Funtoxication iPhone app can tell if you're drunk, then call a cab
Minneapolis-based iPhone app developer Michael Tankenoff wants to help bar-goers gauge their sobriety with Funtoxication, a program that calculates blood alcohol content (BAC), locates cabs, and offers interactive games to test reaction times. The Hot Dish checked in with Tankenoff to find out how the app works and where he likes to deploy it. "Once it was finished," he says, "finding friends to test it out was much easier than anticipated."
1. Where did the idea come from? As a Minneapolis native and avid bar-goer, I was browsing the selection of nightlife-related iPhone apps during a particularly fuzzy Sunday morning. At the time, there were only a few BAC calculator apps. However, none of them had all of the crucial elements to effectively estimate a users BAC level (age, sex, weight, time, alcohol type/percentage alcohol content). And none of them had any entertainment value. I thought the potential was there to create a more efficient and interesting app that's a must-have for anyone over 21 who likes to go out. 2. Could you explain how the real-time tracking BAC feature works? You are able to create up to four personal profiles within the app. Each profile contains your age, weight, and sex. Once you add your first drink into a profile, the app will begin tracking your BAC from that moment (though you can adjust the time function if you have been drinking for a while). You can close the app and return to it at any time and it will still keep track of your current BAC.
The drink database varies from drink size, alcohol type (wine, beer, liquor), and alcohol variety (light beer, stout, etc.). Because each alcohol percentage is different, that's already built into each drink-alcohol type (a feature other BAC apps don't have).
3. And the taxi function? Maybe the coolest feature of Funtoxication, though, is that once you are over the legal limit to drive, a message will pop up indicating that you're getting kind of drunk and ask you if you need a taxi. If you choose "yes" when prompted, it will redirect you to a Google taxi search.
4. What are your favorite Twin Cities bars? As a North Loop native, it's my duty to put Cuzzys as my clear favorite. You cannot draw up a more quintessential dive bar if you tried. The slanted original floor, signed dollar bills lining the walls, PBR by the six-pack, photo-hunt ... to name a few highlights. The other favorites where Funtoxication could clearly come in handy would be: Nye's (because it's the coolest polka bar on the planet, if there is such a thing), the Bulldog, the Red Dragon (the Wondrous Punch), the Monte Carlo, and the Local (can't beat a plain old shot of Jameson).
5. How about your favorite local brews? Grain Belt (iconic Minneapolis landmark, and great beer), Summit (still waiting to do the brewery tour), and Surly.
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