Swipe, extracting data from an ID.


Ringing the bell to the Americans. This is the final goal of Swipe, a machine designed by Beatriz de Costa, Jamie Schulte and Brooke Singer. For improving its effectiveness they have camouflaged their machine as an alcoholic drinks dispenser. Its behaviors seems normal: you insert coins, then a identification document to check your age, and then you can choose the drink, but… surprise! The output is a sheet of paper and not the expected alcoholic drink. A computer matching process has retrieved data about you, basing on the inserted i.d. (a driver license, for example). As a matter of fact, it’s not just the data needed to check the customers’ age that emerge, but a much more detailed profile. The project come up from the the feelings of many restless Americans, tired of the massive privacy violations made by unscrupulous businessmen and the government after 9/11, to inform their fellow citizens. The latter seem still unaware of the sneaky mechanism triggered every time they buy a bottle of wine or a cigarette packet. In the actual socio-political-economical scenario, the deceits must be unmasked to claim our freedom in the daily life, as not only a right but also a moral imperative. Only through the shared awareness is possible to make your voice heard and maintain your ability to to put up a fight.