MADRID -- Students at the Miami Ad School Madrid, which bills itself as "The School of Pop Culture Engineering," have created The Worldwide Machine, capable of accepting virtually any currency or combination of coins and bills from across the globe for a transaction.
The three students working on the project -- Erika Reyes, Gabriel Morais and Sandra Silva -- have described it as a way to promote a globalized brand. Currently prototyped as a Coca-Cola vender, the machine has garnered worldwide attention.
The core concept is not altogether new, as similar technology exists in the ATM field. Unique to The Worldwide Machine, however, is that foreign currency ATMs only allow users to withdraw multiple currencies, while the prototype Coke vender can also accept them.
Like the foreign currency cash machines on the market, the student-designed beverage machine is equipped with an exchange calculator (it can work offline and online to access data). It also boasts sensors that will allow patrons to deposit coins or bills in multiple currencies.
"We had to develop new hardware and software," said Reyes. "We believe that the technology used in the cash machines is quite different, since those machines withdraw different currencies, but our Worldwide Machine is the only machine capable of accepting different currencies."
The machine, which is in the final stages of construction, should be completed soon, according to the trio of inventors. When completed, it is expected to make its way to such locations as airports and hotels, as well as to international events like the World Cup and Olympic Games.