According to a recent study published in Nature Biomedical Engineering , this hi-tech toilet is capable of recognizing you by scanning your anus and is also capable of analyzing the appearance of your bowel movements.
As trivial as it may sound, the study actually describes easily deployable hardware and software for long-term analysis of user health through data collection and human health models .
The ‘smart’ toilet, which is self-contained and works autonomously by taking advantage of pressure and motion sensors , analyzes the user’s urine using a standard colorimetric assay, calculates the flow rate and volume of urine using computer vision as a meter urinary flow.
It also classifies feces according to the Bristol scale using deep learning , with performance comparable to the performance of trained medical personnel.
Individual users are identified through a fingerprint scanner embedded in the release lever, as well as by ‘anal fingerprint’ (yes, the researchers called it an anal fingerprint). A camera in the toilet module takes images of the user’s anus, allowing an algorithm to link the image of the anus to a specific person in later use . The data is stored and analyzed securely on an encrypted server in the cloud.
The toilet may also have applications in longitudinal detection, diagnosis, and monitoring of specific patient populations.
Researchers are aware that the practical applications of such a sophisticated and expensive toilet are still a long way off (perhaps it could only be used in some hospitals), but consider it a first step in the future development of truly smart toilets . According to themselves they affirm:
Our goal is to include multiple clinically relevant assays in our system: (1) microfluidic observation of cellular components of urine, (2) quantitative physical analysis of defecation, and (3) biochemical analysis of sample-response-type stool, including genomic and microbiomics.