We were walking into the Missoula Target last night, commenting about how the new 'abandoned syringe' is now 'abandoned face mask,' as where ever you go, you see blue medical masks littering parking lots. I wonder if these mistakenly fall out of purses and pockets, or accidentally blow out of car windows, but more likely, it's the result of mask deniers who want to display their defiance by littering the earth. Anyway, we were noticing those as we were grabbing a shopping cart, which we thought had some litter in the bottom. But it wasn't an abandoned flyer, it was actually a warning not to steal carts.

The notes at the bottom of Target's fancy red carts basically warn shoppers that if you get too close to the edge of the parking lot with 'em, the wheels will become disabled. Translation: Dear Potential Cart Thieves, don't waste your time, they're chipped to stop you in your tracks. This is likely Target's response to seeing their carts littered across and around Reserve Street bridge and beyond. Shopping carts typically cost between $75 and $150, with some as expensive at $400 each, so this new system should save Target Corporation some revenue.

Photo by Angel

I was curious as to how this works, turns out there's a motherboard inside the store, with a perimeter antenna around the parking lot. If you really need to nerd out on it, here's an exciting 3 minute explanation.