04_Drinkable_Book_Overhead_Tear-1024x806E-books might be changing the way we read, but paper books can learn new tricks, too. Electric Literature and Discover Magazine report on a “Drinkable Book” composed of a new kind of “pAge” filter paper treated with silver nanoparticles that can kill 99.9% of water-borne bacteria. The book, and a plastic case that can be used as a filter, is being developed for communities in the developing world that have no access to sanitary water sources. A single book could provide up to four years of water filtration capability to a family who would otherwise have no source of drinkable water.

At the moment, the manufacturing process for the paper is slow and expensive, but Theresa Dankovich, the Carnegie Mellon scientist who invented it, is seeking funding to find a way to mass produce it cheaply and distribute it around the world.

Lest you think the digital world can’t keep up with this new development for old-fashioned paper, take heart: Boy Genius Report tells us about a Kickstarter project to develop a drinking flask cunningly disguised as a tablet. Maybe it’s not as useful as providing potable drinking water for the developing world, but it can at least provide some potable booze to liven up your boring office meeting.


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