J is for jacking

Digital Robot

This post is part of a continuing series, “Digital: from A to Z,” that explores what it means to be “digital” from A to Z, broken down into individual blog posts diving deeper into various subjects. Check back regularly to see continuing posts as I work my way through the alphabet and let me know: What’s in your A to Z of digital? You can find me on twitter @Max_Hemingway or leave a comment below.

Jacking is a term used when you plug into something. Body jacking is a growing area where the body is being used, from generating power through movement, to implanting chips to interact with the environment such as to open a door or unlock a computer.

Previously, the main development area for jackables has been in the medical industries with things like robotic limbs, artificial organs, pacemakers and implanted hearing aids. The market is now shifting, with recent examples including someone who had lost their eye replacing an eye with a camera to create films of what they see, to employees being implanted with chips to open doors and use the vending machines. There are also bioables that collect data on your body, such as glucose levels, using sensors that penetrate the skin.

Whilst there are some medical and ethical questions to be looked at around the growing use of jacking, the evolving market for non-medical use (i.e., chips implanted under the skin) is starting to create a demand that will trigger these debates.

Being implanted with a chip under the skin may not be for everyone, but this is a growing area where it may become part of an induction to a new company on your first day.

There are no clear standards at the moment, and chips can use a number of technologies such as NFC or RFID to operate the surrounding environment. Consideration should be give to those that do not want to be implanted or contractors who may not want lots of chips in their bodies.

There have been a number of demonstrations around the insertion of the chips. In some instances professional tattoo artists are used to insert the chips, as they have a level of training around injecting the skin. What has yet to be seen is the removal of the chip should someone leave a company or it needs replacing for some reason.

Join me next time as I look at “K is for knowledge” in my Digital A-Z series.  See my last post, I is for IoT.

This entry was originally posted in Max’s blog.

Max Hemingway is a senior architect for DXC in the United Kingdom. With more than 25 years of experience, he has a broad and deep range of technical knowledge and is able to translate business needs into IT-based solutions. Currently the chief architect of the BAE Systems account in the UK, Max has a proven track record acquired through continual client engagement and delivery of leading edge infrastructures, all of which have delivered positive results for end-clients, including IT cost reduction, expansion of service capability and increased revenues.


  1. […] Join me next time as I look at “L is for legal” in my Digital A-Z series.  See my last post, J is for jacking. […]

  2. […] an event or action such as turning off lights. Other developments we are seeing are implants (jackables), providing a different way of interfacing with devices, such as turning things on/off as you walk […]

  3. […] A-Z of Digital – J is for jacking […]

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