There’s a new development under the sea: a smart glove that could help scuba divers help each other steer clear of danger.

Let’s unpack this device a little, which the researchers outlined in a paper titled “Underwater Gesture Recognition Meta-Gloves for Marine Immersive Communication.”

Despite what you sometimes see in SyFy original pictures, you can’t easily talk while scuba diving, and even if you could, how would anybody hear you underwater?

Scuba divers often communicate instead with hand signals.

It’s usually the most effective option, but it can still be a challenge if the divers aren’t looking right at each other, or if the water is dark, or if it’s cloudy or dirty or, say, if there’s an angry shark in between them.

This flexible, waterproof glove lets scuba divers communicate even when they can’t see each other directly.

It uses a series of sensors to detect hand movements, specifically a set of 16 gestures that signify the kinds of messages that divers might sign to each other, like “OK” or “Exit.”

The glove then sends those messages to the other nearby gloves which can decode the signs and relay the information.

Divers can not only send each other messages, they can send signs up to those above water.

So now we just need to train everybody on how to do the agreed-upon gesture for “Sharks in a tornado. Sharknado. Simply stunning.”

Boing Boing just pointed us toward the website After the Beep.

It’s an online answering machine, where you can leave your own anonymous voice message for the world to hear.

Some of them are from trolls, because of course they are, but there are also some genuinely nice ones, and some real surprises.

Like the person who called in to say “Megatron, you’ll never defeat me!”

At least I think it was a person and not a Transformer.

New e-glove could allow scuba divers shout ‘shark’ attack underwater (Interesting Engineering)

After the Beep is a website where users can leave an anonymous voicemail (Boing Boing)

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Photo by Neil Rickards via Flickr/Creative Commons