Healthcare Where You Need It

Great new medical examination device from Tyto Care.

Handheld, mobile, cloud-based solution for performing a basic medical examination, anywhere–either remotely guided by an online physician or using the 3D avatar on the device itself for conducting a self-examination.

The device looks like the one in the doctors office that checks your ears, but it also has sensors to listen to your heart and lungs, and for viewing your eyes, throat, and skin, and for taking your temperature.

The results can be read by the end-user or sent to a physician for review and diagnosis.

When your not feeling well or aren’t sure what’s wrong–isn’t great to have the convenience to have your vitals checked from wherever you are and the self-sufficiency to even get and see your own basic medical stats.

In a time where we are under more stress to get adequate medical care due to families made up of dual working parents, jobs that are 24/7, and a declining ratio of medical professionals to patients–the Tyto seems like a breakthrough that can help us get checked and get help, anytime and place.

Now, we just need to get our medical practitioners online and in regular remote communication with their patients–so the traditional office visit and emergency room aren’t the only options for being seen. 😉

Social Networks–Online and At The Beach

Social Networks--Online and At The Beach

There was a comical editorial in the Wall Street Journal about Social Networks.

This guy, Farhad Manjoo, is addicted to Twitter.

He writes: “I check it first thing in the morning, last thing at night, and about a billion times in between.”

And he admits he doesn’t understand his own addiction: “I’ve never been able to explain what I get out of Twitter, or exactly why I find it so enthralling.”

Manjoo is afraid of what an IPO will do to Twitter–will they have to advertise more, become more like Facebook, favor pictures over text, lose it’s strength in the area of breaking news–hopefully, he is referring to more than what he ate for breakfast!

People are spending inordinate amounts of time on social media–friending and following people they don’t even know!

Perhaps, it’s the fantasy–compliments of virtual reality on the Internet–of being associate–“friends” or “connected–with the rich, famous, powerful, and wise or with the kids who would beat us up in the schoolyard only years earlier.

Online–we’re all sort of friends, aren’t we?

Our avatars or online profiles don’t differentiate much between those we really like or not–we are free to pretty much follow anyone, anytime–unless they block you because you are annoying!

Virtual reality in social media–perhaps the great equalizer–the freedom fighters in the Middle East can post videos of the Sarin attacks as easily as the President can post his inaugural message.

The material is there and free for the ingest by everyone.

Social media has a purpose in bringing us together and spreading the word, videos, and pictures of the times–it make the big world smaller for us to get our arms around.

Then again, a social network of a few close family members or friends on the beach–also good, maybe better for the soul. 😉

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Liar, Liar, Pants On Fire

Liar, Liar, Pants On Fire

To catch a terrorist, you have to think like a terrorist or at least be able to get behind their lies and deception.

Terrorist want to gain entry, surveil their targets, plan their attack, assemble their weapons and tactics, avoid their pursuers, and execute maximum human, economic, and political damage.

To succeed, terrorists have to use lies and deceit to make their way through all the obstacles that the good guys put up.

Wired Magazine (February 2013) addresses some new interrogation technology being tested by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to catch the lies and the liars.

First of all, “people are really good at lying, and it’s incredibly hard to tell when we’re doing it.”

Moreover, most people “lie 10 times a day,” so it is routine and comes naturally to them.

In terms of detecting lies, we are not very good at it–in fact, we’re just better than chance–able to tell when someone is lying only 54% of the time.
Apparently, even with polygraph exams–their success is dependent more on the experience and finesse of the examiner and less on the polygraph tool.

However, with new research and development, DHS has come up with an automated interrogator–that enhances the success of catching a liar by combining multiple detection technologies.

The “interrogator bot” has three different sensors in use by the Embodied Avatar Kiosk.

– Infrared camera–“records eye movements and pupil dilation at up to 250 times per second–the stress of lying tends to cause the pupils to dilate”

– High-definition video camera–“captures fidgets such as shrugging, nodding, and scratching, which tend to increase during a deceptive statement”

– Microphone–“collects vocal data, because lies often come with minute changes in pitch” as well as “hesitation, changes in tempo and intonation, and spoken errors”

In the future, a additional sensors may be added for:

– Weight-sensing platform–to “measure leg and foot shifts or toe scrunches”

– 3-D camera–to “track the movements of a person’s entire body”

Aside from getting better deception-detection results from multiplying the sensing techniques, the interrogation kiosk benefits from communicating in multiple languages and being “consistent, tireless, and susceptible to neither persuasion not bribery.”

Another very cool feature being tested is tan interrogation avatar that actually resembles the person being interrogated using a camera and morphing software and making it look uncanny and “disturbing” at the same time–this can be quite familiar, disarming and unnerving.

By aggregating data points from many types of sensors and using behavioral analysis as a first line of defense followed by human questioning of those found to be lying, homeland security can proverbially light a fire under the pants of would be infiltrators and terrorists–and catch them before they make it to their next target. 😉

(Source Photo: here with attribution to Cosmic Jans)

>Holograms – Projecting Soon

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I think Holograms are the next big thing.

This example of a hologram on an an iPhone App is pretty amazing as an early version of what is to come.

Just wait for hologram phone calls and meetings and integration with everything social media.

I see things like avatars–graphical representations of users– as a precursor to actual 3-D projected images of ourselves that will be sitting in the classroom, going to the office, and even interacting socially like going on dates with our favorite other.

This is going to make things like Skype, Facetime, and Telepresence just baby steps in our ability to project ourselves across space and time and “be there” in ever more realistic ways participating and interacting with others.

As part of a training class a number of year ago already, I had the opportunity to see a spatial hologram that was very cool. So holograms are not limited to only people but entire environments that can be virtualized and this gives us the opportunity to test new ways of behaving and model and simulate new worlds.

This iPhone App is just a teaser of what is coming.