Soon, all of the rock climbers I know are going to thank the kite flyers. A group of Squids (Squid Labs in Emeryville, CA) decided to put some sensors on their four string kite one day. The load sensors led to more sensors and a wire core in the rope. This is when they realized that rope isn’t just used to fly kites, and this technology could be used in a ton of different applications. The rope is smart, and tells you before it breaks, that it will break.
Hopefully with nano technology we’ll get this incorporated into fishing line. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve hooked the big one, and broke my line. If only my PDA alerted me right before that “snap”, I would know to let up and allow free Willie do his thing before I start reeling him in again.