Every time you go down to the local hardware store to make a copy of your house key, doesn't it seem like the copy is noticeably worse than the original? A San Francisco company claims to not only make duplicates that are better
than the original, they also can do it using nothing more than a photo shot with your phone's camera.
The secret is making a key to fit the particular lock it's supposed to open (or close). Instead of merely replicating a key by grinding the contours of the original onto a blank (which tends to produce tiny errors each time the key is copied), Shloosl analyzes the depth of the teeth on the original, makes deductions about the lock it operates, and cuts the key with the width and spacing according to the specifications of the lock manufacturer (you can read more about their process here).
All that's needed is a high-res image of your key, taken with your phone, and then emailed to the company. For a cost of $5, Shloosl will then send you a duplicate in the mail. Visit their site for more info, including their security precautions.