Prosthetics have come a long way since the days of wooden legs. Now a team of Stanford researchers says it's taken a big step towards developing an artificial skin that can actually "feel" pressure and could someday help amputees and burn victims.
Spray-on carbon nanotubes and deformable silicone storing an electrical charge form the stretchy, sensitive material that's being billed as a synthetic skin prototype by the team of Stanford researchers led by associate professor of chemical engineering Zhenan Bao that developed it. The flexible, skin-like sensor can be stretched in any direction without tearing, losing its shape, or wrinkling and it's sensitive enough to detect a wide range of pressure.
"This sensor can register pressure ranging from a firm pinch between your thumb and forefinger to twice the pressure exerted by an elephant standing on one foot," Darren Lipomi, a Stanford post-doctoral researcher who helped develop the artificial skin sensor, told PopSci.com.
These days, everything from our mobile phones to our iPods have WiFi capability, so why not put it in a device where it really matters, like a pacemaker? Apparently, a New York woman was the first to receive such a device, and it is designed to upload any troubling stats tol her doctor should it pick up anything abnormal.
We like seeing technology used to keep people safe, and this saves time as well, since most of her normal tests are now done on the fly, with results delivered without an appointment needing to be made.
Read More | Daily Tech
The Sad Scale app from Deep Pockets assesses your emotional state, even if you think you are already aware of it. Created by a physician, answer a series of 20 Zung standardized questions that will be scored and you will be told where you stand on a Depression, Geriatric or Post Partum Scale. While this is not a substitute for real therapy, it will save the last 30 entries that can be e-d to your doctor. The iPhone and iPod touch application is available at the App Store for $.99.
Read More | Sad Scale
Even doctors love Twitter. Last week surgeons from the Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, Michigan sent short updates while removing a cancerous tumor from a man’s kidney. Sent by the chief resident, the messages were watched by medical students, doctors and perhaps fans of “Grey’s Anatomy.” Four months ago, Robert Hendrick, while under local anesthesia, tweeted his varicose vein removal surgery while the event was taking place. He claimed that it not only took his mind off it and lessened his nervousness, but family and friends were there to support him.
Read More | CNN
Worried about the flu? Google Flu Trends uses several search terms to figure out where the next outbreak may occur. Launched Tuesday, they collaborated with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to get tracking data from a 5 year period. Hit the site, move your mouse over the state, and get the current status of outbreak.
Dr. Joseph Bresee, chief of the epidemiology and prevention branch in the CDC’s influenza division, claims, “In theory at least, this idea can be used for any disease and any health problem.”
Read More | CNN
The Japanese company Prop has developed a Human Airbag for seniors. The strap-on device deploys in a few seconds if the wearer falls and can’t get up. It consists of 3 airbags that inflate with compressed gas, protecting the head and back. Unfortunately, the vest will not work if the user falls forward. The safety gadget costs $1000.00 and we are thinking that maybe Prop could design a mini-version for toddlers learning to walk.
Read More | Trendhunter
Don’t panic! The Interactive Talking First Aid Guide will get you through almost any emergency. Press a lighted key and the device will ask you a few yes/no questions, then give you calm step-by-step instructions in English or Spanish. There are 8 categories and 30 total interactive recordings. Carry the 3 1/2 x 7 x 1 1/2-inch, 11.5 oz. guide with you or mount it on a wall at home. The first aid assistant comes with 4 AA batteries and a $99.95 price.
Read More | Brookstone
Travis Watkins got together with other students and the University of So. Florida to build a wheelchair for his father who has Lou Gehrig’s Disease. He wanted the OFF-Road to roam on uneven surfaces such as grass, dirt, or sand. The University was so impressed that they will be offering the chair through their Rehab Ideas spin off company. We expect even with the $4,495.00 price tag, they will still have plenty of takers.
Read More | Newlaunches
The Voice Thermostat measures forehead temperature with infrared in about 1 1/2 seconds. It displays it on its screen as well as speaking out. It also saves the last 30 test results with exact date and time. The company claims that it is reliable within ± 0.2 ° C and can be used for liquids. At a size of 3.5 x 11 x 2.5 cm and a weight of 65g, the VT comes with a 3V lithium battery and a 2 year warranty for € 39.95 (~$63.00.) By the way, the German site didn’t say what language it speaks in.
Read More | Pro Idee (translated)
For years people have saved their pets through taxidermy, including Roy Rogers, who had Trigger and Bullet stuffed and placed in his museum. Now, thanks to a So. Korean company, you can have your pup forever immortalized by cloning. RNL Bio will gratefully accept your $150,000 and claims that there is a 25% possibility of success. Seoul National University will be performing the actual procedure and although RNL prefers creating guard dogs, they won’t turn down a beloved pet. While this is a nice idea if you adored your dog, you might want to double think the idea if he/she was hesitant to become housebroken when a puppy.
Read More | Korea Times
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