Monday, May 05, 2008

Paying for the London Underground with a dissolved, naked Oyster card

Source: http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/boingboing/iBag/~3/283755674/paying-for-the-londo.html

In this video, Flickr user Chriswoebken dissolves one of the London Underground's RFID-based Oyster cards with nail-polish remover, leaving behind nothing but the chip and its antenna -- and then gets on and off the tube using nothing but a flimsy bit of electronics, sometimes in his hand, sometimes taped to a sheet of paper.

I've been trying to come up with a good Oyster killing method since Transport for London made Oysters near-mandatory (you can't get a week-long pass without any Oyster anymore, and the buses are incredibly expensive if you don't pay by Oyster). In my ideal world, I'd pay cash for an Oyster card, use it for a couple weeks, trash it, and get a new one, so that there would be no long-term ride history for me on file.

Unfortunately, the ticket-agents have started to charge £3 for replacement Oyster cards, which I'm sure they'd waive if the card was malfunctioning. Microwaving the card leaves behind some unfortunate burn-marks.

The nice thing about this video is that it hints at the location of the RFID chip in the Oyster, which appears to be one of the corners. Anyone know which? Link (via Beyond the Beyond)

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