Two years ago, I met Square CEO Jack Dorsey at Third Rail, one of his favorite coffee shops in downtown New York. He held up a small plastic square and told me that the future of payments was in this tiny device.
The entire industry was about to change, he said.
Dorsey was in the middle of a major change himself. Recently ousted from Twitter, the company he cofounded, he rebounded by shifting his famously intense focus to a new pain point: the way we pay.
A 3D food printer sounds like something out of Star Trek, but it's not out of this world. It's up and running at the French Culinary Institute in Manhattan - and in five years, it could be in your home.
As part of a project at Cornell University, a group of scientists and students built a 3D printer and began testing it out with food. The device attaches to a computer, which works as the "brain" behind the technology.
It doesn't look like a traditional printer; it's more like an industrial fabrication machine. Users load up the printer's syringes with raw food - anything with a liquid consistency, like soft chocolate, will work. The ingredient-filled syringes will then "print" icing on a cupcake. Or it'll print something more novel (i.e., terrifying) - like domes of turkey on a cutting board.
Welcome to the dawn of mobile currency.
For years, tech companies have demoed flashy prototypes of systems that let customers use their mobile phones in place of cash or credit cards. This year, those systems are heading out of the labs and into the real world.
"There's a lot of money at stake if it's done right," says Omar Green, director of strategic mobile initiatives at Intuit (INTU).
Starting Wednesday at Starbucks (SBUX, Fortune 500) stores throughout the U.S., the cashier can now scan your phone to deduct payment for your latté from the balance on your pre-loaded Starbucks card. Splitting the dinner bill with a friend? Download Bump, and you can beam over the cash from your PayPal account.
Read the rest of "Your mobile phone is becoming your wallet" on CNNMoney.
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