Blind Tech, Senior Surveillance and Stress
BrainGrain — Dec. 31. 2015
- — Blind Sweet Spot
Until now, our four legged best friends have been taking care of many of their blind human folks. Guide dogs have proven to be excellent everyday necessities for visually impaired people that still want to cope with daily routines. Dogs have proven to be the most suited for this job.
With a little bit of luck and patience, technological advancements can potentially even further increase blind people’s quality of life.
“Universities and companies like IBM, Microsoft and Baidu are working on technologies ranging from smart glasses to better computer-vision software that could one day serve as digital eyes for the estimated 285 million visually impaired people worldwide.”
2. — Tech That Failed
“As quickly as the fad took off, popular hoverboards were pulled by Amazon and banned by airlines as a threat.”
and everybody could go on living a peaceful life without any further distractions.
Nonsense, 2015 was filled with technological disasters like the mentioned exploding hoverboards. MIT summarizes this year in horrible technology with 6 worthy mentions of nanotainers, coal power, gene editing, Yahoo and phone records.
3. — Senior Health Surveillance
Reading the numbers, health tracking for senior citizens seems like a worthwhile endeavor.
“The data from the pilot project look promising. A cohort of 34 older adults who used the Healthsense monitoring system had around 50 percent fewer emergency room visits and hospital admissions than those with similar health issues who didn’t have the sensors.”
On the other hand, it is quite appropriate to ask how far tracking mechanisms can invade people’s privacy and how much personal data is needed to make important medical decisions?! I certainly know that the last fitness tracker i tried did not help me get into shape. It just made me sad.
4. — Trauma, Stress and PTSD
“In the past 25 years, Yehuda has done as much as any scientist to understand the debilitating disorder. Yehuda, a professor of psychiatry and neuroscience, is the director of the Traumatic Stress Studies Division at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City. She has worked with war veterans, Holocaust survivors, and other trauma victims to gather insights for numerous research papers that detail the biological roots of PTSD.”
- A recent study on the effects of soldiers deployed at different stages of the Iraq war on the development of PTSD [..] found that among the men — about half the overall group — the insurgency-phase veterans were more than twice as likely to have a diagnosis of PTSD, compared with those who served in either of the other two phases.
5. — Daily Outliers
- “Considering that the city of Las Vegas from Fallout: New Vegas was the target of 77 nuclear warheads alone, and the fact that page 11 of the Fallout 1 game manual states that the average size of a nuclear warhead is between 200–750 kilotons instead of a measly 15, it’s easy to guess that the consequences would be suitably apocalyptic.” How accurate is a post H-Bomb scenario like that from the Fallout series?
- Let’s hope they build that underwater museum big enough. So claustrophobics won’t feel like chewing on their toes while watching nearly extinct sea creatures and other objects.
- “Only twice before has the Arctic been so warm in winter. Residents of Iceland are bracing for conditions to grow much worse as one of the most powerful storms ever recorded blasts through the North Atlantic.”
- Smartphones combined with walking make people behave like lemmings.