crane cascadeHow would you feel about a vending machine which tweets about the snack you just bought, every time you buy one? It may sound ridiculous but this is exactly what one snack vending machine does at Nottinghack, based in the East Midlands.

Nottinghack is a Nottingham based group of hackers, makers and crafty creatives. The company says it is not an illegal hacking group but is a creative and educational group which hacks hardware as a hobby.

One of the group’s hackers, James Fowkes, ingeniously hacked their office snack vending machine so that it tweets every time someone buys something from the snack vending machine. “Holly” is the humanoid name given to a computer server which records who buys snacks when they use their ID card to make a snack purchase from the vending machine. She also knows which snack has been purchased and the price of that transaction.

The server then tweets the information to all of Holly’s Twitter followers:

“Daniel purchased a 50p chocolate bar from the snack vending machine.”

As you may imagine the hack hasn’t been welcomed by everyone! But aside from the opinions of those who may or may not enjoy the public announcements which broadcast their snacking habits, it is a fun hack and one which offers a view into the possibility of creating smart gadgets such as smart-toasters.

And as far as we are concerned it’s a great way to put snack vending machines on the radar.