilst enjoying a post-lunch coffee. Please advise where I should send the bill for replacement monitor, keyboard, shirt, and a nearby co-worker.

    Props for the clever solution to a problem but, one is forced to wonder if the device is indeed cellular, modular, AND interactivodular.

  5. Novex
    Coat

    There's something unerring about having the words 'banana' and 'log' in the same sentence...

    1. Novex

      Doh! That should read 'unnerving', not 'unerring'...

    2. agatum
      Coat

      > words 'banana' and 'log' in the same sentence...

      That's nothing if you consider there are words 'banana' and 'hammock' in the same word...

  6. Sgt_Oddball Silver badge

    could be worse

    It could request that you pull on a sausage or squish some plums. I also have to wonder if the cost of fruit / extra electricity (whilst I admit it will be small but it's an extra machine that wouldn't have otherwise been running. Unless you turn off the Secretaries machine in which case all the better) would offset the cost of the paper?

    1. Preston Munchensonton
      Coat

      Re: could be worse

      Could be far worse, like the South Park vehicle (IT) invented by Mr. Garrison:

      http://youtu.be/JscQXDsSgco

      That would be going the extra mile.

  7. Scott 53

    Well done

    + several for the Banana Phone reference

  8. Christoph Silver badge

    Banana!

    No good if there are any minions about.

    1. TheOtherHobbes

      Re: Banana!

      Banana??

      Banana!

      BA NA NA!!!

      [slap]

      [explosion with running around and screaming]

      Another typical project meeting then.

  9. Triboolean
    Coat

    Do you get a better grade of key if you stroke or rub the banana instead of just touching it?

  10. David Robinson 1

    What if you have an Apple device?

    1. Stoneshop Silver badge
      Go

      Apple?

      http://toastytech.com/guis/banana-fritos.gif

  11. earl grey Silver badge
    Headmaster

    acrylic glass - WTF?

    Is it a piece of hardened silica and chems or a piece of reconstructed petro chemistry?

    1. Voyna i Mor Silver badge

      Re: acrylic glass - WTF?

      It meets both the dictionary definition of a transparent hard substance used to make windows, and the chemistry definition of a substance that hardens without crystallisation. So yes, acrylic glass.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: acrylic glass - WTF?

        Just to be a pedant, acrylic forms a regular repeating polymer, therefore it is not a glass.

        1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
          Paris Hilton

          Re: acrylic glass - WTF?

          So it's lucite?

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: acrylic glass - WTF?

          To be an even bigger pedant, a glass is a solid with no regular long-range structure. Most materials can exist in the form of a glass - even if their usual form is crystalline. For example, both water and some metal alloys will form a glass in the right conditions.

          Furthermore, crystallinity is not a yes or no proposition: it is quite possible (and in the case of polymers, even common) to form a structure where microscopic parts of the material form a regular, crystalline structure, while other, connected regions are amorphous.

          A regular repeating structure of the polymer chain is necessary, but does not guarantee that it will form a crystalline material (ie a material with regular long-range structure). Depending on the technique used for polymerization and the subsequent handling, the resulting polymer may have crystallinity anywhere in the 0 to 100% range.

          1. Danny 14 Silver badge

            Re: acrylic glass - WTF?

            so you could make glass out of beer? Or bacon?

            mmm bacon.

  12. pewpie
    Coat

    Is that a keygen in your pocket?

    Or are you just I'll get my coat.

  13. Camilla Smythe Silver badge

    I suppose using a push button would....

    My Keyboard is Full of Eels..

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G6D1YI-41ao

    http://www.royaldanishfish.com/the-worlds-most-responsible-eel-farm-is-located-in-denmark.aspx

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electric_eel

    "Please tickle the Eel for your Wifi Pass."

  14. daajjall

    Unfunny Hunic stuff

    Any intelligent person would have used a Banana Pi!

    1. VinceH Silver badge
      Pint

      Re: Unfunny Hunic stuff

      You stole the comment I was going to make. Have one of these:

    2. hplasm Silver badge
      Holmes

      Re: Unfunny Hunic stuff

      This is better- Banana && Raspberry PI!

      1. sorry, what?
        Boffin

        Re: Unfunny Hunic stuff

        "Banana && Raspberry" - not a logical combination if you ask me...

        1. davidp231

          Re: Unfunny Hunic stuff

          Banana-berry Pi?

  15. sorry, what?
    Devil

    Seriously though...

    How does the $corp track the pr0n downloads back to the banana fondler? Does the Pi not also need a web cam for capturing the goofy smile of the bendy fruit tickler?

  16. ZanzibarRastapopulous

    Every day....

    I would come in and obtain my code crushing the banana into a pulp in my fist and wiping the excreta on the imbeciles desk.

    (We don't have an enormously supportive environment here)

  17. daajjall

    Yeah, great minds think alike, eh?

  18. MotionCompensation

    Day O, day O

    Daylight come and me wan' go home

  19. a_yank_lurker Silver badge

    A new meaning to monkeying around, eh?

  20. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken Silver badge

    "And now I eat the banana!"

    Does it also work with passion fruit or mango or raspberries (and so on)?

    And what happens when someone approaches the device with a pointed stick?

    1. Pompous Git Silver badge

      And what happens when someone approaches the device with a pointed stick?

      And what happens when some enviro whacko approaches it with a Geiger counter? Oh noes! Radiation sickness! My hair's falling out!

  21. Martin Maloney
    Coat

    The banana keygen

    I find it a-peeling.

  22. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    Banana-pi?

    More power with one of these appropriately named devices

    http://www.banana-pi.com/eacp_view.asp?id=87

    http://www.banana-pi.com/eacp_view.asp?id=78

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Headmaster

    Fruit?

    Bananas are herbs!

    1. PunkTiger
      Boffin

      Re: Fruit?

      Botanically speaking, the banana is a berry.

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