Vice reports on the LOL Verifier, a device that won’t let you type out “LOL” in a message unless you’ve actually just laughed out loud:
[Brian] Moore, an artist who likes to play with technology to make a point, told Motherboard in a phone call that he had long been thinking about the plight of LOL. “The deflation of the LOL, as it were, was a realization when I started talking with friends. LOL does not say anything anymore. It might as well be punctuation,” he said.
“I wanted to figure out if there was a way to make something that would actually verify it,” he continued. “Finally I figured out a way to make it into a physical piece of hardware that sits between your keyboard and your computer and sniffs for an LOL.”
The physical device, a small black box with “LOL” printed on the front, is connected to the user’s computer by a cable. It has a big light in the center. When a user types “LOL,” the device listens for some form of laughter. If it detects passable laughter, the light turns green, and the device’s verification message—“✅LOL verified at [time]”—is inserted into the message. If no laughter is detected, the light turns red, and the typed “LOL” is switched out for another message, like “that’s funny” or “ha.”