Wearable-Devices

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Wearable Tech TV: 2 Hours of Back-to-Back Wearables

Happy Friday Future Geeks!

Got some time on your hands this weekend? Sit back and enjoy a YouTube playlist made up of videos highlighting wearables available or are just about to hit the market. With over 64 videos in total, this playlist covers smart glasses, fitness trackers, smartwatches and more.

Wearable AI system can detect a conversation's tone

It’s a fact of nature that a single conversation can be interpreted in very different ways. For people with anxiety or conditions such as Asperger’s, this can make social situations extremely stressful. But what if there was a more objective way to measure and understand our interactions?

Researchers from MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) and Institute of Medical Engineering and Science (IMES) say that they’ve gotten closer to a potential solution: an artificially intelligent, wearable system that can predict if a conversation is happy, sad, or neutral based on a person’s speech patterns and vitals.

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Eternity is a Moment

Here’s another old story to keep you (hopefully) happy while I work on a couple of new ones. It’s another one of my personal favorites.

-=oOo=-

Raven straightened up, a small wince passing over her face while her hand massaged the small of her back where the pain flared. She rolled her shoulders to work out the cramping, then relaxed and leaned on the hoe, observing what she had accomplished so far.

The weeds were gone and the furrow for the carrots was waiting for the seeds. The potatoes, beets and radishes were doing nicely, the onions reaching upwards with their feather-like leaves and the tomatoes just blushing from green to red, bending the slender stalks that supported the heavy fruit.

I’m not in the mood for more work in the garden today, she thought while a frown creased her brow. Her eyes glowed white. The soil shifted and two more furrows appeared as it quickly parted, seemingly by itself.

She sent the hoe floating into the tool shed and stretched, still stiff from the hard physical labor she had learned to enjoy. For a moment she thought about going into the cottage and taking a shower, but decided against it. She walked to the porch and picked up a wicker basket, whispered her mantra and transformed into a black, ghostly bird to fly over towards the nearby forest.

It took about an hour to fill the basket with mushrooms. She did it many times before; by now she had a very good idea of which ones were safe to eat, but in any case Garfield would be the final filter. No poisonous mushroom could sneak by his nose.

She looked up, trying to gauge the position of the sun. She hated wristwatches, and the only other wearable time-keeping device that she possessed was the Titans’ communicator, gathering dust in a locked chest in the attic of the cottage, together with Garfield’s. And with their uniforms.

And with the memories of a time long past. As bitter as they were sweet, as sad as they were hopeful.

It was past noon, but not too much, she concluded. No need for flying or teleporting. She’d walk. The forest held no danger; it was populated only by green shadows pockmarked with bright splotches of sunlight and the earthy scent of beeches and wild chestnuts and decaying vegetation hanging rich in the air. She took it in with a deep, satisfied breath and began her stroll home.

She sensed him soon enough, even though he was soundless as a cat. She forced herself to carry on walking as usual, the only sign of her awareness a small smile on her face. She also sensed… playfulness? Suddenly realizing what he was up to, she gasped and started whispering her mantra to phase away, but before she could begin on zinthos his paws were already landing on her shoulders, the rest of the green wolf’s body slamming into her back and carrying them both to the ground, the basket with mushrooms flying from her hands and her face burying itself deep into the carpet of fallen leaves.

She turned on her back, glaring at him as he transformed, the panting wolf snout turning into his familiar wide, boyish grin. His head bent and he planted a gentle kiss on her lips, his scent mingling with the smell of wet earth and leaves and grass. Her glare softened; he knew it was fake anyway. Her arms went around him and she kissed him back.

A mixture between a purr and a snarl came from deep in his throat as his kiss became harder, more intense, more insistent, more urgent. His desire flooded her in a delicious tide; her fingers curled in his hair and her arms tightened around him as she pulled him close, her own passion awakening and responding to his urge.

The need for air made their lips part for a moment. She gazed into his eyes, noticing that they were darker than usual. Her chest heaved with deep breaths, but she managed to half-whisper a question.

“Here?”

“Why not?” he growled back as his lips traveled over her cheek and to her neck.

“Mmmm. We do have a cottage. With rooms. And beds –”

Her argument was cut short by a gasp produced by him kissing her throat.

“Too far.”

“It’s only… a couple… hundred yards!”

“Still too far.”

Somehow she found the strength of will to push him away. His eyes shone with iridescent flecks of mischievous gold dancing inside. It took all of her reserves of self-control to ignore what her body was screaming at her.

“Easy for you to say. You’re not the one that has to lie on the cold, damp earth.”

“If that’s all it takes…”

He squirmed to the side and twisted onto his back, his hands gripping her and pulling her on top of him. “There,” he smirked, gently brushing off the wet leaves stuck to her hair.

“Not funny, Gar!”

“It wasn’t meant to be,” he replied and closed her mouth with a kiss.

[Continues below]

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The Google Glass of Helmets Wins at SXSW 

SXSW’s sixth annual accelerator pitch event wrapped up on Sunday with over 500 companies applied, 18 finalists and 6 winners. Taking home the big win in the Wearables category this year was the Google Glass for motorcyclists, the Skully Helmet.

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Wearable Tech in Tokyo                                             

If you can’t make it to the Wearable Expo happening in Tokyo, these are what you can expect to find: smartglasses, fitness trackers, smartwatches, health monitors and even pet communication devices.

Consumer-electronics companies are turning out wearable gadgets that anyone can buy — and increasingly on the cheap. Health and fitness devices are expected to dominate this market in the next few years.

On second thoughts, would you really want to know what your cat thinks?

Photographer: Kiyoshi Ota/Bloomberg

© 2015 Bloomberg Finance LP

Diabetic sweatbox

A wearable device that monitors compounds in your sweat for up to a week could help in the early detection of diabetes, according to the University of Texas, USA, research team.

The wearable device, pictured above, can detect cortisol, glucose and interleukin-6 – interconnected compounds linked to diabetes – in perspired sweat. ‘If a person has chronic stress, their cortisol levels increase, and their resulting insulin resistance will gradually drive their glucose levels out of the normal range. At that point, one could become pre-diabetic, which can progress to type 2 diabetes,’ said Dr Shalini Prasad, Professor of Bioengineering.

Not only is the Texas team’s device functional for one week without loss of signal integrity, it requires a far smaller degree of sweat – one to three microlitres, rather than 25 to 50 – to be effective. Prasad said, ‘We spent three years producing that evidence. At those low volumes, the biomolecules expressed are meaningful. We can do these three measurements in a continuous manner with that little sweat.’

The team’s paper, A new paradigm in sweat based wearable diagnostics biosensors using Room Temperature Ionic Liquids (RTILs), can be read on Nature.

Augmented and Virtual Reality Market Worth $1.06 Billion by 2018

A new report on augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) shows that this space is expected to grow over 15% from 2013 to 2018 reaching over $1 billion dollars by 2018. And this is just for dedicated AR/VR systems.

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Disney Patent ‘Alters Rides’ Based on Passenger Emotions

OBJ reports: A new Disney patent, titled “Sensing and Managing Vehicle Behavior Based on Occupant Awareness” looks at a way to read riders’ emotions or pre-determined interests to customize ride experiences. For example, the patent states that via a camera on the vehicle or a wearable ID device — say Disney’s MagicBands — a ride system could read rider facial expressions such as being excited or bored, and then alter the course of the attraction to increase/decrease speed, spin more or less often, change the tone of display scenery and/or more to improve the ride for guests.

“The technology would allow rides to adjust show content appropriate for pre-teens, teenagers or adults; or for thrill-seeking and non thrill-seeking passengers. The control system may also operate the vehicle to address (e.g. even solve in some cases) motion sickness issues for passengers such as by adjusting speed or movement patterns of a vehicle. [Through RFID or some other identifying system] access one or more ride experience goals (or expectations) for the occupant.

For example, the occupant may simply desire transportation while in the automated trackless vehicle and, hence, will not be wanting to interact with to be entertained by external display systems. In other cases, though, the occupant may have provided goals/expectations (e.g. by completing a questionnaire on a website or the like) that indicate they want to be educated during the ride, be entertained in a particular manner during the ride, be informed of sales on services or merchandise during the ride, and so on. In the same or other cases, the goals/expectations may indicate whether the ride experience” should be thrilling, as smooth as possible, or something in between, said the patent.  

The technology may add more speed changes, spins and sharp corners for riders who seem bored or have provided prior information that they enjoy thrill rides. In addition, the patent states it may be able to sense passenger comfort levels such as temperature and alter the air-conditioning of the ride to make it more pleasant.

Unpowered Ankle Exoskeleton Takes the Load Off a Long Hike

Evolution has had four million years to tinker with the locomotion experiment called walking on two feet. With that much time for natural selection to keep what works and chuck what doesn’t, there wouldn’t seem to be much room for improvement. 

But what about those tired feet you get after standing on them all day? Or the dull ache that starts creeping up your legs after walking for a few hours? It turns out that even evolutionary fine-tuning leaves room for improvement, and a number of public and private sector engineers have been working on exoskeletons to improve bipedal efficiency. 

Researchers have now built an ankle exoskeleton that requires no external chemical or electrical power and decreases the energy a person uses for walking by more than 7 percent, about the equivalent of taking off a 10-pound backpack. The team, from Carnegie Mellon, North Carolina State and the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, say this walking efficiency improvement is on par with units that run on powered motors. It could also be a simple and cheap way to help people whose work keeps them on their feet all day. Learn more and see images below.

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Big news! Sword Art Online the Movie has been revealed! The release date will be in 2017 Roadshow on Japan. The story will focus on Kirito and Asuna on the new game called “Ordinal Scale”.

“Ordinal Scale” is the name of a game after “Sword Art Online” and “Gun Gale Online.” The game uses a new augmented reality device called “Augma.” The English website describes “Augma” as follows:

A next-generation, wearable multi-device that looks like a pair of small headphones. In terms of size and portability, it is far superior to the existing VR machine “Amusphere.” Augma doesn’t have a full-dive function, however, its AR function is greatly enhanced to compensate for it. It can transmit visual, audio and tactual sensation data to players while they are awake, thus enabling the users to enjoy fitness and health management like a game.
Additionally, the site describes the “Ordinal Scale” game as follows:

“Ordinal Scale,” an ARMMO-RPG that was designed exclusively for “Augma.” Following its release, it has become the most discussed game due to its advanced technology. In this game, players can raise their rank by collecting items that appear in various places in the real world and by defeating monsters. This “Ranking System” is the main feature of the game, and in this system, each player’s status is determined by their rank which is indicated by an ordinal number instead of a cardinal number. As the result, high ranking players are given overwhelming power and often rank has become a major factor in deciding the outcome of a PvP battle.

Wearables As A Form of Human Expression [VIDEO]

The Creator’s Project is back with the third episode in its “Make It Wearable” YouTube series which explores the impact of wearable technology from various angles. This video focuses on the intersection of wearable tech and fashion in creating new opportunities for human expression.

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Engineered Cotton Makes Magical Garments

A Cornell University lab is applying nanotechnology to make textiles do a whole range of new and useful tricks.

Chemical and biomolecular engineer Juan Hinestroza and his team in the textiles nanotechnology lab are adding tiny bits of metal into fibrous material like cotton. When woven into a textile, the augmented yarn can produce light, kill disease-causing microbes or act as a filter to trap harmful gas. In addition, the metal oxides allow the yarn to be fashioned into conductive components like transistors for electronics.

“We want to transform traditional natural fibers into true engineering materials that are multifunctional and that can be customized to any demand,” Hinestroza said. “We are chemists, we are material scientists, we are designers, we want to create materials that will perform many functions, yet remain as flexible and as comfortable as a t-shirt or an old pair of jeans.”

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The Japanese website also streamed a trailer for the film, but it is region-locked to Japan. The film will open in Japan in 2017.

“Ordinal Scale” is the name of a game after “Sword Art Online” and “Gun Gale Online.” The game uses a new augmented reality device called “Augma.” The English website describes “Augma” as follows:

A next-generation, wearable multi-device that looks like a pair of small headphones. In terms of size and portability, it is far superior to the existing VR machine “Amusphere.” Augma doesn’t have a full-dive function, however, its AR function is greatly enhanced to compensate for it. It can transmit visual, audio and tactual sensation data to players while they are awake, thus enabling the users to enjoy fitness and health management like a game.
Additionally, the site describes the “Ordinal Scale” game as follows:

“Ordinal Scale,” an ARMMO-RPG that was designed exclusively for “Augma.” Following its release, it has become the most discussed game due to its advanced technology. In this game, players can raise their rank by collecting items that appear in various places in the real world and by defeating monsters. This “Ranking System” is the main feature of the game, and in this system, each player’s status is determined by their rank which is indicated by an ordinal number instead of a cardinal number. As the result, high ranking players are given overwhelming power and often rank has become a major factor in deciding the outcome of a PvP battle.

Source: ANN

Design Project Entry: Exploring our Solution + Prototype Research

Our final Final solution choice: App + Website + Wearable device

App

For the app, we really want the ability for the user to have all the necessary information right with them. We believe the software of the app should have these points below:

1. Patient’s Profile

Patient’s Name, age, diagnosis, details etc

2. Treatment Plan

Medication, outline, diet info, doctor’s notes etc

3. Book a GP/Doctor

Being able to request a GP in case of support with treatment plan

4. History

Previous visits, medications, treatment plans, etc

5. Current Medications

Alerts and notifications of the patient, outline of medications to take etc

6. Journal

Questions to answer, keeping up to date with medication and tracking

Website

The website really is an extension of the app. Similarly to the app, the website is more optimized to be used on a pc rather than a phone. Depending on the patient’s needs, they may find the website much more user-friendly than a phone app. The website will consist of the same components as the app above plus a few things: 

1.Home Page/ Dashboard

Photos and user reviews, Patient profile

2.Company Page

Company Description/ About section/ more info in General

3. Doctors Page

All the partnered doctors that signed up to become a legal doctor affiliated with MeDE

Wearable Device

Below is the list of major components of the design 

  • Screen
  • Heartbeat monitor
  • Emergency button
  • Speaker
  • LED light
  • Vibration motor
  • Home button
  • Charging port
  • Transmitter
  •  Accelerometer
  • GPS
  • Battery

Below is a quick sketch of what we envision in our minds when we thought about a wearable device that fits our requirements.

Plan for Future:

  1. Explore existing solutions
  2. Wearable device development
  3. App/ Website development

You’re looking at a video clip recorded on a prototype camera that powers itself without needing a battery or electric cord. This innovation might represent the early stages of something big, not just for snapping selfies or recording the latest funny thing your cat is doing, but more as an enabler of the ubiquitous sensing that will be at the heart of the Industrial Internet.

The Columbia University computer scientists and engineers who created it say they are aiming to build computer eyes that can last forever without a tether. Their breakthrough came in marrying the fundamentals of how a solar panel operates with the light-capturing function of video camera image sensors.

“Digital imaging is expected to enable many emerging fields including wearable devices, sensor networks, smart environments, personalized medicine, and the Internet of Things,” said computer scientist Shree Nayar, the head of the Columbia Vision Lab and inventor of the device. “A camera that can function as an untethered device forever—without any external power supply—would be incredibly useful.” Learn more and see pics below.

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Goodbye Pedometers! Activity Trackers Get Heart

The majority of wearable devices on the arms of consumers today are used for fitness and health. Fitbit, Jawbone, Nike and Lumobody are all seeing success with sensors that track steps, monitor your sleep and try to motivate you to get up and move.

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