In China, health insurance companies apparently offer discounts to people who can prove they get enough exercise every day by using their mobile phones to monitor their movement. Only instead of actually going for walks, some people use ingenious perpetuum mobile devices to cheat the system.
I first learned about China’s “mobile phone cradles” a few days ago, after seeing a picture of a strange perpetuum mobile device with a smartphone attached to it, tweeted by Chinese comedian Dashan (@akaDashan). He had spotted it in a restaurant in Harbin, where patrons were invited to use it to trick their phones’ pedometer apps into recording thousands of steps artificially, while they relaxed, and had a bite to eat or a drink. Why would anyone want to do that, you ask? Well, that’s where it gets interesting.