After generating the instructions for making my front door key in the KeyMe app running on Marsh’s iPhone, I wrote the code down in a notebook and took it to a locksmith close to the Popular Science office, Elite Locksmith on East 33rd Street. The instructions looked like a jumble of letters and numbers to me, but the two men working there said they would be able to cut a key from it. They would charge more for such a job—”probably like ten bucks,” one locksmith says, rather than their usual $2.50. The extra charge is for the extra work it takes to look up the different teeth depths and cut the key by hand.
One of the smiths pointed to the code in my notebook and said, “You should keep that in case you ever lose your key.”
Popular Science reports that there is an iPhone app that allows you to digitally copy your keys, and use the digital copy to make a real copy at your local locksmith. It is kind of amazing, and also kind of terrifying in a James-Bond-spy-movie kind of way. I mean, you could essentially copy all of my keys into your phone if you’re visiting me and I’m in the bathroom, or whatever scenario will have me be somewhere else and my keys in front of you.
My current backup plan in the event that I lose my keys or lock them in my apartment is keeping an extra pair at a close friend’s house. Also, I don’t have very much to steal, unless you want a really great knife set, or an old couch.